A Few Thoughts On The Health-Care Debate: Ram It Through?

I have enough faith in the people who day in and day out deal with health-care to move forward.  They include doctors, nurses, hospital administrators, insurance employees, pharmaceutical companies (even the sales reps), and ultimately, you and me.

Yet I also observe that man is a political animal, and can see how the subtlety and complextity of this issue (or any issue) is so often rendered into political sausage and earmarked pork.  Politicians do what they do best;  seeking political advantage, crafting their message to fit the times and their constituencies, and hopefully representing you and me if we vote and hold them accountable.  Beyond that, I’m skeptical.

If you are a true liberal or progressive…don’t you value individual freedom enough to recognize that the kind of political idealism you display (America is ungovernable!) can also lead to political stagnation, over-reach, and potentially a loss of individual freedom?

To some conservatives I know:  doesn’t Obama’s political sacrifice involve the address of a cost problem. Aren’t we wasting money with our emergency room triage centers?  What do we do about this in our own lives?  Perhaps there are options beyond tea-party populism…and opportunities to use this moment, at the very least, to wiser political advantage.

Politics plays a part, but how big a part should still be up for debate in my opinion…

Also On This Site: Atul Gawande suggests some ideas for how big a part: Atul Gawande At The New Yorker: ‘Testing, Testing’From The New Yorker: Atul Gawande On Health Care-”The Cost Conundrum”

Addition: A friend points out that one barrier to free trade (and a talking point even on the left) is protectionism in our farm markets…so if you nationalize, be prepared to deal with unforeseen consequences down the road?

Health Care is a right?: From If-Then Knots: Health Care Is Not A Right…But Then Neither Is Property?

Clive Crook At The Financial Times: ‘Congress Misses The Point Of Reform’

Add to Technorati Favorites

2 thoughts on “A Few Thoughts On The Health-Care Debate: Ram It Through?

  1. Good post! American Government today is filled with politics and less action. All we hear are promises and commitments from our President and other politicians. Isn’t it about time that we see actions and improvements rather than speeches.

  2. brandy, thanks for reading and commenting.

    I think what I’m getting after is that the political system may not be the most efficient way to address this, or perhaps most, problems.

    Sometimes even action is boring…(it’s the 5 years you spent wrestling with your borough council to get them to stop dumping trash next to your house). It’s the way a senator voted against your issue enough times that you organized enough to get him to notice…and think twice about the issue.

    High hopes and political idealism (wishing to see your worldview, whatever it may be) reflected on the national scene, and demanding broad action can put the wrong kind of pressure on politics.

    How much and how little can it really do for us?

Leave a Reply