I think the biggest obstacle to single payer healthcare is the conservative view that the government should not be responsible for healthcare insurance. They are still attacking Medicaid and Medicare. I don’t think there is another country with conservative party quite the like the Republican Party. I think it is very unlikely that there will be single-payer healthcare in the US. It is politically unrealistic although it makes financial sense. I think trying to find compromises with the Republicans is the only path forward and even that is dubious since the Republicans are intent on on rolling government healthcare coverage back, not increasing it. No matter what type of healthcare coverage we have in the US there needs to be a focus on reducing the cost of healthcare without reducing its quality. The US has the best specialized healthcare in the world. That seems beyond question. But we need to make more routine healthcare available to more people.
Me, I think that the biggest obstacle to single-payer healthcare is the fact that US politicians don’t pay attention to what the electorate wants.
One thing we should have learned from Republicans - it makes no sense to advocate for a compromise position as your starting point. Even if you are fatalistic about getting Medicare for All passed with the current amount of Republicans, that doesn’t stop you from fighting for it and trying to move the public discourse as much as possible (I’m sure you recall the iconic “keep your hands off my Medicare” sign carried by a typical Republican voter).
I really don’t like this situation (I always used to argue against Earth First for staking out a ridiculous environmental position to move the compromise over to something more reasonable), but in this case it is just the way the game is played.
Krugman is a right wing, corporate apologist posing as a ‘Liberal’. Krugman, who routinely criticizes the Republican Party, still pledges an allegiance to the corporate funded Democrats. This is part of the MSM strategy to keep every political discussion within the narrow parameters of a corporate framework thereby giving the public the impressions that many points of view are being presented to them.
In many ways Krugman represents the inherent dangers of believing that the Democratic Party somehow represents the 99%. These so called “Blue Dog Democrats” support the status quo from military adventurism to Big Pharma yet they like to label themselves as 'Centrists" despite their extreme right wing views. When corporate America injects Krugman’s view points to the public, the intention is to show that “both sides” of the political spectrum don’t support Medicare for all and that this topic has been studied to death with always the same result… that medicare-for-all is nothing more than a fantasy created out of thin air by no nothings across the political spectrum.
Is Krugman incorrect? I think not. As long as liberals keep voting for mainstream, corporate Dems, it is quite impossible to get single payer. Our two-party system is mostly to blame, but progressive leaders are also to blame because they don’t raise awareness that our party is bought off just like the Republican Party. Think about it: if the Dem Party had the Green Party’s platform, we would have single payer.
You are almost on to something there.
“…if the Democratic Party had the Green Party’s platform, we would have single payer.”
The Democrat Party is virtually the same as the Republican Party. Totally addicted to Money, Mullah, Payola. How can the people of the United States ever trust those in governance, if the people are always secondary to the evil of Money and Greed?
We, the People must awake to the fact that neither of the parties of the Duopoly deserve our support, our trust, or our vote. They have written the laws over the past 30 years to protect themselves. Legalized Corruption is still corruption. It protects the few at the expense of the many.
I was extremely fortunate to see Dr. Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka last November 6th at the University of Maryland Student Union Ballroom and together they spoke of their vision of a government of, by, and for the People.
If it hadn’t been for the Duopoly candidates refusing to allow Jill Stein on the debate stage, many Americans would have seen how major issues confronting the United States should be debated, honestly and in an articulate manner. Not just name calling and debasing each other as we had.
No, the Democratic Party Establishment will never support Medicare for All. Too much legalized corruption benefitting the few instead of the many. Just watch.
My suggestion: Join the Green Party and be a part of something honest and truthful.
People, Planet, and Peace over Profit!
"The first commandment of political strategy still applies:
NEVER ARGUE WITH VOTERS– LISTEN AND RESPOND TO THEM"
(article’s all caps–not mine)
Well said. I agree. I have voted Green in the past, but I’ve also switched back here and there to Democrat (which probably didn’t matter anyways, since I live in CA and it isn’t a swing state). The only thing to get all progressives with the Greens is to do something monumental, like get Bernie to run as a Green or something, not that Jill Stein wasn’t as good (I’d argue that she was actually better).
Medicare as it exists today has sizable gaps in coverage. Quite sizable co=pays for hospitalization. You can exhaust your Part A coverage and there is a deductible of over $1,000. Your Party B pays 80% of doctor fees. The other 20% is up to you.This is why many people on Medicare buy Medicare Advantage plan or supplementary plans to fill in the “holes”.
On the other hand Medicaid offers 100% coverage. It is however very “basic”.No doubt it would be possible to create “Advantage” plans using Medicaid as the base if we wanted to do it.
Corporations own the duopoly.
Stick with the duopoly and you can guarantee that current trends–toward oligarchy, climate catastrophe, the death of the middle class, war for profit–will keep gathering steam.
Krugman’s attempt to dismiss single-payer as “puppies and rainbows” is a Freudian slip that belies the weakness of his position. He takes the normally used expression “UNICORNS and rainbows,” and changes it in an essential way. The critical difference is that we KNOW PUPPIES EXIST. In the case of health care, we KNOW that there are systems that work better than ours, that get better results for less money per person.
Now we have to keep insisting that, yes, puppies exist, and that if you prepare your house for them, they make excellent companions.
I think the biggest obstacle to single payer are the insurance companies and pharma companies that have bought our politicians on both sides of the isle. California is a great example. It’s the Democrats, who control the governorship and both houses, who have killed the bill for single payer.
It was the Obama administration, who when they had both houses of Congress, instead proposed the ACA which kept the For-Profit insurance companies in charge of healthcare. The only way to reduce cost is to remove the profit motive. Healthcare is NOT a commodity.
Yes, it’s amazing when you are a part of the Green Party that you don’t have to fight against your party to try to get them to listen to you. It’s like you have the partner fighting FOR you, the way it’s supposed to be.
The Green Party is owned by its voting base while the Democratic Party is owned by its corporate paymasters and has no interest in input from its voting base.
Don’t allow yourselves to be manipulated by the paid corporate mouthpieces. Their job is to make you believe single payer is impossible, pie in the sky.
Rather than allow yourself to be manipulated speak of single payer as if it is a foregone conclusion. Universal health care is a fact in the entire rest of the developed world. Do not allow the insurance industry to put words in your mouth or thoughts in your mind.
Don’t let these Common Dreams liars, the ones that say single payer is too hard we shouldn’t even try, influence you.
"Krugman argues that Obama Care is the LEFT’S “Biggest Political Success in over Half a Century…”
The freaking LEFT?