Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Health Insurance Industry: National Parasite


How does America spend more money per capita on health care than any other nation in the world and still not even cover everyone? In part because we rely on an incredibly wasteful health insurance industry to deliver our care. Our enormous national wealth, which could guarantee quality medical care for every American, is instead wasted maintaining an inefficient and immoral system.

Where are our health care dollars going?
  • Health insurance company profits. (I'm having a very hard time finding estimates of total profit margins for the industry as a whole. Tell me if you know where to look.)
  • Health insurance company executive salaries.
  • Duplicative administrative costs throughout the industry... which is enough money to cover all uninsured.
  • Health insurance company advertising.
  • Political donations and lobbying against a system that puts people before profits.
  • Blimps 'n stuff!


Elizabeth said...

Hey wait a minute!! Blimps are a highly-efficient way for less than ten people to float above sports stadiums.

Amy said...

LOL Liz! That's a good point.

That's one thing I worry about for when we move back to the States--how in the world will we afford health insurance? That's one thing living somewhere else has done for me; it's made me realize that a different way is entirely possible.

Camp Papa said...

I think I speak for most Americans when I say that obscenely compensated insurance company executives floating in serene comfort in a really cool blimp high above a sports stadium is good return on my health care dollars. I can feel my joints loosening up, and my blood pressure dropping, just thinking about it.

As President Obama said, "We don't have a health care system in America. We have a health care industry."

cft said...

Here here!

Don't let those self-undermining authoritarian populist goons/henchmen undermine this opportunity to put right the Orwellian nightmare that is our current, nominally "private," corporate-oligarchic health insurance regime.

The skyrocketing costs of care -- an ongoing process in which the insurers are enmeshed -- represents the single greatest impediment to the quality-of-life enjoyed by individual Americans, to the resourcefulness and capacity for innovation of our citizens and the renewed prospect of mobility among socioeconomic classes. The latter otherwise known as the American Dream.