posted on October 25, 2013 15:13
Republicans couldn’t defund Obamacare, and Democrats seemingly can’t defend it. Some states (where there’s competition) are seeing lower insurance rates, and some (where Republicans blocked competition) are having sticker shock.
Nobody understands what Obamacare is, but everybody understands a website that won’t work, so we’re obsessing about that.
Maybe we’re overcomplicating this. Maybe there’s a simpler way to fix the whole system.
One thing seems to work: Medicare. It works so well that everybody on it is ready to throttle anybody who tinkers with it.
So why don’t we just put everybody – everybody, regardless of age – on Medicare?
Why go through the agony and confusion of “reform”? Why try to fix a broken system? Why not just throw out what everybody seems to hate and replace it with what everybody seems to like?
I don’t mind if you disagree. Soon, I’ll be on Medicare. And it looks good. I just thought I’d give you the same opportunity.
Saturday, October 26, 2013 1:00 PM
Well, first of all, last year Medicare had $38T in unfunded liabilities. If you add more people to the system that number will only go up -- that single-payer system would soon eclipse all other government spending.
Secondly, recognize that Medicare is generally a bad deal for hospitals -- the reimbursement rates set by the government are typically too low to cover the Hospital's actual costs. So, those hospitals shift the extra to non-Medicare patients. If you put everybody on Medicare, then Hospitals will have nowhere to shift costs to and will either stop accepting Medicare patients altogether or go out of business. (Or, more likely, reimbursement rates would have to go up, further expanding the federal expense.)
Monday, October 28, 2013 10:42 AM
Ah yes... Put everybody on the Medicare system, which has a $38.6 TRILLION dollar unfunded liability and which is expected to be insolvent in a decade. There's a brilliant idea.
Recall also that hospitals only accept Medicare patients because they can shift all their fixed costs to non-Medicare patients. If everybody's on Medicare, then who pays the fixed costs? NOBODY!