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merjet
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1 hour ago, merjet said:

The structural change I described would push out government interference and employers, leaving the matter between insurer and insured.

I admit it may be a step in the right direction, in the context of, it's less poisonous of the choices.

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Changing the tax treatment of employer-paid health insurance would be a big improvement in my opinion. Make the cost taxable income to the employee (retirees included). If the employee buys his/her own insurance -- not employer-provided and include family coverage -- make the premium tax-deductible or allow a partial credit, perhaps scaled by income. This would enlarge the individual insurance market (below age 65), make it more competitive, and make consumers more cost-conscious

Our discussions have to indicate which fundamental context we are arguing within:

1. The ideal situation

2. The better of all poisons that we are force to endure

I would agree with you in the context of number 2.

Now, having said that do you think Republicans would agree to push it forward in the next 10 years? Or Democrats or others?

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33 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

I admit it may be a step in the right direction, in the context of, it's less poisonous of the choices.

Our discussions have to indicate which fundamental context we are arguing within:

1. The ideal situation

2. The better of all poisons that we are force to endure

I would agree with you in the context of number 2.

Now, having said that do you think Republicans would agree to push it forward in the next 10 years? Or Democrats or others?

What do you consider ideal?

I doubt either Republicans or Democrats would push it. Neither would want employer-paid insurance to be taxable income. Especially government and unionized employees, which have high cost plans with rich benefits! To make it more feasible,  I believe making the change would need to be paired with a cut in income tax rates.

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Ideal would be a comprehensive and complete free market:

  • Freedom to buy medicine any where in the world
  • No taxation or credit in relation to medical expenses
  • AMA unable to control licensing of Doctors or Hospitals
  • Freedom to try any medication you want
  • Freedom to order any test without a Doctor's request (Arizona allows it)
  • No prior restraint on using a foreign unlicensed doctor (buyer beware)
  • Ultimately: Freedom of Competition

I would agree that your solution is much more palatable and plausible given the situation we have.

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Easy Truth,

Your ideal says nil about insurance. Few people can pay the cost of medical, especially if hospitalized, out-of-pocket. Most need insurance (similar to auto or homeowners insurance), to mitigate a high claim amount. 

8 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:
  • No taxation or credit in relation to medical expenses

I didn't say or suggest taxation of medical expenses. I meant taxation of premiums paid for medical insurance paid by employers.

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1 hour ago, merjet said:

Your ideal says nil about insurance.

I didn't mention it, but wouldn't insurance costs have pressure downwards in a market where:

1. The cost of medical services and pharmaceuticals  are lower

  • As in Doctor Visits cost less and less
  • Your pills cost less
  • Hospital stay cost less etc.
  • Nursing costs less

2. Insurance companies would compete or be allowed to be more effective by operating interstate, intercountry even. As in you could buy your health insurance in London because they gave a great deal with their huge customer base all over the world. The way it is, this would be highly unlikely.

3. Far more tiers of insurance from low quality, high deductible to highest gold standard insurance would be available so everyone who wants it would get some insurance. Right now, some people can't afford to get any AT ALL.

Currently, the only services available to you, i.e. that you are allowed to have, is non-competitive-expensive services. As you agree, the interference of government is causing it.

This argument can be expanded into government interference in education and other areas. I'm pretty sure you already are familiar with these arguments. All I am saying is, it's best that I say: I am talking ideals, and you say, I am talking most practical in current circumstances.

In current circumstances, the ideal situation I am pushing for will not happen in my life time. For some it will sound improper that I am even proposing them. But what you are proposing might be implemented and should be considered.

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National Debt - Thank you for posting this, Merlin.

"As I began to write this on Thursday morning, the Fox News home page had only two stories on the Covid relief bill and dozens on things like the royal family and cancel culture." -David Brooks

"Poor economic conditions pushed the G.O.P. away from Milton Friedman libertarianism and toward Donald Trump populism. Republicans have learned that in this new era it’s foolish to fight Democrats on redistribution policy, but they can win elections by fighting culture wars." 

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