Health Care

Health Care

The history of American health care is exceptional, and not in a positive way. Every other developed nation has a cradle to the grave universal health care system. Several presidents attempted to provide universal healthcare, but every attempt was defeated by industry and conservative opposition. Several significant gains were made over the years: Medicare provided access to coverage for the elderly, Medicaid for the very poor, SCHIP for children, and COBRA for the previously insured unemployed. But it wasn’t until 2010 that a universal health care bill, the Affordable Care Act, was finally signed into law by President Barack Obama.

Commentary

Health Care and Emergency Room

Crying Wolf -- The Same Old Song on Health Care and Unions

April 29, 2009

Cry Wolf Quotes

[A dramatic increase in regulation under the Obama administration is] threatening to short-circuit our recovery and undermine our long-term growth....More importantly , it is suffocating the entrepreneurial spirit so vital to America’s success.

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Thomas Donohue, President of the Chamber of Commerce

This program could destroy private initiative for our aged to protect themselves with insurance against the cost of illness….Presently, over 60 percent of our older citizens purchase hospital and medical insurance without Government assistance. This private effort would cease if Government benefits were given to all our older citizens.

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Sen. Milward Simpson (R-WY).
08/08/1965 | Full Details | Law(s): Medicare

In the first place, bureaucracies never become efficient; they're never going to get rid of administrative costs; they're never going to reduce them. That's not the purpose of bureaucracies. It's to increase those things.

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Rush Limbaugh.
09/17/2007 | Full Details | Law(s): Universal Healthcare

I think people have no idea what’s coming down the pike. This is the crown jewel of socialism. And we only have next week to stop it….This is socialized medicine and like I said Sean this is the crown jewel of socialism….It’s unconstitutional.

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Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Fox News show Hannity.
10/20/2009 | Full Details | Law(s): Affordable Care Act

Backgrounders & Briefs

Marine Hospitals in the 18th Century

The Marine Hospital Act of 1798 was the federal government’s first foray into public medicine.  The arguments against the policy sound awfully familiar.

The Work, Family and Equity Index: How Does the United States Measure Up?

The Project on Global Working Families is a study that measures worldwide social safety nets.

Resources

Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) is a progressive think tank that concentrates on social and economic policy, both domestic and international.

University of California-Berkeley Labor Center carries out research on labor and workplace-related issues.

Yale’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity is a think tank devoted to food policy in the United States.

Institute for Women’s Policy Research is a prominent think tank that is largely focused on American women's issues. This covers everything from pay equity to welfare reform to domestic violence.