Tuesday, February 12, 2013

N.C. Teat Squawkers Demand Medicaid Expansion

The teat squawkers are in full-throated mode in North Carolina.  Newspaper editors and healthcare providers are demanding our legislators take the Obama bribe, and accept $15 billion in “free government money.”  Of course, that would expand our welfare rolls by approximately 550,000 people.  But hey, that money is free!  According to a number of physicians it would be plain stupid not to accept such a generous “gift.”

Dr. Charles van der Horst, an AIDS researcher at professor at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, said it makes no sense to surrender $15 billion the federal government would pay for the expanded coverage. An outside consultant for the state Department of Health and Human Services said the expansion would generate 23,000 net jobs through 2021 and annual real disposable income of $1 billion.

"And what do you think the voters will say that we're turning this down?" Van Der Horst asked, adding Republican elected leaders in other states support the expansion. Without the expansion, North Carolina hospitals will continue to have pay for charity care in emergency rooms, the cost of which will keep getting passed along to patients with private insurance, he said.

"It's morally wrong to not expand Medicaid," said Dr. Mohan Chilukuri with Durham Family Medicine. "It fiscally doesn't make any sense."

An outside consultant hired by the state claims expanding Medicaid will generate 23,000 jobs and provide an ANNUAL REAL DISPOSABLE INCOME OF $1 BILLION?  Bullshit!  That money has to come from somewhere, either through taxation, borrowing, or worse printing, which in itself is tax.  And let’s disabuse ourselves that this is “real disposable income.”  This is not real wealth; it’s manufactured.  Sooner or later we as country are going to pay for the sins of the Federal Reserve.

Another problem with the expansion of Medicaid, or should I say “free healthcare” is that it distorts the market.  The adverse effect is higher cost of goods and services.  When people believe something is “free” they’re going to abuse it.  The question remains, when does it stop?  Llewellyn H. Rockwell answered that for us in his essay Subsidizing Sickness.  Here is an excerpt:
Thus spake Mises. He is observing that there is a moral hazard associated with socialized and subsidized medicine. Because there is no clear line between sickness and health, and where you stand on the continuum is bound up with individual choice, the more medical services are provided by the state as a part of welfare, the more the programs reinforce the conditions that bring about the need to make use of them. This one insight helps explain how socialized medicine takes away the incentive to be healthy, and maximizes the problem of overutilization of resources. Hence, socialized medicine must fail for the same reasons all socialism must fail: it offers no system for rationally allocating resources, and instead promotes overutilization of all resources, ending in bankruptcy.

Considering the federal government’s spending, that prediction isn’t far away.

Source:  http://www.businessweek.com/ap/2013-02-12/doctors-nurses-ask-nc-lawmakers-to-grow-medicaid

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