The Kennedy Socialized Medicine Triple Whammy
Over the weekend the Kennedy health care bill--aimed at inserting government into the nooks and crannies of every doctor's office and operating room--was leaked to the press. Not so coincidently, this enormous growth of government comes as Americans celebrate the 60th anniversary of George Orwell's book 1984.
In this book, Orwell depicts various insidious instances when Big Government engages in what is called “newspeak.” “Newspeak,” of course, is when the words of a language are distorted to fit a totalitarian regime's plan to restrict liberty.
There is little doubt that when Harry Reid and Ted Kennedy's people sat down to draft this bill, they took great pride in elevating “newspeak” from cliché to archetype. Doubtlessly laughing up their sleeves all the while, they named the bill that restricts and coerces millions of Americans the “American Choices Health Act.”
This bill, of course, neither improves American's health, nor their choices in health care.
Its goal is said to be to give all American's health care. But the only way it can get it done is by forcing individuals to take government-rationed health care while coercing the employers to take money from employees' paychecks to pay for the restricted coverage.
And that, truly, is a socialist double whammy.
Somehow by giving up their freedom of choice, Americans are supposed to save a heavily overburdened welfare state that already operates dangerously in the red. It is being reported that in the next 10 days, the White House will release how this plan will knock off $200 to $300 billion in Medicare. At the same time, we are informed, people will be lining up to get a taste of this new “free” health care.
In economics, it is said “incentives matter.” And when it comes to health care costs and benefits, incentives often matter most. When the average American is deciding whether to take health care or not, they are weighing the benefits and costs. This is no different than buying milk at the grocery store. Now that the cost is being subsidized to those who are 500 percent above the poverty line, they will be more apt to try and collect their newly distributed benefits.
For America this means longer wait lines for doctors and for surgery, along with radically increased costs to an already overbloated Big Government. But conveniently for them, Kennedy and Reid left out any and all of the accounting costs in the bill. Though, a previous low estimate was in the range of $1.2 to $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years.
But wait, as the TV infomercial hipsters shout, there's even more!
Just when it couldn't seem to get any worse, Kennedy and Dodd are proposing yet another new bill that will only clog the major healthcare arteries even more. It is called “The Healthy Families Act.” This bill forces businesses to pay sick leave to all employees--in the name of preventing the swine flu (as well as any other ailment that happen to take an employee's fancy.)
To prevent abuse of this, employees will have to document their illness, and that, of course, means even more mandatory--and costly--trips to the doctor. Naturally, there will be more than enough people who will volunteer to spend the day reading magazines and waiting for the doctor (or at least they claim they are) then going to work and being a productive member of society. How can we be so sore? Check out the local welfare and unemployment offices.
Which means the entire health care hoax has now become the true socialist triple whammy.
Kennedy, Pelosi, and Obama are not only incentivizing people to overburden the doctor's offices, but also now they are even paying those who do work to take more time off and spend it in the waiting room. All the while, bringing the U.S. closer and closer to becoming a kissing cousin to the many unsustainable welfare states of Europe.
Justin Williams is a Contributing Editor of ALG News Bureau.