Boots & Sabers

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0936, 20 Dec 14

Socialized Healthcare Collapses in Vermont

One of the nice things about being a conservative is that we are almost always eventually proven right. It is unfortunate that it causes so much pain to learn these lessons – and that they have to keep being relearned.

Vermont was supposed to be the beacon for a single-payer health care system in America. But now its plans are in ruins, and its onetime champion Gov. Peter Shumlin may have set back the cause.
Advocates of a “Medicare for all” approach were largely sidelined during the national Obamacare debate. The health law left a private insurance system in place and didn’t even include a weaker “public option” government plan to run alongside more traditional commercial ones.
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So single-payer advocates looked instead to make a breakthrough in the states. Bills have been introduced from Hawaii to New York; former Medicare chief Don Berwick made it a key plank of his unsuccessful primary race for Massachusetts governor.
Vermont under Shumlin became the most visible trailblazer. Until Wednesday, when the governor admitted what critics had said all along: He couldn’t pay for it.

“It is not the right time for Vermont” to pass a single-payer system, Shumlin acknowledged in a public statement ending his signature initiative. He concluded the 11.5 percent payroll assessments on businesses and sliding premiums up to 9.5 percent of individuals’ income “might hurt our economy.”


0936, 20 December 2014


  1. Kevin Scheunemann

    What? The Democratic dream for health care fails miserably?


    Just shocked.

    What baffles me is: Democrats that are continuing to spread the misery.

  2. scott

    Whatever the case in Vermont, don’t the many successful examples around the world kind of indicate that it can indeed work?

  3. Boyd McBoyd

    And how many of those countries are we subsidizing their defense?

  4. Kevin Scheunemann


    Name 1.

    I’m hoping you start with the United Kingdom.

    That single pay health care system kills people in droves just on the line wait.

  5. Mark Maley

    My companies insurance cost for 2014 dropped 30%
    Same insurance company
    Is that because my for profit insurer felt bad ?
    No, they now have legitimate price competition even for a small # of insured like mine
    OBamacare is the reason costs have come down dramatically
    It’s inconvieniant to the Conservative myth machine but it happened right here in WB

    So much for the invisible hand of competition .
    In our case, it was gleefully stuck right up my companies backside for 10 years .

    The idea that the system prior to Obamacare was anything other than a shiv in the side to
    Small business is fiscal fantasy .

  6. Kevin Scheunemann


    No one defends the system before Obamacare.

    However, Obamacare is much different than what is going on in Vermont or other single payor systems.

    You may be down 30%, but my business and my church have seen double digit increases in health care ins. since Obamacare went in.

    So Obamacare is hardly a win for the rest of us.

  7. Boyd McBoyd

    So…it was competition, not socialization that made Mark’s premiums go down.

  8. Owen

    I’m just curious why Mark stuck with the same insurer for 10 years if they were “sticking it up [his] company’s backside?” Were they truly the only insurer available?

  9. Boyd McBoyd

    “No, they now have legitimate price competition even for a small # of insured like mine”

    “So much for the invisible hand of competition .”

    How drunk was this guy?

  10. Mark Maley

    34 years sober actually so the drunk idea is probably a non starter

    Owen ,
    We switched insurance companies 3 times in the last 10years .
    That was done to reduce the amount of increase in every case
    Under no circumstances was a decrease part of the movement
    Yet strangely, this year my big name insurer dropped my premiums 30 %
    Because others were now interested in my admittedly limited number of employee’s

  11. Boyd McBoyd

    Then it’s a good idea we kept an illiterate off the school board.

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