Thursday, July 05, 2018

Our Own Fool

It didn't take long. As soon as Doug Ford got into office, he sank Ontario's Green Energy Program. And, over the weekend, Heath Minister Christine Elliott nixed the OHIP+ program, which covered prescription costs for all of Ontario's children under 24. Martin Regg Cohn writes:

In future, young people will have to turn first to their parents’ workplace plan — if they have one — that covers some or all of their expenses. Only if they have no coverage, or face additional costs, will they be able to turn to the government as a last resort, months later, for reimbursement that remains indeterminate.
On the campaign trail, Ford spoke often about his plans to cut billions in government waste because “the party with taxpayers’ dollars was over.” But he vowed to protect health-care spending, and young people had every reason to believe that a program supplying essential prescription medicines would survive Ford’s axe.

If anyone is amazed, they shouldn't be. We've seen this movie before. It's part of Ford's pitch that Ontario is "open for business." But Ford's decision simply isn't good business:

You don’t have to love pharmacare, medicare, socialized medicine, or socialism to appreciate the benefits of universal health care with comprehensive coverage. It’s not necessarily a matter of empathy or ideology, but efficiency — something Tories can surely support as much as Liberals or New Democrats.
By analogy, business think tanks have come to embrace pharmacare as a cost-effective way to benefit from a single-payer system that eliminates the waste of private insurance companies duplicating overhead and services (both administrative and diagnostic), while ramping up the scale of government purchasing power to save money on bulk buying, and also selecting the most cost-effective drugs (notably generics) to treat patients. Oh, and pharmacare doesn’t force people with strep throat to first cough up the money at a pharmacy, or check their parents’ benefits plan and wait for (possibly partial) reimbursement, and then hope the government will backstop them later.

South of the border, they have their Great Orange Fool. In Ontario, we now have our own Great Fool.

Image: Huffington Post Canada


Anonymous said...

This was all easily predicted, Owen. Cons always target the weakest members of society, including women and children. So it was a sure bet that OHIP+ would get the axe. Look for a resumption of Harris' war on teachers and nurses in the weeks to come.


Owen Gray said...

These fools claim to be good managers, Cap. But they are essentially cruel. The Champions of the Little Guy get sadistic glee from ginding him into the ground.

Deacon Jester said...

What an ugly future Ontario has chosen for itself. If it's possible to do I would advise selling off now before the reality really sets in and getting out of there. The damage Ford will do will take a generation at least to repair.

John B. said...

It shouldn't be to hard to recall the basic rules of the CRAP Party governance model as it applies to labour relations in the public service. You're in for another round of the politics of creatively balanced disrespect: never-ever-ever trash the firefighters; suck up to the cops; screw the nurses; and, most importantly, always-always-always trash the school teachers.

Owen Gray said...

I agree, Deacon. Undoing Mike Harris' legacy took more than ten years. Ford would like to turn the clock back further than Harris did.

Owen Gray said...

I'm reminded of what Howard Hampton said when the Harris government got rid of Grade 13, John. He said that, if the educaation minister -- who dropped out of school in Grade 11 -- could get rid of one more grade, he stood a good chance of getting his high schol diploma.