If you have "no place to go," come here!

Americans want a health care system that is uniquely ... Swiss!

From the Wonk Room at Think Progress:

Most notably, Obama has rejected a British/Canadian-like single-payer reform and most policy makers are looking for a “uniquely American solution” that preserves the employer-sponsored system and creates a hybrid public-private partnership. In other words, American reforms would look a bit like the Swiss health system

in which the government “leaves the provision of health care and health insurance in private hands” but creates a marketplace within which insurers can compete on price, and not avoid insuring the sickest patients.

This from the purportedly liberal think tank, Center for American Progress. Do these people ever listen to themselves?

God forbid that Americans should ever get a health care system designed by, and for, Americans.

No votes yet


Submitted by lambert on

If we're going to do a takedown of a health care post, please, let's try to do the takedown at the source, as well as here, by leaving comments -- at this point, we know the talking points and the analysis as well as anyone. Anybody reading a health care thread at any place in the blogosphere should see a pro-single payer comment!!

This was mine on Igor Volsky's post:

Any article that contains the phrase “Newt Gingrich explains…” pins my bogometer. For a minute, I thought I was over at Heritage, not Think Progress!

As for “Obama has rejected” the proven success of single payer — and its $350 billion in savings from reducing administrative costs from the 30% that insurance companies spend to deny people care to 3% — in favor of an experimental, Blairite public-private partnership… Well, I guess we’ll just have to make him do it!

Submitted by hipparchia on

well, maybe not, but for some reason, i can no longer post comments at tp. probably just some technical glitch that ate my passport [or whatever it's called there]. i keep meaning to register under a new name but that's just one more thing to do.

yes, definitely, we do need to be commenting on these at their sources. fortunately stateofthedivision has been doing yeoman's work in the commenting at think progress.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

The more they say they want a uniquely American solution the more they are feeling the heat from single payer advocates. They are trying to get us to quit. I think it is a good sign.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

The coalescing around that jingoistic phrase means that they have found polled and focus-grouped that phrase. Very bad sign.

On the other hand, it definitely is time to start pushback. I may have to go back to some of the websites I've abandoned over the last year.

Submitted by hipparchia on

it's long, but it's worth reading [the part on focus groups starts about halfway through] -- An analysis of Celinda Lake’s slide show, “How to talk to voters about health care”

all the catchphrases you hear, including *uniquely american solution amd even healthcare reform came out of 'research' that celinda lake did for the herndon alliance. ostensibly it's about whether americans prefer single payer or private insurance, but in reality it was all about finding ways to co-opt americans' definite preference for single payer and make it seem like they preferred private insurance.

here's a transcript of one of the herndon alliance's members speaking on their 'research' [the event: American Values, American Solutions: Overcoming the Barriers to Health Reform Herndon Alliance November 2, 2007]

he first starts talking about "american solutions" on pg 17 [of the 100+ pages] and first injects "uniquely american" by pg 19. i did read all the way through it once long ago, but refuse to go any further tonight than finding the first mention of "uniquely american".

this transcript is from an even earlier [2006] presentation. i don't feel like wadig through it at all, but if you want to look for "uniquely american" here too, here ya go.

some posts i did on the herndon alliance, celinda lake, their focus groups, blahblahblah some time back.

Submitted by cg.eye on

... because it helps Americans first, through Americans paying in and getting what they paid for, without high administrative costs, without insurance company subterfuge, lobbying and hidden clauses.

Americans are for openness and fairness, and that's what Medicare for All provides better than any other plan considered.

Submitted by hipparchia on

and openness, you'd think this administration, with its constant transparency transparency transparencydrumbeat, would be all for single payer.

splashy9's picture
Submitted by splashy9 on

"I would think that “Uniquely American” would be a simple plan, where there is universal single payer and the choice of any health care provider you want. That sounds American to me - easy to use, efficient, provides a wide range of choices, and quick - compared to what we have now with the private insurance which is difficult to use, inefficient, rations choices and slow.

That’s not to mention the private insurance cutting out a huge group of people because they either can’t pay or have “preexisting conditions.”"

I'm hoping that meme will take.

Submitted by hipparchia on

maggie mahar, with whom i disagree vehemently on some things [she thinks advocates of single payer are lying about the cost savings], does a good takedown of regina herzlinger's mis-analysis of the swiss system.

which is perhaps why bush liked it. probably he too thought competition was the cost controller in switzerland [hint: it's not competition, it's govt price controls].

the swiss have a good system [among other measures, they live about 3 years longer than we do], but it's arguably the most expensive behind ours. citizens pay much of the cost themselves, no help from employers [bush probably liked that part too] and govt subsidies only for low income folks. plus, health spending there takes up a fair amount of the country's gdp [by european standards]. we can do much better.