The Instigator
ZekeGroth
Pro (for)
The Contender
TheModernPsyche1
Con (against)

Universal Healthcare/ Single-payer Healthcare

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/9/2018 Category: Economics
Updated: 6 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 281 times Debate No: 106514
Debate Rounds (4)
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ZekeGroth

Pro

Even as a hardcore libertarian, I take the position that the US should provide a universal healthcare system for all. There are specific things that we can go into detail about in the debate that I am against to be included but that is unnecessary right now. The first round is for acceptance and we will then use the next three rounds for actual debate.
TheModernPsyche1

Con

Sure, I'll accept this challenge. Let's keep this debate professional and enjoyable.
Debate Round No. 1
ZekeGroth

Pro

Thank you for accepting the debate, TheModernPsyche1.

1) Ethics:
Is it ethical and moral to judge how fast people are given treatment based on how much they make? Why should someone who makes a far higher salary to get a check-up before someone in poverty and can't afford health insurance to get treatment for a deadly disease? That is how it currently is in the US. We need to create a system where people are treated based on severity, not salary. You need to side with a Universal Healthcare plan in order to save lives.

2) Healthcare as a right:
Another deciding point is if healthcare is really a right to citizens. Well when asked what your personal rights are as a citizen, you probably say "Life, liberty, property/pursuit of happiness/right to resist tyranny" (last part depends and varies from person to person.) Look at that first one, the most consistent and inarguable. Life. Life is the largest right as a citizen. How do you achieve life? By having a fair and government-provided healthcare system. Otherwise, people die, and that's unconstitutional.

3) Money:
I'm sure your argument will be how much it costs. "The US already spends the most on healthcare." When people say this, they're right. I'll tell you it's ridiculous how much America spends on healthcare. But here's why it's ridiculous: Switzerland is number 2 on healthcare spending, below us, and has a very well managed healthcare system, providing care to it's citizens as well as allowing the insurance companies to compete and keep them in line. Want to go further? Canada spends HALF as much as America. They have an all-inclusive healthcare system, going as far as forcing you to be insured by at least it, and going even further than what I advocate for. Universal healthcare isn't too expensive - the US just can't get it's finances together and spend it's money wisely.

4) How inclusive?
I don't actually advocate for Canada's healthcare system for it's "gun-to-head" style of forcing you to have it and how much it includes. We could easily have a system similar to Switzerland's, where it's very minimum, (we could even have less than theirs), and this is going to allow businesses to compete as well as keep them in line so they don't reject people based on "pre-existing conditions."

5) Pre-existing conditions
A universal healthcare system is preferable to one solely left to the free market due to the fact that, not only do people no longer go uninsured, with one I am advocating for, businesses will be kept in check to ensure the customer does not get left out of any plan that they may want. Why buy a health insurance that cuts you out due to your pre-existing condition when the government will cover you? Businesses will be forced to not screw anyone over, without the guidelines set by Obamacare.

Conclusion:
We need to be supporting a universal healthcare system to protect citizen's for their right of life. It is far less expensive than people make it out to be and in fact already affordable. Universal healthcare is going to let businesses do as they please but protect the citizens who can't afford them have an option of life.
TheModernPsyche1

Con

*Note - the views I present here are not necessarily representative of the views I personally hold

Counterpoint Ethics:
Are people required to be ethical? Should ethics be enforced by the law? The answer to this is no; it is unfair actually to force people to be ethical. Capitalism, imperfect as it is, is currently the best system we have for the challenge of allocating resources such as health care. Sadly, this means that some people who need healthcare the most will not receive it. But any other system we use runs the risk of being unfair and destroying the incentive to innovate and be efficient. It was very ethical of communism to try to make everybody equal, but how well has that system worked? It's best to leave ethics outside the scope of our government.

Counterpoint Healthcare as a right)
It is not unconstitutional for people to die. And it is not unconstitutional for a person not to care that someone else is dying. People have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, which means they have a right to themselves, their property, and to be free from tyrannical and unjust powers. Forcing other people to give money in support of universal healthcare actually takes away the people's rights and freedom to their own property (in this case, money) by forcing them to give it to the cause of universal healthcare.

Counterpoint Money)
The US spends lots of money on healthcare, but the best hospitals and medical innovations take place in America. According to Forbes, 40% of biomedical research articles came from the US in 2009. Also, when wealthy people in other countries are sick, they come to the US for treatment because we have the state of the art medical facilities to treat them. We may be spending lots of money on healthcare, but perhaps this is because healthcare is such a protected industry, which drives prices up. Perhaps the prices we have are artificially high, and the solution to more affordable healthcare is good old fashioned supply and demand. And maybe other countries have a lower healthcare cost because they use the medical innovations Americans create. Universal healthcare may be the wrong solution to a problem America is facing. Also, having a universal healthcare system may reduce costs in theory, does not guarantee our healthcare system as a whole will get better.

Counterpoint How Inclusive)
You brought up the notion of adopting another country's for of healthcare, but the fact is we are not other countries, and we have different cultures, institutions, population size, and people than in other countries. Other systems can inspire us, but their systems won't necessarily work for us. As I argued previously, we are not required to be ethical, and although our system may not be inclusive all the time, it does perform the best of all systems we have seen thus far.

Counterpoint Pre-existing conditions)
Unfortunately, people with pre-existing conditions are generally riskier and more expensive to insure. And somebody has to foot the bill - under universal healthcare it will be the healthy people. It is a shame that people will have to pay more for insurance if they have a condition, but companies have a responsibility to make money, and people with pre-existing conditions are riskier and more expensive. Forcing people to pay for others' medical bills is unfair, as I have argued previously.

Side Effects)
One side effect that is feared among many is that having a universal healthcare system will encourage people to adopt riskier behaviors, degrading the overall health of Americans and making healthcare more expensive for everyone. It makes sense - if I pay for my own medical and insurance bills, I'll try to be healthy so I don't pay so much. But if I don't pay for my own medical and insurance bills, there's not much keeping me from adopting risky behaviors and practices. The system we have is not perfect, but it keeps people in check and is fair. A universal healthcare system isn't as rosy as people make it out to be.
Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
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