by Paul Jacob
Weeks ago, in the debate over whether to euthanize what's left of freedom in American medicine, President Obama made a stunning concession about the so-called "public option" being proposed. Hoping to assure attendees of a townhall meeting that private insurers would not be threatened by the public option, he said, "if you think about it, UPS and FedEx are doing just fine, right? . . . It's the post office that's always having problems."
Yes. The post office. The "public option" in mail delivery: chronically in financial trouble; chronically over budget; chronically being bailed out by taxpayers.
So, don't worry, everybody! Government expansion into our medical delivery system will be just as lumbering and inefficient as the post office is in our mail and package delivery system.
Er, good point, Mr. President.
Some might argue that under the proposed public option, direct private competition will in fact be allowed, whereas direct competition with stamped-envelope postal delivery is not allowed. But, as many supporters have conceded in unguarded moments, the Democrats' reform is intended to be a transition to a single-payer system.
Moreover, the medical reform bills pending in Congress are bulging with new mandates and price controls for private insurers that will hamper their ability to compete -- something UPS and FedEx don't have to contend with.
The president has done us a favor. He's reminded us why we should privatize postal delivery.
Health care too.
Paul Jacob's "Common Sense" is published by the Citizens in Charge Foundation. Their website can be visited at www.citizensincharge.org.