Are there any Americans who seriously believe this system is going to bring the Apocalypse?
Apocalypse is a little strong of a word. If you asked if it was going to cripple us economically, set us back 20 years, make 20% unemployment normal, and cripple the health care industry, I'd say we're already getting there just fine with Medicare. Bush's Part D expansion is just the latest straw crushing the service side of the industry. Just because you don't bother to educate yourself beyond the sob stories doesn't mean you aren't going down the swirly with the rest of us. The lever was already dropped a long time ago.
Instead of letting shock and sadness rot your ability to observe and rationalize your settings, actually look at the system you're in, and how you got there.
The insurance industry you pay through the nose to partake of was created by government regulations. All that nonsense you don't need but pay for anyway is mandated by multiple tier regulations all across the country. Your inability to afford your own choice insurance policy is aided by mandates and tax breaks that force you to get insurance through your employer. IfI can make a killing selling a thousand policies to one entity as a tax deduction, why would I give a shit about you? If your employer is the one paying for it, how much are you going to care about how much you're spending?
In some states, you get to pay for Viagra, cosmetic surgery, sex changes, all kinds of twisted shit you shouldn't be forced to purchase coverage for. In a lot of states, you don't even have insurance to begin with. You have prepaid medical.
It stands to reason that paying someone else to pay a bill is going to come with a premium, yes? Why then would you want to buy "insurance" to pay your bills? Insurance is for the car accident, not the oil change.
If we kill all the fucking lawyers, everyone gets life long catastrophic coverage policies and pays their own damn bill when they go to a doctor for a checkup, you could cut primary care costs in half overnight.
It doesn't cost a doctor sixty bucks to feel your throat up, look at it, and tell you you've got strep. It costs sixty bucks to pay for the insurance your litigious asshole country has made him need, the two secretaries he needs to give your insurance company shit over paying a bill that should have been a momentary cash exchange, and all the Medicare patients he sees that are reimbursing him for half that while costing just as much. Then there's defensive medicine, all those tests they like to run that have fuck all to do with whether or not the simple answer to a simple problem is easily verified, and everything to do with making sure you can't sue them if you're too stupid to go back in a few days when the antibiotics for your rash aren't working because it's really lyme disease.
Sure, because taxes are a figment of his imagination and you don't actually pay for government programs...