Watching both political parties wrangle with each other over every item they discuss can be rather frustrating. From my vantage point, it seems that neither Democrat or Republican parties are working for the best interest of our nation. This is how I’d solve some of our nation’s thorny issues, that hopefully both DEM and GOP could find the will to support.
It is sad and not reasonable that we have many legal Americans who go to work, yet do not make enough to support their families. These are not “Welfare Bums” who sit at home watching their big flat screen TV while the rest of us work. These are folks who work and work hard at jobs, probably two jobs. The issue of course is they are not very educated, so they get the bottom of the barrel jobs that pay minimum wage.
How sad is it for someone to be a hard worker, working many hours per week and yet can’t feed, shelter, or clothe their family. My fix would be to raise the minimum wage in steps, over a period of time, so that these folks who are working would be able to provide for their families and no longer qualify for Welfare or Food Stamps. No, it should not be raised from $7.25/hr. to $15.00 /hr. overnight as some of the extreme Democrats demand.
It must be done in steps or many of these folks will lose their jobs and many “mom and pop” businesses would go bankrupt. Economics 101 says: Owners and Stockholders get their money from a business or they’ll move their money to some other place where they will. The owners would not get their money if salaries more than doubled, so I’d do it in steps.
How sad it is that we have Americans who again work, yet these folks do not have healthcare insurance, because their employer does not provide it. Obamacare was an effort to try to fix this, but is a poorly designed program that is extremely costly.
My fix would be to eliminate Obamacare completely and place those folks who work, but do not get insurance from their employer, on today’s Medicare Plan with us seniors. For those who get employer-based insurance, they’d keep getting that. The poor would stay on Medicaid. This would be far less expensive than Obamacare, and far less expensive than Bernie Sanders Single Payer version of what he calls Medicare for All.
With my plan, employers would no longer be required to provide all sorts of things for FREE and make their policy the way they desired, not by government edict. The only requirement from the government would be that pre-existing conditions would not be turned away and charged unfairly, thus the cost to the employer would be far less meaning the premiums and deductibles would be far less than they are today, due to Obamacare’s requirements made on employers.
The reason I believe Congress on both sides of the isle could get behind this is, Medicare today is a hybrid plan. Part A and B is the Medicare part that we seniors get from the government, after paying into the Medicare Insurance System for our lifetime of employment. T
he supplemental insurance we buy to supplement Medicare comes from private enterprise, thus making Medicare a hybrid of both government and free market insurance. It has been up and running since 1965, so it is a well-known program. No unknowns as with Obamacare or a Single Payer plan. The government already knows what the program costs for us seniors, so add in those folks who work, but do not get insurance from their employer and the math should be pretty straight forward, so no opportunity for the politicians to lie about how it would work or how much it would cost.
In any case it has to be far less expensive than either Obamacare or a Single Payer plan. So, if the true desire is to get all legal Americans covered on a health insurance plan, and not to make us into Denmark or some other Socialistic nation, then this plan would be the best approach, in my view. Republicans will not vote for any Single Payer Plan, but could support this plan.
The border, is another thorny issue. We Americans have been and want to continue to be a nation that welcomes folks who come here to escape various life-threatening situations, but at the same time do want our borders to be secure so that not just anyone can walk in. My fix would be to build the barrier/wall in the places where the Border Patrol and ICE say it needs to be built. They are the experts, so their recommendations should surpass any that the knuckleheads in DC propose, be they DEM or GOP. Then do electronics and drones to cover the rest. We also need to add more judges and others to make the process at our ports of entry far faster so that these folks show up and within a few days, either get admitted or turned away. We should never separate parents from their children. These folks all need to be treated in a humane way, as most of these folks have traveled a long distance coming here, as many of our family did when they showed up at Ellis Island. Any criminals, drug dealers, gang members, etc., would be put in prison and then deported back to their nation so that their government could prosecute them for the crimes they committed back in their nation. Sadly, both the GOP and DEMS see this issue as political rather than as a humanitarian issue. To remove the political issue, these immigrants would not be eligible to become to become citizens or vote for at least 10 years. Time to fix all of these problems and move on to other issues our nation needs to address.
Mike Cannatelli’s column appears every other week in the print edition of the Avon Grove Sun and the Kennett News.