Lisman has no solution

April 23, 2012

Times-Argus

In the recent op-ed, Bruce Lisman writes, “Is health care reform important? Of course it is. Yet politicians in Montpelier are ‘rocketing’ us to a new system without showing us the cost.” Really, Mr. Lisman is apparently ignorant of or is ignoring four official studies commissioned by the state on health care costs since 2001.

These include the Lewin report in 2001; the Thorpe report in 2006; the Hsiao report in 2011; and BISHCA report in 2011. The findings of these reports show that a “single payer” health care will control costs better than any other system. Ten plus years of studies isn’t exactly “rocketing” toward a new system. The obvious intended target of Mr. Lisman here is the Green Mountain Health Care Board and the transition to “single payer.”

The above criticism by Mr. Lisman regardless of the facts shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that is familiar with this issue. Many of those against real reform are opportunists using fear to generate opposition to a new system for political and/or economic gain. The health insurance industry and their political allies have been guilty of such misrepresentations and propaganda numerous times.

The “Harry and Louise” ads in 1993-94 against the Clinton health plan are a prime example, along with “Death Panels for Granny” more recently. Some other opponents such as right wing pundits oppose any government run program strictly on ideological grounds. They would have us believe a universal health care plan such as “single payer” will cause the end of western civilization as we know it! This is in spite of Medicare that has elements of a “single payer,” being a model of efficiency compared to health insurance plans in the private sector. I personally know of this since I’ve had experience with both types of health coverage.

It should be pretty obvious that Mr. Lisman is attempting to use his fortune in the form of the expensive media blitz, “Campaign for Vermont,” to become a “player” in Vermont politics. This similar to the political ambitions of Rich Tarrant and Jack McMullen whose wealth, in their opinion, immediately entitled them to high political office. Since Mr. Lisman has claimed that he favors health care reform lets hear what his solution is to this staggering problem. Otherwise he is apparently satisfied just to attack Green Mountain Health Care without providing an alternative.

Jerry Kilcourse

Montpelier