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Teaching Paul Krugman

This is a wonderful example of an elitist who thinks he knows everything being brought down to size:

Hat tip to Theblogprof who also links to Doug Ross who outlines all the latest headlines in the UK about failures at the NHS. It's an extensive list so you better get comfortable.


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Comments (43)

That's destined for classic... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

That's destined for classic comedy gold.

Be careful of what you ask ... (Below threshold)
Mycroft:

Be careful of what you ask for, people might answer truthfully.

lol, and they gave that idi... (Below threshold)
Drew:

lol, and they gave that idiot a Nobel Prize

His guesses on peoples resp... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

His guesses on peoples responses are much like his guesses on economics.

I still waiting for ... (Below threshold)
Richard R:


I still waiting for examples of "bad" socialised medicine from the other 35 countries who are INFRONT of America, and have HALF THE COST. Stop using the stupid english system (the worst in whole Europe by all means) as an excuse to continue "as nothing happened".

Where is are examples of Sweden, Denmark, Germany, France etc? Never see them.

It's ok to guarantee your doctors and practitioners a premium income and wealth when they reach the age of 45. But don't use such blatant hypocrisy. Say how it is: that being a doctor has its price and you slimy d-bag of a patient who doesn't want to pay for my Porsche:
go away! I don't want you as my patient.

Sacred oath? What oath? I can't remember anything, I have to pose for a billboard, so more RICH people come to see me for their "health".

Richard R

Wow, someone needs more Pro... (Below threshold)
epador:

Wow, someone needs more Prozac.

That'll be $50.00, no checks.

Richard needs a Psych consu... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

Richard needs a Psych consult....stat

There are no countries in f... (Below threshold)
John Irving:

There are no countries in front of the U.S. with half the costs per capita, Richard starts out wrong from the start.What he misunderstands is that government-run health care reports numbers to appease their government masters.

Also, I'd rather have surgery done by a doctor who stands to lose his Mercedes than by one who stands to lose nothing. There is little incentive for doctors in socialized countries to perform, and in fact as the patient get solder there is every incentive to underperform.

Isn't it about choic... (Below threshold)
Richard R:


Isn't it about choice? If the one asks 20.000 for fixing your hand and the other asks 5.000 (and two weeks of waiting) - who is to step in and says: "No we don't want 'that' type of choice?" I can see that the 20g doc needs maybe to cut costs to 12.000, since many will may wait two weeks. But: if he can simply cut cost from 20 to 12.000 just because there is a different competition - isn't he _overcharging_ since years?

How can that be "the best interest"?

John, can you then p... (Below threshold)
Richard R:


John, can you then please correct the Wikipedia article?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_care_in_the_United_States

It would help tremendously that the facts are very clear and the sources are correct and non partisan.

The mania, it's in the eyes... (Below threshold)
Trajan:

The mania, it's in the eyes! This guy always
looks like he just ate a peyote and arugula
salad before he pontificates on the economy.
Either that, or he just made a mistake in his
BVDs.

Of course, if we were serio... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Of course, if we were seriously talking about bigger, more representative samples, instead of just making cheap shots.

From Harris's interactive poll 'Health Care Systems in Ten Developed Countries'- The U.S. System Is Most Unpopular and Dutch System the Most Popular.

7 out of 10 Candians say the Canadian system is working well and is far superior to the US model in the latest Harris Decima Poll, July 2009.

Canadians think their American neighbours would be wise to look north as they grapple with a massive health-care overhaul.

That's the conclusion drawn from a new poll published as Capitol Hill legislators debate a plan to cover nearly all Americans with government-run health insurance.

The Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey suggests 82 per cent of Canadians believe our system is better than U.S. health care.

The only polls that Wizbang likes to point to are those show Obama's poll numbers down (though they discounted Bush's abysmally low numbers) and not that those that point to the weaknesses of their arguments. Canadians and every other first world people are generally far, far happier with their health system than Americans. I wonder why?


Steve:Three questi... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Steve:

Three questions for you:

How much would it cost per person to provide the same level of care that Canadians get?

How much is that amount times 350 million?

Where will we get the money?

7 out of 10, eh Crickmore? ... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

7 out of 10, eh Crickmore? I wonder ... did they ask any of these Canadians if they or any of their friends ever had any experience with the American system from which they draw their conclusion? Because if you ask me, I have friends who are in "the other system" and their stories aren't pretty. I've shared a couple of those stories here.

"The U.S. also has the highest health-care costs of any country in the industrialized world."

And Canadians pay more for everything else.

Seems to me to be a trade off. A trade which the individual has the least control over. No thanks. I'm still not convinced.

Sacred oath? What oath? ... (Below threshold)
iwogisdead:

Sacred oath? What oath? I can't remember anything, I have to pose for a billboard, so more RICH people come to see me for their "health".

