For every problem government tries to solve, it creates two or three more

ObamaCare is wrought with problems. In addition to a failed roll out of the federal exchange computer system, there have been canceled individual policies that Obama is trying to uncancel by fiat as he did by delaying of the employer mandate for a year and issuing assorted waivers to favored unions and companies, all to fix a broken law.

Who could’ve predicted it?

Apparently the late UNLV economics professor Murray Rothbard could. In his 1995 book “Making Economic Sense,” Rothbard wrote:

One of Ludwig von Mises’s keenest insights was on the cumulative tendency of government intervention. The government, in its wisdom, perceives a problem (and Lord knows, there are always problems!). The government then intervenes to “solve” that problem. But lo and behold! instead of solving the initial problem, the intervention creates two or three further problems, which the government feels it must intervene to heal, and so on toward socialism.

No industry provides a more dramatic illustration of this malignant process than medical care. We stand at the seemingly inexorable brink of fully socialized medicine, or what is euphemistically called “national health insurance.” Physician and hospital prices are high and are always rising rapidly, far beyond general inflation. As a result, the medically uninsured can scarcely pay at all, so that those who are not certifiable claimants for charity or Medicaid are bereft. Hence, the call for national health insurance.

Rothbard concludes that the problems with medicine were created by the government, beginning in 1910 with the Flexner Report that recommended all medical schools and hospitals be state licensed. The states essentially put out of business all medical schools that were proprietary and profit-making, especially those that taught disciplines other than allopathic medicine, such as homeopathy. The states closed medical schools that admitted blacks and women. Half of the medical schools in the country were put out of business.

Even before ObamaCare nearly half of all the nation’s health-care spending came from government sources, most of which do not pay what private insurance pays.

Rothbard concludes:

When managers such as trustees take over from owners financed by customers (students of patients), the managers become governed by the perks they can achieve rather than by service of consumers. Hence: a skewing of the entire medical profession away from patient care to toward high-tech, high-capital investment in rare and glamorous diseases, which rebound far more to the prestige of the hospital and its medical staff than it is actually useful for the patient-consumers.

And so, our very real medical crisis has been the product of massive government intervention, state and federal, throughout the century; in particular, an artificial boosting of demand coupled with an artificial restriction of supply. The result has been accelerating high prices and deterioration of patient care. And next, socialized medicine could easily bring us to the vaunted medical status of the Soviet Union: everyone has the right to free medical care, but there is, in effect, no medicine and no care.

Speaking of no care, the British press has been filled with stories of late all aghast at plans by the National Health Service to have patients operated on in India to save money.

Former Labour health secretary Patricia Hewitt told the MailOnline that NHS doctors could be flown to India to treat locals to raise money for cash-strapped UK hospitals, and less expensive Indian doctors could be brought to the UK to perform operations.

The MailOnline reported: “Mrs Hewitt said there was a growing number of areas, including a range of cardiac procedures, where Indian doctors could deliver similar or better clinical outcomes at substantially lower costs than the NHS.”

Heart bypass surgery in India may cost as little as £1,000, compared with £35,000 in the UK. More than 70,000 Britons already fly abroad each year for private surgery, the paper said..

The NHS has a projected £30 billion deficit by 2020.

13 comments on “For every problem government tries to solve, it creates two or three more

  1. Joe says:

    As they say down here in LA (Lower Arkansas), “I do believe the boy nailed it.”

  2. Bruce Feher says:

    My friend fly’s to Costa Rica to get his dental work done. The cost of his stay, food, flight and dental work was around $6000. In the states it would have been 3 times as much just for the dental work!

  3. Winston Smith says:

    Another classic example of Problem – Reaction – Solution. What! The Hegelian Dialectic Process again!

  4. Milty says:

    “Problem – Reaction – Solution.”

    As opposed to Ready – Fire – Aim?

  5. Nyp says:

    Any of you guys agree with Mr. Mitchell that it is a mistake to require doctors to be licensed to practice medicine?

  6. Steve says:

    Does Nyp agree with the NHS flying patients to India for surgery?

  7. In recent interview Texas Senator TED CRUZ stated that Obamacare is a good example of BIG GOVERNMENT RUN AMOK. Obama and fellow liberals think they know what’s best for you, such as your health care, your sexuality, your promiscuity, the food that you eat etc. In our own state of Nevada, el Governor senor “BS” earlier wanted to be the enforcer of Obamacare and he today got his dick in the…

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    My name is ED HAMILTON (R-Henderson), and I am a duly elected MEMBER of the Nevada Republican State CENTRAL COMMITTEE. I represent Clark County in the state party. I was formerly the President of Coalition For A Conservative Majority.

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  8. nyp says:

    1. the NHS is not doing that.
    2. If you can get good heart bypass surgery in India for £1,000 and not pay £35,000 in Britain, by all means go to Bangalore! That is exactly how the market system should work!
    3. By the way — by US standards, £35,000 for bypass surgery is a Sam’s Club bargain. You could not purchase a £35,000 heart bypass procedure in the US for love or money.

  9. Steve says:

    Maybe not,,,,,yet.
    Nyp didn’t read the link,,,,again.

    “NHS patients may be sent to India for cut-price surgery claims former Labour health secretary”

  10. Rincon says:

    Interesting theory, Thomas. Might be better if it fit reality. According to the now classic Time magazine article, Medicare patients cost substantially less than insured ones. In addition, every one of those horribly inefficient socialistic health care systems beats us by at least 40%

    No surprise that dental work is so much more expensive here. I assume that your friend did not have dental insurance, Bruce. Although dentists sometimes are paid by insurance, I believe these are a minority of the work these days. Doesn’t that make his dentist a normal capitalist? How does dentistry relate to socialism?

  11. Athos says:

    “Time” magazine, new or classic, isn’t suitable to line your birdcage, let alone cite as a source.

    Sorry, Rin. Your data (from those sources) is flawed. They don’t pass the smell test.

  12. Rincon says:

    So what are your favorite sources of information?

  13. […] Now, what is it we keep saying about central planners? […]

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