Employer Health Insurance is Killing Us

It’s a disaster, for two main reasons: (1) Many employers are doing everything in their power to avoid providing it. (2) The cost to manufacturers is making US-made goods uncompetitive on the world market. There’s an obvious solution.

So what we have is an ethically challenged bunch of lousy-pay mega-rich employers whose entire goal is to sell bad goods as cheaply as possible, thereby boosting profit for themselves. Thus, McDonald’s cheerily explains how to survive on their penny-pinching wage while working just under the hours where health care coverage would be required (take a second job), and that pizza guy vowing to never, ever provide health care insurance for his employees, because, because…well…Obama!

Many employers are doing everything
in their power to avoid providing health care.

When you read reports about things like this you have to check twice to be sure they didn’t come from The Onion, or Andy Borowitz. They are so funny it’s hard to believe they could be true. I’m often still suspicious even after ruling out The Onion as the source, the idea so often being preposterous. This can’t be real, right?

At the other end, the cost of providing health care insurance for employees is taking many US-made products out of the realm of profitability on the world market. This is why fewer and fewer of them are providing health insurance at all.

They have a point. Good insurance provided by the corporation is a historical anomaly that arose after WWII, but is not really suitable for a global market. But their answer—low wages and no insurance—is not a reasonable or ethical answer. Fortunately, there a good, money-saving, effective answer that waits only for us to grasp it.

The cost of health care insurance for employees
makes US products uncompetitive.

Health care is a bedrock need for all persons. We might all be able to pay out-of-pocket for common medical needs, but what happens when an expensive condition comes along? Say, a coronary at age 32. Well, conservatives seem to think that if you are not rich, it’s your own fault, and you should be able to afford to pay. Something is wrong with you, probably because you’re not white. That being the case, you should simply die, and quit being a burden to honest people. But what is actually needed is good health care insurance.

Without medical coverage, curable conditions go untreated, and people literally die every day because they aren’t treated. Hardly a desirable outcome for the richest nation in all history.

Health care is a bedrock need for all persons.
People who are not covered die every day.

This should be a non-partisan issue, but it is not. Grim conservatives who tell us we must all be completely independent of government somehow fail to understand the economy of scale as it applies to insurance, as well as the plain fact that no one can buy insurance on crappy pay. In medical insurance, the costs we would bear with national insurance are half what they cost with our present mashup of semi-insurance. Conservatives demand that we all stand on our own two feet, but work hard to be sure we cannot, by paying wages far too low to provide a decent life, let alone medical care. At the same time they remain blind to the obvious advantages of national insurance that most of us could afford.

The obvious answer comes in two parts: a living wage for everyone, and a good, national health insurance plan.


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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. ..and the only way for fair and equitable health insurance is for it to be run wholly and souly by the government not profit driven health insurance companies and their like


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