I’m sure supporters of congressional Republicans are happy that those younger than age 55 might soon be at the mercy of the health-insurance industry for their future elderly care, as it would be mandated by Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget. After all, it is very important that those at the top of the economic ladder have even more tax breaks at the expense of those who can least afford health insurance.
But possibly most important to supporters of the Ryan budget is that its passage will ensure the people who will never be at the top of the economic ladder know their place, and are willing to defer to, and look out for, the financial interests of their betters.
The health-insurance industry is designed to make a profit, not provide medical care. One simply cannot make money by insuring high-risk pools such as the elderly without charging very high premiums. Whatever monies the Medicare “coupon” provides will quickly disappear; you will then quickly eat through your savings, retirement account and any assets than that you hoped to leave to your children. Or you can simply choose not to get medical care – with its inevitable painful, potentially mortal consequences.
For those of you who do not remember the days before Medicare, please know there was a time in this country when the elderly chose to die because they did not want to be a personal or financial burden on their families. Medicare, with all it imperfections, stopped this indignity.
If the Tea Party folks want to be real heroes, they should demand their Medicare plan be changed immediately to a voucher program, and show us how real Americans can get things done. Take the country back to a time when there was no meaningful Medicare program. Imagine the excitement of knowing you can be dropped from coverage because of a newly discovered pre-existing condition, or you can no longer get coverage because you forgot to mail in a coupon or check because of your Alzheimer’s. Show the rest of us how to breathe the sweet air of freedom when you are kicked to the curb after all your assets have been liquidated to cover your medical expenses.
Anything less than such a bold and courageous act by the Tea Party folks will reveal that, despite all their flag-waving patriotism and shouts of individual self-reliance, they are selfish, hypocritical and only in it for themselves.
Also, please be assured that congressional Republicans will not be at the mercy of a medical coupon for their elderly care.