Nationalization: One step at a time
The people relying on Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security didn't fail. They (we) were sold a tax scheme (sound familiar, Justice Roberts?) that claimed to be insurance and pension plans.
If you've ever scoffed at the rumors that the Federal government might confiscate your retirement savings, it's time to reconsider. And you don't have to look to the actions of Greece, Ireland, Poland or Cyprus to do so.
I recently read a radical extension of past theories for a Nationalized health care solution to the costs of Medicare and Medicaid for the elderly: Since many elderly citizens receive more out of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security than they paid in, and so many eventually rely on Medicaid to pay their bills, it was suggested that our government "nationalize" all Nursing Homes and Assisted Living businesses and confiscate Senior citizen's assets. The Feds could then expand the Veterans Administration system in order to provide housing and medical care until death.
Isn't the entire purpose of any insurance a bet that the insured will someday need more than he pays into the fund? Couldn't the claim be made that many Social Security beneficiaries often receive more money over their lifetimes than they paid into the funds?
Since the Federal government got into the health care business with Medicare, Congress has done everything possible to ensure that Seniors are dependent on what we now know are failures. Everyone who becomes "Medicare eligible" - turns 65 years old - faces penalties for not signing up with Medicare. Janet Reno threatened Federal charges and prosecution for any Medicare-eligible senior who dared to pay for their own health care with their own money or entered into "private contracts" with their own doctors. Their doctors faced the penalties that go with "opting out" of Medicare. For anyone planning ahead, Congress wrote laws severely limiting Health Savings Accounts.
In the meantime, Federal (and State) government(s) failed to put money aside for the future of the people who were paying taxes that could have gone into genuine savings or the purchase of real insurance. Private insurance and pension funds acting the same way would have been shut down and the officers imprisoned for doing the same thing.
Under the "tax" of the ACA, everyone will be forced by law - and the IRS, Federal lawyers, guns and prisons - to buy "insurance" (in reality, pre-paid health care). Since the scheme is rigged to benefit the government-run exchanges, that's how most will buy their "insurance" - or pay their tax.
When the "Affordable Care" scheme proves to be as false as Medicare and Social Security, what next? Where to stop with "nationalization" and confiscation of property? 401K's? Private pensions? The family home and Mama's jewelry?