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Insuring a less healthy futurePosted Wednesday, February 24, 2010, at 7:40 AM
Looks like Americans' health is taking the back burner this week while politicians promote party and big business first and people last in the arguments over President Obama's health care proposals.
Should Americans be legally required to have health insurance or be hit with fines?
Should the government be allowed to block large premium increases?
Should insurance companies be forced to insure those with pre-existing conditions?
Obama and Democrats think so. Republicans disagree. And I guess many of us feel caught in the middle.
I've thought for years that insurance companies charge ridiculous premiums with little other than market forces to stop them. Suppose the "oil company" mindset hits the insurance industry. What happens then?
But I'm also hearing some conservative voices increasingly using the word "socalism" in claims that the federal government wants too much control -- read "regulatory authority" -- over business.
All I know is last year it cost over $1,800 for me to get six stitches. Yes, America has a problem.
And I suspect that whatever happens, if anything, concerning insurance it'll end up costing us more.
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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.
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