Sunday, August 23, 2009

A Letter to the Prsident's Office

This morning I Emailed this letter to the office of the POTUS and am waiting to see what form of response I get back.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the President's Staff,

Perhaps you have not been made aware of this exhaustive list of questions about the proposed changes in the Health Care System. As a way of moving the debate forward you may wish to have answers to these questions.

Some of my personal favorites are:

• A lot of people have been upset about Congress passing bills that they haven't had time to read—and they haven't even finished writing the health-care bill yet. But what I want to know is, with a bill this big and complex, have you taken the time to read it and understand it? Can you really say that anyone has had the time to figure out how all the parts will work together and what all of the consequences will be? With a bill this big, is it even possible to figure out all of that and really know what you're voting for?
• Why does "reform" always mean more government? Are you aware of proposals that have been put forward for free-market reforms of health care? Congress has already approved Health Savings Accounts, where individuals buy their own high-deductible health insurance and save money tax-free, which they can use for their out-of-pocket health-care expenses. This gives people more control over their spending on routine medical treatments while keeping them covered for a serious illness, and it allows them to keep their health insurance if they change jobs. But this program has been limited in size. Are you open to ideas like this, for free-market reform of health-care? Why aren’t these proposals a part of this reform bill?
• What is the closest currently working system that is like the one you are proposing that we can examine for its cost/benefits
• Medicare cuts costs by paying lower rates to doctors and hospitals, which then shift these costs to those of us with private health insurance, which get charged higher rates. But if the government takes over and starts dictating Medicare reimbursement rates for everyone, who will the costs get shifted to then?

I wish to better understand the administration’s opinion on this matter and would greatly appreciate a response. My best wishes to the President and his family and I hope they enjoy their visit to the Vineyard.


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