Wednesday, December 06, 2006

COWS For Universal Healthcare

The socialist plan for America is being developed at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Joel Rogers runs a personal think tank called COWS that operates under the protection of the university. It is in effect a Wisconsin taxpayer subsidized research unit for the Democratic Party. The latest publication further develops their theoretical basis for expanding government control of health care financing.

When Work Doesn't Pay: Hard, consistent work does not always pay enough or provide health insurance for families. Of the $1.85 billion spent on programs, fully 45 percent of this money—$837 million—goes to year-round working families. Despite these families’ commitment to work, they must rely on the state to make ends meet. By far the most important and expensive support to year-round working families is medical assistance which accounts for 38 percent of this money. When workers cannot rely on employer provided health insurance, they turn when they can to the state for medical assistance. Employer provided health insurance is in decline, which means that the medical assistance costs of low-wage jobs will continue to grow.

The essential point of contention is the difference between compensation for work (pay) and inducements to work for a specific company (benefits). Socialists consider benefits indistinguishable from pay. From this false premise they build a case that when compensation for labor is inadequate to meet the expectations of employees for third party products and services, then either the state must control wages or the state must control payments for the products and services with regulatory and taxing mandates.

What the socialists take as a given is the assumption that while there is a right to charge an individual for healthcare, the obligation to pay those fees can be transferred to other individuals. In our private insurance system, individuals voluntarily pay the bills of others until and unless they have their own bills to pay. The advocates of government control apparently believe the obligation to pay the charges of healthcare providers is primary over the right of private money to remain private. In other words, since money is needed (for the greater good), then there is a need to take money.