What should government health care look like?

As the health-care reform debate advances in Washington, President Obama insists that a public plan makes sense. Industry representatives counter that government-run health care would drive private insurers out of business.

Say the president gets his way. What should government health care look like?

Everyone should have access to the same level of health care that members of congress have. It should be administered in a manner similar to Medicare.

Rick Reiter, Coon Rapids, MN

Forget private health insurance–if premiums are too high and coverage is poor, insurance is a cruel joke. Instead, focus on medical care for all. VA and Medicare and Medicaid all work for those who have it. Get employers out of the middle of health care. Our insistence on private insurers results in wasted dollars for administration and thousands of “plans” which we do not need. -Bill Jones, St. Paul, MN

I would support a public plan that is a non-profit health plan that is national. I went to a meeting where single payer plan was discussed and would support that plan. I listened to President Obama’s health discussion on t.v. and like what he proposed in the public option. We need to deal with our health care crises, offer health care for everyone and focus on health care quality. -Cecelia Newton, Minneapolis, MN

We’ve got to start somewhere. The health care plan should be as good as that provided to our representatives in DC. All employers should contribute for all employees. It should be less like insurance than a system that ensures that health care is provided as a human right. -Jeanette Leete, White Bear Lake, MN

I believe the debate should be whether or not the government should become involved in health care. I am of the opinion that government run programs are always less efficient and cost far more than programs in the private sector. The government run medicare program is a great example of government failure in the healthcare field. Most states such as Minnesota already had health care programs availabe for lower income individuals. This government grab for power with poorly written proposals and insufficient planning is going to become a nightmare that will be with us for decades and will cost far more than the President and his advisors are telling us. -Ted Stuckmayer, Winona, MN

Provide health care to those who don’t have access or to those who are under insured. It should act as a tool for the people to keep the health insurance industry honest and to get as much value as possible from them for every dollar we put in.-Steve Tripp, Minneapolis, MN

I am not smart enough to know, but is should definitely look like something better than this. Lately when asked if I have health insurance, I just laugh and say ‘I cant afford health insurance, I’m an American.’ -Brian Jesness, Eagan, MN

A government health care plan needs to address the following issues:

Portability: no longer tied to your job

Accessability: available to all citizens

Affordability: negotiate competitive prices with drug companies to bring our prices in line with the rest of the world.

-Garret Narjes, Minneapolis, MN

Federal government should require the states to run the “public option”. Some states may have government workers do it. Some may contract for care, some may do something else – coops maybe. I work for the Department of Veterans Affairs and I can tell you the VA model is not the answer.

-Jeff Hall, Wrenshall, MN

Should be low cost optional plan to take care of serious problems only. All medical places should have to burden with their fair share and reimbursed at a lower rate then standard price.

-Timothy Albrecht, Cambridge, MN

I like the idea of a government program competing with the private insurers. If private enterprise is superior to government programs then the insurance companies have nothing to worry about. Meanwhile the government plan would provide a safety net for unemployed or underemployed people. The carping of the insurance companies looks very suspicious. Let’s try the public option. It cannot be worse than the current chaotic, expensive system.

-Hamp Smith, St. Paul, MN

There should not be a government program. We have a fine example of what can be done outside of government with the MCHA program for those with medical problems. Government programs of Medicare and MA are bankrupt despite paying providers a mere fraction of the true costs for service. Those unpaid costs are shifted to others driving up private insurance costs. Blue Cross and others are not for profit companies and operate MORE efficiently than any government program. Stick to the areas outlined in the constitution and leave the rest to the private sector!

-Terrance Genelin, Le Sueur MN

Health insurance should not be a ‘business’. Government provided health insurance is the only way to really reduce costs. Nobody is willing to put the amount of political capital on the line that would be necessary to pass or even discuss a single payer option. Maybe someday…

-Matthew Reinhart, Elk River, MN

Government health care should look very much like Medicare. Medicare is the same for all, cost effective. The paperwork would be incredibly lessened, saving more money,and coverage would be the same anywhere in America. After how many years of taking advantage of us with their dirty tricks and denials of coverage, the insurance companies have shown clearly that health care in America is a right and not a priveledge, and must be a nonprofit area in order to not be driven by the hypercapitalism that has taken it over.

-Elizabeth Johnson, Pequot Lakes, MN

Government Health Care? You have to be kidding! Just take a look at how Uncle Sam is managing, or more aptly mismanaging healthcare for our Veterans. I feel that the spearhead of efforts should be directed at reforms in the healthcare services system. I agree with others that the government’s role should be in providing insurance for the uninsured and under-insured.

