hblask, on 29 May 2012 - 05:43 PM, said:
The number one problem is health care is the lack of pricing information and pricing pressure.
I don't think it's the #1 problem, but it's a huge, huge problem.The question is, how do we go forward and build a better system?As is standard, you take the high-flying ideological position, whereby if we just revert to anarchistic grass roots, the magic powers of economic equilibria will make it so CT scans will be $5.99 in drive-thrus and doctors will take chickens and apple pies as payment for housecalls. This is obviously retarded, but you predicate the logical leap of faith on the basis of a very credible complaint, so its understandably hard to shake you off it. Also, you live in what I can only presume is somewhere in Rural/Exurban Minnesota, where social conditions are 'quant' to say the least. With this as your only point of reference, it makes sense that you can put your stock in laughably impractical idealism without realizing how unworkable it is in the world the rest of us live in. It's the equivalent of taking advice from Canadians. We have an entire world to look at, as far as how other systems work.A lot of very advanced civilizations have determined that things like roadways, national defense, health care, police and fire services, bridges, waterways should be managed as a function of the state, since allowing 'free markets' doesn't build that interstate or take care of human life who the health care corporations determine will cost them too much to insure.The question boils down to, how should we move forward?We could implement your ideas, remove all price constraints, then wait 20 years for the system to shake itself out, determine the winners and losers and arrive at something resembling a free market balance, but there is no guarantee- or even distant implication- that the endgame will produce anything resembling an optimal outcome, in terms of solving the problems we face (without even bothering to consider the Pandoras box of new problems and unintended consequences this might give rise to)Or, we can look at all the other countries that have a state run health option and perhaps acknowledge that like roads and police, this is a service where the unique powers (and ideological principles) of a Democratic state can achieve a better outcome than corporate managers maximizing shareholder value? And yes, we definitely do need to get the political influence of Pharma and Corporate Health Care out of the mix. We need to let free markets determine pricing, but fixing 'that problem' doesn't fix 'the problem'?