Tom Price’s suggestion in his Healthcare proposal, “Restoring the Trust for All Generations” are wildly and notably extreme.  Apparently he sees the enemy as “Washington.”  This makes sense if you think that Washington is run by Anti-Christians and Socialists and you hate Anti-Christians and Socialists.   But it does not make sense if you want to have a reasonable discussion of Healthcare.

In an IJReview Opinion Piece, Tom Prices says,

It’s time to get real about advancing positive solutions. That will only happen if the American people lend their voices and support to those policymakers who are willing to take on the entrenched defenders of a broken status quo. And that will only happen if folks engage in an honest and open dialogue about these challenges.

I agree with Tom here.  We need to engage in an honest and open dialogue about the healthcare challenges facing us.

So, to that end, we are looking at his recommendations in his RESTORING THE TRUST FOR ALL GENERATIONS and having an honest and open dialogue.

In this post we will look at the paragraph below found on Page 7 of the report.

As a first step, policymakers must shed the notion that the government can run health care from Washington. No centralized health care “plan” can replace America’s health care sector, and, in fact, any such plan would stifle ingenuity. Health care is the product of many players, interacting in dynamic ways: doctors, nurses, technicians, pharmaceutical companies, medical equipment makers, State and local government, and insurers, among others. Effective and efficient health care must draw from this diverse field of participants. It should restore decision-making to the people most directly affected by the choices, putting patients, families, and doctors in charge, not the central government’s bureaucracies. It should encourage greater flexibility in the design and pricing of health insurance policies, so insurers can tailor benefits to a wide range of individuals and families with diverse needs – precisely the opposite of Washington’s insistence on prescribing what types of insurance people need. It should promote innovation by lifting regulatory burdens, and encouraging the exploration of untried technologies, rather than directing research from Washington.

Now let me take each sentence and have an honest and open dialogue:

#1 – “As a first step, policymakers must shed the notion that the government can run health care from Washington.”  

  • First is not a “Fact.”  This is a “Conclusion.”  And I disagree with this conclusion.  I am not sure the government cannot run healthcare.  I don’t think the first step is to shed the notion that the government can run healthcare.  I think the first step is understand what the goals of the healthcare system should be.
  • This is a Strawman argument.  What does he mean by “run heathcare?”  Is he saying that the UK system does not work at all?  Is he saying the UK system is the government running healthcare.
  • Is this an all or nothing statement?  Is he saying that the government should not be involved At ALL?  For example, the Obamacare plan says that insurers cannot deny coverage for “Pre-existing conditions.”  Is that what he means by government running healthcare?
  • I think this is a “dog whistle” statement to the people that hate Washington.
  • Is he saying that States can run healthcare, but the Washington cannot?  Why?  is Atlanta any better or worse than Washington in running healthcare?

#2 – “No centralized health care “plan” can replace America’s health care sector…

  • This is a Strawman argument.  I am not suggesting that a centralized healthcare plan can replace America’s ENTIRE healthcare sector.  
  • This needs to be further defined.  What centralized health care plan is he talking about?  And what is his definition of the health care sector.
  • I actually might agree with this statement if it was better defined.  So, in the effort to have open and honest discussion, Price needs to define this better

#3 – “in fact, any such plan would stifle ingenuity.”

  • This is not a “Fact.”  It is a “Conclusion.”  And I disagree.  I do not conclude that ANY centralized healthcare plan would necessarily “stifle ingenuity.”   At it most basic all health care plans have some “centralized” aspect to them to some greater or lesser degree.
  • This is a Strawman argument.

#4 – Health care is the product of many players, interacting in dynamic ways: doctors, nurses, technicians, pharmaceutical companies, medical equipment makers, State and local government, and insurers, among others.

  • This is not a fact.  This is a conclusion.  And I agree with this conclusion.
  • It is critical to note that this sentence contradicts his first sentence – #1 above.  In that he acknowledges that there is a role for a centralized government in the provision of health care.
  • He notes that there is a role for State and Local Governments.  Which I agree.  But, why then is there no role for the Federal government.
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