To the editor:
After reading Mark Hirschey’s commentary in Sunday’s paper, I felt compelled to correct his misperceptions.
His comments reflect the old Reagan conservative idea that government isn’t the solution; it’s the problem. I’ve always felt government could and should solve problems that involve the public good.
Mr. Hirschey’s comparison of a government-run health system to the inefficiency and slowness of the U.S. Postal Service is a popular government bashing tactic. The “facts” prove otherwise. Comparing the Postal Service, UPS, and FedEx, we find their on-time delivery percentage basically the same. Comparing the consumer complaints percentage we also find it basically the same. When you factor in the Postal Service delivers more pieces in one day than the others do in a year, the misperception becomes a misrepresentation.
If Mr. Hirschey lived in countries with government-run health systems like Canada, Germany, England or Japan, he would have received the same excellent care he received here with not one dime out of pocket. Incidentally all those government-run health systems are rated superior to ours and at less cost per person.
My 82-year-old mother asked why we couldn’t have everybody contribute as much as they could afford into a fund and pay doctors and hospitals out of that. I said, “Mom, that’s a single-payer system and it was not part of any of the debate.” People like Mr. Hirschey would rather trust insurance companies than the government. Somehow I find that scary when you consider the latest financial debacle.