Does anybody have a logical conservative argument against socialized healthcare?

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cthulhuspawn82:
The problem with universal healthcare is the same as private insurance. You have a system where you go to the doctor, and the doctor sends a bill to a third party who just signs a check. This makes the cost of medical care 50 times higher than it would be if people payed out of pocket. Doctors charge you insanely high prices for their services because they know your insurance fairy will pay for it.

I always facepalm when I hear something like "I had to stay overnight in the hospital and got a $2000 bill. Now my greedy insurance company refuses to pay. Greedy insurance companies are the problem" No buddy, the problem is the hospital that thought one of their dinky rooms should cost more per night then a stay at a 5 star hotel. Insurance companies are not a problem. The problem begins and ends when the health care providers who are writing bills that are so ridiculously large that most people in this country cant afford to pay.

It's not quite that simple. Overhead costs are very high because of all the people involved in running them. Doctors, nurses, technicians, testing companies, costs of machines, supplies, it all adds up very quickly.

Hospitals are companies just like anything else. They need to run profits or they go out of business and then everyone loses. Those costs are so high because of poor regulation when the healthcare industry was being built along with the high cost of medical school. Doctors need to pay their student loans just like the rest of us and they (rightfully) need to make more money to do so. I read somewhere that the average MD comes out of school with almost 500,000 dollars in debt.

Jacco:
This is true, however the money they are spending doesn't exist. The deficit is funded by China. Spending that much money every year is simply not possible. All of the Federal systems in place equal about a trillion dollars together if I remember correctly. You're talking about adding another trillion on top of that PER YEAR for one service. It's simply not feasible. As I said in the other part of my post, you would have to dismantle and completely rebuild the health industry from scratch to get it to a point where it would be affordable. Costs across the board are simply too high because of how things are set up.

Edit: SocSec is not a good example to use because it is self sustaining. People like to scapegoat it, but as far as I know in its charter, it is built to be self sufficient. I don't remember the actual mechanics of it, but it cannot and does not contribute to federal debt costs.

They could easily raise the funds. Instead of Americans paying a national average of $4,500 on health insurance a year, they'd pay a national average of maybe $5,000 a year in healthcare tax (higher because it has to cover people not currently covered). Because it's a tax and not a purchase, this 11% increase in healthcare cost could be spread progressively. Indeed, the whole system could be progressive if you want it to be.

Boom, done. You've just raised $1.5 trillion a year. This huge federal pool would also have a much better position for bargaining down healthcare costs.

Jacco:

Edit: SocSec is not a good example to use because it is self sustaining. People like to scapegoat it, but as far as I know in its charter, it is built to be self sufficient. I don't remember the actual mechanics of it, but it cannot and does not contribute to federal debt costs.

It's not really self-sustaining. The Social Security and Medicare Board of Trustees claims that SocSec will start paying out more than it's receiving by 2017~ and it'll be completely drained of money by 2037.

Basically nothing in America is sustainable. It's not a question of if it will crash but when.

My bet is that America will come apart around 2050~.

Jacco:

cthulhuspawn82:
The problem with universal healthcare is the same as private insurance. You have a system where you go to the doctor, and the doctor sends a bill to a third party who just signs a check. This makes the cost of medical care 50 times higher than it would be if people payed out of pocket. Doctors charge you insanely high prices for their services because they know your insurance fairy will pay for it.

I always facepalm when I hear something like "I had to stay overnight in the hospital and got a $2000 bill. Now my greedy insurance company refuses to pay. Greedy insurance companies are the problem" No buddy, the problem is the hospital that thought one of their dinky rooms should cost more per night then a stay at a 5 star hotel. Insurance companies are not a problem. The problem begins and ends when the health care providers who are writing bills that are so ridiculously large that most people in this country cant afford to pay.

It's not quite that simple. Overhead costs are very high because of all the people involved in running them. Doctors, nurses, technicians, testing companies, costs of machines, supplies, it all adds up very quickly.

Hospitals are companies just like anything else. They need to run profits or they go out of business and then everyone loses. Those costs are so high because of poor regulation when the healthcare industry was being built along with the high cost of medical school. Doctors need to pay their student loans just like the rest of us and they (rightfully) need to make more money to do so. I read somewhere that the average MD comes out of school with almost 500,000 dollars in debt.

They may have good reasons for charging as much as they do, but the it doesn't changing the fact that the huge bill they send you is the underlying problem here. From what I have seen, the whole private insurance/universal healthcare debate focuses on how we are going to pay for that bill rather than lowering the cost of that bill. Health care is our biggest expenditure, and it makes sense that if we could cut that bill in half, then our medicare/cade costs would be cut in half as well. We could pay less and cover everyone.

cthulhuspawn82:
Snip

Our country cuts costs of our socialized healthcare by having 1 lawyer per hospital instead of 2 lawyers per doctor. The US sucks in that regard.

What also cuts the cut is the fact they don't have to make a profit, everything is rather cheap.

What also cuts the cost is the fact that the doctor has a set salary rather than being paid per successfully cured patient, this used to be sorta ruined by giving them more money the more medicine they prescribed, but we took that away as well.

Socialized Healthcare works when everything else in the country isn't a total sham. It'd be easier for you to see it working if the US didn't allow parents to sue schools for not teaching creationism. And didn't allow patients to sue hospitals for increasing their chance of getting cancer by 0.1%. When you have people suing for everything like in the US, and court cases are decided by the number of lawyers and money put into them. Everything else just gets ruined.

Danish Hospital: 29 Doctors 1 Lawyer.
US Hospital. 10 Doctors 20 Lawyers.

"With an average of one lawyer per every 300 citizens, the United States has not only more lawyers per capita than any other country but also more lawyers than any other country - including those with populations two, three or four, and five times as large"

- Examiner.com

The room cost 2000dollars with 1 doctor and 2 lawyers. And lawyers are expensive.
Without the lawyers the room would probably have cost 500dollars and the insurance would have covered it.

Long live extreme capitalism!

Couple of fun facts.

Lawyers they employ are paid more than their doctors.

There are more Lawyers in the US than public toilets.

There are more Lawyers in the US ---- nevermind. Look, US is based on lawyers. That room was made more expensive by lawyers, throw the lawyers out the window and make a system where everything isn't solved by suing people. This would make managing your banks and corrupt organizations far more easier aswell. Considering atm they just employ the stradegy of 'getting more lawyers than their opponent' which seems to be working half the time.

I just had a quick look after the old sources (Will post when I find) but I 'did' stumble over a law firm solely made for a Detroit Hospital. AN ENTIRE LAW FIRM FOR ONE HOSPITAL. *barfs* How is the US still afloat? How can people afford this!?

Nikolaz72:
How is the US still afloat? How can people afford this!?

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

This ship is sailin' on broken dreams and lost wages.

This is probably a bad time to mention that I'm going into paralegal studies, huh?

Kopikatsu:

Nikolaz72:
How is the US still afloat? How can people afford this!?

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

This ship is sailin' on broken dreams and lost wages.

This is probably a bad time to mention that I'm going into paralegal studies, huh?

Well no, theres always a need for lawyers. And in bad times you could move somewhere that there lacks lawyers (Like Afghanistan!!! :PPP... lord knows no western country requires more lawyers) but I found it funny that a republican would blame the 1 doctor rather than the 2 lawyers.

Nikolaz72:

Kopikatsu:

Nikolaz72:
How is the US still afloat? How can people afford this!?

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

This ship is sailin' on broken dreams and lost wages.

This is probably a bad time to mention that I'm going into paralegal studies, huh?

Well no, theres always a need for lawyers. And in bad times you could move somewhere that there lacks lawyers (Like Afghanistan!!! :PPP... lord knows no western country requires more lawyers) but I found it funny that a republican would blame the 1 doctor rather than the 2 lawyers.

I have a friend in the FBI who went to the middle east on some assignment and he told/showed me some of the 'fun' things he had to do over there.

Trust me, I have zero interest in going there in anything less than that gigantic monster tank from Black Ops 2 that was the size of like literally twelve MBTs ducttaped together.

Kopikatsu:

Nikolaz72:

Kopikatsu:

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

This ship is sailin' on broken dreams and lost wages.

This is probably a bad time to mention that I'm going into paralegal studies, huh?

Well no, theres always a need for lawyers. And in bad times you could move somewhere that there lacks lawyers (Like Afghanistan!!! :PPP... lord knows no western country requires more lawyers) but I found it funny that a republican would blame the 1 doctor rather than the 2 lawyers.

I have a friend in the FBI who went to the middle east on some assignment.

Trust me, I have zero interest in going there in anything less than that gigantic monster tank from Black Ops 2 that was the size of like literally eight MBTs ducttaped together.

Stay in the capital, stay away from the southern region. You should be alright.... Aslong as you're not a woman.

If you're a woman bring the monster tank even when you are just going out to shop.

