Thomas Sowell

What is so wrong with the current medical system in the United States that we are being urged to rush headlong into a new government system that we are not even supposed to understand, because this legislation is to be rushed through Congress before even the Senators and Representatives have a chance to read it?

Arguing
with Idiots By Glenn Beck

Among the things that people complain about under the present medical care system are the costs, insurance company bureaucrats' denials of reimbursements for some treatments and the free loaders at hospital emergency rooms whose costs have to be paid by others.

Will a government-run medical system make these things better or worse? This very basic question seldom seems to get asked, much less answered.

If the government has some magic way of reducing costs-- rather than shifting them around, including shifting them to the next generation-- they have certainly not revealed that secret. The actual track record of government when it comes to costs-- of anything-- is more alarming than reassuring.

What about insurance companies denying reimbursements for treatments? Does anyone imagine that a government bureaucracy will not do that?

Moreover, the worst that an insurance company can do is refuse to pay for medication or treatment. In some countries with government-run medical systems, the government can prevent you from spending your own money to get the medication or treatment that their bureaucracy has denied you. Your choice is to leave the country or smuggle in what you need.

However appalling such a situation may be, it is perfectly consistent with elites wanting to control your life. As far as those elites are concerned, it would not be "social justice" to allow some people to get medical care that others are denied, just because some people "happen to have money."

But very few people just "happen to have money." Most people have earned money by producing something that other people wanted. But getting what you want by what you have earned, rather than by what elites will deign to allow you to have, is completely incompatible with the vision of an elite-controlled world, which they call "social justice" or other politically attractive phrases. The "uninsured" are another big talking point for government medical insurance. But the incomes of many of the uninsured indicate that many-- if not most-- of them choose to be uninsured. Poor people can get insurance through Medicaid.

Free loading at emergency rooms-- mandated by government-- makes being uninsured a viable option.


Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

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