More on Socialized Medicine

British doctors are deciding not to treat patients if they are “too old or lead unhealthy lives.” Smokers, heavy drinkers, the obese and the elderly should be barred from receiving some operations, according to doctors, with most saying the health service cannot afford to provide free care to everyone…. About one in 10 hospitals already deny some surgery to obese patients and smokers, with restrictions … Continue reading More on Socialized Medicine

Immigration and the Welfare State

Milton Friedman thought it was obvious that one cannot have both free immigration and a welfare state. It’s like giving out twenty dollar bills to an unlimited audience; one soon goes broke. Daniel Greenfield contemplates a variation on that theme. Socialized medicine, he argues, is a particularly strong and expensive form of the welfare state. It is so expensive, in fact, that it forces taxes … Continue reading Immigration and the Welfare State

A Cauldron of Irrationality

Shrinkwrapped discusses the psychological basis for “counterknowledge,” the absurd conspiracy theories that seem to be enjoying more credence these days. We are living in dangerous times. Anxiety over the future and the pace of change (change ushered in by magical technologies that no one can fully understand) naturally produces powerful regressive forces in a culture. Our rationality can be so subtly and easily subverted that … Continue reading A Cauldron of Irrationality

Positioning Pols for Primaries

I’ve read a number of articles recently urging various contestants—um, sorry, candidates—to position themselves by making statements, affirming positions, making promises, etc. (E.g.: “John McCain should pledge not to increase taxes.”) Bill Quick points out the absurdity of this: Or…I dunno…maybe he could just ask us to read his lips… Why anybody trusts these power-crazed, flag-in-the-wind RINOs is utterly beyond me. Are you people all … Continue reading Positioning Pols for Primaries

Beware Benevolence!

Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt point out a number of cases in which well-intended government intervention backfires. (HT: Ann Althouse.) They thus put contemporary teeth into an old conservative maxim, the Law of Unintended Consequences, which states that the unintended consequences of an act or, especially, policy ultimately outweigh the intended consequences in importance. The ADA has actually harmed employment prospects for the disabled. (This … Continue reading Beware Benevolence!

Wretchard’s Three Conjectures

Wretchard at the Belmont Club argues that U.S. success in the War on Terror is necessary to the survival of Islam. He makes three conjectures: Terrorism has lowered the nuclear threshold. Attaining WMDs will destroy Islam. The War on Terror is the ‘Golden Hour’ — the final chance. His idea, in essence, is that radical Islamists with WMD capability present a set of scenarios very … Continue reading Wretchard’s Three Conjectures