RSS

Healthcare: Ask The Wrong Question, Get The Wrong Answer

03 Jul

“There’s a sucker born every minute.”
-P. T. Barnum

Engineering Thinking teaches us to challenge our assumptions, because if they are wrong, then our subsequent analysis and decisions will be wrong.

The healthcare challenge — it is commonly assumed — is this: how can the government best ensure that the weakest members of society receive adequate health care?

This is the wrong question. The reason it is wrong is that it is based on the flawed assumption that the government should be making our health care decisions. As discussed previously (see “Feedback, Prices, And Sullen Spouses“), the government is inherently inefficient, and is therefore the last organization that one should ever select to provide a service.

But what is the alternative?

First, remove health care from the tasks assigned to governments at all levels: federal, state, and local. This will substantially eliminate the tremendous waste of dollars caused by having inefficient bureaucrats positioned between patients and their doctors, and — just as importantly, if not more so — eliminate the moral hazard created by providing “free” services to those who may not deserve them, at the expense of diligent and hard-working taxpayers.

So who takes care of the poor, the unlucky, the out of work?

We do. But we do it through our local communities, through our churches and charities and civic associations. This was done before the advent of Big Government and worked well (see “What Would Happen If The Government Didn’t Take Care Of Us?“), and it can work well again. Local communities will be able to evaluate best who deserves help and how much and on what terms, eliminating the moral hazard. The rest of us will continue to pay for our own medical coverage. Government’s function will be reduced to its proper function, that of ensuring that insurance companies operate transparently and honestly in a competitive environment.

Does this sound simple? It is simple. Politicians and their special-interest allies (whose prestige and livelihoods depend on fooling you into providing your tax dollars for their grand and impractical ideas) would prefer that you think that all of this is too complex for you to understand, and that fairness can only be assured by putting your faith in the government.

Are you not yet convinced of my analysis? If so, I doubt I can change your mind, and respect your right to your opinion. But I would ask you one question:

Have you ever been asked by a relative or a friend for a favor, such as loaning them some money? If so, I’m sure that you based your decision on your personal knowledge of that friend or family member. But what if someone on the other side of the country that you don’t even know asked you for a loan? Would you give it to them? No? Then why on earth are you so willing to give your tax dollars to anonymous bureaucrats to give to anonymous people who may or may not deserve those hard-earned dollars?

-Ed Walker

 

Tags: , , , , ,

One response to “Healthcare: Ask The Wrong Question, Get The Wrong Answer

  1. B. Johnson

    July 4, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    Regarding the constitutionality of Obamacare, I believe that the right question to ask is this. Have the states ever delegated to Congress via the Constitution the specific power to address intrastate healthcare? Based on the following information, I think that the answer is clearly no.

    Regardless whether the corrupt federal government wants to call the Obamacare mandate a tax or a penalty, please consider the following disturbing information concerning activist justices, including Justice Roberts, who supported Obamacare. Regardless that Roberts referenced the Gibbons v. Ogden case in the Obamacare opinion, he seemingly ignored two key statements in the Gibbons opinion which clearly indicate, imo, that Congress has no constitutional authority to make legislation of any kind regulating public healthcare.

    In fact, note that the first statement below clarifies, in a single sentence, that not only is public healthcare a state power issue, sovereign state powers to address public healthcare issues protected by the 10th Amendment, but also that Congress has no constitutional authority to regulate intrastate commerce; FDR’s activist justices got the Commerce Clause wrong in Wickard v. Filburn.

    “State inspection laws, health laws, and laws for regulating the internal commerce of a State, and those which respect turnpike roads, ferries, &c. are not within the power granted to Congress.”  –Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824.

    “Congress is not empowered to tax for those purposes which are within the exclusive province of the States.” –Chief Justice Marshall, Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824.

    In other words, Congress cannot make laws to lay taxes or establish penalties in the name of intrastate public healthcare any more than it can make laws regulating 1st Amendment protected religious expression and freedom of press.

    Here’s two more excerpts from USSC case opinions which likewise indicate that Congress has no constitutional authority to make laws regulating intrastate healthcare. Note that Justice Barbour referenced the above excerpt from Gibbons in New York v. Miln, expanding it as follows.

    “Inspection laws, quarantine laws, health laws of every description, as well as laws for regulating the internal commerce of a state and those which respect turnpike roads, ferries, &c., are component parts of this mass.” –Justice Barbour, New York v. Miln, 1837.

    And before Constitution-ignoring FDR nuked the Supreme Court with activist justices, Constitution-respecting justices had again emphasized that Congress has no business sticking its big nose into intrastate medical practice.

    “Direct control of medical practice in the states is obviously beyond the power of Congress.” –Linder v. United States, 1925.

    Sadly, until the states decide to delegate to Congress via constitutional amendment the specific power to tax and spend in the name of public healthcare, the federal government’s unconstitutional power grab concerning Obamacare is stalling the states from establishing their own healthcare programs, evidenced by Massachusetts’ RomneyCare.  Article V of the Constitution is the best kept secret of the unconstitutionally big federal government imo.

     

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 45 other followers