Monday, July 18, 2005

Dig Out Your Checkbooks

The prescription drug entitlement boondoggle is about to go BOOM!

The economics of the new program depend on the assumption that large numbers of relatively healthy people will enroll and pay premiums, to help defray the costs of those with high drug expenses. Insurers say the new program cannot survive if the only people who sign up are heavy users of prescription drugs.

BUT

People who said they were healthy said they saw no immediate need to buy the Medicare drug coverage. People who said they were ill said the benefit seemed meager. And local insurance counselors said they shuddered at the complexity of the program.

Imagine that! Only people who see immediate benefit are gonna sign up. Jeez, never could have seen that coming. And what's that you say? If no one agrees to carry the program on their backs, there's gonna be a huge shortfall? And if there's a huge shortfall, we have to take MORE money from the unestablished youth and transfer it to that population segment with the highest net worth - retirees? And all this in addition to a Social Security system that does the same? And there's a hell of a lot more retirees than young folks to carry them in the very near future?

So which party was I supposed to vote for in order to avoid this whole mess? Which one was committed to fiscal sanity and smaller government?

Well, I guess we will have to comfort ourselves in the knowledge that it's entirely possible that the legislation's purpose has been acchieved. It did indeed buy enough votes from the aging to get Bush back into office. Ain't democracy grand?

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