America has the greatest health care system in the world. Don’t be fooled by claims that Canada or the UK is better because they have universal government run health care systems that cover everyone. The liberals that want the government to run our health care system cite infant mortality and life expectancy statistics to prove their case – but if you look at WHY the statistics are different you’ll see that they shouldn’t rely on them at all.
As US News and World Report noted, The United States counts all births as live if they show any sign of life, regardless of prematurity or size. This includes what many other countries report as stillbirths.
And life expectancy statistics are also problematic. In the United States there are more murders and accidents than in Canada or the UK. There’s also a wider range of demographics that includes a higher percentage of African-Americans whose life expectancy is about 72.3 years while for whites it is about 77.7 years. Why the difference? As Dr. David Hogberg wrote in a National Policy Analysis, there’s income, personal risk factors like diabetes, smoking, blood pressure, HIV rates and genetics. Obviously the United States is not as homogeneous a population as other countries.
Bottom line: when someone important from another country gets sick, they don’t go to Canada or the UK, they come to the United States. People are voting with their lives that we have the best health care system in the world.
Now let’s take a look at the 46 million uninsured Americans that President Obama cites. Keith Hennessey notes six and a half million of them actually are insured and are enrolled in Medicaid or S-CHIP but didn’t tell the census taker. Another four and half million are eligible but just haven’t enrolled in Medicaid or S-CHIP yet. Another group, about nine and half million, are non-citizens. Another ten million earn more than three times the poverty line and could buy it if they wanted.
So the “problem” is only fifteen and half million who actually are uninsured and many of them are young adults who rationally don’t want to buy health insurance because car accidents are covered by car insurance and work accidents are covered by workman’s comp. The liberals want the young to buy insurance to help subsidize the older people; that’s in addition to the Medicare taxes the young are already paying.
Why would the liberals want to put the world’s greatest health care system at risk through a major overhaul for fifteen and half million Americans when any of them can go into a hospital and get treated no matter what anyway? Maybe this debate isn’t really about health care and instead is a fight along the usual fault line between liberals and conservatives – the amount government should be involved in our lives.