Don't b.s. me, bro

I'm not as dumb as I look, you know. Also, when and why did our government start confusing taxpayers with ATMs?

Filed under: health care economics obamacare 

A Civilized Debate on Obamacare: How Refreshing!

Liberal Feminist Nina Burleigh vs. The Heartland Institute on Obamacare

This is really interesting, and I think it might enlighten some who believe in government solutions for health care.

I’m no expert on health care, but I do understand something about economics and markets. And because health care is a system, an economic market, with different groups who sometimes have differing incentives, it must be viewed through that lens to find the incentives necessary to fix the problems. This is basic problem solving mixed with the economic theory of incentives. Other theories that sound good, but don’t create the right incentives to change behavior, simply will not work, and as is often the case with big government solutions, these other theories usually make things much worse.

It really cannot be overstated: government solutions rarely fix anything, and in fact usually increase costs to the consumer, with worse service and quality of goods. It is a systemic problem, introduced by the various problems with big government solutions to economic problems: corruption, graft, rent-seeking, corporatism, and hiding the true costs from the consumer, which (all by itself) fundamentally alters consumer behavior, everywhere and always. In other words, there are no subtle “tweaks” to be made when a process is so rife with systemic flaws.

This is the basic argument that those who dislike Obamacare are usually coming from, but instead we get accused of hating sick people. OK, not helpful. It’s a debate worth having. Let’s stick to the topic at hand.

And I have a question for you Obamacare supporters: why is there no balanced analysis of the economic markets view of health care — like I just gave on my blog fer crying out loud — in the news? It’s entirely relevant, and in fact, is the key starting point for any discussion of economic intervention: what are the perverse incentives causing the problems we face today, and then, once we identify those, what are the incentives we need to address those problems? If you want to fix something, you have to use a process that can actually fix it.