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Health Care Kennel Rationing

Mark Levin featured an article by Shannon Love* at ChicagoBoyz.net entitled The Dangers of Decompartmentalized Health Care Spending. Under Obamacare, politically-managed health care spending would become a society-wide zero sum game:

Right now we compartmentalize government health-care spending. We have one program for the poor (Medicaid) and one for the elderly (Medicare). Each is paid for by a separate flat tax on wages. The government doesn’t spend any money on health care for the middle class. This means that if the government spends more money on health care for the poor it doesn’t automatically mean they spend less on the elderly. More importantly, it means that when the government spends more on the poor or elderly it doesn’t directly mean middle-class families have less spent on them.

And we know what happens when politicians are faced with large, politically powerful special interests competing for a sliced of a fixed pie: they increase the size of the pie.

In another article at the same site, Shannon Love points out the rhetorical trick used by proponents of politically-managed health care. Noting that economists use the word “rationing” to describe the action of economic forces in controlling access to a fixed set of resources:

When opponents of politically-managed health care claim that politically-managed health care will lead to rationing, they use the term in the ordinary sense. Proponents of politically-managed health care have dishonestly tried to obscure the debate by substituting the specialized definition that economists use for the standard definition, so they can claim the current system already “rations” care so nothing will change.

(The trick is known to logicians as a fallacy of Ambiguity, in the substitution of one meaning of a word for another.)

Sarah Palin calls the overall Obama plan “rationing care to benefit the strong and deny the weak”.

Congress has refused to put itself in the group who will compete for health care dollars, being unwilling to eat its own dog food.

Americans do not want benefits to be cut for the poor and the elderly so that the able-bodied young can have free health care. Americans do not want to pay higher taxes to provide benefits to the able-bodied. In fact, they don’t want to pay higher taxes to provide benefits to themselves. Increasingly, as the consequences of accepting the benefits come out, they don’t even want the benefits.


* This, like other bylines at that site, may be a pseudonym

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