Open Left:: Parcel Delivery with a Public Option.
Diarist tremayne at OpenLeft, with the most cogent example of how public and private can work effectively together:
… I immediately thought of the U.S. Postal Service. Here’s a government-run service that can deliver a paper document to any remote location you choose for 42 cents. They can also deliver packages quickly and at a very competitive rate. Impressive.
But even with this efficiency the “public option” for package delivery has a number of healthy competitors. There’s FedEx (started in 1971 as Federal Express), DHL (founded in 1969), UPS (founded in 1907) among others.
Well said. Repeat, repeat, repeat…
The Coop Plan – Kent Conrad’s compromise proposal instead of a public plan has been roundly criticized as too small to make a difference. Some of the reason it’s being criticised is that it would never eventually yield to a single-payer plan…a complaint I don’t think most Americans have. Some of the reason its being criticized though, is that it would be so small the big insurance companies would eat it alive, and it would never meet the prime objective of ensuring a large enough entity to force the big insurers to compete and improve business practices to drive down costs, while delivering better service. THAT’S a valid concern.
I like the idea of member cooperatives. Credit unions don’t outcompete the big banks, but they sure as heck provide better services. I would be excited about seeing member owned coops for health care delivery. So – I proposed the following to improve of Sen. Conrad’s idea:
1. create a national umbrella organization with regional chapters.
2. force the national insurers to break up similarly into regional chapters (think: the break up of Ma Bell)
In recent discussions - it seems that point #1 has been taken up as a good idea… if they follow through with point #2 – I’m onboard.
Btw – I’ll take the congressional public option too – it sounds like a solid plan. The negotiation between the congressional option and a stronger (from a regulatory standpoint) Conrad option – would yield something unique, and valuable for the American people.