Every time I hear somebody, usually from the left to the far left, sing the praises of single-payer medical care, I am convinced that that cheerleader is speaking from ideology without regard for, or even knowledge of, the facts. The term single-payer medical care is a euphemism for the much harsher and much less acceptable ideological term, socialized medicine. That term reflects the blind faith that the far left has in bigger and bigger government control of medical care and, in fact, just about everything else.

The statistics of socialized medicine in countries where it is the system vacate any claim to its superiority over the conventional systems of private insurance and autonomous medical care by professionals. Here are some of those statistics, abstracted by "Investor's Business Daily" from a survey compiled by the United Nations International Health Organization.

Percentage of men and women who survived a cancer five years after diagnosis:

United States: 65 percent

England: 46 percent

Canada: 42 percent

Percentage of patients with diabetes who received treatment within six months:

United States: 93 percent

England: 15 percent

Canada: 43 percent

Percentage of seniors needing hip replacement who received it within six months:

United States: 90 percent

England: 15 percent

Canada: 43 percent

Percentage referred to a medical specialist who see one within one month:

United States: 77 percent

England: 40 percent

Canada: 43 percent

Number of MRI scanners (a prime diagnostic tool) per million people:

United States: 71

England: 14

Canada: 18

Percentage of seniors (65+), with low income, who say they are in "excellent health":

United States: 12 percent

England: 2 percent

Canada: 6 percent

And now, the last statistic: Which countries have single-payer medical care, i.e. socialized medicine?

United States: NO

England: YES

Canada: YES

Those who professedly want single-payer medical insurance, i.e. socialized medicine, are clearly in the ideological camp, not the facts camp. They include Gov. Peter Shumlin and Pres. Barak Obama. In order to remain there, they are, in effect, saying, "Don't bother me with the facts. I've made up my mind." These emperors have no clothes on. The proof of that will be when the U.S. Congress rescinds Obamacare, as it surely will early in 2013, and Vermont rescinds Shumlincare, if and when our Legislature wakes up to the facts. If it doesn't, Shumlincare's wagon hitched behind Obamacare's missing horse will have nowhere to go and nobody to take it there.

Bernier Mayo, of St. Johnsbury, is a lifelong conservative.


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