Sunday, July 26, 2009

Three questions (in no particular order)

isconsin Political Fix
not just another blog
July 26, 2009

By Bill Kraus

1. It is pretty clear to almost everyone that we have a Rube Goldberg version of universal health care in this country. No one is left to die on the steps of a doctors office, a clinic, a hospital. Everyone gets treated. Late and inefficiently and expensively perhaps, but everyone who gets to a provider gets treated.

It is obvious that the people and institutions are well paid for treating all of us, insured or not.

The fact that this system is very expensive, more than twice as much per capita than health care costs in other industrialized countries, is well documented.

So if we were to change our system in ways that would reduce our costs even if what we changed to was socialized it would be rationalized as well and would cost less than what we have now.

So what are the extra trillions for?

If they are for keeping the insurance companies in the mix, my next question would be, Why would we do that? What is it that insurance companies bring to the table that has anything to do with delivering health care?

2. A lot of people seem to have noticed that a lot of stimulus money is going to governments and to the infrastructure maintenance for which governments at every level are responsible. Many of the people who have noticed this are not happy about it. My question is, “Have these people noticed that the private sector businesses and the people who lend them money and invest in their businesses are very reluctant to put money into what seems to be a dead market?”

Advertisers are not advertising. The only businesses that are still promoting their wares are pretty much in the fast food, virility, and Facebook sectors. Everyone else is looking at the wreckage of a consumer-driven, automobile-obsessed, housing-bubble market and trying to figure out where we go from here. Manufacturing? Manufacturing what? For sale to whom? Services? Services are pretty much taking in each others’ laundry.

The economists got what they wished for. They got people to start saving more and spending less. Another answered prayer gone awry.

Has anybody anywhere, not just anybody in the government who is throwing money around, figured out what the next American economy is going to look like and when it is likely to arrive?

3. Do those who talk about “recovery” think we are going back to status quo ante? Are they deluded?

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