The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
10 Points

Health care should be free

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/17/2013 Category: Health
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,017 times Debate No: 37863
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (2)




People should't pay for treatment


Thanks for initiating the debate, Pro. I'll assume since in economics nothing is free my opponent is trying to advocate some kind of argument for Universal Health Care, so I'll just post the case I have already written over this topic. If not, I'll argue against the proposition that doctors should be forced to provide free care too.


I. Worst possible time

My opponent is advocating government run insurance at the absolute worst possible time. The US government is already reaching un-real levels of debt, inducing panic among the population and political gridlock that has crippled the US government. UHC would only increase the fiscal burden. Moreover the number of seniors (who need care the most) is currently rising[1] and the existing US safety net is on the verge of a complete meltdown.

Worse still, while debt is ever increasing, the US credit horizon is looking increasingly gloomy. ForexLive reports[2] S&P's position on US credit: “U.S. sovereign credit risks, primarily political and fiscal, could build to the point of leading us to lower our ‘AA+’ long-term rating by 2014.”. S&P thinks there's about a 1-in 3 chance they'll have to downgrade the US credit rating even after the 2011 budget control act, and that probability will vastly increase if the government takes on a huge entitlement program while failing to maintain the ones it has. S&P explains that unless the US implements: “a credible, medium-term fiscal consolidation plan that represents significant (even if gradual) fiscal tightening”, they will probably downgrade it further. The impact of a downgrade is horrible. Economics professor Charles Rowley warns that if S&P or Moodys further downgrade U.S. credit ratings [3]:
"[This would] throw into question the privileged status of U.S. Treasury securities as a safe haven for global investors. Any significant flight from Treasuries would raise Treasury bond rates, with crippling consequences for the economy. A 1-percentage point increase in rates would raise Treasury debt payments by $1 trillion over the next decade, wiping out the benefits of all the budget cuts enacted by Congress last year."

The US government serves it's citizens best and secures their autonomy most by remaining the hegemon able to secure it's interests, but UHC will deter this. The perception is that the US is in a state of decline, as Mark Steyn argues in an article posted yesterday[4] "The assumption that we are in the early stages of “the post-American world” is now shared by everyone from General Sisi to Vladimir Putin." As the US and its allies continue to wallow in their debt and budget/trade deficits, China and Russia are becoming increasingly more aggressive and imperialistic. Much of Africa, the untapped gem of the world, is under Chinese economic hegemony[5]. The US faces the loss of it's position in the world, and consequently an inability to secure it's citizens interests abroad, if it does not tighten it's fiscal belt. The US's coercive power is just as much determined by its economic might as it is it's military muscle, and UHC will weaken the economy.

Cutting spending is try or die-- as Samuelson explains[12], Mass hysteria about the economy still abounds and the US remains in it's slump with high unemployment and massive deficits "The Obama administration is grappling uneasily with this reality. It can rightly claim that its economic policies quelled the near-hysteria of late 2008 and early 2009. But the success was partial, and the administration isn't getting much credit even for that. Only 23 percent of the public say President Obama's policies have improved the economy, reports a new Pew survey. By contrast, 29 percent think his policies made matters worse and 38 percent believe they made no difference. For or against, those policies haven't restored faith in the economy's underlying strength. The danger is that pessimism feeds on itself and leads to a dreaded "double-dip" recession. Companies won't hire because they fear customers won't spend; and customers don't spend because they fear companies won't hire -- or may fire." This shows us that even under the status quo people are fearful and a downgrade would only fuel this.

Cutting spending is the best way to pay off the deficit and keep people from panicking, and economists seem to agree[15].

Moreover even if these impacts are proven false by my opponent, the fact of gridlock remains. In order to pass UHC, Obama and Congressional democrats would have to sacrifice all the political capital they have. This means that sensible pieces of the democratic agenda such as tightening gun laws so that terrorists can't buy guns[6] and immigration reform are less likely to pass, along with other legislation that's vital to national objectives and the presidents political capital will be destroyed. This means if he has to do something vital to maintain US hegemony or interests his ability to do so with congressional support is severly limited (see all the backlash against Obama's plan to intervene in Syria). To advocate such a massive change in such a tumultuous time is absurd.