-Dominic Tacheny, St. Paul, MN

1. easy to navigate. 2. takes full advantage of technology for the sake of efficiency. 3. focused on preventative care first. 4. retain private ownership/operation of health care providers (clinics, etc.) where it currently exists. 5. allow for expansion of alternative and traditional medicine wherever it can be deemed safe.

-Jeff Boone, Minneapolis, MN

How about modeling it after the system which consistently receives the top rating in the world at half the cost of the US system — France. Why the fear of replicating a world class system in the US? We already have a well functioning single payer system for millions of Americans which operates with low administrative costs. Why not simply extend medicare to all US residents. There seems to be an inherent conflict of interest in a health care system in which private for profit companies operate between the patient and doctor to decide how they can maximize their profits, not how the doctor can best treat the patient, and without incentive for the doctor to improve health of the patient. -Ralph Pamperin, Chanhassen, MN

We should do something…but Government health care already composes >1/3 of the market (Medicare/Medicaid). Problems with more of it: 1st preventative care: If the government is going to be paying for health care it will eventually be reasonable that they can dictate how healthy you must be. Personal freedom and choice will need to be suppressed because people make unhealthy choices and will continue to without having those choices forcibly taken away (goodbye buttered popcorn). 2nd Economics: By making health care a right the demand will increase and will overwhelm an already stretched supply of health care. This will lead to increased cost of health care.

-Thomas Miller, Blaine, MN

We need a sustainable health care solution, so it has to be affordable. To achieve the side-by-side public/private market that the President has described, we need the government to do 3 things. First, change the payment approach for health care from that Medicare/CMMS currently uses to one that rewards quality results instead of simply doing a lot of procedures. Second, create fairness from a geographic perspective. MN health care providers receive a fraction of payment that providers in FL and some other states do. They are being punished for being efficient. Third, Medicare and any other public plan need to pay at a level sufficient to eliminate the cost-shift to the private market.

-Doug Smith, Stillwater, MN

A big black hole. There aren’t enough taxpayers to cover the costs when only 50% of the people living in the US pay taxes. I’m tired of paying for mine and someone else’s.-LouAnn Donahue, Eden Prairie, MN

Yes, a public option needs to be included. The best plan would be a ‘single payer’ plan, which means that health insurance is not linked to employment, that all providers are in ‘the network’, that there is no such thing as ‘pre-existing condition’, that medical decisions are made between the patient and the health care provider. No insurance company looking for ways to deny coverage. Affordable rates, no more bankruptcy because of health care costs.

-Deb Staley, Rochester, MN

From conception each citizen would have a health care account that could be a product from private companies or a public fund. This health product is not tied to employment but the individual. Then when one is employed the premium/maintaince cost is prorated to the employer based on a formula (wages, % of fulltime, etc). All employers would pay something. Now if capitalism works & everyone has a premium, health care premiums should come down. Basically, all citizens/residents should have health care from a central pool which then transferred to employors when working.

-John Robertson, Morton, MN

It should look like a right for every American to have good healthcare. It should most definitely NOT look like a profit center for the companies involved.

-Erik Bartz, Toronto, ON

Our health care system has become a leviathon-a beast beyond our control, it seems. Inefficiencies need to be identified and stripped. Standardized claims processes need to be adapted. Technology should make a variety of efficiencies possible and create new jobs as we transition to new streamlined systems. Beyond that, I’m not sure there is a place for government in health care. No one wants to say it, but as long as health care is a for-profit enterprise, we’ll see continued exponential growth in costs. The big question should be: How do we transition to a system that is based on the concept that the health and well being of our citizenry is more important than a big profit machine?

-Trish Clancy, Robbinsdale, MN

Fix private health care by eliminating so many cnoices insurance companies offer to employers. There is so much administrative WASTE in the system. Third party expenses would eliminate alot of cost and bring costs down for employers. You must justify costs for a public plan. Doctors don’t like Medicare, it only pays 43%, why would they like a public plan? Someone has to pay!

-Susan Fyock, Eden Prairie, MN

I think Medicare is an amazing program, and I’d like universal health care to be based on that model. I’d much rather have my health care decisions be in the hands of my doctors and me than in the hands of an insurance company bureaucrat whose personal bottom line depends on limiting care the patients his company insures receive. If we could put some of the millions of dollars in salary and bonuses that the CEO’s of the big private insurance companies receive, we’d make a dent into providing care for a lot of uninsured people. I wonder how much the director of the Medicare program is paid compared to the salaries paid to insurance company executives?

