There's a better way. I remind you of my speech to business leaders in March. I said, "America's free market has been the engine of America's great progress. ... And I believe that our role as lawmakers is not to disparage wealth, but to expand its reach; not to stifle the market, but to strengthen its ability to unleash the creativity and innovation that still makes this nation the envy of the world."
Only the vitality of the private sector -- a truly free one, unencumbered by the crippling stranglehold of burdensome government regulation -- can lift America out of the unsustainable mess that we liberals created.
Therefore, I propose complete deregulation of medicine and health insurance. State mandates raise the cost of insurance by forcing people to have coverage many would never buy on their own. The federal government reinforces this crazy system by forbidding competition across state lines.
Meanwhile, professional licensing and controls on medical schools keep the supply of medical services limited and prices high.
That must end, along with restrictions on Health Savings Accounts.
A free medical market would bring lower prices and better services. The price of insurance would come down with the price of care.
The only way to avoid Medicare's collapse is to get retired people onto private insurance plans that they pay for themselves. Since many on fixed incomes would have trouble buying even inexpensive insurance. I propose we sell off the 507 million acres that the federal government owns and give the proceeds to the oldest and most needy.
Then we must free younger workers from the albatross of Medicare so they can save for whatever medical services they choose, now and in retirement.
Yes, my liberal friends, free enterprise is the way.