Savings Accounts do not Constitute a Plan

Look, I have a savings account, and I’m pretty good about putting money in it. This is something of a new development for me, considering that I am not prone to saving money, but I digress.

This whole ordeal reminds me of Bush’s Social Security plan. That being, of course, having your money automatically diverted to the stock market, or, having a savings account. Funny thing about that, though, if I wanted to open up a savings account I would… wait for it… open up a savings account.

Very novel concept, I know.

The problem is, McCain’s “health plan” apparently isn’t much more than savings accounts and hoping the free market will insure the 47 million uninsured Americans that we have today. But what really got me was this little snippet from McCain on intervention from big ol’ mean and nasty government:

“In the end this will accomplish one thing only,” he predicted in a speech in Tampa. “We will replace the inefficiency, irrationality, and uncontrolled costs of the current system with the inefficiency, irrationality, and uncontrolled costs of a government monopoly.”

Now, this strikes me funny because I wonder why he brings it up. Is he just, you know, tilting at windmills? He must be because neither of his opponents in the race actually are offering such a system, though, I must admit, I would kind of like one.

What’s probably happening is that he’s not necessarily accusing Clinton or Obama of going after “socialized medicine,” yes, that lurking specter that will kill us all, but instead he is sort of implying that that is what they have to offer.

Not that they do. Both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have put forth plans to make it easier for people to buy into existing health care companies that are not government run. Hillary mandates coverage for everyone, Obama mandates coverage for children. Neither mandate that healthcare be run by Big Brother.

Thus making John McCain’s “Straight Talk” on healthcare both a little dishonest, and a lot ineffective.

But it still boils down to the fact that McCain is still pimping the “ownership society” even if he isn’t using those words. The problem is, the people who actually own things aren’t the ones that are hurting. If you have enough money to do healthcare by saving account, you’re probably not hurting all that much financially. On the other hand, those who don’t own anything, those who get turned away from the “ownership society” those are the folks that do need a little help, maybe even a little government intervention.

And no, the market won’t fix the problem, and we know this because it hasn’t. It hasn’t even really tried to, and why should it? There’s little profit to be had in insuring people who can’t really afford it, which is part of the reason why I have been a supporter of Universal Healthcare.

You tell me I can’t afford a yacht, I’m fine with that, I obviously won’t be contributing to the yacht market, and I don’t expect the yacht market to start producing a line of vessels affordable to guys like me. I don’t expect Corvettes to come in two versions, working class and rich, and I don’t expect Martin to start making guitars in my price range (though, they did, and with absolute glee I am an owner of a Martin… sorry, off topic).

The point is, all of this is stuff that can be done without. Fancy food, flashy cars, all this stuff, I am fully¬† willing to say, sure, that’s for the rich, and not for me. But healthcare’s different. From a moral standpoint, I don’t think that having billions of dollars should mean that you can have your debilitating illness treated when someone else with the same exact illness gets turned away due to a lack of insurance.

I’m sorry, it’s a given that not having a lot of money automatically excludes one from a lot of things, but receiving vital care simply isn’t one of them.

McCain, on the other hand, either disagrees, or he really really doesn’t know what he’s talking about when he wades into the topic of healthcare.

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