by John Geyman, M.D.
In the same way that Thomas Paine made a strong argument in his pamphlet, Common Sense, for people in the Thirteen Colonies to gain independence from England in 1775-1776, this pamphlet takes a similar approach, also based on simple facts, plain arguments, and common sense. Here, 241 years later, the subject is different but parallel to his goal—to have the American people gain freedom from the corporate masters in our medical-industrial complex that take their exorbitant profits on the backs of sick Americans, their families, and taxpayers. We detail markers of today’s health care crisis, summarize lessons we can learn from previous reform failures, and compare three financing alternatives: (1) the Affordable Care Act, (2) the GOP’s American Health Care Act, and (3) national health insurance under Medicare for All. The latter is described as the only way to achieve sustainable universal coverage to comprehensive health care. This will be paid for by eliminating waste and profits of the current system, simplifying administration, and sharing health care risk across all 320 million Americans. We describe how this new system of national health insurance will work and how we can achieve it given political will and a grassroots movement around the country energized by the majority of Americans who are losing out to corporate profiteers.