by Steve C Finney, Jr
(Dallas, TX USA)
Original Date of Submission: October 2009
Well like so many others, I've spent an enormous amount of time watching the hearings in congress on C-Span as well as reading provisions of Bills and reading/listening to experts. The issue is simply too complex to write a simple solution.
However, in my opinion the first question is should health insurance companies be allowed to operate strictly on a protected for-profit basis? My answer is no.
First step is to eliminate the anti-trust exemption for the insurance companies that has existed since 1945 in the McCarran-Ferguson Act. Insurance companies are entitled to make profits, but 400%? I do think there is more of a moral and value component at play in addition to simple free enterprise. We are talking about the health and life and death issues of our citizens.
Second, allowing greater competition by having more choices and options is very important. This can be done by having several companies operating in a state and/or through providing a public option the way Medicare operates. I'm not so sure either or both are ineffective options.
Although we must preserve a healthy level of competition in the industry, the idea of a co-op or public option or even a trigger certainly has the ability to do so, the problem is the cost. But how do we pay?
Do we cut services at a time when people demand greater services? Hence government needs to increase revenue. If the marginal tax rates were adjusted upward by 3% and the revenue strictly earmarked for health services and not pork spending financing such reform would not be such a big issue.
Even just a repeal of the 2001 tax cut could do the job, however,
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