Posted tagged ‘Free market’

The Reality Of Obamacare

October 28, 2013

“SOCIALISM BY INSTALLMENTS”

Ludwig von Mises said, “The middle-of-the-road policy is not an economic system that can last. It is a method for the realization of socialism by installments.” The middle ground between free markets and socialism is chaotic, with the only stable ground being free markets, on the one end, and socialism on the other. The free market being stability in wealth, and the latter being stability in poverty. Our current and impending healthcare debacle is an example of what Mises is saying in the quote.

We haven’t had anything close to a free market healthcare system since government put a freeze on wages during WWII. The unintended consequence of this action was employers started giving health insurance as a benefit, in order to attract labor for employment, because they couldn’t pay higher wages. Up to this point individuals payed for their health insurance out of the wages they earned. The individual was insuring himself against financial ruin in case their was a catastrophic situation with his health. He paid for all other health care problems out of his earnings. Over the years the unintended consequences of  increased Government regulations has moved our healthcare system into the chaotic middle ground we are experiencing.   Obamacare has and will make our health care system more chaotic. It was designed as the next step toward a single payer health care system. Single payer is simply the Government controlling all decisions about the production and consumption of healthcare (aka socialism).

THE ECONOMICS OF HEALTHCARE AND HEALTH INSURANCE

Understanding health care becomes easier when you know a few things about it. 1) Health care is a good of service produced and exchanged in the free market, and is therefore not a free good. 2) Health insurance is a good or service produced and exchanged in the free market, and therefore not a free good. 3) Health insurance is not health care. Health insurance is just one of many arrangements, an individual can make to pay for healthcare. Health care is the good that health insurance pays for. 4) Even if someone thinks having health insurance or health care is a right, it doesn’t change the fact that both are economic goods, that have to be produced before they can be exchanged and consumed.

Scarcity is what dictates if something is an economic good. If a particular thing is available naturally, like the air we breath, it isn’t scarce and therefore doesn’t have to be produced before it is consumed. Scarce goods have to be rationed because the demand for the good is greater than our ability to produce it. Prices ration scarce goods in a free market. The price of a good is the result of every individual making decisions on what they produce, exchange and consume. Each decision every individual makes, even if it has nothing to do with a particular good, has an effect on the production and consumption of that particular good. The reason it has an effect is because the scarce means of production have alternative uses. For example a barrel of oil doesn’t just produce gasoline, oil is used to produce dyes, rubber, resins, adhesives, asphalt, solvents, lubricants, nylon, polyester, acrylic, pharmaceuticals, and plastics. The means (resources, labor, time, capital) used to produce healthcare can be used for other purposes. If the compensation for their use in healthcare doesn’t cover the cost of production, they will be employed in uses that are more profitable. This scarce good (healthcare) will be made scarcer still. In our new socialized healthcare system, Government will have to ration healthcare because the artificially set prices will be meaningless for the purpose of rationing.

IT GETS WORSE

The health care website “glitch” isn’t even a cup of water in the ocean of problems that awaits us as this ever-expanding law begins implementation. The Government health insurance exchange is not health insurance. The exchange is playing the role of a broker trying to help individuals find “affordable” health insurance  from participating insurance companies. What happens when the 2500 plus pages of regulations gets unleashed on what’s left of the market system? 1)  Businesses have started to protect themselves against the future cost of the law in a number of ways: Keeping their number of employees under 50. Larger companies are cutting employers hours to under thirty per week. They’re getting rid of employer paid health care plans altogether because it’s cheaper to pay the fine (tax) instead of paying the insurance premiums. They’re making their employees pay more toward their insurance. 2) Insurance companies have been protecting their bottom line by increasing premiums in anticipation of higher costs. Some insurance companies have decided not to supply health insurance because it won’t continue to be a viable business model down the road. 3) Healthcare providers from doctors to medical device manufacturers have started to change how they do business because they know they will not be compensated enough to cover the cost of producing their good or service.

CONCLUSION

The cost of our “new” healthcare system is already going up. We changed the whole system because there were supposedly 30 million Americans without health insurance, although these uninsured people could go to the emergency room to receive healthcare. The prices charged by hospitals and the prices charged by insurance companies are what cover the cost of treating these uninsured people, just like the cost of shoplifting is factored into the prices you pay at a store. This old way of paying for the uninsured is less expensive than the cost of insuring them under Obamacare.

