American Shorts

Cocktail Socialism | September 9, 2009

Anthony Weiner, a congressman representing New York’s ninth district is a socialist when it comes to health care reform.

Thank G/o/d.

We need more socialist voices speaking the truth about what we really need: a single-payer system. Weiner has a really good piece on Huffington Post about the need for a single-payer Medicare for all type system.

Huffington Post:

We’ve been reluctant to tackle the real inefficiency in the current system, namely, the very presence of the private insurance companies. Too many in Washington would rather stay friends with the insurance and drug companies when real reform probably can’t be achieved in a way that makes these powerful institutions happy.

That’s not to say we should vilify the industry. When they pocket up to 30% in profits and overhead (compared to 4% for Medicare) or when their executives take multimillion dollar salaries, insurance companies are doing what their shareholders want them to do.

But let’s leave it to the Republicans to defend those actions. I, and most Democrats, should not join the chorus that sounds like we care more about insurance companies than taxpayers.

The same is true for Big Pharma. If Wal-Mart can pool its customers to be able to offer the $4 prescriptions, why shouldn’t the federal government drive the same hard bargain on behalf of the tax payers so they too get the best prices under Medicare? I pose this exact question at every town hall meeting I attend and if my colleagues and the President did the same on Wednesday night, they would mix good policy with good politics. Instead we have watched a puzzling dance as policymakers have effectively limited the savings we would find in the enormous drug expenditures that are a fixture in our current system. Is it any wonder citizens are confused?

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