Election 2008: What’s Important To Me (Part 1)

I've been asked by a couple of people what's important to me this election season. I was further inspired by a post by Pundit Mom about what is important to her. And I thought that maybe I'd share what I find the most pressing issues for Election 2008. (And get your insights as well!)

My top 3 concerns are:

  1. Health care
  2. Education
  3. Energy

Today I'll address health care, and move on to the others later.

Health care

This is the biggie for me right now. Our health care system is seriously messed up. Millions of children (and adults, of course) do not have health care. Millions more have inadequate health care. Of developed countries, we have the highest per capita cost for health care, but we are not number one. Nope, we rank #37.

I'm going to repeat that: Our health care system ranks #37 in the world. We pay more than many others of the richest countries in the world, but our health care isn't as good.

What we pay in health care also cuts into other areas of our lives. Insurance premiums constantly go up, but we do not get better health care. We just pay more. Sometimes we get worse health care — with benefits cut. With all of the other pressures on the household budget, health care is often the thing that is dropped. If you don't lose it because your employer can't afford it anymore.

Additionally, there are other costs. If you don't have health care, it costs you — and society — more in the long run. How many people wait until things are bad enough for the emergency room before they go in? It would be cheaper all the way around if preventative measures were encouraged. As it is, without insurance (and even with some insurance), we wait until the last possible second to get anything taken care of. And it costs more for everyone.

Neither of the candidates offers universal health care. However, Obama provides a plan that would allow the government more of a role in closing the gap that we see in ability to pay for health insurance. Obama's policies would directly benefit the Middle Class. When all is said and done, McCain's would most likely do little more than maintain the status quo. And one thing we don't need in terms of health care in this country is the status quo.

What do you think about health care in America? What issues are most important to you?

Tags: health care, Election 2008, issues election, universal health care,
economy, Barack Obama, John McCain

6 thoughts on “Election 2008: What’s Important To Me (Part 1)”

  1. Thanks for the shout out and for the great post on health care. I really do not understand why so many in this country are against the idea of making sure that we all have decent health care, especially children.

  2. No kidding. I think it’s odd that, as a society, we get so jittery about taking care of each other, and of spreading the risks out wider so that everyone pays less.

    We already have education, police, utilities, waste management and even capitalism operating on universal principles. But for some reason, we can’t wrap our heads around universal health care…

    And the children! At the very least children should all be well provided for in terms of health care.

  3. Thanks for posting this. We are currently dealing with this very issue – not so much about the massive cost, but the fact that we can not GET insurance for our 4 year old son due to an illness that he had at nine months old. Oh, and this last time – the 4th? – denial came with the added reasoning of EAR INFECTIONS and TUBES. Sigh. The system is seriously broke when people can’t even GET covered..

  4. I’m sorry that you’re having trouble getting covered, HipMamaB. Our son had tubes in his ears as well, but that didn’t stop him from receiving coverage. But that was three years ago, when things weren’t quite as ridiculous as they are now. And now that we’re covered and mostly healthy, we should be in good shape.

    Good luck finding coverage. It’s insane in this country that a four year old can’t get health care. The most “Christian”, wealthy and “moral” country in the world can’t take care of children?

  5. My husband has been without consitant health care for about 5 years. Me and my children have only had health insurance because I am so frequently pregnant and therefore qualify for medicaid. Right now we don’t have medicaid or health insurance. When I did look into getting a personal family plan, because my husband does not have benefits at work, if was going to cost about $300 a month for a 70/30 mid level plan. That is $3600 a year. That is more than we would normally spend on regular doctors visits, but less than if something traumatic happened. Of course 30% of $10,000 is another $3000. A High Deductable family plan is about $150 a month. This doesn’t include whatever you save into your HSA.
    In my opinion employers with over 50 employees should be required to offer a group health insurance benefit.
    The government should also pass a law that you cannot be required to pay over 20% of your monthly income in health care costs. Anything over 20% should be subsidized by the government. That way everyone is paying what is fair for them and their family.
    Another problem for many is that their insurance has a set amount they will pay for a certain procedure that is less then what the doctor actually charges. If a doctor is accepting a certain insurance, they should only be allowed to charge the insurance companies acceptable charge, or the insurance company should pay the whole cost that their doctor is charging.
    Just my two cents worth.

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