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Let's Be Perfectly Clear

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As Bernie Sanders often says, "let's be perfectly clear:" The Affordable Care Act is an inadvertent attempt to delay the demise of the private health insurance industry. It is nothing but a fool's errand if it is meant to be a solution to the problem of national healthcare.

Wake up America! The actual premium for private health insurance for a 45-64 year old with multiple pre existing illnesses may run to thousands of dollars per month and many thousands for family coverage. Just think of the irony, Republicans and Hillary Clinton both telling their supporters that the solution is to defray this enormous burden to the backs of manufacturers and small business owners! Without these companies providing outrageously high cost group insurance, none but the very healthiest or wealthiest of us could possibly afford medical insurance at all.

Please wake up. The money for our presently outrageously inflated medical costs is paid for by lowering working wages! It is covered by letting productive employees go, by not even hiring those 45-60 year olds. It is covered by higher costs for manufactured products, adding as much as 1500-2,000 dollars to the price of an automobile.

The present archaic and unmanageable health insurance model, as Hillary proudly admits, is a holdover from World War Two. IT IS OBSOLETE! Without huge government bailouts, the system will lead to the inevitable demise of the health insurance industry. As I have written so many times before, it is the same model as that of homeowners insurance. Not even the largest homeowners insurance companies can afford to cover their unfunded liability, that is their projected losses in case of a widespread disaster. They can't even afford the huge cost of "reinsurance," that is paying another larger insurance company premiums to cover their losses. Instead, the federal and state governments become their reinsurance guarantors, while the homeowners insurance companies are held to only a small portion of their actual responsibility.

Notice to Republicans and to Hillary Clinton: The health insurance industry fully expects the same handouts! It's known as "CORPORATE WELFARE!" It is the "chicken soup" designed to temporarily ward off the demise of a failing aspect of the insurance industry. Sorry Folks! Just like homeowners insurance, if the government is to be the "deep pocket" for medical insurance, then they must own it! No more "CORPORATE WELFARE!"

It is my hope that readers can visualize a scenario in which decreasing corporate welfare and providing a competently and honestly managed single payer health insurance system can actually decrease the number of individuals on welfare. As a practicing physician for thirty four years, I can assure you that a substantial number of "disabled" Americans are on the welfare rolls for the healthcare insurance, not for the token paltry sum they receive in their welfare check. If everyone were afforded equal health care, many of these people would be employed and paying taxes. Easing the unfair burden of healthcare insurance from the backs of U.S. manufacturers and small businesses needs to go hand in hand with raising wages and keeping prices down. Ironically, if the Insurance companies are paid by the government to efficiently manage a single payer system, to expertly negotiate prices for services and goods, then they may be able to save their industry as well. If the federal and state governments finally take the time and effort to work with healthcare professionals, including physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, various therapists and Hospice to finally establish here-to-fore non existent healthcare standards, then, with the help of, as opposed to the interference by, insurance companies, we may actually achieve the goal of an "affordable healthcare act."

I for one am tired of trying to explain to politicians exactly why we need an honest single payer healthcare system. I am also tired of explaining why the private insurance companies must be tabbed to run the system. It is not that I trust corporations more than I trust the government bureaucracy. I believe that they are equally well trained. However, bureaucrats are under the thumb of Congress which, since the Citizen's United decision, is basically immune from prosecution for taking unlimited bribes. At least the insurance corporations can be prosecuted if they are caught taking the same bribes from the same lobbies that are currently so generously paying off congressmen, congresswomen and Supreme Court Justices with equal impunity. What I am really tired of is explaining the ideas in this article to politicians who point to their mouths and ask, innocently, "Sir, is this my front end or my rear end?"

Al Finkelstein, D.O.

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Dr. Allen Finkelstein, writing since 2006 under the penname “O’finky,” was born in New York, where he attended the Hebrew Academy of Nassau County as a boy. He continued his religious training in South Florida until his family, (more...)

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