If Everyone had to Buy Their Own Roads

The issue of healthcare continues to be politically potent, owing mostly to the fact that Republicans continue to politicize it while Democrats continue to push for universal healthcare.

The current healthcare system has five main insurance components:

  1. Employer-provided insurance (including government employees) ~50%
  2. Private insurance (purchased by the consumer) ~7%
  3. Medicare ~14%
  4. Medicaid ~20%
  5. Uninsured ~9%

One can imagine a society where everybody has to buy their own roads more directly, rather than having the government work it out. Employers, needing to have employees get to work, needing to ship goods, would form group plans where various roads would be available to employees and the company.

One can imagine that older folks, no longer working, would be subsidized in their road access by the government. Some private plans would be available for freelancers. Eventually, the poor might get some access to roads.

And then you would have the roadless. Folks that maybe had a single road to work, but their employer doesn’t need broad transportation, and has few employees, so the road options for those people are limited.


And maybe, if you don’t belong to a road access plan, you could still use a road. But they would charge you more. You’re extra traffic not accounted for in the planning and budgeting. You aren’t one of a hundred cars in a group that uses the road, so you don’t get a bulk-traffic discount.

And maybe, if you don’t belong to a road access plan, you can’t use some roads. They’re built for the members. The members don’t want you slowing them down. You’re excluded entirely. You can use the dirt paths, only. You’ll still get there, covered in dust and smelling like it.


Americans love the open road (it’s even called the open road). They love their cars. They would never stand for limitations on their ability to cruise. We should not stand for it for healthcare.

The friction that would be caused by having to have special maps to figure out which roads you could use, filling out forms at intersections, constantly worrying about making a wrong turn, are mirrored in the healthcare system where Americans are constantly dealing with red tape from provider networks, drug coverage conundrums, and claims processes.

It’s long past time to open American healthcare.

It’s about 14 weeks until the midterm elections.