Saturday, December 1, 2012
The David Pakman Show: Wendell Potter: "Insurers Will Stop at Nothing to Prevent Single Payer": The Way Forward For Single Payer Supporters
I'm against Single Payer Health Insurance for lots of reasons, actually I can't think of a reason why I would like it. And most of my problems with Medicare For All has to do with the lack of choice in it, that if we were to move to this model. We would lose all choice when it comes to health insurance. Which I believe will never happen at least in the near future but thats not the point of this post, I'm just looking at the politics of it. And what supporters of this approach could do to actually accomplish what they want, government run. Health insurance for the entire country, thats exactly what it is, there's no spin in that but there's. A way forward for supporters of this approach that could get them to where they want to go, without the Federal Government. Forcing it on everyone, which has been the Progressive approach up to this point, outside of California and Vermont. This approach would be slower but Progressives might actually have a shot at accomplishing what they want. Instead of demanding that the Federal Government, which is generally divided between Democrats and Republicans. With one party controlling the Presidency and the other party controlling at least one chamber of Congress.
Even when Democrats control the entire Federal Government, both the White House and Congress, Single Payer supporters. Don't really ever get anywhere, can't even get a vote for their position in either the House or Senate. As we saw in 1993-94 and 2009-10 when Democrats controlled the Federal Government, couldn't even get the Democratic President. In either case to support their position and both occasions Democrats had large majorities in Congress, thats. Not the case now but if Progressives or Social Democrats as I also call Progressives were to go state by state and start. In the most Progressive-Socialist of states like Vermont or Massachusetts, where Democrats control the entire State Governments there. They could make that progress and I know state by state is not the approach that Progressives tend to like. They are not Federalists by nature and prefer the Democratic Socialist model, with large centralize. Federal Governments thats common in Canada and Europe but with this approach, they would at least have a shot of accomplishing this.
The support is simply not in the Democratic leadership right now to move to a nationalize health insurance system. Where Medicare would be the only game in town when it came to health insurance and where everyone would be forced to pay for it and take it. There are even Progressive Democrats in Congress who understand this, like Representative Jim McDermott in the House. And I believe Senator Bernie Sanders has a similar approach and a bill in the Senate that would be Medicare For All. But would allow the states to run their own Medicare programs, instead of the Federal Government running the entire system. And the Democratic leadership doesn't want to be accused of starting some government takeover of healthcare. So they are not going to touch Single Payer either.
Progressives need to understand that progress is better then nothing and that even if you move slower. As long as you get to where you want to go, instead of being stuck and not being able to move at all. Which is where Single Payer supporters are at right now when it comes to healthcare, that at the end you can still accomplish what you want. Instead of just fighting the same battles and never getting anywhere.