(Quote) Florian-626971 said:
Quote: James-17080 said:
Yes, personal health care is a public good. Are you really suggesting to me that if people can't afford personal health care, they should be left to die? Yes, people take care of their own needs in a lot of areas. I'm not suggesting that those who can fend for themselves should be taken care of by the government. But there are a lot of people who can't, and this is why we have Social Security and Medicare (which you consider "socialism"). Let me ask you this: Do you consider socialism with respect to Medicare and Social Security bad things?
Congrats on getting your Ph.D from a public university. You know, a university which the state pays for most of your education. It looks to me that you're all in favor of some forms of socialism, and not in favor of socialism which doesn't affect you. Now, admittedly, maybe that's not true. But based on my interactions with you, that's what it looks like.
No. Personal health care is a personal good, not a public good. That is clear.
Of course, I am not suggesting that those without health insurance ought to be left to die. What sort of people would allow that to happen? If there are people do consciously let that happen, then I admit that they should be held responsible somehow. But that doesn't mean that the government is responsible if its constitution does not charge it with that responsibility.
In your vision for gov't health care, the government does not take care of those who can fend for themselves. Thus, your gov't health care does not serve the public, only certain members of public. Why does this not prove that personal health care is not a public good? Actually, what you are identifying as a public good is not really health care but welfare, or broadly speaking, poverty insurance, which covers not just poverty but all low income people for whom health insurance is cost-prohibitive.
So, are Social Security and Medicare, and for that matter, welfare all bad things? It is difficult to argue that these are public goods. One could argue that they are by saying they're insurance which covers everybody and therefore serves the whole public. This is how Social Security was originally conceived. In the event you lived to be too old, SSI had you covered (age 65 was the life expectancy when SSI was first enacted). I don't know, maybe its not such a bad idea to have saftey net like Social Security as a last resort for people. But it was probably bad that we've expanded the Social Security program so much since the 1930's. If welfare is absolutely necessary to deal with poverty, then I am in favor of that too. However, Medicare, I would say, has been a bad thing overall. The USA survived for 190 years without the Medicare program. Medicare was a big step in the march of government towards greater and greater involvement in the health care industry. That involvement has led to health care costs rising out of control, though better medical technology also must have contributed to that as well.