-Bea Larson, Duluth, MN

Since when has the government run anything successfully? If the government runs the health care we should expect incompetency and government officials getting rich at the taxpayers expense. Just another example of how Obama wants the government to run EVERYTHING!!!

-Dean Waldemarsen, Inver Grove Heights, MN

Existing health program like Tricare for veterans and families. Single payment source, nationwide standards and capacity to bargain for both quantity and quality. A family medical emergency in France showed us that great health care, without bells, whistles and profit focused administration is possible at far lower costs. I wish that government were not captive to business interests and would move towards a real single payer system while leaving service delivery in a mix of private and public hands.

-Jay Wilkinson, St. Paul, MN

Current day federally qualified health centers are the ideal facility for what government health care should look like. Call me if you want more information. We are serving the un and under insured every day with better service that most main stream clinics.

-Betsy David, Minneapolis, MN

It should have a public option that is affordable. My family spends so much on healthcare these days, and if one of us loses our job, we will have no care.

-Nell Kauls, St Paul, MN

Universal healthcare is an absolute moral necessity. Single-payer healthcare is in everyone’s best interests: think about it — private insurers have absolutely no interest in actually providing healthcare to anyone. Their financial interest lies solely in the DENIAL of care to as many of their customers as possible! Equality of care ranks high on the desirability list as well; and that includes affordable coverage for all, regardless of any ‘pre-existing conditions.’

-Susanna Patterson, Stillwater, MN

Whether people like it or not there needs to be friendly competition in healthcare to keep it competitive. Government and insurance companies need to coexist to keep it competitive. Obviously, it hasn’t been working the way it is. Costs continue to rise and will continue to rise if nothhing changes. Government healthcare should be basic and conservative, again with an emphasis on healthier habits and education. There needs to be some accountability and a limit for those that are solely using the government system. A person should be able to purchase more coverage and services for their own personal needs, to be used where government assistance ends.

-Dr. John Pederson, Roseville, MN

It should look like an expanded Medicare. The Federal government become the insurer of last resort, and an available insurer for the public who prefers what it offers. Public insurance needs to be robust enough to cover preventative care and preexisting conditions as well as emergency room visits and standard treatments. Elective surgery would need approval by case workers. ‘Government health care’ sounds as if the government provides the services. Though the VA system proves that government can provide medical care effectively, any expansion of government health services can be limited to public clinics. Ideally, the government will focus on providing coverage, not health care itself.

-John Fulton, St. Paul, MN

Everyone should have affordable basic health care, and the stakeholder table should be large and bipartisan.

-@markawallace

I believe that access to health care is a right and not a privilege. Our current system is very unfair. My first choice for reform would be for a single-payer government plan that is not tied to employment. All U.S. citizens would be covered by this plan and would have equal access to high quality medical care regardless of income level or age. Ideally, co-pays would be a part of this system in order to reduce waste and ensure that people are investing in their own health. Minimally, though, I think that there should be a public option for health care that would compete with private insurers. Why not open up the plan that the Senators receive to all Americans?

-Siri Erickson, Stillwater, MN

There needs to be a public plan because it will help to make private plans become leaner and more competitive. If only this were not a political football! Medicare is a program that is thrifty and could be deemed successful were it not for the paltry reimbursement rates that are choking hospitals, long term care facilities and clinics. I’m willing to pay taxes or a premium to make this happen! We will all lose if we don’t have some public option. -Lisa Peterson, Bemidji, MN

Share your reply in the comments: What should government health care look like?

  • Julia Schrenkler, MPR

    A very intriguing question, and I’m looking forward to reading the comments here.

  • Joanna

    Garret said very succinctly what I would also desire; portability, accessibility, affordability.

    We should design a system from the premise that basic health care itself (not just insurance) is a human right, and should be available to all citizens.

    A single-payer plan would eliminate the need for the excessive paper work that doctors, hospitals and patients currently struggle with.

    To those who object to the idea of a gov’t agency potentially having a say in health care decisions, I would reply that the insurance companies are already interfering in doctors’ decision, quite often to the detriment of care. My father, a physician, retired in disgust over precisely this issue. I will never forget how doctor and nurses negotiated with an insurance bureaucrat on my sister’s behalf to demand that they authorize the care needed to save her life, and for which she had paid with her insurance.

