So this is what it now comes down to. We institute a Medicare program in the 1960s that was supposed to cost a fraction of what it does today. When we realize it has bankrupted itself, and possibly the government, we celebrate when its present rate of growth is lower than in the heavily regulated “private” side of the US medical system. When proposals to raise the “retirement” age are put forth, we actually say we cannot do that, because it will “raise costs.”
So, this is where we are. If we don’t raise the retirement age, the Medicare program will bankrupt us. If we do raise the retirement age, this article implies, it too will bankrupt us. Such is the nudity of your emperors in Washington. And how will raising the retirement age bankrupt us? For one, it will ask individuals and their employers to pay more for health coverage than if the government continued to provide it. Is that proof that we shouldn’t raise the retirement age? Not to me. It seems to suggest that Medicare is heavily subsidized and masking the true costs of health care. The other reason this piece suggests raising the retirement age is “costly” is that states and other parts of the federal government will end up paying more. So we’ve tied up the Gordian knot of government dependence good and tight. Anything we do is harmful. The only solution it seems is to swallow hard and enjoy the big tax increases that are coming our way.
Have a nice day.