Brock’s health plan is a sham

September 29, 2012
http://www.timesargus.com/article/20120926/OPINION02/709269989/1020/OPINION

Republican gubernatorial candidate Randy Brock’s health care proposal (“Brock says he got good ideas from Maine, Indiana, and Florida,” Times Argus, Sept. 9) is an enigma wrapped in a mystery and put into a fallacy.

It is an enigma why Sen. Brock believes that the free market can, and is more than willing to, solve the health care ills that it created. Can an industry which excludes so many, that spends so much of every health care dollar (up to 30 percent and more) on non-health care items such as marketing and excessive CEO salaries, and that does this by denying or obstructing claims, be expected to suddenly reverse its ways in an unregulated free market because there is more competition?

It is a mystery why candidate Brock would equate health care with buying a television at Best Buy or Costco. “Every time I go to Costco or Best Buy, I look at the price of large-screen TVs, and every week they’re lower,” Brock says. “That’s what competition and choice do ...” Health care is about lives, not about television sets. I know this. I almost lost my life to this “free market,” when sick in a life-or-death situation several years ago. Health care is not about consumerism. There is every reason to assume that under Brock’s good ideas this would happen to me again.

It is a fallacy to think that the health insurance industry would allow “choices” outside of the ones that it provides — like these high-deductible plans now in vogue. It is another fallacy to think that, under Brock’s plan, insurance companies will lack the choice to “cherry-pick” their customers, meaning that older people like me, and not of Medicare age and burdened with a medical history, will have the “choice” of astronomical premiums or fending for ourselves.

Walter Carpenter
Montpelier