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Public Health Care Is Broken 
So we’re going to expand it?

by John Campbell [congressman] 10/3/07

Medicare, Medicaid and Veterans Health Care are
bankrupting our country. Why expand the madness?

One of the debates raging in Washington right now is over whether to continue and expand the so-called “State Children’s Health Insurance Plan” (SCHIP). I say “so-called” because a number of the proposals will make this a federal, not a state, program and it will largely pay for healthcare for adults making up to $90,000 per year, rather than children. The massive expansion of this program to cover more people at greater cost is clearly another step in the direction of socialized medicine espoused by many in Congress and virtually all of the Democratic candidates for president. When you include Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans Health Care and SCHIP expansion, you could have over 50% of all Americans with government healthcare. Then, they hope to have that majority vote to impose the same misery on the rest of us.


John Campbell (R-Irvine) is a Member of Congress representing 48th Congressional district [Orange County, California]. He can be reached through his Congressional website. [go to Campbell index]

But it seems that all the proponents of more government healthcare are doing so in absolute denial of how much currently provided government healthcare is failing. Here’s what I mean:

All experts agree that our current entitlement programs (Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid) are on a collision course with bankruptcy. Sometime between 2030 and 2040, they will absorb 100% of the government’s budget, assuming that taxes remain where they are now. Today they absorb 58% of total spending. So, absent some radical reform of the systems or more than doubling taxes on everyone, there will be no room in the budget for a military or roads or a national park system. In other words, the government health systems of Medicare and Medicaid are unsustainable long term in their current form.

You have no doubt read about the serious problems in the delivery of healthcare to military personnel that recently surfaced at Walter Reed Hospital in Virginia. And many veterans will tell you that there are numerous problems with veteran’s healthcare around the nation, including long waits and unavailability of many drugs and procedures. Spending on veteran’s healthcare has been dramatically increased, but still the problems persist.

According to the Comptroller General of the United States, healthcare is already the driving force behind all of our deficits at both the state and federal levels.

So, if the government healthcare systems we have are expensive and not working now, why would anyone want to expand them? And how are we ever going to pay for these expansions since we cannot pay for the systems we have today?

Frankly, it’s mind boggling. It seems great to talk about healthcare for all. But the purveyors of this notion never discuss the massive tax increases that will be necessary to even approach paying for all of this. And we’re not just talking about taxes on the much-maligned “rich” here. You could literally confiscate all the income of those who produce the most economic value in our society and it won’t come close to paying for these programs.

No, they will have to tax the middle class, so that they can then give benefits to that same middle class. Now that really makes no sense. It is one thing to provide for those few in our society who cannot provide for themselves; it is quite another to tax everyone in order to give them services they could buy cheaper for themselves.

Socialized medicine is not working and will not work. We shouldn’t be adding to the cost and failures of the system. Health- care should move away from government and let people and markets work to reduce costs and match services with need. CRO





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