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such a nasty woman | by maryann johanson

watch it: the 6/6/09 weekly address from President Barack Obama

I was out all day yesterday, from early in the morning till waaay late, and ended up going 24 hours without being online at all. I can’t remember the last time that happened. Anyway, Obama’s weekly address is just about the one post I cannot schedule in advance, because the video is not available till sometime late Saturday mornings. So here it is now:

I’m still waiting to hear him say: “Health care should not be a for-profit endeavor.” It’s not that hard to say. Why aren’t we hearing this? I mean, apart from the fact that every damn politician in this country is sucking on the insurance-company teat?

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  • AJP

    Maybe because health care is a scarce good, and there just aren’t any really good ways to allocate scarce goods on a long term basis other than a market based system.

  • Victor Plenty

    Basic preventive health care is not a scarce good. Much like education, it can be diffused throughout society without decreasing the available supply, and with definite benefits for the entire economic system.

    Expensive, reactive health care (in which nothing is done until health problems deteriorate to dangerously advanced stages) is the highly profitable scarce good, and one which becomes even more profitable when basic health care is anemic.

    This is why an ideologically pure market approach utterly fails to manage a society’s overall health care system. The most powerful actors in a market system have too much incentive to game the system for their own short term gain, to the ruin of all.

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