Richard Boddie for U.S. Senate


I totally support a national health care plan, so long as it is
_voluntary_ (not like the "voluntary" W-2, 1040 tax, however), and
provided that it is not run by any government agency, institution, or
mandate. We currently have government national health care through
Medicare, the VA, etc., and look at the results. These programs are
extremely troubled, inefficient, inadequate, and rife with fraud and
corruption. Furthermore, government regulation and control of health
care, assisted by the AMA, through licensing, insurance mandates, out
of control tort law recoveries, and a variety of other ingredients,
hinder many effective and much lower cost alternatives to health care
to people in need of care.

For example, the FDA drug testing requirements give many citizens a
totally false sense of security as to the safety of an "approved"
drug, while hindering the research and marketing of experimental drugs
that might possibly cure those infected with AIDS and other illnesses.

Another example. The FDA animal testing _requirements_ are inhumane,
ineffective, and very costly. Finally, since the sole business of the
FDA is really information, why must this information only be allowed
to come from the government? Check your electrical cord. "UL" is not a
government agency and you probably don't worry about being hurt by
electrical devices.

The Libertarian Party has put forth a comprehensive proposal for
health care reform that will reduce health care costs, while extending
access to care. This market-based program will take America's health
care system off the critical list. Our five-point plan:

1. Establish Medical Savings Accounts.

One key to controlling health care costs is strengthening the role of
the individual health care consumer. As part of this process, an
individual should be exempted from taxes on money deposited in a
Medical Savings Account (MSA), in the same way that he currently pays
no taxes on deposits to an IRA. Money could be withdrawn from an MSA
without penalty to pay medical expenses. This would increase consumer
responsibility, while increasing access and controlling costs.

2. Restructure Tax Policy.

As a second consumer-based reform, taxes should be restructured to
establish equity in the treatment of employer-provided health
insurance, individually purchased health insurance, and out-of-pocket
medical expenses. All health care expenditures should be 100% tax
deductible. This will add a measure of fairness to current tax
policies that penalize the self-employed, part-time workers, and
employees of small businesses, while subsidizing health care for the
most affluent in our society.

3. Deregulate the health care industry.

There should be a thorough examination of the extent to which
government policies are responsible for rising health costs and the
unavailability of health care services. America can help lower health
care costs and expand health care access by taking immediate steps to
deregulate the health care industry, including elimination of mandated
benefits, repeal of the Certificate-of-Need program, and expansion of
the scope of practice for non-physician health professionals.

4. Replace the FDA.

The Food and Drug Administration is clearly an unnecessary burden on
the American health care system. There is no evidence that agency
offers Americans any real protection, but there is massive evidence
that it is causing great harm -- driving up health care costs and
depriving millions of Americans of the medical care they need. The
agency should be abolished and replaced with voluntary certification
by a private-sector organization, similar to the way Underwriters
Laboratory certifies electrical appliances.

5. Privatize Medicare and Medicaid.

The current Medicare and Medicaid systems have clearly failed. Costs
are skyrocketing. Patients are receiving second rate care. And,
providers are being shortchanged. The time is ripe for drastic reform.
The federal government should begin to restructure the system to give
Medicaid and Medicare recipients more flexibility to purchase private
health insurance.


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