…and the members cried, “Shame! Shame!”
Well, actually they didn’t. Most of them lined up to line the pockets of their local fiefdoms and to pick yours. Rep. Bart Stupak, D-MI, among the first to the trough.
The House legislation funnels money to favored hospitals by treating them as if they are in high wage areas even though they aren’t. For example, two hospitals in Kingston, New York will be paid as if they were in New York City, which is 80 miles away, thanks to the efforts of Democratic Rep. Maurice Hinchley. And, thanks to Democrat Rep. Bart Stupak, “any hospital co-located in Marinette, Wisconsin and Menominee, Michigan is deemed to be located in Chicago.” Only one hospital, Bay Area Medical Center in Green Bay, fits that description. Yet wage rates in Green Bay bear little resemblance to those in Chicago.
This is the same government some people think will bring us better and cheaper health care. …When pigs levitate over Galt’s Gulch, maybe.
Here’s 1991 commentary from a man who arguably did more to advance the cause of liberty than any other in the 20th Century.
Government has played an increasingly large role in medical care. For decades, total spending on medical care was about 3 to 5 percent of national income. It is now 12 or 13 percent, and the acceleration of spending dates from the introduction of Medicare and Medicaid in 1965. Some of you may have seen an article published in that excellent journal of opinion, the Wall Street Journal, in which I cited figures on hospital cost per patient day, adjusted for inflation. The cost was 26 times as high in 1989 as it had been in 1946; personnel per hospital bed was seven times as high, while the number of hospital beds had been cut in half. Great advances in medical care have certainly occurred, but they did so before 1965 as well as after. Those seven times as many people per hospital bed are clearly not people who are attending to patients; they are mostly people who are filling in forms to satisfy government requirements for payment.
Read the whole thing.