Nikolaz72:

"With an average of one lawyer per every 300 citizens, the United States has not only more lawyers per capita than any other country but also more lawyers than any other country - including those with populations two, three or four, and five times as large"

- Examiner.com

When you consider which countries have a population greater than the USA, their relative lack of lawyers compared to the USA is possibly more a sign of the weak state of their public empowerment and legal system than it is a comment on how many lawyers the USA has.

There are plenty of reasonable conservative arguments against socialised healthcare. Although when we say "conservative", we should probably clarify that as US conservative, as the average European conservative is in favour of socialised healthcare.

1) The big one is simply all that derives from an ultimately defensible moral stance that individuals do not have a responsibility to and should not be forced to pay for other people's healthcare. Even if that results in other people's harm and death, or to other general detriment.

2) There are aspects of market competition that tend to drive greater efficiency, innovation and advancement. As a caveat, we need to be careful with free market systems applied to healthcare, as healthcare does not operate like a free market in several aspects.

3) There may be good arguments to query a government's competence at running a healthcare system.

This is potentially a wide-ranging number of circumstantial complaints. It is bureaucratic and sclerotic. That a centralised, top-down system may lead to persistent, localised failures. Susceptibility to corruption. It may be abused as a political weapon. And so on.

Conservatism is solely about advancing the interests of the wealthy and cementing the positions of the wealthy. Socialized healthcare works against this, thus by conservative logic universal healthcare is bad.

I think in American GOP terms it is referred to as 'The government shouldn't be picking winners and losers'.

Jacco:

This is true, however the money they are spending doesn't exist. The deficit is funded by China. Spending that much money every year is simply not possible. All of the Federal systems in place equal about a trillion dollars together if I remember correctly. You're talking about adding another trillion on top of that PER YEAR for one service. It's simply not feasible.

The deficit is not funded by China, it is primarily funded by you, your children, and every other US citizen that is and ever will be, until the debt is paid off.

The GDP of the US is about $15 trillion. The Federal Budget is about $2.5 trillion. The bank bailout was initially to be .7 trillion. Trillions are thrown around all the time by governments alone, nevermind the ludicrous amounts of money thrown around by the financial sector. A trillion is a lot of money, but not really. Not at these scales.

Adding extra expenditure does not necessarily mean more debt, as long as taxes are raised to pay for it.

Governments are not corporations nor are they private individuals. They operate by their own special set of rules. Here's a good video:

And here's a fairly good post I wrote on debt:

Danny Ocean:

cthulhuspawn82:

I have not taken classes on economics, but I know how debt works for an individual and I assume its similar for the government. Its spending money you don't have. You want that $2000 TV but don't have any money, so you charge it and go $2000 in debt.

It appears the government has a magical credit card that it charges billions (recently trillions) a year to, and never pays off. Why would an entity with unlimited debt, and who never pays its bills need money?

It is not the case that government debt is the same as individual debt. The government represents (a fraction of) the aggregate income of every member of its country, including those who have not yet been born. It has, given a sufficient timeframe, effectively unlimited funds.

The problem comes when that timeframe is narrowed. Such as, for example, when a creditor turns around and says "I need my money back now". This, of course, happens all the time in the form of interest payments. And occasionally happens all at once, such as is nearly-but-not-quite happening with Greece.

The state has significant bargaining power in these circumstances in ways that an individual does not. Should the state be large enough- such as the USA- it can simply turn to creditors and say "Sorry, we don't want to pay you back right now, and we won't pay you back at all unless you extend the contract". Big, rich states can effectively force creditors to alter the contract. This is not the case with smaller states, who are often less powerful than the banks/countries they are borrowing from. That's why you see so many small poor states collapse due to debt but it's not as common in big rich ones.

It's also worth remembering that some government borrowing is done long-term fixed-rate. This means the money isn't payed back (+interest) until at like 25 years after its borrowed. This is long enough for inflation to kick in (Or, indeed, the bankruptcy of the creditor) and reduce the value of the debt. If I borrow $50 from you now, which is about the price of a pair of shoes, and pay it back to you in 25 years, when it's about the price of a dinnerplate, I've made a profit. This is how you can get real negative interest rates (Real means adjusted for inflation). The government can do this too.

Government debt and private debt are similar in the sense that you don't need to be able to afford the amount of money you're borrowing, just the individual repayments. That is what the government needs (some) of its taxes for. The rest of the taxes go to time-sensitive or security related things, such as paying contractors (the government doesn't have the power to renege on payments for vital programmes like medicare/aid) or paying soldiers (you don't want their wages beholden to a bank).

