Monday, September 17, 2007

I Have No Idea If The Devil Wears Prada

But she does write for the Washington Post.

Rolla, Mo.: Is Sen. Webb's approach one way to get around the issue of ending the war through direct funding cuts? I ask because the Dems are in a fix, the American public wants the war to end, but they are against the seemingly only option the Dems have, cutting funding.

Shailagh Murray: Democrats, and not a few Republicans, believe Webb's approach is an effective way to limit the U.S. role in Iraq, in a way that benefits American troops, rather than potentially harms them through a funding cutoff. In particular, it directly addresses a big area of concern for Republicans from large military states, namely the war's toll on troops and their families.


Princeton, N.J.: Why can't people understand that a single-payer health care system is simply much more efficient than what we have? Forget the immorality of the uninsured, forget the competitive disadvantage of our business community -- other countries get much better health care at much lower cost. The evidence is overwhelming. We can't afford our current mess. We need Medicare for all. Is this a failure of democracy?

Shailagh Murray: Back in another century, I covered health care policy for the Wall Street Journal, and I couldn't believe the complexities. You have huge corporate, political and labor interests, all with their own perfect solutions. Another thing I realized was that none of the other models out there, i.e. in Western Europe, are perfect fits for the U.S., which is much bigger and more diverse, both socially and economically.

That said, if a Democrat wins next year, it will be interesting to see him/her attempt to deliver on some very big promises now on the table (at least from Edwards, Clinton and Obama)

Washington: To the best of your knowledge, have any of the candidates addressed how to solve the supply side issue of health care, specifically how we are going to find doctors to care for the 40 million-plus that (presumably) will have some kind of health insurance in the future? I see lots of rhetoric about making sure that everybody has insurance, but nothing about how to find doctors for everyone. Most of my own MDs rarely or never accept on new patients -- who's going to take care of the newly insured? This seems to be a big unknown.

Shailagh Murray: This goes to my last point. It's not just about insurance coverage. I know all you liberals and trial lawyers out there groan when a Republican says "tort reform," but this is exactly why the GOP-led Congress tried so many times to change medical malpractice laws -- and why many states already have.