Obamacare incentivizes an increase in the demand for a scarce good, and a decrease in the supply of this same good. The scarce good becomes more scarce as supply and demand move in opposite directions. Government decisions will have to ration healthcare, but as the years pass the ultimate rationing mechanism for our socialized healthcare system will be waiting in line and death. Fortunately for us we have a culture of freedom. We will figure out a way around the government obstacles that have been placed in the way of us getting what we want, even if it’s an illegal black market for healthcare. Freedom is in the DNA passed on by our founding fathers, and I think we’re in the process of rediscovering it.

Ten Things to Expect From Obamacare, by Elizabeth Lee Vliet M.D., at caseyresearch.com.

SOME HEALTHCARE HUMOR

More cartoons here from theburningplatform.com.

139127 600 HealthCaregov cartoons

139206 600 Web Site cartoons

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Walter E. Williams Talks About Free Market Morality

August 2, 2013

I saw this video titled Free Market Morality at prageruniversity.com. In it Walter Williams talks about the voluntary action between individuals in the market as opposed to the coercive action used in a centrally planned economy. He also talks about the market being a positive sum game instead of a zero sum game because both sides in an exchange are better off. He explains concepts as only he can. Watch listen and learn.

Related Article-Video,  Walter E. Williams: Voluntary vs. Involuntary Exchange, or Seduction vs. Rape, at ausrtianaddict.com.

Related Article-Video,  Walter E. Williams: Free Market Capitalism Produces A Higher Standard Of Living For Everyone, at austrianaddict.com.

Related ArticleI Love Greed, by Walter E. Williams, at jewishworldreview.com.

Specialization And Trade Create Wealth

July 24, 2013

In our previous post I briefly touched on specialization and trade. Civilization advances  through specialization and trade not just from the stand point of creating more wealth, but also from the stand point of creating a more peaceful world because of the cooperate involved in trade. This short video from LearnLiberty.org, featuring Art Carden, is a very good explanation of these concepts.

Specialization and trade utilize scarce resources, time, labor, and capital as efficiently as possible. Labor, time, capital, and resources are freed up, because of specialization and trade, and can now be used for other activities that couldn’t have been attempted before these scarce resources were freed up. These new activities may prove to be productive or they may not. The good news is that in a free market they will be allowed to succeed or fail depending on their ability to produce more value than the cost of the production.

For a more in-depth analysis of this subject read, People Can Just Get Along, by Robert P. Murphy, at mises.org.

Spontaneous Order = Free Market Economy.

April 12, 2013
Spontaneous Order

Spontaneous Order (Photo credit: KAZVorpal)

SPONTANEOUS ORDER CREATES COMPLEXITY.

For us to understand how free market capitalism works, we have to understand the concept of spontaneous order. In this video below titled, “The Lawless Streets of Hanoi, Vietnam”, the man filming the video doesn’t even understand what he is watching. He says,”There’s no traffic lights to be found and everybody pretty much does what they want……It’s mad chaos.” He’s used to seeing traffic centrally planned by signs, signals, or traffic cops, and because of this bias toward centrally planned order, he is incapable of seeing the complex order that is created by individuals voluntarily cooperating. (more…)

Why Socialism Won’t Work? Human Nature.

March 28, 2013
From each according to his ability, to each ac...

From each according to his ability, to each according to his need (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Socialism is defined as Government control of the means of production, instead of private ownership, (property rights). Socialism goes against human nature as you can read about in this article, “Does Socialism Work? A Classroom Experiment”, by Dan Mitchell at danielmitchell@wordpress.com. Human beings are self-interested and will work harder for their own benefit than they’ll work for the benefit of others. The human nature of a child born in today’s world hasn’t changed, it is the same as a child born in prehistoric times. A child has to be taught to share, selfishness is natural to him, and even when he becomes a civilized member of society, self-interest is still his default position. In the article mentioned above, (more…)

Ticket Scalping, The True Free Market In Action.

March 21, 2013

I’m going to the Ohio High School Basketball Tournament this weekend not and not just to watch the games. I like to observe the economic principles at play in the free market for tickets,(aka scalping) that takes place outside of the arena, it is a real education. This video explains whats going on.

Most of the people who participate in the free market of ticket scalping, have no understanding of the economic principles they are demonstrating by their actions. Supply and demand, subjective value, (more…)

Why Do People Think The Government Is The Economy?

February 17, 2013
leech

leech (Photo credit: KCBIO)

PRODUCTION AND EXCHANGE

Government can only exist if it is funded. In the market, people produce a good or service, and exchange it for a good or service that someone else has produced. You might think that through this exchange process each of us funds each other, but that would be incorrect. Each person funds himself from what he produces. If I don’t produce anything, not only would I have nothing to use for exchange, I would have nothing to consume. If I decide not to produce, I would have to depend on other people’s generosity, or I would have to steal someone’s production (more…)