The Instigator
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4 Points
The Contender
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0 Points

Healthcare + the Public Option

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/23/2009 Category: Health
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,860 times Debate No: 9542
Debate Rounds (5)
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-There isn't a single government agency that runs with considerable efficiency, the USFG will not effectively run something to complex as healthcare thru attempting to centralize and micromanage it
-One overall healthcare plan will simply cause more problems, all citizens are not under the same medical and financial circumstances and thus require unique coverage which will not be as readily available under a public option
-The private sector, especially due to business oriented taxes and regulations can never compete with big government
-Loss in jobs and business incentives
-Profit motives, competition, individual ingenuity have always led to greater cost control and effectiveness
-Other sectors are founded on the basis of successful capitalism, why shouldn't healthcare???
-Obama's Plan will have to be paid for with either higher taxes or spending cuts in other areas such as Defense and Education
-Healthcare Legislation introduced to the House (America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009) proposes:
-1% income surcharge for income between $350,000-$500,000
-1.5% income surcharge for income between $500,000-$1,000,000
-5.4 % income surcharge for income over $1,000,000
-Calls for potentially dangerous corporate and international tax reform proposals:
-Delay in the application of WW interest rules relevant to U.S. Trade
-Limitations on trade/treaty benefitss to domestic international transactions
-Codification of the Economic Substance Doctrine
-Essentially limits tax benefits to domestic international transactions unless corporations meet specific economic governmental demands
-Government-controlled Healthcare leasd to a decrease in patient Doctor flexibility, resulting in poor patient care
-Patiens definately won't curb drug costsd or Doctor visits if Healthcare is free
-Total costs will ultimately be several times what they are now
- Non-profits and Government-run hospitals provide services to those who don't have insurance
-Abuse of the system, behavioral tendancies (Moral Hazard)
-Healthy people who take care of themselves would have to pay for those who don't manage their health because they have a safety net (i.e. Obese, Smokers)
-Everyone will have to cope w/ rising costs, not just those responsible
-Long, painful transition will have to take place involving lost insurance industry jobs adding to unemployment, business closures, and new patient record creation
-Loss of private practice options possible reduced pay may dissuade many would-be doctors from pursuing the profession
-Malpractice lawsuit costs, which are already sky-high, could further explode since Universal Healthcare may expose the government to legal liability
-Suing a govt. entity with $$$ will invite lawsuits
-Govt. is more likely to pass restrictions on potential health concerns (i.e. raising taxes on tobacco FFood) limiting personal freedoms
-Cost of Developing a Centralized, National Database for medical/insurance records is high complicated
-Patient confidentiality is compromised since centralized health information will likely be maintained by the government
-Heathcare equipment such as drugs services could be rationed by the govt.
-Politics, patient lifestyle, philiosophical differences could determine who gets what (very biased medical care)
-Like Social Security, any govt. benefit is usually taken as a "right" by the public, so making it politically impossible to revoke when costs other factors get out of control in the future
-Thankyou Opponent, I need the practice!!!!!


I will simply address your points in order (though I will provide numbers):

1.) Efficiency: The benefits of providing health care to all citizens out weigh the government being inefficient in doing so. You give no harms to the government being inefficient.

2.) Cause more problems: The whole idea behind the public option is that citizens with private health care that better suits them can keep that private health care, which negates this point entirely. Those who require coverage not available under a public option can still get it.

3.) 4.) 5.) 6.) Competition, loss of jobs, capitalism: We already have Medicare and Medicaid (public options for health care), yet we haven't seen some giant collapse of health insurance providers. No scenario was provided on how the government extending these benefits to those 46 million who currently do not have health insurance would cause any problems since none are seen today when we already have socialized health care to an extent. They don't have insurance already, so how can this harm the insurance companies?

Well I am losing count due to the sub points, but I will continue to lump:

Spending and taxes:
1.) No harms given for reducing spending on defense and education. Would a 1% decrease in defense spending (a savings of some $8 billion a year) cause that many problems? Or what about 5% for $40 billion a year? Please provide analysis for this point about the impacts.

2.) To the random points in the middle: Please elaborate: What potentially dangerous corporate and international tax reform proposals? What delay in the application of WW interest rules? What limitations to trade/treaty benefits? Etc.

3.) No harms to tax increase on high incomes given.

