...and the Republicans are all a bunch of liars. And Washington is as scared of change as a cult. And other things you'd expect Howard Dean to say in a hot-button debate. Except, when it comes to this particular hot-button debate, Howard Dean really knows what he's talking about. And so should you.
By: John H. Richardson
Howard Dean says private health care is breaking the economy, the Republicans are liars, and Washington is as scared of change as a cult. Except when it comes to the health-care debate, Howard Dean really knows what he's talking about.
As Congress debates health-care reform, the arguments against a "public option" are coming fast and furious. The best I've read recently is from Greg Manikow, the distinguished Harvard economist and former Bush advisor who insists that the public option will inevitably crowd out private insurance companies, resulting in less competition and poorer health care. Manikow reminded me of how quickly the efficiencies of private military contractors like Blackwater crushed the socialists in the United States Army, how the option of great public beaches in New York drove all Connecticut elite from their Buffy-and-Muffy-only private beach clubs to the boardwalks of Coney Island, and how the wealthy rushed from their Park Avenue penthouses to take advantage of the great deals in Section 8 housing.
For an alternate point of view, however, I consulted the former governor of Vermont. As a doctor married to a doctor, Howard Dean made health care a priority of his administration, putting strict regulations on health insurance profiteering and figuring out a way to extend insurance to every child in the state. In a new book called Howard Dean's Prescription for Real Health Care Reform, he makes a persuasive case for reform.