    My daughter is a Spanish citizen and as such has received excellent, free, and timely health care all her life when living in Spain, as have all her family members, regardless of age, health condition, or employment status.

  • Linda Barclay

    I’m in favor of a strong single payor system, but I know that won’t happen. We should, however, have a public “umbrella” entity to negotiate fees across the board–facilities, providers, especially for meds with the drug companies. No one should pay more than others for health care, and no one should go without. We need more well care, and need to educate nurses, midwives and PA’s to provide well care in neighborhood clinics. We must provide better, accessible pre- and post-natal care in order to lower our shameful infant mortality rate(look at how Europe handles this). Parental leave should be a “given” for both parents. Universal accessibility, a national insurance ID card, non-employer-driven. I also think we deserve BETTER than what Congress has, why stop there? we need to eliminate HMOs and PPO networks, in order to allow complete freedom of choice of providers. A public plan, contracting with existing health insurance carriers/intermediaries to administer the claims process–to put insurers’ minds at ease. We need to eliminate the need for the powerful insurance lobby. Eventually, phase out separate Medicare/Medicaid and embrace a plan for all from birth to death.

    If you post this, you may feel free to edit. I have a lot of thoughts on the subject since I’ve been in the industry for 17 years. Thank you for the forum.

  • Tim

    We need a strong single payer system that will get the middle man (health plans) out of the health care cost. We need to spend our money on healthcare rather administrators that add little, if any value, to the health care process. The Health Plans have no incentive to allow medical treatment, pay doctors a fair price for their services or resolve medical conditions. Their objective is to reduce payments to doctors, increase rates to build shareholder wealth and limit patient usage of medical benefits to control costs.

    With a signal payer all of the waste of stock options, bonuses paid to health plan executives, and the costs of administration can be eliminated with a single bill payment administration process.

  • Leanne

    We are one of the wealthiest countries, but do not share the same high honors when it comes to health.

    It is important to note the difference between a national health PLAN versus national health care.

    The current system appears to be a takeover by the profit-driven business sector of a concept originally designed by health care providers who were genuinely interested in streamlining services and controlling health care costs.

    The control needs to be put back in the hands of individuals and their providers. We need to be focusing on healthy outcomes…not just access to an insurance plan.

    I envision a Public PLAN design (similar to Medicare) that would have a core benefit, and be accessible to all residents. This would be a guaranteed individual PLAN (not provided by employer, not to exclude pre-existing conditions, etc…) Under this Public PLAN, only the PLAN is public…the providers would remain private, etc…but would cut out significant administrative overhead and marketing costs.

    Private plans would still have a market to compete…

    Employers could still offer upgrades and supplements through the private sector for fringe benefits, if they so choose.

    “We The People” would negotiate rates with providers and pharma in an open, transparent fashion. This would hopefully have a secondary effect of reducing or eliminating corruption in the health care lobby.

  • Jennifer

    The government plan should be cheap, comprehensive, and easy to use. It should take public health into account above all else. Profit should never be the chief concern when it comes to covering people who are sick – getting rich while someone dies of cancer… that is sick. I look forward to a public plan competing with private insurers (let the market decide!) who, with their stingy policies, have dug their own graves.

  • Carol Drinkard

    There needs to be a focus on eliminating inappropriate and excessive procedures to be more efficient and save money. The current incentive is to do more procedures which results in more pay to the health care system and more dollars spent by the consumer in premiums, taxes, etc. More is not better, and may even be worse (see Atul Gwande’s article in the 6/1/09 New Yorker). For instance, there could be a board or panel (nonpolitical!!) of experts, consumers, and ethicists to evaluate evidence-based medicine to determine the type and amount of procedures that are effective. I am very concerned by the current actions in Medicare and Medicaid (and perhaps in a future “public” system) of simply reducing pay to doctors and hospitals to “save money.” That will only force the providers to opt out of the system and into private plans which are not available to many and are likely more expensive for the consumer.

  • Amanda Rudelt

    What we need is healthcare not health insurance. Insurance is a for profit model that is about risk and mitigating risk. It is something that we want to have and never need to use. That is not how I see healthcare. We now live in a time of chronic diseases that need to be treated and not avoided, which means that the point is to use it. This need for usage is does not fit in and insurance model. As we look at changing American healthcare we must look at getting off of the insurance model and onto a healthcare model.

