Spreading Fear About Single-Payer

April 22, 2014

 Valley News

By: Chuck Gregory, Springfield

Megan McArdle’s piece (“Vermont Single-Payer: Show Me the Money,” April 17) about the unaffordability of universal health care is way off the mark. If Vermont were its own country, it would rank 20th in per-capita GDP — $38,198, according to data from the Central Intelligence Agency (2005). Adjusted for parity of purchasing power (which equalizes currencies’ worth), that puts Vermont right ahead of Belgium and 171 other countries. Of the 36 countries that have health outcomes superior to the U.S., only 15 have a higher per-capita GDP than Vermont. Vermonters per capita are richer than the citizens of France, Belgium, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Andorra, Japan, Finland, San Marino, Israel, Saudi Arabia, New Zealand, Spain, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Italy, Cyprus, Greece, Portugal, Chile, Argentina and Colombia. We have more than triple the per-capita GDP of Colombia ($11,100), yet that allegedly violent, narco-ridden state surpasses the U.S. in health care outcomes per dollar spent. McArdle flings “fud” — fear, uncertainty and doubt — in order to keep us at a level of peasantry.