23 June 2009

Will Admits 'Public Option' is cheaper and out-competes for-profit insurers

Nate Silver, who apparently doesn't favor so-called "Single Payer" health insurance (as I do), nonetheless has a very good piece entitled George F. Will Admits Public Option Will Cut Costs. Silver believes in profit motive and private enterprise, but he recognizes that there are exceptions, and this is one of them.

As an aside, George Lakoff, who has done important work in cognitive science and linguistics, and their interface with politics, is very critical of Democrats in their inability to marshal current thinking on communication to effectively frame their issues and craft language effectively to deliver the message. Such terms as "single payer" and "public option" are very poor at communicating the effective moral message. Single Payer should be Low Cost Doctor/Patient Health System, or something like that, and Public Option, which is already an unsatisfactory compromise, should be Guaranteed Low Cost Health Care Option. By using the terms currently in use, Democrats are buying into the false characterization by the right that universal health care is "creeping socialism" or "government making choices for you." In fact, the opposite is true, of course, government isn't in the business of denying people health care, private insurers are. We should characterize private insurance as an Illness Profiteering and Risky Patient Care Avoidance Scheme, since that's what it is.

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