Saturday, November 7, 2009

Group Bias in the Distribution of Health Care in the United States

As I suggested in an earlier blog entry governmentally subsidized health care in the United States is already being rationed. I think it is distributed based on an indefensible group bias; that is, politicians control access to subsidized health insurance based on arbitrary group association. Let's take a closer look at that.

Since the twentieth century, politicians have granted subsidized access to specific groups. In the 1940s, the first “group” to gain that access was comprised of individual white, male workers that worked for large unionized corporations. Later, politicians expanded access by including other groups including: the elderly, the poor, veterans, Native Americans, employees of government, and children. As a result of this irrational group-based allocation system, we now have a “maze” of health care tax-supported programs that provide various levels of health care coverage to most Americans. The current problem is that we now have a growing number of individuals that need access to health care but do not fall into any of these arbitrary groupings. Therefore, in order to gain access these “outsiders” have had to manufacture their own “group,” and lobby government for equal recognition. This new group is comprised of everyone that is not employed by a corporation that offers private health insurance, not elderly, not poor, not a veteran, not Native American, not employed by government, and/or not children.

Now any rational person that is against health care reform within its current framework must argue that these outsiders are not entitled to health coverage, even though these other groups already enjoy subsidized health insurance. Of course, no politician is going to take subsidized health care away from workers, the poor, elderly, soldiers, or children. But many politicians are opposed to adding “outsiders.” Interestingly the rest of us rarely demand that those politicians justify the inclusion of one group and the exclusion of another. Why?

1 comment:

HAK said...

Please notice that often those "outsiders" are entrepreneurs, the engines of our industrial strength.

One can only ask, how many potential Edisons, Fords, Gates’ failed in recent years just because of medical bills, theirs, or their employees.

This provision of our health care system strikes directly into our economic strength.