One topic that is absolutely essential to my daily life, as I’m sure it is for so many Americans, is health-care. Unfortunately, however, I’m always completely disgusted by the way politicians handle this problem. But for the most part, the majority of my disgust is reserved for Democrats. Why? Because despite the luxury we have of being able to learn from the mistakes of others, we’re completely disregarding the plethora of evidence at our disposal and still pushing for socialized/universal health-care. This completely irritates me beyond belief, which is why it’s taken me so long to write a post about it. I’ve tried several times and just couldn’t get through it.
Before I explain why my life depends on our nation refusing the temptation of socialized medicine, let’s get down to some facts. The reason the Democrats are calling for universal health-care is because of the supposed crisis of the uninsured. They claim that there are so many millions of people in this country who are uninsured that we absolutely must drastically change our entire health-care system. What do they use as evidence to back up this claim? Their oft-repeated statement that 47 million Americans are uninsured.
That number sure sounds big, but there’s an even bigger problem with it: it’s just not true.
They’re pulling this number from the US Census Bureau, specifically their 2005 report on “Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States”. Yes, in the report it does have close to that number as being “uninsured”, but the problem is, it’s just not that simple. The Democrats are completely ignoring the very important statistical breakdown of those 47 million people and what categories they fit into. This creates a very, very, very misleading picture of the current state of our country’s health-care system. So let’s break it down, shall we?
First off, the actual number of uninsured people living in this country is 46.577 million. That list happens to include 9.487 million people who aren’t even American citizens. Even Michael Moore, in his movie ‘Sicko’, agrees that being “an American” matters when it comes to getting health insurance. As he says, “That’s the only preexisting condition that should exist. I’m an American. That’s it.” Therefore, even according to one of the most liberal guys out there, the 47 million number is already debunked in one regard.
So now our total is down to roughly 37 million. Still astronomical, but not as bad as 47 million. Another big claim of people pushing for socialized medicine is that people simply cannot “afford” insurance. As Michael Moore said on CNN’s ‘Larry King Live’ on July 10, 2008, “And when you’ve got 47 million people in this country with no health insurance, they don’t go to the doctor because they can’t afford it.”
Surprise, surprise, the Census Bureau study looked at that issue too.
Of the remaining 37 million people who are uninsured, 8.3 million of those make between $50,000 and $75,999 a year. On top of that, 8.74 million make more than $75,000! That’s roughly 17 million people who ought to be able to “afford” health insurance, because they make substantially more than the median household income of $46,326. According to every study out there that compares income, cost of living, and health insurance costs, those 17 million people can afford health insurance! The thing is, they flat out choose not to.
So when we subtract non-citizens and those who can afford their own insurance yet choose not to purchase it, we’re left with about 20 million. That’s less than 7% of the population. Yet even that number is still inaccurate.
Why? Because the overall total of 47 million people also includes those who are temporarily between work. These are people who are going to have insurance within the next four months. A whopping 45% of those 47 million people will have insurance within the next four months. That’s huge. According to my calculator, that’s 21,150,000. That’s more than we’re left with! Of course, that has to be figured in with those who are not citizens and those who make more than the median income. But still, that begs the question, how many of the remaining 20 million were simply between jobs at the time this census was taken?
In addition to those who are simply temporarily between jobs, the fact still remains that the majority of those who are uninsured already qualify for existing government programs. But just like those who can afford it and choose not to buy it, so many people simply choose not to participate in those government programs. Why?! Who knows! But does their inaction warrant the rest of us sacrificing the quality of care we are already blessed with in this country for the woes that exist under socialized medicine? NO!
We already know that the elderly are covered via Medicaid. Every child is automatically covered as well. There are even programs for the disabled as well! I have a friend whose stepdaughter is profoundly disabled. Even though both of her parents and her stepmother could easily – easily – afford to pay for her medical bills, the entirety of her medical bills are covered by government programs. While yes, I’m all for providing care for the disabled, in my opinion, that’s ridiculous. And what’s more, my friend agrees with me! If you can afford health-care for you and your children, there is no reason that burden should be shifted to the American taxpayer. It’s ludicrous and it shows us just how far down that slippery slope we are toward socialized medicine.
That 47 million statistic is so inflated and I’ve already shown just how inflated it is. But of course, with the Census Bureau’s study, we can’t continue to subtract so easily, since we can’t easily break down how many in each category are temporarily without insurance. So we’re at roughly 20 million, along with the overall 45% who are between jobs.
But that doesn’t mean we’re done. Thankfully, The Kaiser Family Foundation, a liberal non-profit frequently quoted by the media, has done a similar study. They have a figure for the number of uninsured American citizens who do not qualify for current government programs and make less than $50,000 a year. That number is between 13.9 million and 8.2 million. That is one giant leap from at best 13.9 million to 47 million. And that’s a liberal organization.
There you have it, that’s the truth behind the myth of the health-care crisis in this country. Yes, I think it’s so sad that there are people out there who are uninsured. But the government cannot make up for our own choices in life. The government cannot sacrifice the quality of our medical care to make up for the so very few who are without insurance. Especially when there are so many other options already out there to take care of these people! There are many, many answers in the private sector to address this problem.
The bottom line is, inflating the truth will not do us any good. I hate that on such an important issue, both sides have now succumbed to the lie propagated by the liberal left. When John McCain mentioned this save 47 million figure during the debates, I cringed. If we can’t hold on to reason, if we can’t cling to the truth, we are truly lost. This issue is too important for us to lose sight of the truth.
Now that we have the facts out of the way, if you’d like to read about my own personal experience trying to receive treatment in a country with socialized medicine, click “more” to read on. Also, as an extra special treat, I’ve also included a cute – albeit anecdotal – look at the supposed crisis of the uninsured. So go on, click “more”, you know you want to!