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Letter: Obamacare? Think Greece, squared
The recent Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) decree from the Obama administration telling the Catholic church and other churches what types of insurance they must buy is simultaneously a severe slap in the face to Catholic church doctrine, the First Amendment, and free enterprise. (I could mention slang for a certain kind of slap which would fit metaphorically but, in the interest of decorum, I will refrain.)
Yes, it is also pandering to the entitlement society and with the “compromise” offered, an affront to the intelligence of the working class (the 99 percent).
It is all of these things and much worse. From a medical-care point of view, the entire concepts of both zero copays and HHS edicts show the utterly sheer folly and magical thinking of the Obama administration and the progressive left.
If we do not soon find ourselves with a “President Santorum” or “President Romney,” etc., then we will soon witness an acceleration in the percentage of health care being provided through the federal government -- a system which is deeply in debt and fraught with unfunded mandates as is.
The concept of “zero copays” is a surefire way of increasing the overall cost of health care shifted to our taxpayer-funded system, due to increased overutilization and decreased cost containment.
Without intervention, we will be set on a collision course to see the tragic crash between this “right” of free treatments (such as “free” government-funded birth control and, no doubt, many other free treatments whenever a political advantage can be seen) and the increased number of persons who obtain their medical care through the federal government (even above the increase already expected which was massive to begin with, as more and more private health-insurance companies go bankrupt).
This is like someone in deep, deep critical credit-card debt literally demanding a higher credit card limit and a higher APR at the same time -- it is utter insanity!
Furthermore, the simple fact that HHS would single out this particularly sensitive issue to introduce such a folly is proof positive -- as if we needed that -- to illustrate exactly how politicized the implementation of Obamacare is designed to be.
When deciding what Medicare procedures will be covered or not in the future and which will have copays or not, these issues will never be decided by a scientific approach tempered with compassion and experience. No, these decisions will be made forevermore by politically assigned and agenda-driven bureaucrats with axes to grind.
Instead of paying for hip replacements, pacemakers, and routine vaccinations, we could very easily find our government funding a never-ending series of political promotions with “free” stamped on them to buy votes. Instead of paying for the necessary care for our elderly and our children, we will be watching more and more of these controversial “free” items being exploited, while we drive our entire health-care system and economy over a $16 trillion-high precipice with the pedal to the floor.
Think of Greece squared.
THOMAS J. LEYTHAM, M.D.
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