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Health Insurance Has Similarities to Sewers

A frequent commentator on this blog,

Some things only work if everyone is in the same fix, everyone does the same thing. For example, consider sewer systems. If, in Albuquerque, some people had privies and some had septic systems and some bought from a private sewer system and some bought the city’s sewer system service, we’d have a mess. We’d have both private sewer systems and City sewers on some streets (probably the richer neighborhoods) and and probably no sewer system on poorer streets, and cholera from the privies. But since we all are required to buy the City’s sewer system, we all have a pretty adequate system at lower total cost (because no street has two sewers).

Health insurance has some similarities to sewers.

First, let me reiterate, I really appreciate the people who take the time to leave comments – especially those with a different point of view. With that said, I found it interesting that Mr. Schneider should choose to use the example of sewer systems to make his case.

I live about eight miles from Albuquerque. I have a septic system. It’s probably worth noting that neither myself nor anyone around me is suffering from cholera. As to the presumption that people in rich neighborhoods would be the ones with a city sewers system, I’d suggest a drive through North Albuquerque Acres. You’ll find some of the largest and most expensive city adjacent homes are all on septic systems.

The vast majority of the folks in the East Mountains have fought city/county unification for over fifty years because we don’t want to be forced into supporting everyone else in the city and live according to what is best for the city. We don’t want to be forced to adopt city water (yeah, many of us have our own wells), city sewer and city trash pickup. Consider that last one, despite the fact that no government entity is picking up the trash, I think you’ll find much less trash on along the roads of the East Mountains then you would in the City of Albuquerque.

Well, the same holds true for health insurance. We should not all be forced into one system that rations care for all. A system like that will not improve health care service over the long run. It will degrade it. And, the way it is being offered, it will degrade it for everyone equally. Our governments – local, state and federal – are already struggling to fund the unwieldy systems for which they have already taxed us, and lest you think they will only tax the rich, think again.

Consider that despite year after year increases in tuition, the largest government run university in the state is asking their employees to take an unpaid furlough:

President David Schmidly said UNM employees who participate in the voluntary furlough program, which he announced this week, will help UNM avoid cutting jobs.

“We have got to hold the line on spending. If we don’t, we’re going to get in a situation where we can’t cope with our reduced appropriations without doing something major with our payroll, and I want to try to avoid that,” he said. “And so, if I can reduce expenditures, get people that want to voluntarily do some things that save on their salaries, and don’t fill those vacancies that come up that we can deal with in some other way, then we can save money and be in a better position to cope with the budget downturn.”

Now, you want a state that doesn’t have enough doctors to run the health care system? IF you think you’re health care situation is dire now. Just imagine when the state run system asks doctors, nurses and technicians to take a furlough to help avoid cutting jobs. Hopefully, you’re not scheduled for major surgery during that furlough week.