What To Remember About Medicare

Posted by | August 17, 2012 13:40 | Filed under: Top Stories

by Stuart Shapiro

Both sides are claiming that their plans better protect Medicare and that thet other side wants to destroy it.  It’s easy to get lost in the details of a complicated issue and the fact that changes do need to be made.  Steve Benen reminds us of an important fact though.

What is Medicare? It’s a massive, government-run system of socialized medicine. It’s wildly popular, very successful, and one of the pillars of modern Democratic governance. This government-run system of socialized medicine was created by Democrats against the opposition of conservative Republicans, and it’s Democrats who’ve fought to protect it for more than a half-century.

Or to summarize, the left loves Medicare and always has; the right hates Medicare and always has. For liberals, the system is a celebrated ideal; for conservatives it’s an unconstitutional, big-government outrage in desperate need of privatization.

In 2012, once we get past all of the talking points and attack ads, we’re left with this: Romney/Ryan wants you to believe they’re the liberals. No, seriously. Think about what the Republican presidential ticket…and the Republican National Committee have been saying all week: those mean, rascally Democrats cut our beloved Medicare and voters should be outraged.

Governor Romney and especially Rep. Ryan claiming they want to save Medicare is like the fox campaigning for chicken’s rights.  I don’t know whether the Democrats are capable of saving Medicare.  But I know that the Republicans are the last ones I would trust with this job.

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Copyright 2012 Liberaland
By: Stuart Shapiro

Stuart is a professor and the Director of the Public Policy
program at the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers
University. He teaches economics and cost-benefit analysis and studies
regulation in the United States at both the federal and state levels.
Prior to coming to Rutgers, Stuart worked for five years at the Office
of Management and Budget in Washington under Presidents Clinton and
George W. Bush.

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