In reference to Boeing’s claim that Canadian airplane manufacturer Bombardier sold its airplanes in the U.S. at less than fair market value, due to government subsidies [“Big win for Boeing: U.S. slaps Canadian competitor,” Sept. 27, A1]:
Every business located in a country with a government-sponsored universal health care system has a pricing advantage when it comes to selling their products on the U.S. market. With health care provided to everyone as a public good and guaranteed by the government, businesses in Canada and 35 other developed countries of the world do not have to add the cost of employee health-care benefits to their pricing structure. They can be more competitive because basic human needs are taken care of by society, not by businesses. Such a system could continue to be privately delivered. Only its administration would be handled by a government entity, such as Medicare is now.
It’s time for American businesses to understand this and support universal health care in the U.S. If they did so, they could eliminate one of the costs that currently place their products at a competitive disadvantage with those of their counterparts abroad.
Marcia Stedman, Bothell
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