It was 7 years ago today that I lapsed into a coma, following a stroke that I suffered while on the operating table (following unsuccessful quintuple bypass surgery). However, I am well aware that one of the reasons I had the outstanding care I did have was because I had insurance.
It wasn't without it's problems, though. Just 6 weeks earlier, I had lost my job as a trainer for stockbrokers and customer service reps. The company I worked for, MyDiscountBroker, was failing and I was only one of six employees who made it as long as I did. However, because I had been taught at a very young age the benefits of having insurance, I made sure I continued my coverage through COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985). My doctor informed my wife (at the time) that had I not had insurance, the likelihood of being transferred to a transplant hospital was between slim and none. As it was, all the hospitals he called (except for the last one - Montefiore Medical Center) turned me down. While he never gave the reason, it was obvious to the doctors at Montefiore that since the odds were very much against my survival, none of the big New York hospitals wanted the liability.
While in the hospital, I was no longer in a financial position to continue my COBRA premiums. But of course, I now qualified for Medicaid, since I was no longer employed and had depleted our savings account by this time.
Now I am on Medicare and one would thing that I am a big proponent for universal health care. But I'm really not - at least not in the way it has been presented by the government.
You see, I am not one of those who would have been against Medicare when it was first proposed because I believe that as a nation we should help those who are unable to help themselves. But the key word is "unable." I am among those who understand that the biggest problem with Medicare is the fact that it is run by the government - therefore, there is little real oversight and rampant waste and abuse.
Does the industry need major work? Absolutely. But turning it over to the government is a recipe for disaster. Aside from the waste and corruption - which raises costs astronomically (if it were a private industry, there would be far better oversight because the bottom line is affected) - the cost to the taxpayers who would have to foot the bill is oppressive.
The democrats want us to believe there are 47 million people without health insurance. But is that number real? If you count illegal immigrants and those who feel they do not want insurance, the number is closer to 9 million. Is it worth destroying the economy for 3% of the population?
My proposal is simple. For one thing, we should allow insurance companies to sell their policies over state lines. Secondly, we should cap outrageous tort costs. When you consider some physicians have to pay over $100,000 annually just for malpractice you begin to understand why premiums are as high as they are.
As far as the uninsured are concerned, we should raise the income level of those eligible for Medicaid/Medicare. While this will cost money, it will be far, far less that the proposals teh Democrats are trying to shove down our throats.
If the President wants to go after the insurance giants for their insane profits, then find a legal recourse. But completely taking over the industry will not only cause the majority of Americans to reject the administration (as the polls plainly suggest), it will lead to the same problems that plague Canada and the United Kingdom.
Just remember, just because the President says "something must be done", it doesn't mean we should do the wrong thing. There is a very good reason the majority of Americans do not want what the Democrats are trying to force on us. And the reason is not because Americans are racist and it is not because FOX News lies.
Similarly, I find it rather amusing that the left is screaming that Van Jones was "swiftboated." If by "swiftboated" you mean he was found out about, then maybe he was. But to say the right "lied" and forced Jones out, I must remind you of two facts: #1 - everything that Glenn Beck (and others) found out about Jones was absolutely true and were his own words and deeds. And #2 - since the Democrats have a majority-proof House and Senate, what does it matter what the right thinks? If this guy were really just an innocent victim of a "Rethuglican smear campaign", why would Obama accept his resignation.
It reminds me of all those liberals who would call Bush "dumb" but in the same breath would accuse him of masterminding 9/11.
Anyway, back to the point, here is a little story from London that is just one of many that have come out in recent months that explain the direction the President wants to steer us:
'Doctors told me it was against the rules to save my premature baby'
Read it and weep.