Health care problems:

1.) There is no decreased patient doctor flexibility. People who currently have no health insurance do not have options to begin with. They would have more options under the public option. People with private insurance can keep it and thus maintain their current level of flexibility as dictated by their insurance.

2.) I think the idea is not for patients to curb their doctors visits, but for those people who need health care to be able to get it, so I don't see the point on the "curbing drug costs or doctor visits".

3.) No analysis given to cost being several times what they are now and this contradicts your previous points. You both claim that private companies will be put out of business because they can't compete with the government and then turn around and say everything is going to be twice as expensive... which is it?

4.) Abuse of the system: Like what? Sick people getting treated? Are you claiming that people that aren't sick are going to go sit in doctors offices all day to get examined just to be told nothing is wrong with them just because they can?

5.) Healthy people paying for the unhealthy: This is already done in the current health care system and in current health insurance. I have paid for health insurance through my work for the last 6 years and never once had a claim. Its wasted money for me that went to diffuse the costs of the people who did need it. That is the way insurance works...

6.) Rising costs: This has already been addressed, what rising costs?

Transition issues:

1.) Painful transition: It is called "The Public Option" because there will still be a "Private Option" like there is today. You have yet to demonstrate how extending health insurance to the 46 million uninsured will cause private health insurance companies to go out of business. The uninsured are currently not their customers.

2.) Loss of doctors: Again, it is called the "Public Option" because there will still be a "Private Option".

3.) Government malpractice and suing the government. Not an issue: Malpractice is tied to the doctor who performed the procedure, not the health insurance company who paid for the patient to have the procedure. There is absolutely no method by which the government could be sued for malpractice for providing health insurance to someone.

4.) Restrictions: Health insurance with restrictions is still much better than no health insurance at all. Restrictions are a part of all health insurance, so this is a non-issue.

Other issues:

1.) Cost of database: The costs is minuscule compared to other things the government pays for... with you have a $3 trillion a year budget, spending $100 million to develop a database doesn't even register a significant amount.

2.) Lost of confidentiality: We already have Medicare and Medicaid, yet this is not an issue so I see no harms to it being extended to the rest of the uninsured.

3.) Government rationing: No evidence given to support this claim.

Round 1 Summation:

The instigator of the debate fails to present sufficient evidence as to why the government should not institute a public option health plan. The plan would provide health insurance to the 46 million Americans who currently do not have such insurance while at the same time allowing citizens the freedom to keep their current health plans should they choose to do so.
Debate Round No. 1


I will first refute my Opponents arguments and then proceed to restate my own:

1) The harms to the government being inefficient are obvious, and also stated (contrary to the claim of the Pro). If the government and it's actions are inefficient, especially in an area such as healthcare, citizens will not receive the "benefits" stated by the Pro, eliminating the outweighing argument.

2) Those who don't posess "private" healthcare still require unique coverage in order for the Public Option to have any impact on their lives at all, and this will not be available due to the Option's sheer magnitude, and thus inability to provide quality, personalized care to those who need it.

3), 4), 5), 6) Yes, contrary to the claims of my opponent, there has indeed been a giant collapse of Health Insurance providers, being the source of this Debate in the first place. Also, if Medicare and Medicaid are as effective as the Pro stipulates, than a Public Option is clearly unneccesary anyway.

Spending and Taxes:

1) The Con hardly has the time and room to construct a full on Policy Debate Case, but the Con does beleive that the public is educated enough to understand the current state of affairs that the United States is currently in regarding both the decline in educational quality/progress as well as the issues of National Security. A 1% decrease in Defense Spending will certainly be enough to damage the security industry, considering that, due to the estimates of the DoD for Fiscal Year 2009, that would mean an over $5 billion dollar cut that could instead have been used to maintain, train, and equip 92,000 soldiers over the next 1 year. The example of 5% for $40 billion would do the same if not worse. Considering that the Public Option is estimated to cost about 1 trillion dollars over the next ten years, that 1% or 5% number is likely to be far higher.

2) Specifics have not yet been decided on, another sign of failure for the plan, but the concept still holds that any delay in the application of regulation regarding the interest necessary for business transaction could mean further domestic economic doom and worsened foreign relations., same with the limits on trade and treaty benefits to domestic and international transactions.

