Last week, I wrote about the problem of cost-cutting in health care. Over the weekend, the Washington Post published an article suggesting one reason why making cuts has historically been so difficult:
Although inappropriate care, high administrative costs, inflated prices and fraud all add to the country's gigantic medical bill, the biggest driver of the upward curve of health spending has been the discovery of new and better things to do when someone gets sick.
"Money matters in health care as it does in few other industries," wrote Harvard University health economist David Cutler in 2004. "Where we have spent a lot, we have received a lot in return."
As Mickey Kaus notes, this cuts rather strongly against what he calls "Orszagism"-the school of thought, led by Obama OMB director Peter Orszag, that says that health-care reform can reduce growth in spending on medical care without sacrificing quality.
Jacob Sullum argued that health-care reform isn't worth the cost.