I swear that this isn't a cop out, but I'm starting to feel uncomfortable about turning my beloved music site into a forum for political debate, so I think this will be my last post on the matter. At Erik's request, here's a look at a key issue of the campaign--socialized health care--based on the Canadian experience.The service sucks.
All the resources of the health care system are rationed by the government. Hospital A gets an annual ration of 42 pace makers. If you are the 43rd patient, too bad. Hospital B gets enough budget for two neurosurgeons. If they are both booked until next October, better hope your brain tumour is of the slow-growing variety.The doctors suck.
The government caps the doctors' salaries. If they're really great at what they do, they move to America where they can exercise their God-given freedom to set their own price for their own labour.Prices are out of control.
Because no member of the system--doctors, hospital administrations, equipment and drug manufacturers--are subject to the laws of profit or loss, they have a greatly reduced incentive to keep costs down. In fact, there is no longer a "price system" as you would see in classical economics. While the generally economy sees a modest inflation of prices, the medical system sees a radical inflation of prices. This, of course, results in further closing of beds, longer wait times, and additional rationing of services.It's free!
Since there is no direct cost to seeing a doctor, people aren't selective about how they use the limited resources of the system. They show up at emergency rooms with the smallest of problems, further squeezing the budget that could otherwise be used for more valuable purposes such as buying an extra pacemaker or hiring another neurosurgeon.
Essentially, socialized medicine starts off promising free health care to everyone, but ends up delivering slow, sloppy, overpriced, and ultimately unsustainable health care services. The Lada of health care, if you will. At some point, we're either going to have to cull Canada's baby boomers, or raise the income tax rate to 85% just to maintain our current sub-par level of care.
Contrary to Spud's comment, Evan Sayet's position applies to a lot more than killing terrorists. In my example here, the debate is between a crumbling liberal/Utopian fantasy about free health care for all versus the much more discriminating and intellectually honest realization that it takes a dynamic free market to deliver something of quality at the lowest possible price.
I hope I haven't enraged too many of you with these posts - I'd really like to get back to the music now.