National Healthcare: The Criminal Defense Model (Tethered Money)

Every American has a constitutional right to criminal defense. The public will foot the bill. So why not extend the same to healthcare? Who not, really, show some responsibility towards the needy. Poor Americans are likely to end up in jail for a crime they did not commit, if tried without representation. Similarly, poor Americans are likely to end up with pain, disability, and death if left without medical attention.

And it is this very analogy that points us to a feasible solution of the national healthcare enigma. A poor American charged with a crime does not find himself represented by Johnnie Cochran, Mark Geragos, or Alan Dershowitz. Similarly, we cannot conjure up a healthcare plan that will get every poor American a Mayo Clinic style treatment. We are essentially a capitalistic society: money matters! Rich people have it easier, nicer, than poor people. All historical attempts to thwart this paradigm ended up with regressive prosperity. It may be unfair in some sense, but we are not smart enough to come up with a fairer idea which is also viable and effective.

Once we resign to the notion that money is a factor in the quality of healthcare, we can devise a ‘floor’ like we do for criminal justice. A fully certified member of the local bar will be paid by the public to help out an indigent defender. A fully certified MD will be paid by the public to treat a needy patient.

Much as the free criminal defense program is readily budgeted, so it can be done with public medical payments: a direct government paid service for those who are not financially able to participate in the self sustaining healthcare insurance. Medical government funds may be paid out directly to patients’ cellphone, using the technology of digital money (see the Tethered Money book, Elsevier, 2015), or as explained this video.

Imagine purists striving to insure that every criminal defendant has the right to be defended by Alan Dershowitz — it’s so overly ambitious that it would be laughable. The same for the idea that the poorest patient has the right to the same healthcare as the richest American. To set up an unachievable goal is as deplorable as putting forth no goal at all.