Yesterday I directed Hit & Runners' attention to Reason Foundation policy analyst Shikha Dalmia's proactive case against picking the awful Eric Holder as President-elect Barack Obama's attorney general.
Now that we know that the awful former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) is going to be Obama's Health and Human Services jefe, it's time to look again what Dalmia wrote earlier this week in her exhaustive survey of good, bad, and ugly picks for the next administration's cabinet:
For libertarians, three poor picks [for HHS secretary] would be chairman of the Democratic Party and former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, rumored to be the frontrunner for Secretary of State, and former Democratic Senator from South Dakota Tom Daschle.
Dean, a doctor himself, tried to control soaring health care costs by expanding government control over insurance prices and hospital budgets. He also created a statewide insurance pool and formed a new bureaucracy to manage it. None of this worked and premiums—and the number of uninsured—increased under him.
Clinton, of course, tried to nationalize the health care industry in one fell swoop when her husband was in office. Even though she seems to have abandoned that plan, during her presidential campaign, she advocated forcing the uninsured to buy coverage—through penalties and fines if necessary—to achieve universal coverage.
Meanwhile, since leaving the Senate, Daschle has written a book titled, Critical: What We Can Do About America's Health-Care Crisis, in which he recommends creating the equivalent of the Federal Reserve Board for health care to set treatment standards, performance requirements and impose other mandates on the industry. In short, create another layer of bureaucracy on top of the one that he would oversee and hand it even more powers.
[Any] of them will signal a return of Big Government, big time.
To which I can only say: The return of Big Government? It feels like it's never left.