3) Considering that those who have high incomes usually do so because of business successes and other such advances, they end up paying more in taxes as it is (we do not currently have a Flat Tax system) and thus play a far bigger role in sustaining the economy through business activity and charity work.

Healthcare Problems:

1) The majority of people, that is the roughly 260 million or 84% majority who do have private health insurance will definately have decreased patient/doctor flexibility due to the increased backlog of patient/doctor activity that must be dealt with in the Public Option (since more people will likely switch to the more inexpensive PO) and the decreased patient/doctor flexibility that will be seen in the Private Sector.

2) Yes, the idea is obviously not to curb the necessary crugs and doctor visits, but unnecessary abuse of the system by seeking urgent care for every little cold that comes along because the cost of the "free" care is distributed among everyone will inevitably raise the cost of healthcare, especially when it is needed in emergency medical instances.

3) My opponent seems to be confused about how the process will work - Private companies will be put out of business due to the low cost of the Public Plan, and then when the competition is eliminated and the inefficient policies and procedures of the Public Option come into effect after the fact, the cost will rise dramatically into a healthcare monopoly (whether intentional or inadvertent).

4) Doctors may find something wrong with every Tom, Dick and Harry that walks into their doors, because it is their job and it is how they make money. They get paid per visit and per prescription, so paranoid people becoming unhealthy due to unnecssary drug use and the heightened cost of social welfare services as a result is not exactly ones ideal image of a working healthcare system.

5) It is true that healthy people will be paying got the unhealthy most of the time, but people will have less regard for the condition of their health since they view the healthcare as "free" (although in reality it is being paid for by heightened taxes mostly on the wealthy, when one's taxes will rise, they won't automatically think "hmmm... i should be healthier")

6) As previously stated, costs will rise due to the lack of competition and backlog of patients that will onset after the implementation of the Public Option.

Transition Issues:

1) The Pro continually fails to notice that those who are under a Private Option will not stay under that Private Option because the cost of the Public Option will initially be enticingly lower, the transfer of that information (which will likely be that of more that 46 million of those already insured) is what will be painful and complicated, allowing for misinformation and mistakes in the new system (affecting the insurance quality for obvious reasons).

2) THE PRIVATE OPTION WILL SOON BE GONE DUE TO THE INSURANCE GLUT PROMOTED BY THE GOVERNMENT. Doctors will get less pay and thus be less motivated to get a job in the public sector as opposed to the private. Lack of doctors and nurses will contribute to the failing American Health.

3) The Public Option provides some options to malpractice insurance, the Con's argument is void.

4) This depends upon said restrictions. If the people will be paying higher taxes and making up the cost in other ways, they deserve a certain standard in Health Insurance for which there is no guarantee as I have argued previously.

Other Issues:

1) $100 million that could be avoided is best avoided, especially since the PO will cost so much ($1,000,000,000,000 over the next ten years) already.

2) With a greater magnitude of Government Controlled Healthcare comes the greater magnitude of issues such as patient confidentiality which may now not seem as evident, but will be more present in the future on a greater scale with the passage of Congress's bill.

3) The presented concept of Government rationing is simply a logical argument that requires no evidence (especially since none will be present due to the fact that the Public Option isn't in place yet). If the Government begins to posess limited resources, it will most likely give it to those from whom it can benefit most, no entity is free from corruption in desperate times if they so occur.

Summation of Argument and Breif Reconstruction of 1NC:

The Pro has provided no subtantial reasons that negating the Public Option is bad, considering the Pro has effectively refuted each of their points. The Pro has managed to exhibit limited understanding of the effects of a Public Option and also has not provided reasons that the Public Option is good (only attempted to negate my points) although it is their burden of proof, providing the Affirmative no substance to attack, but I have managed to reconstruct most of my initial case in the 2NC. The Public Option and Universal Healthcare is unfair to the Private Sector attempting to conduct profitable business, provide adequate employment, and contribute to the economy. It is also unfair to its intended audience in that it is setting them up for expectations that are not feasable to be met. Although the Public Option was created with good intentions, it is not the right way for the United States to go about reforming Healthcare.


Floid forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


SherlockLily7 forfeited this round.


Floid forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


SherlockLily7 forfeited this round.


Floid forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4


Waiting for a response, but silence is consent unfortunately.


Floid forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by studentathletechristian8 7 years ago
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Total points awarded:40