It can make sense for a government to run departments and pay people etc... with borrowed money, if the projected value of that investment is higher than the cost of the repayments needed to make it on a periodical or net basis. This is, of course, very hard to calculate, which is partly why governments almost always run deficits.

One misconception many have in their heads is that debt is an inherently bad thing. Usually this was taught to them as an individual because, yes, in large amounts, private debt can ruin lives. However this is not the case when you look at the bigger picture. Debt is integral to our developed society. It allows us to embark on huge, expensive projects that require more funds than we can possibly contribute up front. The scientists at CERN didn't pitch in to a pot to buy the particle accelerator. Not only that, debt provides a kind of "Cushion" against accidents and even just time. Businesses don't always make the money they're expecting month-on-month, but they still need to pay their workers every month. Debt allows them to have bad months and still pay their staff.

When you start to really think about the ways people use debt responsibly, you can't help but see it as a good thing. :)

Money could be saved by scrapping medicare/aid. Don't supplement it, replace it.

Money is also saved in a single-payer system by the massive bargaining of the entire fucking Federal government. If that one "person" provides ALL the demand for the product, they have such immense bargaining power that they can actually counteract the nature of healthcare as a necessary good.

Food is necessary good, but the difference is that almost anyone can make it, so both demand and supply are high. Healthcare, however, is hard to make.

Agema:
There are plenty of reasonable conservative arguments against socialised healthcare. Although when we say "conservative", we should probably clarify that as US conservative, as the average European conservative is in favour of socialised healthcare.

1) The big one is simply all that derives from an ultimately defensible moral stance that individuals do not have a responsibility to and should not be forced to pay for other people's healthcare. Even if that results in other people's harm and death, or to other general detriment.

2) There are aspects of market competition that tend to drive greater efficiency, innovation and advancement. As a caveat, we need to be careful with free market systems applied to healthcare, as healthcare does not operate like a free market in several aspects.

3) There may be good arguments to query a government's competence at running a healthcare system.

This is potentially a wide-ranging number of circumstantial complaints. It is bureaucratic and sclerotic. That a centralised, top-down system may lead to persistent, localised failures. Susceptibility to corruption. It may be abused as a political weapon. And so on.

1 and 3 are largely my own seasonings, far more 3 then 1.

Personal freedom means personal responsibility, including the ability to fail. Failure is a part of life, after all, and if through your actions you f*ck up and break your leg, you throwing that burden onto others by force is morally indefensible. Society did not make you get drunk and decide to jump off the roof of your home into a kiddie pool, or whatever. Now if you catch something you couldn't stop because of circumstances you couldn't control? That's something else entirely. Judging a dumbass who broke his leg because he got drunk and stupid and some guy who caught pneumonia gathering wood is a dumb system, and I would be perfectly fine with a system of universal healthcare that took this into account.

A society needs to be willing to provide a safety net for those that fall within it through limited actions of their own, but those who seek to abuse the net or society that provides the net should be allowed to fall and fail.

And now for my libertarian points:

1. The government is at best monolithic and at worst incompetent when running social programs on the scale being suggested here. Often this becomes the worse at local levels which are too far removed from the central offices oversight/aid. This often leads to unjust or unfair conditions as the local branch simply cannot cope with the local numbers of people clamoring for a service.

2. Anything the government is allowed to do, becomes almost impossible to stop the government from doing. As in, once something has been implemented through the federal government as a 'needed and necessary thing', it becomes virtually impossible to remove that thing, even after the need has decreased or vanished, or has changed; even changing a government program at that level can be virtually impossible.

3. Humans are ultimately fallible and while I'm not suggesting 'death panels' are a thing, ultimately it does become some bureaucrats decision on who gets what when and where. Humans can be bribed, blackmailed, corrupted, and otherwise shifted. While this is a minor worry it's still a worry, and history shows even minor power over another can cause abuse.

So to sum up: I'm for some sort of social safety net for health care, but I feel the current system and the system being proposed are both incorrect for America; we have cities over here that have the population of European countries, and our state populations are often greater then many european nations. For example, the 'golden child' of social nets that everyone spouts off about is Sweden...which has a population only slightly bigger then New York City.

People need to stop thinking what works over there will work over here; the population numbers do not support it.

To use a metaphor (or analogy?), if we consider the social security systems of Europe to be a good thing to do in America, you must recall the engineers axiom; the more moving parts a system has, the more prone to failure it is. Universal anything in America is unfeasible; there's just to many people.

Now if it could be done at a state level with individual states needs being addressed rather then a blanket system...or to put it another way, imagine if the EU suddenly laid down that social security must work a certain way in all member countries, even countries where that way is highly inefficient, and all the central authority for that system MUST go through the EU.

