A Great Argument Against Nationalized Healthcare

Have you been to the Tag Agency lately? I have. This is what happened.

In my state, tags are required each year on the anniversary from when you first registered the vehicle. My renewals are in August. For this year, the tag renewals are completely new license plates for the vehicle, as the design has changed and the state has mandated the replacement of the old style. As usual, the agency requires three proofs of identity to give you the privilege of paying for the new year’s renewal. The special documents are a valid driver’s license, the proof of insurance from your car, and the renewal notice that was mailed to you with the price of the tag on it.

So, in order to be ahead of the game, I went to renew my tag with each piece of information needed two weeks before the deadline on my very brief lunch break. Arriving at the tag agency, I had all my ducks in a row and waited in line for the next agent. Since it is August, and I live in the South, the agency was experiencing the typical lack of air-conditioning and uncomfortably hot. Reaching the front desk, I handed over my info, expecting to get a request for payment and a new plate. However, that did not happen.

To their credit, the agents took an extra long time with the state’s computer system. The reason they had to take so long was that “the system says it can’t verify your insurance or locate your vin.” I replied, “Yes, but that information is on the notice the state mailed me, and on the official proof of insurance I am required by law to carry; both of which you have in your hand.” The agent politely smiled and explained to me that the state had just initiated a new program last year, where agents were entering in our data to the state’s database for later verification. This new program said it could not find my information, and the agent’s would not be able to override it without a letter from my insurance agency on their letter head with a specific legal phrase. Patiently, I asked “Why do I need a letter from my insurance; when the information you need on the insurance’s verification form it here already?” The employee’s behind the counter simply stated I could not be helped without this extra paperwork.

I thanked them for their ‘help’ and went outside to call my insurance agent. My agent said they were wrong and I needed to go to another tag agency. I wondered how that would help if the state’s database was the thing that was in error. She did not have an answer. I asked if she could fax the information on the appropriate letter head that the tag office needed. She said she would.

Five minutes later, a copy of my proof of insurance identical to the paper from my car came over the fax. Again, the tag office staff said, they needed a letter on the insurance company’s letter head stating that I had a “state compliant policy.” Again, I called my agent and she said that I would have to call the underwriting company directly to get such a letter. So, I called the underwriting company and made the same request; after ten more minutes of prompts and hold time. Another five minutes went by and another copy of the same insurance verification came over the wire; only straight from the underwriting company. For the fourth time, I was told this would not be enough for them to override the state’s incorrect database.

Finally, the clerk behind the desk, took my information and called my insurance agent directly and the underwriters. She gave them the same instructions I did, almost verbatim. Another ten minutes later, the proper fax came through. I was able to pay and get my new license plate. After nearly two hours, of re-verification of the same three pieces of information, one clerk pressed one button and the ‘system’ that was state run was overridden.

Now, this scenario involved only one government entity. Also, the tag agents are licensed by the state, but not employed by the state. Imagine if this were a urgent medical situation. Imagine if both ends of the problem were government owned; both the insurance, and the care-provider. Technology is great, but we still have to be able to deal with the human part of every interaction with the public. What happens when my “real-id” and my “healthcare id” are mistakenly mismatched? What happens when a law-abiding citizen is caught up in the State-run State-owned database and he or she is ‘not found in the system’? I had all of the pieces of data I could have with me. Two of which were created by the State. Yet, I was still not able to be served, so I could stay in compliance with a State law!

You may trust a overreaching, overbearing, overprotecting “father” state. You may say, “Hey, it’s better than nothing!” You may think, these problems are just isolated incidents, and the government would never be so cavalier about a person’s life. You may think all of this; but I certainly don’t. I also know that our Founders didn’t either. If you don’t believe me, read their words for yourself. Ask yourself, why would they leave the most powerful nation on Earth, and risk being hanged for treason if a all-powerful government was what they really wanted all along? Right now, for this moment, you are free. Don’t re-burden yourself with slavery to your government for the security they can’t guarantee.

Peregrin.

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