Ryan's Plan to Scrap Medicare Would Spawn New Businesses

Congressman’s Paul Ryan’ plan to privatize Medicare would not only relieve the young and healthy of the burden of subsidizing the spiraling health costs of the old and frail, but it would spawn a new free-market, job-producing, economy-boosting service industry.

Mr. Ryan’s plan, in a nutshell, is as follows: Starting in 2022 eligible beneficiaries would receive a subsidy to purchase health insurance in the open market. Though the subsidy would cover only about one fourth of the cost, the rest would be covered out of pocket by the beneficiaries themselves. However, by negotiating with competing insurance companies, the beneficiaries could significantly reduce their share of the costs.

But because many elderly folk are not physically or mentally hale enough to spend long hours poring over the daunting legalese of insurance contracts, nor would family or friends, even if they were willing, have the spare time to help out, trained specialists would be need to do the negotiating for them. The income-tax-preparing business would serve as a good model for this new industry. When problems become too complex, create a new breed of experts to deal with them.

Of course, the elderly ill, many of whom are at or near poverty level, would somehow have to scrape up the money to pay for the services of the insurance experts, in addition to their regular insurance premiums. Maybe they can borrow the money, if they can find a lender. Some would just have to suck it up and learn to live out their short lease on life with their illness. But that’s another issue.

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