Monday, March 22, 2010

the future in health care/insurance and beyond

The U.S. already has a strong mix of govt and markets-- from responsibility for more than 1/2 of the spending to a wide array of market-numbing regulations and subsidies. Beyond that, it is quite easy to make the case that govt involvement is the cause of the vast bulk of our current problems (although it takes some time and is more complex than the facile arguments to expand govt activism).

Will some people be better off with the new legislation? Sure, that's the nature of government activism.

Are "we" worse off, overall, with the new legislation? The most interesting and hopeful answer is that in the long run, this is likely to mess things up a lot more, leading to some better outcomes. If/when that happens and if we don't trash the economy in the meantime, we would finally end up at "true" (catastrophic and preventative) insurance, which would restore sanity to a govt-inspired mess.

Another interesting angle: this will continue to lengthen/deepen the ongoing recession-- as Bush/Obama/Congress continue to screw around with the markets. This will continue to put the Federal govt in an increasingly precarious position with respect to avoiding debt and inflation. And it will continue to put state and local govts in an increasingly tight bind. This will probably lead to some amazing changes in the next decade.


At March 22, 2010 at 12:30 PM , Blogger John said...

Do you think the states that plan on fighting this new law will be successful? Basis of their argument is that the federal government cannot force people to purchase something.

At March 22, 2010 at 12:31 PM , Blogger John said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At March 22, 2010 at 12:56 PM , Blogger Eric Schansberg said...

I'm not at all an expert on law, especially as it is practiced. Constitutionally, it seems like a no-brainer. Then again, we've been violating that part of the Constitution routinely, so who knows?

If you see any (objective) analysis on that, come back and post a link. Meanwhile, I'll keep my eyes open.

At March 22, 2010 at 9:43 PM , Blogger William Lang said...

Jeffrey Toobin says legal challenges to the law seem bound to fail.

At March 23, 2010 at 8:31 PM , Blogger Todd Grimm said...

The future does seem to be uncertain with the spend without consequences attitude that has swept DC. Fiscal policy like this can only lead to trouble sooner rather than later. If there was $500 billion is waste fraud and abuse in Medicare given the nature of politics someone would have seized that money for what ever pet project was on their agenda be liberal or conservative. Keep fighting the good fight in everything you do Dr Schansberg.


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