March 10, 2008

ALL THAT AND THE CUCKOO CLOCK?

Competition Solves Health Care (TOM COBURN, March 10, 2008, NY Sun)

Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama have spelled out, in very clear terms, their desire to see government takeover of our health care system. Senator McCain, on the other hand, wants to use market forces to empower individuals with freedom and choice. The outcome of this debate will impact not only the health of millions of Americans but the long-term viability of our republic. [...]

The American people know that innovation, choice, and competition work because they see these forces work every day. Consumers expect that the market will produce better, safer, and more efficient cars at a reasonable price. Consumers expect the market will make electronics faster and cheaper, and so on. History has confirmed this fact time and time again. In 1908, Henry Ford made a car for $850. Eight years later he produced the same car for $360. Today, we see that prices for plasma and LCD TVs have dropped by about 50% in the past two years.

A market-based system that would unleash the power of innovation and competition in health care is within reach. A key reform would involve transferring health care tax benefits to individuals rather than employers. Mr. McCain's plan would do that by providing every American with a tax credit of $2,500 per individual ($5,000 per family) to buy their own insurance plan. Switzerland, hardly a bastion of conservatism, has used a similar individual-based model where costs are 50% less than in America with better outcomes.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 10, 2008 6:45 AM
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