There is a not so subtle method that is common to offsetting lessening revenues that is used by all industries and organizations to receive what they want or as close to it as they can get. This method is called anticipation of the final result. Companies and unions “negotiate” what terms they will settle on by setting standards they know they will not get and then back off with an appearance of compromise. This happens in Congress, and anywhere that some individual or group knows the final settlement will not be the initial offer. Home buying is often conducted this way. The seller sets a price he knows will not be met (usually) and then waits for an offer which most times is below the price he is asking. This is a perfectly acceptable method of buying and selling and most people are aware this is how the system works. But what if you are dealing with the government and you know they will cut your revenues as a political expedient? What if people are clamoring to Congress for lower health care costs and demanding Congress do ‘something” about it?
In the first place the government often operates on a cost plus basis when dealing with a contract for say airplane parts. This is pretty straight forward and easily understood. But what if the government offers a contract for Medicare and says it will pay a percentage of the charges? This is what is being done. And when Medicare says it will cut the revenues paid to providers as it is planning to do, what do you think the providers will do to try to offset this reduction in income? They will raise their rates and then Medicare will pay them a greater amount based on the new percentage which means the prices for those without Medicare will be higher and someone ( the consumer) will make up for the lowering of provider revenue the government is trying to obtain ( because they can’t afford to pay what the market requires ).
Of course the government figures that if they want the providers to get less that the providers would just buck up and do with less. It never occurs to those in government that the government could do with less. The government has obligations it has incurred and those obligations are sacred because they have passed a law and that should be sufficient reason for spending. But what we are seeing is that taxpayers are maxed out, credit is dwindling and the printing presses are rolling out more and more dollars that shrink in value because the supply of money is only backed by the credibility of the government. That credibility is in the tank.
So if you take the system of cutting revenues that increases providers prices, the inflation that is brought about by too much government money printing, the inefficiencies that too many government distribution agents create and the cost of regulation to the health care industry you have rising medical care costs that are not being addressed and promise to rise. Then the government thinks the only answer is to nationalize and instead of naming the action they blabber about “universal health care”. There has never been and there will never be “universal health care”. Once politics takes over a business there is favoritism, rationing, shortages and black markets. Black markets arise when the demand for a good or service reaches the point where it is unobtainable under the law. This is why passing laws to regulate commerce fails. Supply and demand is constantly changing and with that the prices. And no matter how many laws are passed to “stabilize’ this fluctuation the laws are too little or too much,, too late and inappropriate. Yet consumers have absorbed the notion that the government can somehow do something to improve economic prosperity. They are taught this in college, they hear it on the news, they hear their “representatives’ constantly finding private scapegoats to blame on economic turmoil in a diversionary move to keep the finger from pointing where it belongs…on them.
Even business leaders are so politically naive that they think the government will ease their burden if it picks up the cost of health care they were paying to attract employees. Surprise. When the health care costs become burdensome for the government and the funds dry up who will be taxed heavier? Who will see the stability of the dollar further deteriorate? Who will be looked at with a jaundiced eye with a thought of nationalization? The ignorant businessmen who looked to government to do something to improve their bottom line. Instead of recognizing the nature of government and challenging and rebuking its claim to be an economic regulator , the business community has emphasized it will comply no matter what ignorant law is passed. There have been challenges but only when the realization was that survival was at stake. The truth is this is always what is at stake when allowing government to run business. There are only two systems that do this ,Socialism and Fascism. Socialism is outright government ownership of the means of production and Fascism allows private ownership but dictates how the businesses will be run. Neither system works.
Yet this distinction is not taught in schools, is unrecognized by evasive politicians, is glossed over by the media and whenever an economic crisis arises all we hear are the same old bromides of price controls, nationalization, jawboning, etc, etc,
There are those of us who know what is going on and try to get our message out and it goes largely ignored. It is deemed too radical, out of the mainstream of thought, not popular, etc. But ignoring what is being proposed as a solution is not a solution either. Neither is doing the same thing and hoping for different results. Remember that Naziism became popular and mainstream in Germany and the people of Germany wondered how such a thing could have happened even as they complied and cheered. It is the attitude that popularity can be translated into intelligent solutions. A grumpy plumber may not be popular but if he does his job well and is competitive in his prices popularity is not a major issue. That is why we should be looking for leaders with the right ideas instead of those pandering to popular opinion. But instead we succumb to a flashy smile and a promise that will never be fulfilled. This is how hopes are dashed and the finest medical system in the world is falling into the hands of the incompetent, the politically motivated and chasing the best providers away. You wouldn’t go to the grocer to buy tires. Don’t go to the government for health care.Tags: government healthcare