‘Battle Over Socialism’ is fake news

Dear Editor,

Rich Lowry’s opinion piece in the August 6, 2018 edition of the WTO is, at best, sloppy journalism or, at worst, intentionally misleading (lies!). His claim that proposals of “Medicare-for-All” amounts to socialism is simply untrue. Socialism requires government ownership/employment of the assets and employees of the enterprise. Everybody knows that our government, under the Medicare format, does not own the hospitals or clinics nor does it employ the healthcare providers. Medicare is merely a payment method whereby a single payer, rather than a multitude of insurance corporations, is the source for all healthcare compensation.

Lowry’s claim that a Medicare-for-All single payer program may increase federal spending by nearly $33 trillion in the first 10 years may be accurate but it (intentionally?) fails to mention that Americans will pay FAR MORE than that for our health care, with worse results, under our current system which combines:

1. premiums to the multitude of private insurance corporations;

2. premiums to Medicare;

3. all the out-of-pocket expenses we pay because of the gaps in our coverage;

4. and, of course, the taxes that pay for the purely socialist healthcare system owned by our government for the benefit of our veterans.

Private insurers take out 30% of our premiums for inflated salaries, advertising, and dividends for shareholders, among other administrative costs. Medicare allocates about 3% to administration and 97% to healthcare. That difference alone is a large part of why our current setup is so much more costly and inefficient than Medicare-for-All would be.

There are several other “half-truths” in Lowry’s piece but his claim of the socialism boogeyman is simply an inflammatory lie.

Respectfully Submitted,

Greg Fraser,