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I work in what is perhaps the most socialized sector of the American economy.  And it's great.

For starters, I have fantastic health care coverage.  Everything is covered 100% - no deductibles, premiums, or co-pays.  When I got really sick last year, they relocated me and paid for me to get treated at one of the top hospitals in the country for my particular problem.  Total cost: about $100K.  I paid nothing.

Dental, medical, and vision are all included.  So are prescriptions, mental health counseling, and a variety of "wellness" programs, such as smoking cessation.  Family members also get similar coverage with only token payments.

That's just the beginning, though.

Defined-benefit pension plan AND a 401(k) option?  Check.  European-style educational benefits, including getting PAID to attend grad school?  Check.  Top-notch fitness facilities, free?  Check.  Free housing?  Check.  Reimbursement for public transportation commuting costs?  Check.  Free food?  Check.  "Company stores" offering name-brand groceries, department-store selections, all at reduced prices?  Check.  Cheap life and disability insurance?  Check.  Automatic salary increases tied to your time with the company and level of responsibility?  Check.  Relocations?  Covered - with extra cash to cover the incidentals of moving.  Travel for company business?  Completely covered.  Required training?  Paid for.

I could go on.  This just skims the surface.  Sure, they don't cover everything - I had to pay out of pocket to see an osteopath, and to get contact lenses (although I was able to do the latter at a non-profit "company store" eye clinic for much less than the for-profit places).  Someday, when I do the cosmetic dentistry I want, it will be on my dime.  Instead of the insurance industry pushing useless tests for their profit, sometimes I've had to push a bit harder to get the health care coverage I thought I needed.  And there are always horror stories.  But by and large, our "socialist" health care program is the stuff of American dreams.  Just ask my co-worker whose toddler girl had extensive surgery and reconstructive therapy at one of the country's top children's hospitals - all at practically no cost to him.

There are trade-offs.  Being government property is one of them.  And the in-processing medical exam excludes many with pre-existing conditions (although family members are covered regardless of their health).  But here's my simple question: if "socialism" is good enough for our troops, why is a "public option" so anathema to the average American?

Originally posted to Square Knot on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 04:06 PM PDT.

Poll

Should the military's "socialist" health care be offered to all Americans?

65%25 votes
15%6 votes
7%3 votes
5%2 votes
5%2 votes

| 38 votes | Vote | Results

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