Hey, great idea: let's discourage doctors from making money. Better yet, let's get the government to limit their incomes. That way, the best doctors will leave the practice and do something easier for more money. Plus, the best and brightest students won't be willing anymore to go through four years of very difficult post-graduate education and three to ten more years of residency and fellowships.

Once we get those people out of the medical education system, then we can get some real dolts in there, and before long, Larry, Moe, and Curley will be doing bypass operations. It'll be great!

"Bad, uh, bad move by my pa... (Below threshold)
RickZ:

"Bad, uh, bad move by my part"? How about a bad move by our Government's part, asshole? Elitist being schooled is right! Will he learn the lesson to never again ask an audience that question, or will he be like Precedent Ostupid, making the same mistake over and over, all the while expecting a different result?

Why is health care so expen... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Why is health care so expensive in US? Yes there is a lot of modern technology but also unnecessarily because of the quiltwork of huge overhead administrative costs, hundreds of billions of dollars, including pay outs to the multi million dollar private health insurance CEO salaries whose companies try and dump their clients, when they become sick, on to Medicare and other public plans which has happened when individuals states have a strong public options such as in Massachusettes.

The US spends the most percapita on health care in the world 16 % while Canada spends 10% ..And I have never met a Canadian who has ever discussed or been worried about the cost of health care in his own country for himself or his family. The question doesn't arrive for Canadians.

It's more expensive in the ... (Below threshold)
iwogisdead:

It's more expensive in the US because the US system provides much more high cost treatment than any of public option plans do. The public option plans limit or simply eliminate stuff that costs too much. Plus, the very best and brightest people in the world are working in the US healthcare system. Of course, they're more expensive--good people can demand and get good money--it's how free enterprise works.

Establishing a public option won't do away with administration costs, it just transfers administration to the government. There's no reason to believe that the government will be able to administer healthcare better than private enterprise because (besides for war and space flight) the government never does anything better than private enterprise. Obama's claim that we'll somehow save money in administration with a public plan is absurd, unless by "administration" he means "rationing" which he might.

The US healthcare system is also weighed down by malpractice and defensive medicine expenses. Of course, the Democrats refuse to go anywhere near meaningful tort reform.

And comparisons of the quality of US healthcare to anywhere else are useless, because the US is dealing with a huge influx of impoverished immigrants.

The whole world better be rooting against Obama's planned destruction of the American healthcare system, because, without it, innovation in healthcare is essentially done.

Polls asking Canadians to compare their system to ours are silly, since Canadians never come to the US for their healthcare. Oh, wait. Forget I said that. The Canadian system is great for people who don't need a doctor.

huge overhead administra... (Below threshold)
RickZ:

huge overhead administrative costs, hundreds of billions of dollars, including pay outs to the multi million dollar private health insurance CEO salaries

You ever heard of this chap, John Edwards, from North Carolina? A lawyer, I believe. Ran for vice-president. Made some money off of channeling dead babies in court, I heard.

Tort reform. That's one thing that's needed. Like Congress is going to do anything about that!

US healthcare costs more be... (Below threshold)
sam:

US healthcare costs more because it is more than "an aspirin and come back in a month".

Wonder when the explosion o... (Below threshold)
Joe:

Wonder when the explosion of administrative costs started? When government put on wage and price controls and allowed unions to demand benefit packages that included healthcare with ever increasing packages and exploded when the government got into healthcare in a big way with Medicare, Medicaid, SCHIP, various state and federal mandates for specific care, etc. and by protecting lawyers income for idiotic litigation.

People in healthcare know how to reform it and save money, but they have to deal with the mess set up by the government. Get government all the way out of healthcare and you will see prices go down and quality go up. We have not had a free market system in healthcare for 60 years. Socialism does not work.

How much does Canada spend ... (Below threshold)
bob:

How much does Canada spend on defense since it has America to defend it? Let them spend the same ratio to defend themselves instead of the US doing it and see how much they have left to spend on health care. That goes for the rest of Europe too.

Steve Crickmore:Th... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Steve Crickmore:

Three questions for you:

How much would it cost per person to provide the same level of care that Canadians get?

How much is that amount times 350 million?

Where will we get the money?

(Hate to repeat things here - but it's a valid question. Something that's affordable for 33 million may not be for 350 million. Especially if we're looking at the Cap&Trade tax on top of everything else.)

Canada is a leech on other ... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Canada is a leech on other countries when it comes to the big expenses such as defence.

No one on the left ever answers why all wealthy foreignors and heads of state come here for medical treatment even when they live in what you call modernized free healthcare systems? Conservatives know the answer but liberals are afraid of the answer.

Our hospital's and healthcare providers are weighted down with mandatory paperwork filing, credentialling, oversight, JCAHO standards, local and state standards. Overhead costs trickle down. It is not the expensive doctor's fees that drive it up. Nor the insurance companies as much as our local,state and federal governments.

