R.Bobak wrote (Aug. 30, 2007 ) on "and doctor biobrain's response is..." blogspot:
Further to doctor biobrain in “Free-market healthcare for Dummies” (Aug. 25, 2007) when he says “…as if “socialized medicine” was some gimmick to improve a country’s ranking with WHO, rather than a real solution to a real problem”, he should stop for a moment and contemplate. “Socialized medicine”, like in Canada, where I live, is certainly a “gimmick”. Don’t kid yourself, or others. This quagmire is a reality in Canada, not some pipedream college thesis that would be ‘fun-to-try’. It is not a real sustainable solution to a real problem.
It denies our marketplace rights to choose our healthcare payer, and its inevitable rationing ensures we have little to no choice in healthcare providers. The state taxes us AND reduces coverage at the same time. The state now denies funding to some cancer patients, deeming their treatment options to be experimental. Does that enter into the left’s cozy, rosy ‘blue-state’ realm of possibilities? You would just give up the great sovereignty your people have created in the marketplace for no-choice socialist healthcare?
In Canada, several provinces now have constitutional challenges winding their way through the courts which challenge the legality of the government-run-health-monopoly denying patients timely medical treatment (there’s your “gimmick”), while ALSO denying patients the right to buy health insurance to ameliorate the negligence of the state’s failure to provide. This foreshadows your future should you decide to follow our path. Legally, we have no alternative in our own country should the state – as it often does – fail to deliver its promises. Would you rather be able to at least fight with your HMO in a marketplace tempered with choice and the courts, or, do you want give up to a faceless government-institutionalized health bureaucracy?
People die on our waiting lists, too…and the “gimmick” , 40 years ago, when Canada’s lefties conned us into this Ponzi-scheme, was that we would have heaven on earth! That grace never materialized. Neither will yours. There's a reason that not many Americans need to go to Canada for their healthcare.
biobrain ridiculed Megan McArdle's position, "in which she insisted that the term “insurance” couldn’t be applied to a single-payer health-care system, and replaced it with the word “Tax”. That’s how easy it is with these people. If you can’t beat an argument, just find a way to slap a negative label on it and Voila! The argument is instantly demolished. And in their minds, they truly believe it worked.”
But, really, she’s right: biobrain’s the one easily slapping labels without an argument – there IS NO insurance in a single-payer system, if by ‘insurance’ you’re referring to something that’s actuarial based, takes into account risks, and is accountable to its stakeholders. That is not what we have in Ontario, we have a “tax”. A lot of tax. What was once actuarial-based has been given a budget by our politicians, and has become the state-run-health-rationing-board. There is no competition, no incentive for institutional improvement. Everything relies on the politicized blessings of a gaggle of meddling politicians. Hospitals rely on huckstering lottery schemes to raise money. Some may think this is just fine, but I wouldn't wish it upon others.
Jim Campbell rightly wrote that “in the US we can do it better. I’m looking at all the different systems and hope to come up with ideas that may make healthcare affordable to all using market-based principles.”
The attitude of the biobrain/Michael Moore/HillaryCare-types reminds me of a scene in the film Deer Hunter, when during the wedding the three main characters approach the uniformed vet drinking at the bar, who’s obviously just returned from Vietnam. “What’s it like over there” they eagerly ask. The vet looks at them and sees the three young, bright, men and says, to their bewilderment: “f--k it”. in a way,Canada is like that vet character, saying to the newbies enamoured with socialism: I’ve been there, it’s horrible, and, there’s nothing I can say or do to stop you from going down the same road. You will have to learn for yourselves.” (And please, for the time being, for this analogy at least, let’s leave out Canada’s non-role in Vietnam, for a moment!)
The inconvenient truth for the left on both sides of our border is that Canadians are forced to travel to the States because the theory of socialized medicine in practice fails to deliver! (And the bizarre part is, Canadian lefties – after 40 years of socialism - are still blaming that on ‘privatization’!) Don’t envy Canada as the answer to your healthcare woes. Your system can surely be improved, just don’t emulate ours.