The Wall Street Journal warned darkly in editorials in 1965 that Medicare amounted to “politicking with a nation’s health.” It quoted a British surgeon as saying that in Britain, government health care was “crumbling to utter ruin” and suggested that the United States might be heading in the same direction.
“The basic concerns and arguments were the same” in 1935 against Social Security, in 1965 against Medicare, and today against universal coverage, said Nancy J. Altman, author of “The Battle for Social Security,” a history of the program. (The quotes against Social Security above were taken from that book.)
These days, the critics of Medicare have come around because it manifestly works. Life expectancy for people who have reached the age of 65 has risen significantly. America is no longer shamed by elderly Americans suffering for lack of medical care…
Why is it broadly accepted that the elderly should have universal health care, while it’s immensely controversial to seek universal coverage for children? What’s the difference — except that health care for children is far cheaper?