So anyway let's summarize...
1) Government continues to artificially flood even more money into the health care market through subsidies and tax breaks than otherwise would normally be spent by consumers in a free market.
2) Government continues to encourage employers to offer broad umbrella insurance coverage through tax breaks, subsidies, and mandates which leaves more covered people less cost-conscious about their doctor and treatment choices since somebody else is picking up the tab.
3) Now government mandates that all insurance companies must cover anybody who asks to join regardless of pre-existing conditions. That means even if an insurer knows a person will end up costing them money (and sometimes A LOT of money), that person must be covered.
4) Now government is mandating that ALL Americans must purchase insurance thereby artificially flooding even more money into the health care market and turning those remaining Americans that tried to be cost-conscious with their health care dollars into big spenders because once again somebody else is picking up the tab.
And, of course, this all plays into the left wing's hands because pushing the market completely out of control where prices are through the roof, leaves people thinking that the only final resort is for government to take over. And once that happens, the problem (created by the very people that now offer the government solution) will seem like it's been solved but in reality will cost more than ever! The only difference will be people won't notice it as much since it will simply be lumped in as part of their overall tax bill where it will be given the same attention that all government waste gets today - a mildly disturbed shrug followed by a demand for even more waste at the voting booth. Oh, and when government does eventually take over health care, you can also say goodbye to innovation. And also say goodbye to any remaining health privacy you had.
As for the subject of rationing that only takes place when a central body (the government) controls all distribution. Beyond that, goods and services are determined by market prices. Obviously, in such a situation, some people can afford more than others. But that's not rationing. That's just life.
And no, my two points do not conflict with each other at all. Government run health care will be the most expensive because it will be run incredibly inefficiently and artificially flood the market with dollars that otherwise would not be spent in such a way. That already overprice $200 IV banana bag will instead cost $500. But, of course, few people will pay attention to the cost because few people will have the incentive to do so. Eventually, they'll try to impose price caps but all that will do is drive businesses - from drug makers to doctors - out of the industry and cause less people to seek a career in the industry thus lowering supply and raising prices even more. Finally, the government will acknowledge that it can't pay for every thing for every body and will begin rationing care with the final decisions on how much and what kind of care you get eventually made not by you but by some government bureaucrat(s).
With government taking over, you can say goodbye to innovation and privacy. I know some don't want to acknowledge these realities because they tarnish their left-wing dogma that health care should some how be a right for everybody but it is what it is.
In 1810 if you got cancer, you went home. You went to bed. Your family kept you as comfortable as possible, and you died. There was no chemotherapy. If you were in kidney failure, the same drill applied. There was no dialysis. Health care didn't soak up much of people's budgets because there wasn't much of it. Today, we have a lot of equipment and a lot of medications. We can treat many diseases, and our abilities are growing rapidly. The cost of health care will continue to rise, and the value of it (more curable diseases) will continue to rise. We're not paying more and more for the same thing. We're paying more and more for a broader and broader array of increasingly effective treatments. What is government going to do to stop that? I'd guess nothing, yet one of the principal justifications for the law that was enacted was that government would bring costs down. The idea of government making anything more efficient is pretty laughable; the idea that they'll be able to pay less and less for larger and larger quantities of a rapidly improving service is just insane.
Those people in 1810 also didn't have cars, tvs, refrigerators, computers, ipads, cell phones, or air conditioners soaking up their budgets either. Healthcare developments should be no different, except that the end user of medical technology (the patient) doesn't pay for it himself, so the supply/demand dynamic, which determines price, is violated.
With new technologies, here's how it always goes:
Company A invents a new product. At first prices are high as it has no competition, and it is seeking to recoup its investment. Only the wealthy can afford this product.
Then company b copies company a's idea. Now these two companies must compete on quality AND price. This puts downward pressure on prices. When companies c and d get into the game, prices are pushed lower. Now the product can be afforded by more people.
Now that companies a, b, c and d have experience producing these products, they become more efficient at production, and can lower their costs, and in turn, lower their prices. They're still profitable and even more people can afford the product.
This has happened with cars, tvs, personal computers, you name it. It should be exactly the same with health care, except for interference with supply and demand (insurance pays for things, the patients do not directly pay themselves, so there's no need for doctors or manufacturers of health care products to compete aggressively on price), doctors overusing certain technologies to avoid lawsuits, patent laws and the FDA delaying drugs and competition for those drugs from hitting the market.
It should also be noted that the above is why profits are so important and not evil like many would have you believe.
Even so taking out the profit motif, charities have long existed to provide basic care for the truly needy. Doctors (including Ron Paul) often devote part of their practice to providing basic care for those that cannot afford it. There's actually a very strong western tradition of doctors offering discounts and payment plans even to those they do eventually charge when those patients don't have a lot of money. So it's not really a choice between "equal care for all" and leaving a portion of the population to rot in ditches. Even the worst off usually end up with basic care in a purely market system.
Last edited by creekin111; 11-18-2012 at 03:09 AM..