The absence of mandatory health care coverage, and the absence of a government-funded system in the Medicare model, is a serious political set-back for the President. Essentially, the two cornerstones of his march to the federal management of health care will not come to pass today if the federally-owned cooperative proposal becomes law. Nevertheless, any foray by the government into commercial activity is fraught with danger; danger to our Constitution, danger to our liberties that we believe are protected by the Constitution, and danger to our prosperity.
It is a given that nowhere among the 17 delegated discreet powers that the Constitution grants to the federal government is the power to manage health care. The left-leaning lobbies in both parties, however, have succeeded in causing even freedom-minded folks to look upon health care as if it were a natural right, like speech, travel, or privacy. It is not a natural right. It is a good, like a cell phone, or a hamburger, or an ipod. The left wants us to believe it is a right because of its government- knows-best attitude, and because of the President's spread-the-wealth goals. If health care were treated as a good, if it were unregulated, you'd see McDonald's-like clinics competing for your health care needs on every street corner. But so long as the government forces insurance companies to offer services that people can't use and don't want, and so long as we all are forced to pay high insurance premiums for all this, costs will stay up and poor folks will be forced to choose between rent and health insurance.
A government co-op will look like the Post Office. Since the feds will own it, the politicians will run it. Thus, expect a political model, not a business model. Just as the feds will soon give tax credits to those who buy cars from the government-owned GM, it will do the same for its health care co-op. Private business cannot compete against a government that will tilt the playing fiend to favor its patrons. A co-op will put the camel's nose under the tent, and just lead tomorrow to the egalitarian utopian fantasies that the President wants today.