The Public Option we already have

This might not be the most articulate argument out there ... I'm just writing in a stream of consciousness ... but I do have an observation about the healthcare debate. It's this. Don't we already have a public option? A state-monopoly, tax-funded, no one is exempt, you pay even if you don't use it because we have decided the country has a vested interest, public option ... for education?

That's the model I think we ought to use. There should be publicly funded and publicly available health care the same way there is publicly funded and publicly available schooling everyone has a right to benefit from. There should also be every other option on the table, all of it legal, and all of it available to willing participants.

Co-ops, magnet and experimental, governmentally standardized, avant garde, individualized, out of the box and out of the imagination, ordinary, and extraordinary -- for the life of me, I do not see what could be wrong with setting it up that way. That education is a basic right seems obvious - why isn't the same thing true with medical dollars?

Besides - I already pay taxes for health care. My elderly family members already use tax money for health care. And I already pay taxes for schools, which I only benefitted from in a very tangential way when I was raising kids.

The government funded and/or managed medical system will never be able to move as quickly and lightly and expansively as complementary care can - but so what? Government schools can only do one kind of thing, and other people have filled in at the edges of that so well that in recent years the standard pratitioners have started to integrate ideas from old, new, east, west, and everything in between - in schools and in medical offices alike.

I read two articles today that speak to my philosophy on this. They're here and here. But philosophy is just background for this one question. Why aren't we thinking about this the same way we think about schools? It just seems so practical to me.


Deanna said...

Brilliant! I will definitely be sharing this concept (linking back to your blog, bien sur).

Carol Whipps said...

Fantastic and well written -- take your "arguments" to some of those forums out there! I agree with you 100%!

Deanna said...

I wrote a blog post on health care reform, inspired by this one. My blog also posts to Facebook where it sparked a lengthy, but generally intelligent discussion. If you would like to see my post, here is the link: