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Saturday, July 14th 2007

John Edwards Knows Healthcare?

I’ve applauded Edwards’ willingness to provide more concrete plans on a whole host of issues rather than the jibber jabber, filler that most politicians put out there. Included in that is health care. I don’t agree with him, but more than most in his shoes, John Edwards was willing to put a plan out there for the voters to judge.

But Slate’s Chatterbox thinks it’s smoke and mirrors and not feasible.

Chatterbox is a column who thinks that the debate on health care needs to shift leftward. True, as Graham loves to point out in discussions on health care access, they don’t even know enough to distinguish single payer from socialized medicine…

Open discussion of a “single-payer” system in which the government pays for and regulates health care is verboten within the political mainstream because it is presumed that Americans would never accept socialized medicine.

…so the fact they jump on Edward’s plan is nothing but a strike against it.

[I]n the health-care primary, John Edwards is the candidate to beat.

They laud it for tricking the public into “socializing” medicine.

As I explained above, the “health markets” component is a Trojan horse (a very elegant one) to replace existing private health insurance with government funding. That’s what I like about it.

With Looks Like These The Substance Is Just Icing On The Cake

This is a column written by a man who thinks that:

As I’ve explained before, the best way to limit medical inflation would be to end fee-for-service medicine and put all doctors on salary. Ending fee-for-service payments would eliminate the incentive doctors now have to perform unnecessary tests and procedures.

So I’m not sure appluading Edwards’ regional health care markets is a boost or burden. Like all positive obligations left wingers try to attach to tax payers, health care is not a right. End of story. It’s a business and should run like one. Yes, the system is broken, but only in the sense of the lack of competition and transparency currently inherent in it.

I truly believe a move towards transparency and the free market can lower costs. Will it allow everyone the health care access they need? No. But, as heart wrenching as individual stories of suffering are, access for everyone shouldn’t be the government’s goal.

Chatterbox is running a whole series on candidate health care plans. They’ve already posted on Obama’s plan. You can find their archive here.