By John Stark
Did the Wednesday night faceoff between President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, change your view of either man?
If you are a devout follower of either one, that’s fine. But spare us the partisan cheerleading, if you can. Tell us if the debate shifted your thinking, your leanings, your attitude in any way.
I’ll confess to tuning in a bit late, but from what I saw, Obama’s vaunted debate and speaking abilities were not much in evidence. To me he seemed tired–the Presidency seems to do that to people– and his delivery was often halting.
It was clear that Romney was working hard to convince us he’s a sensible moderate alternative–not a wild-eyed right-wing radical. He spoke earnestly about the need for government regulations.
In the discussion of Medicare, it seemed as though the world was turned upside down. Romney–standard-bearer for the party of fiscal conservatism–repeatedly bashed Obama for cutting billions from Medicare by reducing the reimbursement rates the government pays to health care providers.
But both Romney and Obama agreed on the obvious need to bring down the cost of health care. The fact is that private insurers are also trying to control costs by holding down reimbursement rates. Here is a local example.
Cutting back on reimbursements is a simple way to force health care providers to cut their own costs. Maybe too simple. But if health care costs are really going to be cut, then we need to spend less on health care. Am I missing something?