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Monday, January 11, 2010

Socialist approach to health care will kill the engine and strand the caboose

Lacking steam power from popular support or political consensus, Democrat House and Senate bosses are meeting clandestinely to plot to push the healthcare overhaul train to the White House station (“Obama to Congress: Pass health bill quickly,” Politics, Wednesday). 

Even if healthcare overhaul reaches that station, however, the train may not get much farther down the tracks.
That’s because economically challenged, leftist politicians intent on redistributing wealth have designed their healthcare engine to be fueled by incentive-killing taxes and penalties against businesses and entrepreneurs--the very ones we’re counting on to create new jobs and rebuild the economy.
In order to subsidize their gargantuan government takeover of health care, Robin Hood politicians see no problem in forcing healthy young people to buy insurance or in slashing the Medicare program for the elderly.
Besides the immense weight of public disapprobation, the healthcare overhaul train is also hopelessly overladen with political payoff pork, such as the $300 million “Louisiana Purchase” perk inserted to secure Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu’s vote on the Senate healthcare bill and the “cornhusker kickback” state Medicaid expense immunity handed to holdout Senator Ben Nelson of Nebraska.
The uninsured and poor need help, and targeted government subsidies paid for with cost-saving initiatives in preventive medicine, tort reform and fraud detection could significantly address their needs. But stealing engine-room resources provided by productive individuals and businesses will eventually cause the healthcare train to run out of steam. That short-sighted socialistic approach will leave the poor caboose stranded on the tracks.

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