Subsidizing Government Run Healthcare

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So after seeing the situation affecting my own family recently I know that in the United States we need a government run healthcare program.  Hands down there is just no way the middle to lower income folks can afford healthcare without a group healthcare policy provided by an employer and these are becoming fewer and farer between.

It is often the middle age who are just too early to reach Medicare but have been let go or forced into early retirement and have to drain their life savings to pay for potential medical issues that they are suffering from. 

We need an entity that is able to negotiate and keep specific services at set rates to prevent ridiculous price gouging, this is especially true on prescriptions and medications which are astronomical in cost if you can’t get a generic for $4 at Fry’s or Wal-Mart. 

With all that is going on in the Tobacco and Alcohol taxing programs I wonder if there can be some sort of system applied to "junk food".  I mean think about it, we know that people who smoke cigarettes for 30 years are going to get lung cancer, COPD and other problems.  The same applies to people who eat nothing but carcinogenic junk food for 30 years and cause their bodies to develop diabetes and other health problems.

If the government is going to run health care costs and obesity is going to be a huge cost involved with medical problems perhaps then a certain tax needs to be applied to certain foods with a poor protein / fat / sugar ratio.  I think the funding for these taxes should go only toward the costs for providing healthcare but this could be a viable source of income to help with healthcare costs.  I mean I don’t know what kind of tax rate is required, even if it is 1 cent per dollar on soda, junk food…etc. this could be a way to bring in sources of revenue to offset the cost of government subsidized healthcare.

Honestly, what I pay now in healthcare from my own company I would rather pay in taxes to help contribute toward a healthcare system that covers everybody equally.  I wouldn’t mind paying an extra 1 cent per dollar on junk food that I know is part of the cause of poor health.  I would exclude all fresh baked goods however from this tax.

Developing the right definition of "junk food tax" would be the tricky part, it would require taking assessment of all food on the market and find the right ‘ratio’ of protein, to fat, to sugar (not just carbs since complex carbs are good for you).  It should apply to products which list corn syrup or certain oils as the primary ingredients.

The truth is that more and more people will suffer as they cannot afford healthcare, and Insurance companies are in the business of staying profitable.  There can never be the best interests in health care if profits are the main goal and concern.   I think that medical professionals deserve their just salaries and earnings for providing health care and going through the required medical training.  I also think that drug companies deserve some reward, exclusivity for spending billions of dollars in R&D for new drugs to help cure diseases.  However, I also think that malpractice insurance, lawsuits, insurance companies and others have driven up healthcare costs that it is ridiculous

Things will only get worse and eventually a revolution will occur, but not before we see a meltdown I am afraid.

-Justin Germino

Updated: July 8, 2011 — 8:00 am