Despite his occasionally grating column I generally like to read the opinions of parenting advice writer John Rosemond.
On a radio program recently he recommended a good way to resolve disputes between squabbling siblings. Instead of getting involved in every detail of the fight, Rosemond suggested that a parent sit the children in a room, remove all of the toys, and tell them they can leave the room when the kids have a resolution to the conflict.
Legislators should take a similar approach to fights over the industry health exchange bill currently moving through the General Assembly. This legislation will remake the health insurance market in the state. It is a complex, intricate bill that requires extensive discussion and debate with all stakeholders represented. In such negotiations consumers will not get everything they want. Insurance companies also would not get everything.
The bill moving through the General Assembly was written by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina and gives the insurance company all that it wants and more. The bill gives the people of North Carolina nothing.
Legislators should skip passing an exchange bill this session and instead call on stakeholders to continue meeting. Leaders in the General Assembly should insist that stakeholders bring one bill to the legislature for enactment. A vote for House Bill 115 is a vote against negotiation. It is a vote against compromise. It is a vote to give over the health care market to Blue Cross and take away control from consumers.
John Rosemond would not approve.