Skip to main content

The Great Health-Care Debate Straw Man

The socialist left has set up a massive straw man in the health care debate.

It is, in short:

"Opponents of Obama's health-care (wait, no, health-insurance) plan want to maintain the status-quo."

This of course is a straw man and a great lie. There are clearly problems with the health care system, or more precisely, with the way that costs are growing out of whack.

Nobody says the current setup is ideal. There is legitimate disagreement, however, about whether Yet Another Government Welfare Program is the way to go.

Obama says "we need a government insurance plan to keep the private insurers honest". Even assuming that insurance companies were being dishonest (which is clearly the intention of Obama's phrasing), why not open the insurance field to MORE competition by allowing insurers to operate across state lines? That is one solution to the issue of limited competition in insurance and one which does not require a massive new federal bureaucracy and entitlement program.

Obama switched from demonizing doctors and hospitals, which turned out not to be so popular; and has started demonizing insurance companies. These are the same companies that pay for millions of cancer treatments every year. Yes, those big, bad, evil money-grubbing insurance companies! We must "keep them honest".

The second aspect of this great straw man is, "the private sector has failed to deliver quality health care". Yet there is effectively no such thing as a free market for health care services.

  1. The government controls who can be doctors, and arbitrarily restricts to MD's the right to provide simple treatments.
  2. The government controls fully 20% of all medical spending, through Medicare/Medicaid.
  3. Medicare/Medicaid result in massive cost-shifting by paying only dimes on the dollar of the real costs of those programs. That is the only reason these programs can be considered "successes". The burden is then shifted to private insurance companies, whom hospitals overbill in order to make up their losses from Medicare/Medicaid.
  4. Government strictly regulate what insurance companies can do, who they can cover, how much they can charge. In many states, government forces people to buy coverage for things they don't need and can't use.
  5. Insurance companies are forbidden from operating across state lines, further limiting competition
  6. Virtually all health insurance is delivered through employers, which means individuals typically have no real choice of insurance plan
Yeah, that sure looks like a "free market". What has in fact failed, is the current methodology of layering government intrusion upon government intrusion with no foresight applied further than the next election.

So what the naysayers to the Obama plan want, is not the status quo.
What we want is the elimination government intrusion in health care, and more private-sector competition.

So all you socialists out there, put the straw man away and let's have a serious conversation about this, ok?


Popular posts from this blog

Murder in the US

In 2011, I calculate the overall US murder rate as 4.6 per 100,000 population.

But if you recalculate this, and assumed that black men murdered at the same rate as everyone else, the overall rate would drop to 1.9 out of 100,000 population. That would give the United States the 147th highest murder rate in the world - or, the 60th best.

The insane disproportionate murder rate among US blacks is why the overall US murder rate seems so high.

I don't understand why liberals refuse to talk about this. I don't understand why blacks refuse to talk about this. Blacks are just as often the victim as the offender - almost SIXTY PERCENT of murder victims in the US are black. Shouldn't they care about this? Where are Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton to talk about this? Yet they are silent.

And it's not like this is any secret. This culture of violence, abuse of women, and plain thuggery is paraded around daily in pop music. It's glorified on TV shows like "The Wire…

The Root of Violent Extremism

We are too flippant about writing off violent extremists as "crazy", "psychopathic", etc.

Just because *we* have a hard time conceiving of doing violence to others, does not mean that those who do are insane.

Hitler was not insane. Hitler was evil. There is a distinction.

To be insane, to be "crazy", means you cannot understand the difference between right and wrong.

People like Hitler, like ISIS, these people are *evil*. They have, in what they believe to be a rational process, *chosen* to embrace a death-worshipping morality.

Such thinking is going to lead us down wrong alleys in dealing with violent political extremism.

Unless we understand the various reasons why such people embrace philosophies of death, we cannot combat the root causes and defeat violent extremism.

Obama's "they need jobs" is a juvenile approach at this. But you simply cannot ignore and dismiss the reality of life in the countries that are the flash-points of extremism…

Is Government "just the name we give to things we do together"?

"Government is just the name we give to the things we do together." Well, no. This is a truly deceptive statement. Because look here, there are many, many human institutions where people get together to do things. Churches.
Families. And these all have their own unique characteristics. If government was simply a variety of these, or vice-versa, why would we bother to have a unique word for it? If government were *merely* a charity, wouldn't we just call it a charity? What is it about government then that makes it unique? I'll tell you. It's the use of force. Government is the sole human institution that legitimately exercises physical force against others. Churches don't commit violence. Corporations don't use physical coercion to get you to buy their products or to work for them. Families don't (shouldn't) do that. BECAUSE government's essence is the use of force, government simply should not do many things, eve…