Commentary Magazine


Contentions

What’s Wrong with It?

In a must-read, Camille Paglia goes after ObamaCare (“this rigid, intrusive and grotesquely expensive bill”) with hammer and tongs:

Why can’t my fellow Democrats see that the creation of another huge, inefficient federal bureaucracy would slow and disrupt the delivery of basic healthcare and subject us all to a labyrinthine mass of incompetent, unaccountable petty dictators? Massively expanding the number of healthcare consumers without making due provision for the production of more healthcare providers means that we’re hurtling toward a staggering logjam of de facto rationing. Steel yourself for the deafening screams from the careerist professional class of limousine liberals when they get stranded for hours in the jammed, jostling anterooms of doctors’ offices.

And on it goes. But amid the rollicking putdowns are some very serious indictments of the Democrats.

First, they really don’t understand the whole supply-and-demand thing. They respond to arguments about rationing by decrying the terminology (“death panels”) but without addressing the underlying reality: they are squeezing payments, which in turn will reduce care and access to doctors and thereby limit care. This isn’t a prediction; it’s the reality of government-run health-care schemes. Along the same lines, Paglia rightly takes the Democrats to task for ignoring an easy means of expanding competition and thereby reducing costs: “What covert business interests is the Democratic leadership protecting by stopping consumers from shopping for policies nationwide?” Well, again, if you don’t really understand or want to rely on free markets, you aren’t going to make an effort to expand them.

Moreover, Paglia doesn’t understand why we are doing this at all:

And why are we even considering so gargantuan a social experiment when the nation is struggling to emerge from a severe recession? It’s as if liberals are starry-eyed dreamers lacking the elementary ability to project or predict the chaotic and destabilizing practical consequences of their utopian fantasies.

Well yes, they are in the business of passing a liberal fantasy that’s been rattling around for years — government-run health care. They aren’t in the business of making it work or picking up the pieces after its disruptive impact ripples through the economy and the health-care system.

And finally, Paglia lambasts the Democrats for slashing Medicare:

How dare anyone claim humane aims for this bill anyhow when its funding is based on a slashing of Medicare by over $400 billion? The brutal abandonment of the elderly here is unconscionable. One would have expected a Democratic proposal to include an expansion of Medicare, certainly not its gutting.

Well, there you have it: an economically illiterate, ill-timed, anti-senior health-care plan. Who could resist? The Democrats and the mainstream media have become obsessed with making the deal and figuring out how to eliminate opposition. But the public is still back on the substance. And like Paglia, it is likely to conclude that this is the worst of all possible worlds. Never has the status quo looked so good.



Join the discussion…

Are you a subscriber? Log in to comment »

Not a subscriber? Join the discussion today, subscribe to Commentary »





Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor to our site, you are allowed 8 free articles this month.
This is your first of 8 free articles.

If you are already a digital subscriber, log in here »

Print subscriber? For free access to the website and iPad, register here »

To subscribe, click here to see our subscription offers »

Please note this is an advertisement skip this ad
Clearly, you have a passion for ideas.
Subscribe today for unlimited digital access to the publication that shapes the minds of the people who shape our world.
Get for just
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor, you are allowed 8 free articles.
This is your first article.
You have read of 8 free articles this month.
YOU HAVE READ 8 OF 8
FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
for full access to
CommentaryMagazine.com
INCLUDES FULL ACCESS TO:
Digital subscriber?
Print subscriber? Get free access »
Call to subscribe: 1-800-829-6270
You can also subscribe
on your computer at
CommentaryMagazine.com.
LOG IN WITH YOUR
COMMENTARY MAGAZINE ID
Don't have a CommentaryMagazine.com log in?
CREATE A COMMENTARY
LOG IN ID
Enter you email address and password below. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you provide.