A Question…or Two…or More…

Just a couple of what seem to me like obvious questions.  (I know, I’ve been writing a bit on the health care debate, and I’ll try to do some other things after this, don’t want to bore anyone, especially myself.)

I see a lot of protesters waving signs that contain something like this:  HEALTHCARE REFORM YES, GOVERNMENT TAKEOVER NO.  TORT REFORM NOW!

Something about that doesn’t quite add up.  If health care is to be reformed, who is going to do it?  The industry isn’t without that there is a threat.  Which means there will have to be something outside the industry doing the threatening.  What might that be?

Hmm.  The government?

And the nature of the reform, if it isn’t to be entirely self-serving on the part of the industry, will have to be devised by a somewhat disinterested party.  Who might that be?

The government?

And tort law…well, that’s, as it says, Law.  Which is legislation.  Which is—wait for it!— the government!

So what is being asked for here?

That the government enact reforms that do not involve the government, do not make use of government authority, do not engage government offices, and will not grant the government any power to enforce.

So how will that work exactly?

Or is there some third party out there we haven’t been told about capable of doing all this reforming?

Oh, the market!  Which basically is consumers, which is, well, all of us.  The people.

But wait…isn’t the government supposed to be the duly elected voice of the people?  So if the people are demanding reform, how are the people supposed to both express such a desire and then implement said reforms?

I guess, through their duly elected voice—the government.

But if the government is not to be trusted, I guess that means the people aren’t to be trusted.  The people don’t know what they want, what is good for them, or how to go about managing the reforms they’ve demanded and, somehow, achieved.  So there will have to be an appointed body of presumed experts who do know how to manage all this to act on the people’s behalf…

Who might that be?

The industry?  Hmm.  Well, since it’s the industry that needs reforming and the people who have demanded reform, handing management of the reform over to the very thing that needs the reform would seem, well, not to put to fine a point on it, stupid.

So I guess we’d have to elect a representative body to manage the reforms.

Oh, wait, don’t we already have such a body?

Yeah, it’s the government.  So by demanding reform of an industry, it would seem reasonable that we not trust the industry (that already doesn’t do what we want it to do) to reform itself.  It would be silly to create a whole other body to oversee all this when one already exists that has over two centuries of expertise in doing exactly this sort of thing.

So how is anything is going to change otherwise?

Just wondering, you know, because some of the demands sort of don’t make any sense.

Published by Mark Tiedemann