  • Dennis Meyer

    Today is possibly the one time in our modern history that we have a chance to reign in the health care giants. Their business model has been to take in health care insurance premiums and invest them in other markets. This is why the BCBS business complex in the south suburbs is larger than any hospital complex that they serve. This is also why some of the health insurance, HMO’s CEOs have been reported to have compensation packages exceeding $90,000,000 (“UHG gets $94.2 million,” Star Tribune, April 13, 2004). These markets have crashed and now they are fighting to keep competition to a minimum because unless they are free to raise premiums at any level they wish, they will fall into the same hole the investment bankers did. Their bailout will be the premium payers. How good do you think our coverage will be when they begin to try to fill those holes?

  • Brent Peterson

    I think one of the reasons our health care costs have ballooned out of control is because health care has become a series of remedies. If we could switch to a system that was based on preventative health care and reward health care providers based on how well the patients do (or how little they come back) instead of how much care and drugs we can provide, we could have a far leaner and healthier system.

  • Leslie Elm

    Medicare for all ages

  • Mary

    Health care should be a right for everyone not a privledge for those who can afford it. I think congress with Oboma’s leadership are on the right track. Pre-existing conditions should go away. Doctors and their patients should decide what the right treatment is, not someone working for an insurance company sitting in a cube somewhere. The health care system definately needs to be fixed.

  • Donna

    There should absolutely be a public option. The private health care sector has bankrupted this country. Take a look at the buildings these HMO’s and Big Pharma has built for themselves. Of course they don’t want a public option. Every time a republican says pubic option or socialized medicine. The Dems should call health care what it currently is ‘For Profit Corporate Heath care’.

  • Carol Jacobs

    A public healthcare plan needs to include basic, evidence-based care, with a focus on prevention and education. The advantage of a public plan is that is would not be tied to employment, which the others shouldn’t be either. Any changes to the healthcare system need to include the increased utilization of all the players in healthcare. Advanced Practice Nurses, ie Nurse Practitioners, Nurse Anesthetists and Midwives, provide excellent, cost-effective care, but are pushed out of the market by MD’s.

  • Ann Doberstein, M.D.

    I am a U.S. Army veteran (11 years), a family medicine physician (25 years), and a self-employed physician/musician (1 year). I have witnessed everything from pure government-run medicine to medicine practiced soley as a profitable enterprise to everything in between. My husband and I have recently experienced the pitfalls of obtaining and maintaining “Individual” health insurance. Fortunately we have no serious health problems. We pay hefty premiums, have a huge deductible, and will definitely think twice before we seek medical care for fear that we will lose the insurance that we have. The health insurance industry is designed to be profitable. This model does not work for medical care, and for that reason, I strongly support a public option.

  • David Mair MD

    Elimination of the health insurance industry, a wasteful middleman who stands between me and my patients. Everyone in, nobody out. Everyone pays based on ability to pay (preferably through progressive taxation). Comprehensive benefits, including mental health, dental, vision, chiropractic, long-term care, prescriptions, etc. Medicare 2.0.

  • Mary Jo

    We definitely need a public plan. I would prefer a single payer plan so hospitals and clinics could reduce the staffing costs currently incurred to manage the paperwork for the numerous options out there.

    Opponents will tell all kinds of horror stories about the single payer plans in other countries, but ignore the horror stories of denied care in the US due to the current system. For profit insurance companies do not have patient care as their primary focus. Their focus is denying coverage to improve the bottom line (profit) and provide exorbitant executive pay.

    My husband and I currently pay over $1,100/month for health insurance and we each have a $2,000 deductible. To top it off, our provider has recently changed its formulary and one of my medications is no longer covered so it doesn’t even figure into the deductible.

  • Thomas

    There is a key difference between health insurance and all other insurances (auto, home, life, etc.): we all need to take care of ourselves and we all need medical attention when we are either sick or wanting to remain healthy, versus the other insurances are only there if a catastrophic loss/event happen. We need a hybrid system where Health Care (regualar checkups, occassional seasonal illness, health performance reviews, etc.) is affordable by paying with cash, and the insurance part is for catastrophic illnesses or accidents that are not necessarily predictable. The “catastrophic insurance” part is what the government should consider subsidizing everyone being covered, so if a serious illness or accident does happen, our next step is not the bankruptcy attorney.

