New York Times columnist and Princeton economist Paul Krugman is among the most passionate advocates for honest-to-God socialized medicine. His solution to Americas health care problems is the Veterans Health Administration, whose success story is one of the best kept secrets in the American policy debate.
In light of recent events, the secret seems to be how shabbily government hospitals treat their patients.
The scandal at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, D.C., got the nation talking. Now, the Arizona Republic reports that patients at the Arizona State Veteran Home were left begging for help for nearly an hour, perhaps longer, drenched in their own bodily wastes.
These stories are reprehensible, but not unexpected. There are countless patient horror stories from countries around the world that have socialized medicine.
To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, government is not the solution to our health care problem--it is the problem. Arizona legislators can start the healing by eliminating costly mandates and regulations that raise the cost of health insurance. Better yet, they could open up the health insurance market by allowing Arizonans to buy health insurance from a company based in any state in the country, not just Arizona. These steps will help improve health care and make it more affordable.