Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Whole Foods Health Care

John Mackey, the CEO of Whole Foods grocery chain, has a superlative piece in the Wall Street Journal this morning that is worth the read. He makes eight key points - none of which are in the current legislation being debated. Here they are as one liners:

1. Remove the legal obstacles that slow the creation of high-deductible health insurance plans and health savings accounts (HSAs).

Liberals hate the HSA's - how dare an individual have control over their own money? But you know what, if you are having to pay for something with a personal check, it sharpens your use of the marketplace.

2. Equalize the tax laws so that employer-provided health insurance and individually owned health insurance have the same tax benefits.

Yah think? Individual insurance is pretty steamy without the pooling benefit of a large group to ameliorate the risk. I'm not knocking the "EVIL" insurance companies that are out to make a profit, they are entitled to it. But not having the equal tax treatment discourages people from buying health insurance.

3.  Repeal all state laws which prevent insurance companies from competing across state lines.

Where is the Interstate Commerce Commission when you need them. This is where a Federal Government can help things by breaking down the silos of the individual states' insurance commissioners for the greater good.

4. Repeal government mandates regarding what insurance companies must cover.

Common sense - it opens up choice for the consumer - libtards for some reason only want individuals to have a choice when it comes to aborting their babies. Get the government out of the way in the places it doesn't belong.

5. Enact tort reform to end the ruinous lawsuits that force doctors to pay insurance costs of hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.

We have been screaming about this on these pages for a year. But since the entire Democrat (and half the Republican) Party is owned by the Trial Lawyers Association, this ain't going to happen. This would result in enormous reductions to healthcare costs if we just instituted "loser pays" to the trial system.

6. Make costs transparent so that consumers understand what health-care treatments cost.


7. Enact Medicare reform

He doesn't give any specifics here, but everyone knows this is a train wreck about to happen...piled on top of the derailed Social Security system. Key point here - I get libs that post on here, or send me e-mails about Medicare satisfaction rates as proof that the government can run health care...Medicare is simply a transfer payment system, it is not a health care system.

8. Finally, revise tax forms to make it easier for individuals to make a voluntary, tax-deductible donation to help the millions of people who have no insurance and aren't covered by Medicare, Medicaid or the State Children's Health Insurance Program.

It is anathema to a statist to suggest that charity organizations can do better work that the government, because it takes away their control. But this is an excellent suggestion.

Finally, Mackey hits the money shot with this:

Many promoters of health-care reform believe that people have an intrinsic ethical right to health care—to equal access to doctors, medicines and hospitals. While all of us empathize with those who are sick, how can we say that all people have more of an intrinsic right to health care than they have to food or shelter?

Health care is a service that we all need, but just like food and shelter it is best provided through voluntary and mutually beneficial market exchanges. A careful reading of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution will not reveal any intrinsic right to health care, food or shelter. That's because there isn't any. This "right" has never existed in America.

This is a guy that is running a very successful (and cool) business model with very satisfied employees. He knows of what he speaks, he has written the checks - something no member of the Obama team has ever had to do...ditto most members of Congress. If we are going to ever climb out from under the mountain of debt that the politicos have saddled us with, we are going to have to get some basic civics lessons re-learned. What you are seeing in the "angry" mobs, is people frustrated with the fact that they are seeing their Constitution trampled...this does not feel good and they are rightfully energized. It's high time for this rush to national socialism to stop.

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