  • Michael

    Eventually, the US will end up with a single payer plan of some kind – nothing else makes sense, and reality wins in the long run. The sooner the better. I thought Wellstone’s single payer setup was a good one, and it was favorably received wherever it was honestly considered. HR 676 (Conyers et al) also seems reasonable to me, although some kind of co-pay or deductible would be better included – there are people who will seriously abuse a “free” doctor, and they will drive up costs surprisingly if not discouraged somehow.

  • M. Reid, Plymouth, MN

    Unless there is a willingness either by the medical field to show some restraint and limit their year-over-year price increases or by the government outright to impose pricing control while stimulating an effective “quality-based” market and measurement system, I fear that short-term cost takeouts by the elimination of a private sector insurance layer (an increasingly “for-profit system”) will be shortlived. Without price discipline and/or constraints, the achievements gained during, say, a president’s term, will only be recouped by the medical providers directly over time by higher-than-inflation increments.

    I have this sense that someone has determined how much of my wallet the profession has rights to over time. I have no idea who this person is, but they clearly don’t agree with similar people billing me for my cellphone, cable, power, and water needs, and of course the higher education people have sights on my wallet too when my kids come of age and attempt to live into the “higher education” expectation firmly rooted in our society.

    We’ve crafted for ourselves a world of half-measures, cloaked in a sham of limited competition and “free market” forces – that are anything but. I am not interested in paying more and more for less and less access to the medical system. I am interested in paying a fair price for guaranteed access to the best care possible for me and my family when I need it. If the process becomes about handing such choices / decisions over to some adversarial adminstrator – it isn’t going to work. We are perilously close to that now, are we not?

    So, the way I see it is that unless my employer steps it up annually with a number collectively equal to or greater than all these other people dreaming about my wallet, the music has to end at some point… My employer has reminded me consistently over the last decade that they cannot keep pace. They try to dress it up, but it’s getting almost impossible to put a good spin on annual choices made in healthcare plans these days. On balance, the last decade has been about reallocation of a shrinking $ pie, not about what I feel is best for me and my family.

    I have a sense the medical community and their insurers are unable to step back far enough to see the bigger picture. At some point I will be paying too much for almost nothing and will find the decision to fly without a net too tempting – if not far less risky than carrying on with the current game.

  • Tom Hauwiller

    Concentrate on squeezing costs out of all nodes of health care spending;

    1) The consumer – needs info on cost and quality and what’s needed, so: Govt to create a website that facilitates diagnosis in the form of an expert system that learns as it goes. Govt to create a database that lists providers of services, success rates, and cost of services. Govt to create a Robinson Patman like statute whereby two people cannot be charged a different price the same service. Govt to end subsidies on unhealthy consumables and start subsidies on healthy consumables. Govt to mandate phy ed and health ed in the schools and provide students with health assessments and recommendations for improvement strategies. Govt to either remove deductibility for health insurance premiums for employers or make them deductible for individuals with low income individuals receiving a tax credit. Govt to keep damage payments for medical errors in line with economic damage and pull the licenses of the worst providers.

    2) Insurers – Electronic record maintenance accessible to the consumer, mine health transaction statistics to discover what therapies work and use the data to feed the govt web site. Provide a consumer help line that advises on options for treatment. Provide a basic care option of things that work in addition to a whatever you wish option that pays for the latest and greatest.

    3) Providers – Concentrate on quality, efficient care.

    4) Consumers – Purchase mandatory insurance with the premium based on a slding scale of income. Get educated on the best practices of maintining health Learn how to access govt databases when a health problem arises.

    5) FDA – New therapies that reduce cost of treatment should be given higher priority. Therapies that were developed using governemt funded research and refined by corporate interests should receive reduced time of patent protection.

  • Ruth Hruby

    Those who are frightened by government involvement in health care should realize that it was private sector that have caused the destruction of our common good. It is the private sector health providers have given us a health system that is the poorest of the developed world at twice the cost.

    Remember Pogo? ” I have met the enemy and it is us.” We are the government. We need to keep informed and act. We cut off our nose to spite our face when we do not want to pay our way (taxes) and allow the corporate world to dictate our legislative process.

  • Randy B

    No, they didn’t treat her fairly at all, and what’s even worse, they were so clueless about her POV and her motives (compared to theirs) that they (the Media) didn’t even know they were treating her so unfairly. It’s one thing to stab somebody in the back, but you ought to know you’re doing it. In the professional political world, Sarah was some kind of “freak.” In her world (still a frontier compared to the Lower 48) she was just Sarah.