I had a debate recently with Jacki Schechner about the various health care plans offered by the candidates.
Obviously, I don't like the idea of gummint deciding what my health care will or should be. I also don't like the pure socialism aspect of it.
She took issue with McCain's plan to give a $5000 credit to the health care companies, and tax each person who gets their employer to pay for their health care as that is a benefit. Benefits are a nice way of saying "income in kind." If I worked at a hospital, and they paid me minimum wage, and I didn't make enough cash to be above the poverty level, but was granted a health care plan which covered everything, with no copay, wouldn't that have value? Perhaps enough value that if the employer gave me the cash instead, it would put me over the poverty line and into the realm of taxpaying citizen?
Of course that is one extreme example. I always revert to that when making points against something, because in general, a rule with exceptions isn't a good rule, and definitely shouldn't be a law, as it provides for inequality.
More to the point, however, if the gummit gave a $5K health insurance handout to everyone, anyone want to guess how many people would use that money for other things, nefarious or not, instead of paying for healthcare, and then still demand we pick up the tab.