The biggest argument against socialised healthcare in the USA is that the USA just can't handle it at the moment. It's far too right-wing with a legislative system that involves a large amount of caving in to the wishes of the opposition minority party.

Any socialised healthcare would be completely ruined and corrupted by the Republicans (If not the Democrats themselves) and be utterly useless and probably set-back left wing ideals a fair amount simply because of how big a failure it would be made to be.

If we could turn the USA into a true left-wing nation then sure, no problems instituting it at all. But the free-market worshiping ideology and culture there means that even if by some miracle it did pass, it would inevitably be corrupted once the far right once again come to power.

Agema:

Nikolaz72:

"With an average of one lawyer per every 300 citizens, the United States has not only more lawyers per capita than any other country but also more lawyers than any other country - including those with populations two, three or four, and five times as large"

- Examiner.com

When you consider which countries have a population greater than the USA, their relative lack of lawyers compared to the USA is possibly more a sign of the weak state of their public empowerment and legal system than it is a comment on how many lawyers the USA has.

And i'm saying the fact that they have two lawyers to back up every doctor is an adequate representation of what is wrong with the American legal system (Ju$ti$e)

Agema:
There are plenty of reasonable conservative arguments against socialised healthcare. Although when we say "conservative", we should probably clarify that as US conservative, as the average European conservative is in favour of socialised healthcare.

1) The big one is simply all that derives from an ultimately defensible moral stance that individuals do not have a responsibility to and should not be forced to pay for other people's healthcare. Even if that results in other people's harm and death, or to other general detriment.

Clarification on the added emphasis please? Because every defense of "fuck you Jack, I got mine" that I've seen comes down, eventually, to "hurpa durr negative rights", which is no less axiomatic than any other philosophical construct, and comes off substantially less defensible than even those since it's an argument which, while capable of being constructed logically, fails to take into account real-world practicality, historical evidence, and the last fifty years of advancement in Neuroscience.

2) There are aspects of market competition that tend to drive greater efficiency, innovation and advancement. As a caveat, we need to be careful with free market systems applied to healthcare, as healthcare does not operate like a free market in several aspects.

That argument relies on several faulty assumptions, one of which you point out; the healthcare "market" doesn't operate in the same way as an economic free market. In addition, it assumes; efficiency should be a primary goal of the system, efficiency is a quality which has inherent value, and that competition is the best way to drive efficiency.

3) There may be good arguments to query a government's competence at running a healthcare system.

That an argument might exist is not an argument in and of itself; in reality, and in the context of America, there is no more reason to question government competence on this matter than on any other, and far less reason to question government than the private sector.

This is potentially a wide-ranging number of circumstantial complaints. It is bureaucratic and sclerotic.

Bureaucratic systems are responsible for and are necessary precursors of just about every positive aspect of modern human existence, the idea that they are inherently negative is a childish fantasy perpetrated by people who's concept of a "society" would collapse into a cannibalistic nightmare in less than a year.

That a centralised, top-down system may lead to persistent, localised failures.

As opposed to the current semi-centralised, top-down system which demonstrably does suffer from such failures?

Susceptibility to corruption.

This is less an argument and more of a truism; every system conceived by and operated by human beings is susceptible to corruption. An argument would be that government is -more- susceptible to corruption than the private sector, but that still wouldn't be a good argument, since it's demonstrably untrue(radiantly so given recent events), and prima facie nonsensical since it asserts that an organisation answerable to the people in democratic elections is more prone to institutional corruption than an organisation operating with the sole primary imperative of making the most possible profit in any given scenario and which is answerable only to their shareholders.

It may be abused as a political weapon.

That's less an argument against socialised healthcare, and more an indictment against the modern Political-Media Complex which relies on sensationalism and brinksmanship rather than rational thought and evidence.

Anyone have any more? I've had quite a bit of practice on this one recently putting right a family member who had apparently replaced their brain with that website that generates humorous but disturbingly believable Daily Mail headlines, and Jeremy Clarkson editorials.

The simplest argument against it is that socialized healthcare is basically unhealthy people being able to use the force possessed by government to tyrannize the healthy. This is particularly pertinent in America, where large swaths of the population(up to 1:3 obesity rates in some areas) choose to behave in ways that drastically increase their risk of needing medical care. A system that rewards unhealthy behaviors while punishing healthy ones is unlikely to act as a source of long term stability.

lowhat:
A system that rewards unhealthy behaviors while punishing healthy ones is unlikely to act as a source of long term stability.

