Senator Warren said this week that Democrats should campaign on the promotion of single payer healthcare.
As reported in the Wall Street Journal, she said, “President Obama tried to move us forward with healthcare coverage by using a conservative model that came from one of the conservative think tanks that had been advanced by a Republican governor in Massachusetts. Now it’s time for the next step. And the next step is single payer.”
This appears to be an effort to tie the Affordable Care Act’s shortcomings to the Right. It shouldn’t work. The final version of Obamacare was pushed through by the Left without a single Republican vote.
Nevertheless, we should welcome the opportunity to have a public discussion on the merits and drawbacks of a single payer healthcare system.
Ronald Reagan spoke in the early 1960s about what was then termed “socialized medicine”. He quoted Norman Thomas who once said, “The American People will never vote for socialism, but under the name of liberalism, the American People will adopt every fragment of the socialist program.”
That is what we are seeing here. It was predicted that the Affordable Care Act was designed to be a stepping stone to socialized medicine. Now, the Left is pursuing that next step.
To have a politician come out in favor of single payer healthcare is an opportunity to have a public discussion about whether or not this is a good thing for the country, especially with a large percentage of the millennial generation opposed to capitalism.
According to Wikipedia, “Single-payer healthcare is a healthcare system in which the state, financed by taxes, covers basic healthcare costs for all residents regardless of income, occupation, or health status.”
Ronald Reagan, in that same talk, pointed out that healthcare in the United States has historically been something to be envied – doctor/patient privacy, the right to choose a doctor, the right to switch doctors. He then asked that we look at it from the doctors perspective.
Under single payer healthcare, if the government is paying our medical bills, it’s a very short step to our doctors being considered government employees. From there, it’s a downward spiral. Our doctors lose freedoms. If the government pays the bills, do they gain the ability to control where a particular doctor chooses to practice, or what specialty a medical student is allowed to study? Does the government then gain the ability to determine a doctor’s pay?
The medical profession is roughly one-sixth of the American economy. If these types of things are allowed to happen to our medical professionals, it’s only a matter of time before Socialism creeps into other, or all, aspects of our economy.
These are the types of questions we need to be discussing publicly if we are seriously considering a single payer healthcare system. Let me encourage you to go to youtube and search “Reagan socialized medicine”. It’s ten minutes well worth your time.