- Myth: Medicare costs are going through the roof! We need to “reform” Medicare by transitioning it to a voucher program so senior citizens can have more “choices.”
- Truth: Healthcare costs in general are rising through the roof. And private sector health care costs are rising faster than medicare.
The elderly are the most costly to insure because their needs tend to be the costliest (conversely, the young and healthy are the easiest to insure, which is why their premiums are the lowest). Rather than expecting retirees to foot the bill for the most expensive health care plans out there, there’s a bucket we all pay into which insures the elderly have access to affordable health care.
Is Medicare Really Bankrupt?
Paul Ryan and others would have you believe that Medicare is in danger and the problem can’t be fixed. A quick look at how Medicare is funded reveals just how solvable this issue is. It can easily be solved by asking the wealthiest Americans (who currently pay record-low tax rates–see below) to pay a little more or we can simply shift more of the cost onto seniors. The latter is what Paul Ryan’s plan aims to do. All the rhetoric regarding “giving seniors more options” simply means dumping them onto the private sector with a voucher which will buy less health care due to higher private sector costs and which won’t be adjusted for the ever-increasing costs of private sector healthcare.
Paul Ryan’s ideology
All of this boils down to a philosophy Paul Ryan adheres to. Paul Ryan and others like him believe America should return to its pre-New Deal state, with a government that does little besides provide national security from outside threats. While the idea sounds great to those who subscribe to the philosophy, and to those who have no idea what life is actually like in countries with small governments, it is large step backwards and would take us back to the age of robber barons.