American society exists because of a concept called "social contract." (see Hobbs, Locke, Rousseau) Envisioned by our founding fathers, with roots in Leviathan and codified by the Magna Carte, Mayflower Compact and the US Constitution. It is the fabric of our nation. We all contribute and we all benefit - a quid pro quo of give and get. But why is Healthcare excluded?
It is said due to cost, and a lack of equity. Some claim that only 50% of Americans directly pay taxes. Perhaps this is true - but we all benefit from low cost labor, and redistribution to the low end drives the US financial engine of Consumer Spending. If the progressive system was eliminated and low income earners paid taxes the consumer would ultimately bear the cost through higher prices required to cover the increase in real wages. Instead, a progressive system of taxation redistributes wealth from those most able.
Please read the preamble to the Constitution. "We the people" established this Union - for the benefit of the people - ALL of the people. Obviously life , liberty and happiness do not coexist with illness, destitution and death.
It is told that the first sign in the Colonies read "If you don't work you don't eat." (2 Thessalonians 3:10) Neo-Conservatives hijack the message - until they are reminded that all work, and the fruits thereof went into a communal distribution where each gave according to their abilities and got according to their need. (Marx)
The public option must be a part of meaningful healthcare reform. This will ensure freedom of choice for all people - and DECREASE cost for everyone. I am horrified by imagining the cost inefficiency and inconsistency of private-only programs for current public-private services like education, police protection or postal service! Why do we do it with healthcare?
Indigent care is supported currently by local governments. In Atlanta, Grady Hospital provides these services. House Bill 70 of the 56th Texas Legislature established NorthWest Texas Hospital as the indigent center in Amarillo, TX. These centers are not examples of public heathcare - but rather symptoms of pathetic neglect as a result of the fleecing done by commercial insurance providers. These centers are grossly inefficient because mundane illness and injury, better served by primary care physicians over emergency facilities, because of the lower income residents lack of health insurance coverage.
We are paying for healthcare for the poor one way or the other!
That's my opinion.
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