The government has already proven itself incapable of planning, designing, running and paying for (with taxpayer dollars) social services programs.
Medicare and Social Security were intended to be self-funding programs. Our government leaders failed to anticipate and plan for societal changes (decreased family size, longer lifespan, earlier retirement, increases in costly disease care for diabetes, cancer, end of life, fluctuations in the economy among other things) that led these programs to spend more than they brought in. Politicians, in the desire for re-election, voted for enhanced benefits for recipients without regard to the inablility of the system to sustain itself. Consequently, many of us who have paid taxes for an entire working lifetime will likely receive little to nothing from either program.
Why in the world would we trust the government to fashion a national program for healthcare when it has failed in every other similar attempt?
Social Security, Medicare Face Insolvency Sooner
WASHINGTON -- The government revised estimates for the long-term solvency of Medicare and Social Security on Tuesday, moving up the date when trust funds for the entitlement programs will run out of money.
The Medicare fund for hospital care will be depleted in 2017, two years earlier than government actuaries estimated a year ago. Last year marked the first time that Medicare ran a deficit, paying out more in benefits than it generates from taxes and other revenue.
The report also factors in a 21% cut in payments this year, required by law, to doctors working for Medicare....
The actuaries estimated that Social Security beneficiaries would not receive a cost-of-living increase for the next two years, and that a quarter of Medicare beneficiaries would pay higher-than-usual increases in monthly premiums, 8% in 2010 and 15% in 2011. The trustees are the secretaries of labor, Treasury and health and human services, as well as the commissioner of Social Security....
...there is no way to balance Medicare without significant increases in taxes," said Henry Aaron, an economist with the liberal-leaning Brookings Institution.
full article: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124212734686110365.html