Time Magazine recently listed the fifty worst cars of all time. The communist East German Trabant made the list with this description: "This is the car that gave Communism a bad name. Powered by a two-stroke pollution generator that maxed out at an ear-splitting 18 hp, the Trabant was a hollow lie of a car constructed of recycled worthlessness… A virtual antique when it was designed in the 1950s, the Trabant was East Germany's answer to the VW Beetle — a "people's car," as if the people didn't have enough to worry about."
Fast forward a half century and the description of that vehicular lemon also applies to its modern healthcare equivalent, Obamacare.
Almost daily, polls reveal that the American people strongly oppose this ill-conceived government takeover of our nation's healthcare system. Frankly, this should surprise no one. As virtually every Republican in the House and Senate predicted when opposing this horrendous law, millions of Americans are losing plans that they liked in return for underperforming and expensive Obamacare policies. That doctor the president said you could keep? Forget about it. Faced with enormous uncertainty, businesses and families are being thrown into health security chaos, while medical professionals are determining that government-run programs are too complex and refusing to accept Medicaid patients. Just like the stooges the East Germans appointed to design and build the Trabant, the Obama administration carries on the tradition by wreaking havoc on a good healthcare system, effectively destroying something it claimed it was improving.
Looking for ways to fix what's wrong with this horrible law would be like trying to re-engineer the Trabant into its incredibly popular contemporary, the VW Beetle. Impossible, so why waste our time? Instead, we should implement practical healthcare reforms to address the problems, not erase the successes. Americans deserve real-world options that allow market-based solutions to address the supply and cost of healthcare, keep medical professionals practicing, as well as expand our ability to seek and provide cutting edge technologies, drugs and treatments.
That’s why Congress should repeal ObamaCare and lift restrictions that prevent health plans from being offered across state lines, allow individuals and families to find the best plan at the best price, and create competition based on value. The greater competition fostered by an expanded market will lower prices and improve the quality of healthcare. We should also help level the playing field between employer-based and individual market insurance by providing all Americans with a standard deduction for health insurance. Individuals could receive a $7,500 tax deduction while families could benefit from a $20,000 tax deduction. This would give individuals and families the flexibility to choose a plan that best fits their needs.
ObamaCare not only requires you to buy health coverage — and ‘taxes’ you if you do not — but it also designs the coverage you get. Manipulating both the supply and demand of a market is the truest form of socialism. It will not only ruin the healthcare market, but it also drags down the economy. It's time to recall ObamaCare - the President’s Trabant - and give Americans a ride built for the long haul.
Olson has served Texas' 22nd Congressional District since 2009. He sits on the Energy and Commerce committees.