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Tag Archives: Medicare

The Tax Bill Needs Follow-On Spending Cuts

Compromise

Although a tax cut may have been a nice Christmas gift, it needs some follow-on spending cuts to work.  At best, Republicans have eaten their dessert first, waiting to eat their spending cut vegetables later; at worst, they will have increased the federal deficit by another trillion dollars or more.

 

By most estimates, even stimulating economic growth will not fully pay for the tax cut.  Republicans will now have to undertake the politically courageous step of cutting federal spending.

 

It will be difficult to make spending cuts without touching Medicare or Social Security, which President Trump has said are off limits. Meanwhile there is pressure to undo the sequester, automatic cuts on spending no one liked, but which have at least kept spending growth down.

 

Ideally, Republicans would have disciplined themselves to do tax and spending cuts at the same time. Tax cuts may come and go, but the federal debt remains forever, it seems. And—without spending cuts—it grows.

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Lanhee Chen: The Bernie Plan: Too Good to Be True

Tax Reform

Senator Bernie Sanders has recently introduced “Medicare for all” legislation, which would enroll all Americans into the nation’s Medicare program within four years. Senator Sanders argues that his proposal would create a system that “works not just for millionaires and billionaires, but for all of us.”

As Democrats and other policy makers debate the merits of Senator Sanders’s proposal, here are a few important observations about international systems that they ought to consider.

First, a vanishingly small number of countries actually have single-payer systems. In fact, almost all feature some role for private-sector insurance companies and providers.

Second, single-payer countries have also failed to control rising health care costs. This is important, given that Mr. Sanders’s proposal was released without a cost estimate or financing plan.

Third, it is simply untrue that single-payer systems produce a better quality of care across the board.

All Americans should bear one important precept in mind: If the Sanders plan sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

For more information on why single-payer healthcare would be destructive to the U.S, please read this article, 13 Reasons Why Single-Payer Would Be a Disaster.

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