II. Empirical results

Lucky for us lots of countries already have "free" Universal Health Care. Lets see if it's made them better off:

Waiting times for care are vast, in England 21% of curable lung cancer patients become incurable while waiting for health care[7]. In Canada, nearly 900,000 people are on the waiting list of care at any time[8]. People will use up all health care resources available since they do not have to pay for them; also in Canada[9]: "Only half of ER patients are treated in a timely manner by national and international standards". This is bad since ER patients usually need help immediately (compare the US, with a mean emergency room waiting time of 58 minutes[10] to Canada's mean time of four hours[11]). Since ambulances are free, the British use them as Taxis with 91% of ambulance visits being for non emergency purposes[12]. Moreover waiting lists for care in countries with UHC are incredibly corrupt, with the rich and influential often jumping places ahead of others in Japan[12] and Canada[13] where "research reveals that cardiovascular surgery queues are routinely jumped by the famous and politically-connected". Survival rates for the US are higher as well, as CATO explains [13]:

“Whether the disease is cancer, pneumonia, heart disease, or AIDS, the chances of a patient surviving are far higher in the United States than in other countries. …the United States is at the top of the charts when it comes to surviving cancer… roughly 62.9 percent [of men] diagnosed with cancer survive for at least five years… 66.3 percent [for women]… Most countries with national health care fare far worse. For example, in Italy, 59.7 percent of men and 49.8 percent of women survive five years. In Spain, just 59 percent of men and 49.5 percent of women do. And in Great Britain, a dismal 44.8 percent of men and …52.7 percent of women .”

This means that when it comes at actual results, the United States is on top. Canadians desperate for care come to the US where they can pay in cash because their system fails to deliver quality care[14].

Pro needs to provide some safeguards against these abuses or explain how the US wouldn't suffer from them. Until then, you negate.






Debate Round No. 1


Aiza.Bekmuhanbet forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


Hello, thank you for your response!

Here I have another point of view,
Clearly, because of economical reasons the country can't provide free medicine to all its citizens. But nowadays, doctors taking our money. Even if inspection and some procedures are free, medicaments are not, and they're very expensive. Therefore, many of doctors work with pharmaceutical companies, and have contracts with them. When we enter into doctor's office we see different titles on their instruments, or stickers, or pens. They advertise the certain product. They advice us to take exactly that medicament, which was produced from certain firm, and we don't have another choice, except buying and taking it. So, does they do money on our illnesses? I would say yes. The average citizen, with his average salary can't afford buying many of medicaments. The government should take care of its citizens. The goverment should provide the best sourses. The government must make such thing as our health, and well-being accessible.


Thanks for returning to the debate, Pro.

Extend my entire case as Pro dropped it. Extend the impacts of loss of hegeomony, credit downgrade, gridlock, corruption, waiting lists, and lowered survival rates. These outweigh Pro's impacts by several orders of magnitude, you can vote Con right here.

Pro's case

Pro argues that a lot of doctors are stuck working with the medicicinal industry and that this leads to overubscribing and higher costs. She then argues that the government can solve this. Unfortunately for Pro, we already know what a government system of Universal Health Care in the US would look like, and it's not pretty as you can see from my case. Moreover she doesn't solve, under the status quo the government when purchasing drugs for medicare/caid patients is not allowed to negotiate with drug companies, which causes prices to increase[1]. Thus her impact is nonunique to the private sector and you should negate.

Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by vanu 3 years ago
Health care must be free. And up to some extent in all countries it is free or with subsidiary. But the problem is if you want to done operation by wellknown surgen, you have to pay more money. Since he is one in whole city.
Posted by Disquisition 3 years ago
Heard of Obamacare?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Yeah, Pro dropped all of Con's contentions, and explicitly conceded that free health care could not be afforded. Oddly, it's flatly not true that most physicians have contracts with drug providers, it's illegal, but Con didn't contest the claim. And "medicicinal industry and that this leads to overubscribing" seriously lacks spelling. Not the best job against a noob, but clearly good enough to win. Pro loses conduct for forfeit.
Vote Placed by Mikal 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: ff and just all around argued better. Had sources to back her points, and also gave reasons that negated the one point pro made.