People argue about the “public option” aspect of socialized medicine as if it’s the primary point. It’s not. While it is true that the “public option,” if implemented, will wipe out what’s left of the marketplace for health insurance and medical care, there’s a faster and more efficient way to do that, and it’s supported by many Republicans. Simply eliminate the ability of insurance companies to require questions regarding “pre-existing” conditions for new policyholders. Underwriting and actuarial tables, based on statistical formulations, are at the core of any insurance business, and they benefit both the company and the policyholders. If government wipes out insurance underwriting, it will in effect destroy the capacity of private insurance companies to survive and cover their policyholders. Premiums will skyrocket so quickly and so massively that everyone will be forced, overnight, to rush to the government program. I don’t understand why liberals cling so tenaciously to the “public option.” They don’t need it! All they need is for Republicans to cave (in John McCain or George Bush-style) to the notion that government owns medicine, and that profit is morally wrong. Republicans can scream all they want that “government should not run health care.” But the fact remains that if they give government this power over insurance companies, they have outlawed private health insurance for good.