Edited 2009-02-24 – A friend advised that I define exactly what I mean by “rich” so I added a note indicating it means anyone who makes more than $250,000/year.
I realize that I’m in a fairly small minority when I say this, but I am against socialized health care in the United States. At least anymore than we already have. Yes, we do have socialized health care in the United States. It’s called Medicaid. You have to apply for it, it’s a ton of paper work and proof of income type stuff but it does exist. My wife was on it (before we got married) when she had her daughter and didn’t have a job at the time (or at least one that didn’t give medical benefits).
Is Socialized Health Care Better?
What most people want in socialized health care is programs similar to what Canada and France have in that they have mostly free doctor visits and low cost medications. What most people in the United States do not know is that when it comes to major issues (like cancer) or major operations, socialized health care doesn’t help a whole lot. In fact in Canada there are numerous complaints about the current healthcare system and things are not as rosy as people would have you believe
- Criticisms of Canadian Health Care System
- (Near) Opposing views on the Canadian health care system: View 1 and View 2
As you can see from the articles linked above, things are not as wonderful as those pushing for socialized healthcare here in the states what you to think. In fact, there are numerous other records or people traveling from Canada to the United States to receive medical care (that they have to pay for out of pocket) and people being put on long waiting lists for surgeries in Canada.
Who’s Paying For It?
Another reason that socialize health care should be drastically questioned in the United States is because I want to know who’s going to pay for it? The simple answer is “taxpayers” but it needs to go a little deeper than that. Which taxpayers? Most people would be happy to tax the “rich” further to pay for government programs of the “less fortunate” but I feel that would be a huge mistake. For one thing the “rich” (annual income greater than $250,000/year) already pay the most in taxes of all the economic classes in the United States (in fact the “rich” pay 70% of all taxes collected by the government). The smallest economic class pays the largest amount of all the taxes collected. That seems odd to me. So taxing them further to pay for socialized health care is just going to tick them off and they’ll leave. But the poor and middle class will cry foul if their taxes go up but they cry for these kinds of programs. That seems to me like a conflict of interest. They want to services but they don’t want to be the ones to pay for them. And those they want to pay for it don’t want to pay for it.
The cost is the largest hindrance to getting socialize health care but if no one wants to pay for it, then it becomes an issue. Especially when people become forced to pay for it when they don’t want to and don’t feel they should have to. And rich democrats who are pushing for this kind of program have been the center of attention the past few weeks because they didn’t pay their taxes. I guess it’s no big deal to raise taxes when you aren’t paying them
The Current System
My other issue with pushing for socialized health care in the United States is that we already have a health care system in place for those that can’t afford it and really need it. This current system however is not perfect and could stand to be overhauled. Why are we pushing to add a government provided program when one already exists? That seems to be a nice quick way to add more bloat to an already bloated system. Why not overhaul the current system and make it better? I’m sure the current Medicaid system can be improved tremendously. I’m also positive that it could have it’s costs looked at and streamlined so that we could get more people that need to be on it onto the program and for the same amount of money.
Also with the current system, it’s bloated and slow. Any government program is going to be bloated and slow. If the current system is bad, what do you think will eventually happen to the new one? It won’t stay shiny and new forever and it too will eventually become a bloated money sucking mess.
Question of Rights
Finally, my largest point is this, government provided health care is not (I repeat NOT) a right guaranteed to you by any government document. Not the Constitution or the Bill of Rights. The Constitution says you have the rights to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” it does not say you are guaranteed happiness. Also, there is nothing that says your government has to take care of you, especially the federal government. There has been a lot of dilution of what we have rights to and what we do not have rights to as the centuries have progressed. It just not really the government’s responsibility to provide you with healthcare.