You’ve heard the debate about SCHIP. The Dems want to take a program originally intended to subsidize health care for legitimately poor kids (originally passed by Republicans, if I recall correctly) and expand it to cover children whose families could not pass (or flunk) any legitimate means test for the subsidy under current law. In other words, they want to do what they always do with entitlements – expand them far beyond their original intent, to addict more of our society to government assistance of one kind or another. The Republicans,
true to principle, have fought back against the creeping socialization of healthcare smarting after November and leery about their prospects next year, have been acquiescing in depressing numbers. The President, fortunately, has pushed back by vetoing the bill. Most Americans support the President on this veto.
Which is, I suspect, why Congressman Walz is standing to post in the spin machine:
SCHIP was created 10 years ago to help provide health care for children whose parents earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to afford private insurance. The program is economical — it needs less than $3.50 a day to cover a child — and cost-effective, because children who have access to routine preventive care from a family doctor don’t have to rely on emergency rooms for their medical care.
That is, of course, the boilerplate about the program – boilerplate that got it passed in a Republican Congress. I have nothing to add that better commentators haven’t already hammered on…
…except this next bit.
I believe these concerns, such as those expressed just a few days ago in these pages by my colleague Rep. Michele Bachmann are overblown.Some have expressed concerns that, under this program, wealthy parents will enroll their children in SCHIP instead of providing them with private health insurance. But if these concerns were well-founded, then private insurance companies would be leading the charge against an expansion of SCHIP. Instead, they are among its strongest supporters.
Walz either never passed Economics 101, or things none of the rest of you did.
Picture yourself as a healthcare company (and I’ve worked for them a couple of times – so while I claim no extra-special insight, I’m not the idiot Walz seems to need us all to be). Your choice:
- Engage in the scrum of the market, advertising and selling and servicing insurance to people the old-fashioned way – by having to convince them to give you their money for your products and services, with all of the ups and downs that attend working in the free market
- Letting government do your selling for you, and cashing their checks.
What’s not to like?
As, indeed, Walz notes:
Under SCHIP’s public-private partnership, private health-care plans work with individual states to cover uninsured children. That is why this legislation has been endorsed by America’s Health Insurance Plans, the American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association. In other words, SCHIP is as good for America’s health-care industry as it is for keeping America’s kids healthy.
Where “good” equals “conveniently remunerative”.