The Case for Single Payer 

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I enjoyed reading both articles on Obamacare [“The Great Obamacare Scare,” “Obamacare Will Not Fix Health Care,” May 24, City Weekly]. The private for-profit health-care system in America is terrible. It doesn’t work for me. The health-insurance companies make money off of a pool of low-risk health people paying outrageously high premiums.

When you get sick, either the companies will up your premiums or drop you altogether. Then the hospital industry comes in. It will take you to the cleaners for payment of its outrageously expensive services.

We, the American people, have been held hostage by the anti-competitive monopolistic greed of both the health-insurance companies and the hospital industry.

Solution: a national or state single-payer system. Expand Medicare for everyone. Choose your own doctor and/or health-care provider. Fire the health-insurance companies. Regulate the hospital industry to protect the patient/consumer. The right-wing echo machine on TV and radio tells me that the private sector for profit solves all our problems. “Privatize it all,” they scream. “Anything the government does is a failure.” Not so. One screwdriver doesn’t fit all screws. We have a mix of the private sector, good government services and the commons—i.e., things everybody can use, such as the public library and public roads.

I am good with this model. When the private sector fails, I want the government to step in on my behalf and fix the problem.

Mike Riordan
Salt Lake City

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