Eighth Blog Post

We are a capitalist nation.  That’s good.  It gives us freedom of choice and power in the marketplace as consumers.  The customer is ultimately always right.  Therefore, our products tend to be exactly what we are willing to pay for.  Right?

If you want to buy a Harley Davidson motorcycle you can choose to walk into the showroom and they will bend over backwards to get you to buy one.  They’ll do special deals, add on cool stuff, offer you upgrades, special leathers and equipment.  If you walk out without buying, you can come back.  Another day.  Or you can go to a competitor.  You can look at used motorcycles.  You can go on Ebay.  Or look up facts in Consumer Reports.  You shop.  You choose.  That is the essence of capitalism.  Choice is freedom.

The same principles work with sofas, dishwashers, pots and pans.  That’s how it works and it works well.  We have good motorcycles, dishwashers and sofas because we choose what we like.  The company that gives us what we want makes the profit.  Choices create the market.  Choice is our freedom.

Health is not a choice.  Cancer is not a choice.  Your child’s leukemia is not a choice.  These are needs which are universal and immediate.  Illness and disease, accidents, affect all, regardless of economic buying power.  You don’t choose.  This isn’t your freedom.  This is a reality beyond economic theories.

Buying a health care plan is not like buying a dishwasher.  You can’t do without it.  You can’t walk away from the showroom to come back when it’s convenient.  You can’t, in your hours of need, negotiate for a better deal.  You are powerless at the moment you need to be the strongest.

You can’t make do with a shabby health care plan when the heart attack, the hip replacement, the emergency C-section, the Alzheimer’s, confronts you and your family.  You need the maximum medical technology as fast as possible regardless of cost.  Your heart surgery will cost more than your car and home put together.  If you don’t own your home, what will you put up as collateral for a loan to save your life?  What’s your child’s life worth?  Your life?  Illness comes to all.  You do not choose.

You can live with a second hand motorcycle.  A low cost dishwasher.  Or none.  If you live in a city, you can do without a car most of the time.  But you can’t live, literally, with less health care.  It’s not your choice.

Capitalism depends on the consumer’s choices.  But health care insurance companies don’t need to respond to consumer choices.  You can’t walk away when you need the medical care and you can’t change policies when you wish.  You don’t have choice.  You can’t afford the best unless you have considerable income.  This points to a basic flaw in the system:  Capitalism and health care don’t mix.

Health and well being are the right of all Americans.  Rich or poor, old or young, we are all subject to the same reality:  We need health care.  We need and deserve the best care that our nation, that we, the people, can provide.

This is a national issue, not to be left up to the States, for what child in any State is not a child of America?  We must use our tax money, patriotically paid by our citizens, for a national health care plan.  This will balance the Capitalist Marketplace at last.  Health insurance companies will have a standard they must meet and the competition that will cause them to improve their services to those who choose to buy their programs.  We will again have Freedom of Choice.

Yes, capitalism works, but the customer is always right.  When it comes to health care, the customer must vote to provide what the market can’t:  universal health care for all Americans.   Tax money is our money.  We, the people, are free to use it for our children, our families, and our selves.



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