Quote Of The Day
Jim Harper @ Reason, on the security of electronic medical records (emphasis added):
Transferring control of health care to the federal government transfers control of health information to the federal government. The government has interests distinct from patients, and no matter how hard one fights to protect patients’ privacy interests, the government’s interests in cost control, social engineering, and such will ineluctably win out.
One of the “selling points” of healthcare reform has been that insurance companies make their profits by denying coverage; their incentive is to not pay whenever they can avoid it. The same people who make this argument assume that a government-run system won’t have these issues; its incentive will be 100% patient care.
Anyone who makes that argument does not understand government. In fact, most of the reason that people don’t comprehend the dysfunction of government is that they assume government’s stated objectives align with its incentives. When you start analyzing the actual incentives, as proponents of public choice theory do, it all starts to make perfect sense. Most of what we consider government incompetence, malfeasance, or dysfunction are simply based on people rationally following perverse incentives. Get your head around that, and it all falls into place.