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Two of the Republicans vying for the nomination for the seat Hulshof is vacating have been publicizing their policies on health care.

Blaine Luetkemeyer, our Director of Tourism and a former state rep who lost the primary race for State Treasurer in 2004, offered an example of what Jack Cardetti calls the Republican tendency toward government by anecdote:

“I was talking to a gentleman the other day, a doctor. And he was talking about a Medicare person who had a serious infection,” Luetkemeyer said. “They put a port his arm in order to deliver antibiotics intravenously. He was in good enough physical condition that he could go home … and inject himself through the port with the proper amount of antibiotics. Medicare says you can’t do that. You have to be in a hospital setting or a nursing home setting. So, they’re going to admit him to a nursing home to administer these antibiotics when he could be at home – and if you have to, have a home health care nurse go check on him once a day, twice a day… But instead, we’re going to put them in a nursing home at $100, $150 a day, whatever it is, and run up several thousand dollars worth of bills without a commonsense care plan between the doctor and the individual.”

“If you have to design a program to provide services for something, would you prefer to give that program to a business or would you prefer to give that program to the government to run?” Luetkemeyer added. “I think you think very quickly think why would you give any program to the government to run? Because they never run it efficiently ….”

Mr. Luetkemeyer, let me offer you an example of similar stupidity on the part of my private ins–… never mind. He wouldn’t want to hear it. Wrong kind of anecdote.

On the other hand, Brock Olivo, MU’s favorite son, has a list of actual policy proposals. He gets points for doing more than complaining about one bit of Medicare foolishness–but not a passel of points, considering what his proposals are. For example:

Insurance competition must be increased. This includes creating plans where big companies, small companies, and private individuals can buy the same policies across state lines in a nationwide market. If it works for car insurance, why shouldn’t it work for healthcare?

M-maybe competition won’t bring health care down to the price of car insurance–because Americans have more health problems than car wrecks. Or maybe health care insurance isn’t like car insurance because if a car requires an operation that will cost a quarter of a million, you just declare it totaled. No wait, that’s what health insurance companies are doing–and health care is still costing an obscene amount.

At least, though, Olivo–or someone thinking on his behalf–has given the subject some thought and come up with a list of proposals you could implement as long as you weren’t going to do anything real.

Photos courtesy of the Columbia Tribune