Monday, September 17, 2007

The Solution in Search of a Problem

The 3 leading Democratic Presidential candidates continue to play dueling universal health care plans as Hillary unveiled her own $110 billion/year plan in Iowa today (one would think even the good people of Iowa are sick of the campaigning as it appears all the candidates from both parties have been there en masse for the past 6 months and don’t have any designs on leaving until after the Iowa Caucus in January).

In case, though, any of you free-market types out there were worried that this is just the top of the slippery slope to socialized medicine…. relax… Hillary says it isn’t going to be a government run program. Clinton was quoted as saying, “This is not government-run.” See.

Similar to John Edward’s program, Clinton is being gracious enough to grant voluntary participation if you are happy with your current plan. But also similar to Edward’s plan, choosing not to participate in any plan is simply not an option.

So, if its not government-run, how will enrollment compliance be enforced, you may ask? Well, you would be getting way ahead of yourself as Clinton advisor Laurie Rubiner said that a specific compliance mechanism would be worked out once the health care plan was passed. This is reminiscent of John Kerry’s secret plan to straighten-out the Iraq situation: Vote for me and then I’ll tell you.

Besides, you’d be focusing the whole enforcement question on the wrong end of the equation. We actually believe half of Clinton’s claim that it won’t be a government-run program… there will not be any actual accountability or oversight for enforcing enrollment in this or any other health plan.

However, the means to generate the revenue for her plan will be via rigorous government participation and enforcement. There is this branch of the government…perhaps you’ve heard of them… its this outfit called the IRS that will make sure you are holding up your end of the deal in insuring the 47 million of your fellow Americans who are without health insurance.

So when one breaks down the concerns a typical conservative would have with this plan: 1) Is it Government-run? 2) Do I have to enroll? 3) Do I have to pay for this thing, regardless? And its done in a mathematical fashion, one would have to be pretty pleased with the 2/3rds favorable rating. Shoot, you can’t have everything, so just be a good little American and quit griping about it.

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