ACC 366P - Kamas
20 February 2018
Capitalism has failed us. Yes, it is the bedrock of American ideology, and has proven to be a very effective economic system for the societies that have implemented it over the course of many millennia. The incredibly rapid development of technology, for example, has been catalyzed by our (semi) free-market system. Without it, pioneers of the internet and incredible devices like Google and Apple would likely not exist, and their products would not be around to facilitate the development of our society as the have over the past few decades. However, there is one crucial area in which this great economic structure has worked against the common good: healthcare. Our current structure for this crucial aspect of civilization is stuck in the past – we allow companies to profit billions, even trillions, of dollars while men, women, and children go without the care they so desperately need to survive. With respect to this facet of society, “greed has poisoned men’s souls… machinery that gives abundance has left us in want,” and more than machinery, we need humanity in the structure of our health system.[footnoteRef:1] A 2009 Harvard Medical School study revealed that 45,000 deaths yearly in the United States are directly linked to a lack of healthcare; uninsured working-age Americans have a 40% higher chance of death than their privately insured counterparts.[footnoteRef:2] How have we let this happen? It seems reasonable to believe these numbers unacceptable for Earth’s most advanced economy. Substantial research regarding the proposed alternatives to our current system, paired with study of other nations’ solutions to this crisis, overwhelmingly proves that there is a logical solution to this issue. A single-payer system is a feasible and preferable alternative to our current privatized structure; the evidence is irrefutable. Universal healthcare in the United States, although reasonably criticized for its expansion of federal power and due to fear of both inefficiencies resulting from a bureaucracy that is not motivated by profit/competition and the disincentivizing of practitioners, is preferable to privatized healthcare for three key reasons: first, the examples set by the healthcare systems of other, similar, democratic republics in the west prove that Medicare for all can be effective; second, the consolidation of the healthcare market should, according to experts in this respect, reduce the overall cost of healthcare by anywhere from five to nine trillion dollars[footnoteRef:3]; and finally, most importantly, the provision of healthcare to all is essential to the fulfillment of our Founding Fathers’ claim in the Declaration of Independence that all men should deserve the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness – healthcare for all is a reasonable and actionable policy, considering the arguments to come, and thus should be considered a component of life,...