Ummmm....how are the healthy people being "punished" and unhealthy people "rewarded"? Sorry, but I don't get it. How's being rushed to a hospital and spending weeks bedridden cause you needed a bypass a "reward" while being able to go merrily about your day without a worry in the world is a "punishment"? Or is this just that usual "I'm being punished by lazy people because they're jealous that I'm successful!" nonsense?

Also, the entire western lifestyle nowadays is unhealthy, mostly. People are stressed all the freakin' time, that's not good for you.

SaneAmongInsane:
I'll never understand why a nation couldn't have both socialized medicine and privatized medicine.

After all, we have public schools and private schools.

This makes me a bad libertarian but I believe in socialized medicine.

Well this is my train of thought exactly. I wouldn't mind paying for private healthcare because I earn a decent wage now, and if private healthcare is half as good as the step up from NHS to private dentistry then it's probably worth the cost. But when times are tough it's nice to know that I don't have to worry about paying for my health as well as food and rent. I mean shit a brick, I worry sick about one of my best friends in the US because she can't even afford a check up right now.

Azure-Supernova:

SaneAmongInsane:
I'll never understand why a nation couldn't have both socialized medicine and privatized medicine.

After all, we have public schools and private schools.

This makes me a bad libertarian but I believe in socialized medicine.

Well this is my train of thought exactly. I wouldn't mind paying for private healthcare because I earn a decent wage now, and if private healthcare is half as good as the step up from NHS to private dentistry then it's probably worth the cost. But when times are tough it's nice to know that I don't have to worry about paying for my health as well as food and rent. I mean shit a brick, I worry sick about one of my best friends in the US because she can't even afford a check up right now.

See, that's quite interesting, because my experience with private dentistry sent me scurrying right back to my NHS dentist; my mother talked me into going private when I was in my teens, and the cretinous idiot decided that my tooth was sore because of a cavity and drilled it. It was actually sore because there was an infection in the nerve, which he proceeded to push a high-speed drill bit directly into - I actually passed out from the pain. He damaged it so badly I had to have a root canal done later. After that experience I'd much rather just use the NHS dentist and pay a little extra cash if I ever need a filling to get the resin over amalgam.

Magichead:

See, that's quite interesting, because my experience with private dentistry sent me scurrying right back to my NHS dentist; my mother talked me into going private when I was in my teens, and the cretinous idiot decided that my tooth was sore because of a cavity and drilled it. It was actually sore because there was an infection in the nerve, which he proceeded to push a high-speed drill bit directly into - I actually passed out from the pain. He damaged it so badly I had to have a root canal done later. After that experience I'd much rather just use the NHS dentist and pay a little extra cash if I ever need a filling to get the resin over amalgam.

Ouch, that sounds nasty. I'm not speaking a bad word about my old NHS dentist, he was a delightful chap but it was the waiting times that really put me off. I remember when my final milk tooth finally gave up (there was never an adult tooth to replace it) and it ached something awful, so I called up to book an appointment early November and was offered an appointment in mid January. I think I pay about an extra 12 than my original Band 1 care from the NHS, but that covers two set check ups, I can usually get an appointment within the next 8 days and I get 5% off any routine treatments I require.

Although getting a good dentist definitely helps and I'm sure there are plenty of good dentists, both private and NHS

Magichead:
Clarification on the added emphasis please?

"Ultimately defensible" simply means that neither can I or anyone else can adequately render it sufficiently objectively unjustifiable it holds no merit at all.

That argument relies on several faulty assumptions, one of which you point out; the healthcare "market" doesn't operate in the same way as an economic free market. In addition, it assumes; efficiency should be a primary goal of the system, efficiency is a quality which has inherent value, and that competition is the best way to drive efficiency.

It requires no assumption that efficiency need be a primary goal, just that it is a goal (amongst potential others).
It requires no assumption that efficiency has inherent value. It is a statement that assumes efficiency has value in a taxpayer supported healthcare system. I would be surprised if anyone thought it did not.
It does make an assumption that competition is generally an effective way (it may not necessarily the theoretical best, but is a useful practical way) of improving efficiency. This is non-controversial, with plenty of supportive evidence.

That an argument might exist is not an argument in and of itself; in reality, and in the context of America, there is no more reason to question government competence on this matter than on any other, and far less reason to question government than the private sector.

It is perfectly reasonable to point out that any number of relevant factors may exist. Implicit in this is that I am not in a position to say whether they do (or I would have done).