90% of us have health insurance. 80% are satisfied. So, we are going to change the whole system and how we think about healthcare for 10%? I don't think so.

The liberals overplayed their hand. They cried crisis and when all focused on the issue, we discovered we were lied to. It is gone. Good riddence. ww

And they only asked 10 Cana... (Below threshold)
Mycroft:

And they only asked 10 Canadians that SURVIVED their health care system.

I have already gone thru two medical incidents that would have killed me in a socialized medical setting, just because of delays.

If they pass this albatross, I am thinking of filing attempted murder charges against everyone that votes for it.

lol, and they gave... (Below threshold)
lol, and they gave that idiot a Nobel Prize

The Nobel Prize committee has been dominated by leftists for decades and the prizes are used primarily to promote leftist ideas and reward other leftists.

This guy alwayslo... (Below threshold)
This guy always looks like he just ate a peyote and arugula salad before he pontificates on the economy.

Ha! Too funny. Krugman's columns are such gushing wells of unhinged partisan hackery, I've always imagined him to be this maniacal, drooling, bug-eyed little gnome; looks like I had him sized up about right.

Obviously Canadians don't l... (Below threshold)

Obviously Canadians don't like their own health care system. How funny that the lefties who shill for health care report "polls" and Wikipedia articles to bolster their arguments, instead of actually looking at cancer mortality rates and waiting times and availability of care.

Canada's health care system is like the UK's system; it's great as long as you don't actually get sick.

For you people who are inte... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

For you people who are interested. Some time back the Mustang Ranch in Nevada which was a brothel, was taken over by the government. They could not run it successfully. If the Government cannot even run a whorehouse, how can you expect them to be able to run healthcare? This idea is so stupid and the lies surrounding it so vile the outcome will be a removal from office of those democrats who vote for this. You will end them for a long time. Anyone notice the date when the bill for this sh*t comes due is 2013. Guess Obama would not want to lose his chance to fool us again because of what the Dems had wrought.

Comparing health care syste... (Below threshold)
epador:

Comparing health care systems in small, relatively homogenous societies with a stable government controlled economy is not easily translatable to our heterogenous and complex society and economy. Its like saying, "Hey, the food at McDonald's is always ready fast and hot, no one there complains about the quality of the food, and it sure is a lot cheaper than at those expensive, swanky restaurants. Lets make all restaurants McDonalds!"

"Canada's health care syste... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

"Canada's health care system is like the UK's system; it's great as long as you don't actually get sick."

The military health care system is great for trauma and emergency medicine.

Chronic diseases? Anything not normally found in a relatively healthy population between 18 and 50? Even simple stuff like glasses and contacts? Forget timely and responsive.

But military health care is great for trauma and emergency medicine!

And I have never met a C... (Below threshold)
Speller:

And I have never met a Canadian who has ever discussed or been worried about the cost of health care in his own country for himself or his family. The question doesn't arrive for Canadians.
17. Posted by Steve Crickmore

You are right, the question doesn't arrive. But it is the wrong question to ask.

The question to ask is, "Are you worried that the wait times will permanently cost you your quality of life or cause your death?"

I know a woman who is in a wheelchair at the age of 40, here in Alberta, who needs a hip replacement but cannot get one because the government says she will need another hip replacement at 65 and they won't allow her to have 2 procedures.
Her quality of life is ruined for 20 years.

The worst thing about the waiting is that Canadians have to wait for diagnostics.
While we are waiting, a problem that is worrisome could become inoperable or terminal by the time it is diagnosed.

My dad was diagnosed with p... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

My dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer; waited four weeks for surgery; had a nurse visit every day to check that the wound was healing properly (although my mother, a nurse, said it was not necessary); and is now completely recovered.

Cost to my parents, out of pocket: $0.
Number of times they had to mortgage their home to pay for this: 0.

I feel for people that get shafted with shitty waiting times, Speller, but as I mentioned before, there is a way to fix this, spelled out in plain enough English that even Stephen Harper should be able to read it: the Romanow Report is available online, and is pretty clear in its prescriptions for our national health care system. We had the best system in the world, and if Harper et al would quit playing political football with funding the system, we would see rapidly decreased waiting times and greater access.

And, this woman in Alberta could fly to Thailand, get the procedure done for $1,500, and enjoy a nice holiday while she recovers. It's not like she has zero options.

Hyper -How much do... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Hyper -

How much does your system cost per person? (And please, don't tell me it's 'free' - averaged out over your population, what's the tax bite per head covered?)

My dad was diagnosed wit... (Below threshold)
Speller:

My dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer; waited four weeks for surgery; had a nurse visit every day to check that the wound was healing properly (although my mother, a nurse, said it was not necessary); and is now completely recovered.

