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Krugman Strikes Again

Paul Krugman writes that "'Consumer-based' medicine has been a bust everywhere it has been tried."  That would probably come as a surprise to the state employees of Indiana where an HSA/catastrophic insurance program has saved the government money and increased worker take home pay while maintaining access to high quality health care.  It would probably come as a surprise to the people of Singapore where the several enormous consumer-driven programs have helped the country achieve access to high quality health care at a fraction of the GDP that the US pays.

That doesn't mean there aren't legitimate questions.  The Indiana-style program seems to work well for some populations but perhaps not the elderly (though that doesn't mean that a government single-payer FFS system is the only alternative.)  While there are things to learn from Singapore it probably wouldn't make sense for a much larger, more diverse, more dispersed population to adopt the entire package of Singapore policies.  Even moving in a more consumer-oriented, the government will still have a crucial role supplying subsidies (whether direct subsides, tax subsidies, or forced savings) and in some ways an even larger role in regulation (especially in enforcing price transparency.)  Neither Indiana, nor Singapore offer a one-size-fits-all answer to our health care policy problems - though we ought to try to learn what we can.  We should also never forget that Paul Krugman will never let his integrity get in the way of whatever narrative he is pushing. 

h/t Megan  McArdle

Categories > Politics

Discussions - 6 Comments

Krugman has a Nobel Prize. Gore has Nobel Prize. Obama has a Nobel Prize. That says it all. Why even pay attention to a Nobel Prize winner in economics who doesn't know the first thing about economics. Or pay attention to a Nobel Prize winner in Peace who started a war (Obama) or a Nobel Prize winner in Global Warming (Gore) who owns five houses, a yatch, leaves the air conditioning in his car running with the windows open, drives in limos and has his fortune invested in oil companies.

The concept of integrity does not exist in the minds of any of the aforementioned.

Re Krugman, ain't that the truth.

Prior to Medicare (1965), most poor people in this country were old. Although there were a variety of reasons for this, the number one cause was medical bills. If it can be said that the Great Society did in fact work, this is ONLY because it lifted this burden from the shoulders of older people (the other aspects of the GS, such as AFDC and other programs aimed at younger impoverished people, were complete busts).

Well, as it turns out, someone has got to pay. Today, the burden has been spread (and multiplied by this third-payer system), and it's bankrupting the country (whereas doctors, hospitals, medical manufacturing companies and insurers are doing very nicely, thank you). Market-dynamics must be restored to this sector of the economy; old people must pay what they can, and doctors, etc., must make only what the market will bear. It's really that simple. At best, government can only subsidize such costs, not assume them.

Hey Cowgirl! How's about we make a very good point even better! Jimmy Carter won the Nobel, Yasser Arafat won the Nobel, Le Duc Tho won the Nobel, Rigoberta Menchu won the Nobel....
However, in defense of the Nobel committees who are in charge of the prizes other than "Peace" and Literature, which are just political awards, Krugman won his Nobel for work he did many years ago concernig trade between developed and undeveloped countries. It was quantitative analysis that showed the old belief of developed countries sending finished products to undeveloped countries in exchange for raw materials was a myth. Even in raw materials, the "Rich" countries do more business with each other than with undeveloped countries.
This, of course, has only marginal relavance to the fact that nowadays Krugman spills bilge, fiction, and bears false witness (ie the Gabrielle Giffords affair).

Gore and Obama were awarded the Peace Prize, which has long been a dubious bit of business and is not awarded for any kind of academic or technical achievement.

Dr. Krugman was awarded his prize for theoretical work on international trade he had published 20 years previous, not for his public advocacy (described by the leftoid economist Herbert Gintis as 'puerile'). His work as a pundit also changed dramatically after his marriage to Robin Welles, so much so that some suspect she actually writes his column.

It would probably behove Krugman then if he would stick to theoretical work on international trade and not the economy of the United States. His ridiculous theories and writings in the Gray Lady make his Nobel Prize look much like Gore's & Obama's Nobel Prize - politically correct. All fluff and no substance. I realize that some of the Nobel Prizes are given out to people who deserve them, but unfortunately giving the Nobel Prize to Obama, Gore, Krugman, Jimmy Carter and others just lessens the value of the Nobel Prize in general. The Nobel Prize committees much like Krugman, Carter, Gore, Obama, etc. are driven by ideology.

We both forgot to add in Stephen Chu - Obama's Energy Czar - who received a Nobel Prize in Physics. Lot of good that Nobel Prize is doing for us who are paying $4.50 per gallon at the pump......

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