A Congressional Budget Office analysis shows that seniors will pay sharply more for their Medicare coverage under the House Republicans’ “Path to Prosperity” plan to reform Medicare and Medicaid.
Well, duh. The only way to reduce federal government spending in health care is for beneficiaries and the states to pay more. The only way to reduce health care spending by the states is for beneficiaries to pay more. And the only way for beneficiaries to spend less is…what? Stay out of the system and hope to God you don’t become sick or disabled? Die early? Be a smart shopper (in a system where you don’t have a clue about cost and quality)? Eat natural foods, exercise, and don’t breathe the polluted air? Depend on the kindness of strangers?
The Republican alternative to what they deride as “Obamacare” gives us an opportunity to have a serious national discussion about our values and priorities. But it will never be serious until we are willing to confront the fundamental quagmire of health care costs and the obscene amount of money that greases the system and its army of middlemen.
With roughly eight health care lobbyists for every congressman and congresswoman in Washington, what do you think our chances are for real health care reform from either political party?