It seems odd to criticise this as not being an argument, and then provide hypothetical answers. If it is not a reasonable argument, there is no need to answer those points. That you have suggests you do think the idea of potential circumstantial factors has some merit.

SaneAmongInsane:
I'll never understand why a nation couldn't have both socialized medicine and privatized medicine.

After all, we have public schools and private schools.

This makes me a bad libertarian but I believe in socialized medicine.

this, make it half and half

make it so that the people who dont want to assosiate with those filthy peaseants get private medicine, and the poor get goverment medicine (but of course there should be incentives and such to keep the amount of good doctors in each balanced)

Agema:
There are plenty of reasonable conservative arguments against socialised healthcare. Although when we say "conservative", we should probably clarify that as US conservative, as the average European conservative is in favour of socialised healthcare.

1) The big one is simply all that derives from an ultimately defensible moral stance that individuals do not have a responsibility to and should not be forced to pay for other people's healthcare. Even if that results in other people's harm and death, or to other general detriment.

2) There are aspects of market competition that tend to drive greater efficiency, innovation and advancement. As a caveat, we need to be careful with free market systems applied to healthcare, as healthcare does not operate like a free market in several aspects.

3) There may be good arguments to query a government's competence at running a healthcare system.

This is potentially a wide-ranging number of circumstantial complaints. It is bureaucratic and sclerotic. That a centralised, top-down system may lead to persistent, localised failures. Susceptibility to corruption. It may be abused as a political weapon. And so on.

1) acording to that reasoning i shoudnt help a person if he is bleading or having a seizure, its not my responsability
2) can be applied to goverment fund reasearch
3) so much lies, how about when they tell you they wont operate you because for them its to expensive? (oh yeah it happens)

I personally support the idea, but to play the devil's advocate:

It's prone to bloat and relies upon a healthy, working population to function. When a fourth of your population is over 60 and you have the problems associated with obesity that are becoming more and more rampant in more and more Western nations, the cost becomes too great. It's an excellent system when everyone is 20-40 and fit such as the one used by the US military. For such a system to work in a world where people are living longer and longer, we would have to somehow keep people working longer while also reigning in the big health problems of the Western world which create obscenely high costs. The first one would mean either people work until they die or we hope to discover some anti-aging serum which keeps people younger for longer. We would also have to find some way to get people to make the life style changes necessary to keep costs low. We could also counter-balance the large number of old people by just making more babies, but that's a very short-sighted solution bound to create an even bigger problem. There's also the question of how to go about that. It can all come off as quite dystopian.

sonofliber:

1) acording to that reasoning i shoudnt help a person if he is bleading or having a seizure, its not my responsability

No, according to that reasoning the government shouldn't enact a law making it illegal to not help people who are bleeding or having a seizure. Although many people who would object to such a law would also help such people out of goodwill anyway.

2) can be applied to goverment fund reasearch

Yes, it could. Although the general principles of why governments fund healthcare and research are rather different, so the same rules need not necessarily apply.

3) so much lies, how about when they tell you they wont operate you because for them its to expensive? (oh yeah it happens)

I'm sure it does happen. I'm not trying to say a non-socialised healthcare system is faultless or better than a socialised system. I'm just illustrating why support for a non-socialised system is not devoid of decent reasons.

Obamacare is not socialized medicine, but assuming you mean socialized medicine on the whole:

Doctors and practices may have lower incomes. This could push some out of the field. It's purely hypothetical though.

Mr.Cynic88:
Being an American, I'm surrounded by people who are anti-Obamacare because "socialism" is tantamount to the N-word in this country. In my liberal college mind, I think taxes to pay for community services such as police officers and the like is the entire point of representative government, and considering what Americans pay for health insurance (if they're lucky enough to have it) I don't see how raised taxes are worse than high deductibles and companies looking for any reason NOT to cover you.

Most conservatives I say this to just want to hit me and call me an idiot, and even those I do engage in debate say little more than "choice" and "companies that don't want to pay for healthcare will just lay off their already destitute employees." But it's never really backed up with any statistics or reasoned argument.

So, I would like to hear a thought-out, rational response advocating privatized medicine as it is currently practiced in America, and why trying to socialize it like most of the Western world would be bad for the country and its citizens.

Obviously such topics could lead to a flame war, so I would prefer that we propose academic answers rather than just call each other idiots.

This question is case sensitive(and you didn't address case). Are you talking about implementation of socialized medicine in a developed first world country or someplace else? What variant of socialized medicine are we discussing the merits of?

I am a conservative, but I can't argue unless you're more specific.

