Nothing Wrong With Federal Inability to Contain Medical Costs that More Federal Medical Costs Can't Cure, Eh?


Megan McArdle at The Atlantic web site wonders if there's something askew with the logic that the solution to increasing costs in federally run medical systems is expanding federal control over the medical system:

Any cost savings you want to wring out of Medicare can be wrung out of Medicare right now:  the program is large and powerful enough, and costly enough, that they are worth doing without adding a single new person to the mix.  Conversely, if there is some political or institutional barrier which is preventing you from controlling Medicare cost inflation, than that barrier probably is not going away merely because the program covers more people. 

She does point out what is probably really behind such thinking: that if we get a system where there is nothing but government run, supplied, and paid for health care, than the government can presumably start making any decision it wants to cut costs, and we'll all just have to suck up and take it. I'd love for someone to campaign on that platform.