Socialized Medicine

L

leopardpm

Guest
#1
I just got through reading one of the best articles I have yet to come across regarding why socialist governmental programs (or even regulated markets) are always more inefficient and coercive than free market alternatives.

Here is an snippet:
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]A similar experience was repeated in every socialized state. Health declined. Vital statistics did not keep up with capitalistic standards. It is a great irony that Marx had thought socialism would be the next stage of history, following capitalism just as capitalism followed feudalism. And yet socialism itself had been systematically driving these countries back to feudal-era forms of health care that were increasingly deprived of modern technology.

[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Not that these countries didn't invest in scientific medical research. People from the old Soviet Union said that sometimes it seemed like every fifth person had a medical degree. Indeed, no societies in human history ever invested more in science than socialist countries did. But they kept sinking further into the abyss. Why? The problem was economic rather than technical. You can put 10,000 government medical scientists in a gigantic cushy building, pay them all a million dollars a month, give them access to every journal and all the equipment they need, and let them invent whatever they want. But the population will still be without.

[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Inventions and scientists might be a necessary condition for popular access to medical goods and services. But they are not sufficient. We need an economic system that can calculate the best use of resources. It requires the division of labor and a complex capital structure for products to reach a general market. What's more, not every innovation needs to go to market. There must be a way for consumers to transmit information about their most urgent needs to producers, and there needs to be a means for producers to decide among alternative uses of resources. In other words, there must be a system of profit and loss, which in turn must be based on private property exchange.

[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]In short, without capitalism, medical services cannot reach the multitudes. The experience of socialism reinforces what the theory would suggest.[/FONT]
Feel free to read the entire article at the link below - I would be interested in any commentary, either pro or con. I really like the author, Lew Rockwell, not only is he a good author, but he is one of those few people who can speak relatively well in public.

[FONT=Georgia, Times New Roman, Times, serif][FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Socialized Medicine in a Wealthy Country[/FONT][/FONT]
 
G

Gryf

Guest
#2
I tend not to trust people who are good public speakers. They tend to have a shortage of integrity. Until someone shows me a socialized medical system that demonstrably works, though, I will not favor one.
 
L

leopardpm

Guest
#3
I tend not to trust people who are good public speakers. They tend to have a shortage of integrity. Until someone shows me a socialized medical system that demonstrably works, though, I will not favor one.
the point is that socialized medicine simply cannot work well.
 
G

Gryf

Guest
#4
the point is that socialized medicine simply cannot work well.
Well, none of the systems that have been tried, to my knowledge. I wouldn't support one unless I were confident it would work. I'd automatically be skeptical of one based on the historical inadequacies of socialized systems, but this doesn't mean that socialized systems should be excluded as a matter of principle. They shouldn't be pursued as a matter of principle, either.
 

Kazmarov

For a Free Scotland
#5
Socialized medicine is by no means more inefficent than free market alternatives. The sociallized sector of US healthcare, the veterans' hospitals, has a higher quality of care, and is less wasteful than the private health market. It enjoys the benefits of a centralized database of medical records, and has fewer unnecessary re-tests. In a society where healthcare services compete against each other, there is no central database, and information is hidden from one company to the next for business purposes. If you got treated in one hospital chain, than were rushed to another after an accident, how can they know that you are allergic to certain types of painkillers, or something of that ilk?

Socialized healthcare has enough incentive to be well done: the more people that live longer, the more taxes are paid to the government.

America is 48th in life expectancy, and many of the nations that supass it have socialized medicine, such as Canada, Japan, France, the UK, and Sweden.

I'll try to find the universal healthcare thread, it was a while ago...
 
M

Mecha

Guest
#6
Here is the Universal Healthcare thread I started eons ago. I do not care to repeat my arguements from that thread.

[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]A similar experience was repeated in every socialized state. Health declined. Vital statistics did not keep up with capitalistic standards.[/FONT]
Even the faintest of fact checks shatters your arguement. You fail. Any universal health care system in an industrialized nation outperforms the US healthcare system. Health statistics in social nations are better. Et cetera.

~Mecha
 

CMK_Eagle

Registered Member
#7
Socialized medicine is by no means more inefficent than free market alternatives. The sociallized sector of US healthcare, the veterans' hospitals, has a higher quality of care, and is less wasteful than the private health market.
Even if they're no less efficient in terms of money, socialized healthcare systems in other nations are typically very inefficient in terms of time. I'm sure most people here have heard the cases of Canadians who are forced to come to the US for surgery (esp. orthopedic) rather than wait for a year or more for an opening. Furthermore, many of those nations impose price controls on drugs which leave American consumers to foot the bill for most of the world's pharmaceutical research.
As for the socialized sector of US healthcare, what about Medicare and Medicaid? I can't say I've ever heard of those being held up as models of efficiency and quality care.
It enjoys the benefits of a centralized database of medical records, and has fewer unnecessary re-tests. In a society where healthcare services compete against each other, there is no central database, and information is hidden from one company to the next for business purposes.
The lack of a centralized health database is more due to privacy concerns than hiding information for business purposes. I certainly don't want my medical history available to anyone I don't explicitly authorize to access it. How does it financially benefit one healthcare provider to hide information from others? Of course, this is one of the main reasons hospitals are moving towards keeping records electronically rather than on paper.
Socialized healthcare has enough incentive to be well done: the more people that live longer, the more taxes are paid to the government.
Socialized healthcare has an incentive to give people what they think they want, not what they need. Sure, the US could probably afford to build and buy enough MRI's to serve everyone, but is that really the best use of our resources? As leopardpm's article states, figuring that out is what the free market does better than any other system.
 