Kopikatsu:
It's not really self-sustaining. The Social Security and Medicare Board of Trustees claims that SocSec will start paying out more than it's receiving by 2017~ and it'll be completely drained of money by 2037.

Basically nothing in America is sustainable. It's not a question of if it will crash but when.

My bet is that America will come apart around 2050~.

Social Security and Medicare are always facing insolvency, because they can't predict raises in revenues/investment.

Insolvency is a good way to determine the health of the trusts, but it can't actually be taken as a serious prediction.

vonmanstein:

This question is case sensitive(and you didn't address case). Are you talking about implementation of socialized medicine in a developed first world country or someplace else? What variant of socialized medicine are we discussing the merits of?

I am a conservative, but I can't argue unless you're more specific.

I'm specifically referring to implementing socialized medicine in the United States.

Heronblade:
Obamacare is not socialized medicine. It is a mandatory version of our previous privatized medicine system. It combines the worst of both worlds while adding few if any of the benefits of socialized health care that other countries enjoy.

This.

Obamacare is a doubling down on an already broken system. A completely privatized market would be better. A completely government run market would be better. But what we get is this ungodly crony capitalism mutation.

randomsix:
Obamacare is a doubling down on an already broken system. A completely privatized market would be better. A completely government run market would be better. But what we get is this ungodly crony capitalism mutation.

Not quite. What Obamacare does is fix the problem that fewer people are paying for more and more healthcare, because people either don't want or can't have health insurance.

Now if those people make healthcare expenses you have a triple problem:
-They can't pay and get in trouble
-The healthcare provider doesn't get paid, or gets paid later on, and has a problem
-Some level of government often covers such cost, and then faces a budget deficit

What Obamacare does is stop that unnecessary opt-out, so everybody you meet will be insured, and for instance will lead to fixing the ridiculous, utterly insane situation that you have to hand in a bank guarantee or insurance guarantee before your medical treatment begins. This is unheard of in other countries, because everybody is always insured, the costs will be covered, and the tiny portion of people who still don't (ussually drug users or illegal aliens) are so small a problem it doesn't afect the budget.

In addition, everybody being insured will make sure that nobody needs to postpone medical treatment due to lack of money for it. This is health gain for the people, but also fixes a 4th problem of US healthcare, namely that postponing and non-treatment leads to conditions worsening, and fixing it later on ussually costs a lot more money, which the taxpayer ends up covering for.

Thus, Obamacare may not change the US healthcare system, but it does fix several very large problems the US healthcare system is having. It's not ideal, but hey, for that to happen you'd need progressive democrats to win an absolute majority everywhere.


The next step should be extensive regulations for health insurance aimed to prevent screwing over clients and prevent the profit motive from interfering with the healthcare motive, namely punishing for or forbidding any business practise that puts profit over health.

This twin system of mandatory private health insurance and heavily regulated health insurance has shown to be a smashing succes in many countries, like the Netherlands. Before we switched to that, healthcare costs were spiralling out of control. I once did some math on that, and concluded that if the pre-privatisation trends (1995-2000) had continued, by 2010 we Dutch would've been paying twice as much for our healthcare compared to what we actually paid to private insurance, compared to my starting year of 2000.

Overhead:
Eh, at least with the first few indicators I chose partly at random and partly because they're significant ones, the Netherlands doesn't look especially good. It doesn't seem to have become more cost effective either.

The 1995-2000 trend was a 10-11% increase per year at an increasing rate, since then there's been a steady paced 3-4% a year increase.

No idea where the worldbank got that stuff from. The Central Bureau of Statistics contradicts it, and I believe them over a google file any day. Causes being identified are mostly non-budgetary: Aging of the population, increasing non-acceptance of suffering from medical problems, people resolving care less through family or other social connections like churches and more through professional healthcare... Things like that.

One thing that's important to note though, is that the privatisation resolved the extremely unfair division of healthcare we had before that. If you fell under the state-run insurance (ziekenfonds), you were off cheaply. € 51 a month for a family of 3 in 2001. However, if you fell outside that because your income was too high, or you were an entrepreneur, that same family would cost in excess of € 450 a month to insure. So you could have an income 20% higher than someone else, but having to spend 300-500% more on health insurance and effectively being poorer than someone who's making less money. Obviously that incredible milking of the middle class being stopped inflated the costs.

During that period we also maintained health coverage across the country by the way. It's only since 2008 that that's being centralised more and more. Obviously that costs money. For instance the legal limit on travel time to any hospital is 48 minutes. I'm betting France or the UK don't have that sort of a standard, not in remote places that's for sure.

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