Cost to my parents, out of pocket: $0.
Number of times they had to mortgage their home to pay for this: 0.
33.hyperbolist

Would your father know your friend's father that is head of radiology at an Edmonton hospital, hyperbolist?

What does your father do for a living?

We had the best sy... (Below threshold)
We had the best system in the world, and if Harper et al would quit playing political football with funding the system, we would see rapidly decreased waiting times and greater access.

Yeah, here we see rule #6 from the liberal playbook: when a liberal policy fails, find a conservative to blame.

JLawson, the taxes for the ... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

JLawson, the taxes for the Canadian single payer system are approximately the same or little less than what an American taxpayer spends for his largely private health care system.

In Canada, health care is 69-75% publicly funded, the US 40% publicly funded.. but as the US system is doubly as expensive, per capita you can do the arithmetic.

From,

'Canadian and American health care systems compared'.

In the US direct government funding of health care is limited to Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), which cover eligible senior citizens, the very poor, disabled persons, and children. The federal government also runs the Veterans Administration, which provides care to veterans, their families, and survivors through medical centers and clinics..

The U.S. government spends more on health care than on Social Security and national defense combined, according to the Brookings Institute.

Most of the Canadian public funding comes from the general provincial and federal treasuries. Employees and employers have about one percent taken off their income and revenue statements, that they are taxed for a healthcare provincial premium.


correct <a href="http://en... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

correct link for Canadian and American health care systems compared.

OK Crickmore. I liked your... (Below threshold)
Carolynp:

OK Crickmore. I liked your logic. You haven't convinced me, but you make a decent argument. Can I make fun of you for listing a politician's site as a "source" without you getting all weird defensive left guy?
An overview of my opinion on why US healthcare costs more than any other system in the world would start with the fact that we are some of the most wealthy people in the world. If my son gets a strange disease (and he HAS), I expect as well as receive the best medical options in the world. The US has been the center of pharm research in the world for the last ten-fifteen years, producing 70%-80% of all new pharm patents. The US is where the money is. Before that, the center of research was in Europe. I think this defends conservative values in alot of ways. We have created the cost incentive. We have also shouldered a disproportionate amount of cost for new drugs, which I find personally reasonable as we have the wealth to sustain these costs. Thus, the enormous costs of R&D are sustained in a weathly country like the US and then the drugs can be distributed in other countries for far less money as they create knock offs. Obviously, you cannot have a knock off without an original and for drugs, originals are costly.
The real question that needs to be answered is where will this research move if the cost incentive in the US goes away? Will Canada graciously step up to the plate and agree to pay huge amounts of money to fund new pharm research? How about that paragon of virtue Chavez? Obviously Venezuela could afford to shoulder this burden, but would they? I don't see that happening.
Trust me when I tell you that you will pay literally anything to get the latest and best medicine for your kids. We were very fortunate to have great insurance that we have carried our entire working lives that paid for everything (I think we had a $200 co-pay for the hospital stay). I cannot even fathom what it would be like to live in England and be told that my son can't have this medicine or that medicine because it's too costly. I don't think that version of socialized med will ever work here and I'm certain that libs realize that. That's why they have to work hard and fast to create something that will look good in the short run, but in the long run will carry a very large price tag, indeed.
Sorry I was so wordy.

Steve:That's not w... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Steve:

That's not what I asked for. (And besides, you know the rules of the game - Wiki links supposedly aren't authoritative, since they're open to editing by any and all. Primary sources, please.)

I just want a simple figure. One single, simple number.

How much, per head, does the Canadian government spend on health care?

Because I figure that it's going to cost triple that per head for US health care (for a level of 'care' equivalent to the Canadian system) once all the kickbacks and payoffs and backscratching and 'preferred providers' and lawsuits are figured in.

Actually, I phrased that la... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Actually, I phrased that last para wrong. I meant to say...

"Because I figure that's it's going to cost roughly double that per head for US health care (for a level of 'care' equivalent to the rationed Canadian system) once all the kickbacks and payoffs and backscratching and 'preferred providers' and lawsuits are figured in.

For the current level of insured care - where there's no rationing - figure 4 to 6 times."

JLawson... It is hard to ca... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

JLawson... It is hard to caluclate the cost of the full Canadian n medicare system quickly since it comes from the combined federal/provincial budgets (about 50/50)including transfer payments from the Canadian feds to the provinces. I don't know about kickbacks/overbilling..a single-payer system would be esentially the present US medicare system for seniors writ large for entire population. The US government already thru medicare pays for most of the US hip placements.

And (as one commenter in the American Specator says) if a massive governmen health care system - through private doctors and clinics and hospitals-

"massivegovernment healthcare system" costs half as much as the more private US system and delivers the same results, would you choose the more efficient system?

I would choose the more efficient system because that means more money in our pockets.

The last <a href="http://tr... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

The last link from the 'American Spectator'.




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