M

Mecha

Guest
#8
I'm sure most people here have heard the cases of Canadians who are forced to come to the US for surgery (esp. orthopedic) rather than wait for a year or more for an opening.
As referenced in my UHC thread, 74x times more Americans use the Canadian healthcare system than the other way around.

Also, orthopedic is one of those gaps in Canadian coverage, which is why that is specifically there.

Canada is by no means the ideal UHC plan.

Furthermore, many of those nations impose price controls on drugs which leave American consumers to foot the bill for most of the world's pharmaceutical research.
Heh. That is a very interesting way of rationalizing your disallowing yourself an effective collective bargining tool. The pharm corps accept lower pricing agreements because of something called "bargining". For example, in Canada they supplement the amount they pay by limiting lawsuit rewards against the corporations. Believe it or not, large amounts of pharm corp research occurs in Canada...

Also, here is a nugget of factuality for you:

(Sept 2005)
Pfizer's Revenue: 50.5 billion USD
R&D: 7.6 billion USD

Pharm is extremely lucerative, they are not going to cut research from loosing a bit of icing on their cake.

As for the socialized sector of US healthcare, what about Medicare and Medicaid? I can't say I've ever heard of those being held up as models of efficiency and quality care.
What data are you basing this on?

Socialized healthcare has an incentive to give people what they think they want, not what they need.
What are you talking about? If anything, it is reversed. UHC is precisely what is required to give everyone what they need.

Sure, the US could probably afford to build and buy enough MRI's to serve everyone, but is that really the best use of our resources?
How many human lives is worth your ideological "money is god" postion?

Best use of our resources... Definitely not in continuing the failure that is non-universal healthcare. The worst you people can come up with against it is that it might make you wait (a la Canada 10 years ago, Britian's NHS mess), unlike the exemplarly French healthcare system, or pretty much anywhere in western/northern Europe. It costs less, provides many axillary benefits, et cetera.

figuring that out is what the free market does better than any other system.
Ahh... So the deciding factor of "this person should live, this person should die" is simply if the person acquires all the money neccessary.

Obviously the best possible system, if your ethical code utterly devoid of humanity.

~Mecha
 

Kazmarov

For a Free Scotland
#9
CMK, have you even considered that UHC is inefficent in Canada because the population density in Canada is 1/23rd of the USA? Talk about a administrative nightmare.

And also the wait times aren't based on inefficency, it's just Canada doesn't have a lot of doctors. The only reason it was faster before was that poor people were being left to die rather than have a doctor.
 
L

leopardpm

Guest
#10
figuring that out is what the free market does better than any other system.
Ahh... So the deciding factor of "this person should live, this person should die" is simply if the person acquires all the money neccessary.

Obviously the best possible system, if your ethical code utterly devoid of humanity.

~Mecha
the deciding factor on whether or not a person gets, and to what exent he gets, medical care is completely up to the person, and whatever circumstances the universe has put down for that person.

The universe is amoral, it is not compassionate, and its nature is dangerous to humans - in fact, one could say that the universe is out to kill us.... unless.... we each put forth whatever effort is necessary to survive.

We, as living humans, do not have an obligation to others to provide for them - that is known as slavery, no matter what abstraction you use to try to cover it up ('for the good of society', 'the greater good', etc). Either all humans are equal in being human, in rights, or arbitrary classes of masters and slave exist - I cannot fathom someone actually believing that some humans have more 'rights' than others so I reject out of hand, the morality of slavery in all of its forms. We do have a responsibility to provide for ourselves though, if we desire to continue to live in the world. We MUST labor, either directly by harvesting resources (food, etc) from our property, or indirectly through providing a valued service to others which they, in turn, provide a means of sustinance to us. This joint agreement in trade is the foundation of capitalism and has allowed humans to exert MUCH less labor in order to survive then would otherwise be necessary, in addition to providing a much greater range of methods and products through which we entertain and enjoy our lives over those poor peoples of the past. It is due to our compassionate nature that we also freely choose to sometimes help out others, when and if we can (most often when it doesn't endanger ourselves or our immediate social network (family and friends). It is decidely NOT 'compassion' to force other people to provide such help.

There is no 'moral' method of dishing out who gets what through dictate, except if you remove all the immoral actions (force, theft, coercion, fraud, etc) from a system then whatever is left over is the 'most' moral - the free market is the clear winner.

How many human lives is worth your ideological "money is god" postion?

Best use of our resources... Definitely not in continuing the failure that is non-universal healthcare. The worst you people can come up with against it is that it might make you wait (a la Canada 10 years ago, Britian's NHS mess), unlike the exemplarly French healthcare system, or pretty much anywhere in western/northern Europe. It costs less, provides many axillary benefits, et cetera.
you act like 'waiting' is harmless - how many more people die 'waiting' for an organ transplant in Canada vs the US? How many people die in Canada because their treatment is not covered by the UHC? Who gets to determine the limits to heart transplants, kidney transplants, lung transplants, skin grafts, medicines - if these things are not determined by the market (and hence are valued relative to all other possible uses for the resources involved), then they must be set by a human, or elite group of humans... are these folks 'god'? How many human lives is worth your ideological "government is magical" position? The government cannot create wealth, only redistribute it after taking it's 'cut'... no matter what, the result is LESS wealth/products/healthcare/etc