Walter Williams On Mandatory Health Insurance

Walter Williams, via Lew Rockwell:

“You are a 22-year-old healthy person. Instead of spending $3,000 or $4,000 a year for health insurance, you’d prefer investing that money in equipment to start a landscaping business. Which is the best use of that $3,000 or $4,000 a year — purchasing health insurance or starting up a landscaping business — and who should decide that question: Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, George Bush, a czar appointed by Obama or a committee of Washington bureaucrats? How can they possibly know what’s the best use of your earnings, particularly in light of the fact that they have no idea of who you are?

Neither you nor the U.S. Congress has the complete knowledge to know exactly what’s best for you. The difference is that when individuals make their own trade-offs, say between purchasing health insurance or investing in a business, they make wiser decisions because it is they who personally bear the costs and benefits of those decisions. You say, “Hold it, Williams, we’ve got you now! What if that person gets really sick and doesn’t have health insurance. Society suffers the burden of taking care of him.” To the extent that is a problem, it is not a problem of liberty; it’s a problem of congressionally mandated socialism. Let’s look at it.

It is not society that bears the burden; it is some flesh and blood American worker who finds his earnings taken by Congress to finance the health needs of another person.”

2 thoughts on “Walter Williams On Mandatory Health Insurance

  1. This is the same reason why it’s really frustrating to hear the ZeroHedge types, Dylan Ratigan, etc. and other ostensibly “pro-market” people calling for a windfall profits/Tobin tax and regulations on executive compensation for firms receiving bailout money. These people accept that there is “systemic risk” and then look to control additional moral hazard as well as punish the public-private profiteers out of spite, by calling for additional regulations.

    But if there were no bailouts in the first place, then the profits these firms made wouldn’t be ill-gotten gains at taxpayer expense.

    Such an idiotic, flawed premise leads to such an idiotic, flawed proposed solution. Very sad to see. These people are all intellectual prisoners of the State… so long as they accept the State as inevitable, if not necessary altogether, they must concede all these flawed premises and become its unwitting advocate.

  2. I made the argument earlier that after a bail-out that was corrupt and wrong and was never punished, how can anyone make the case that wanting health-care carved out of the ensuing windfall profits is immoral..

    It’s not..

    But it does provide a perverse moral incentive.

    Fleece the middle-class, then throw a part of the profits to the body-politic… and you get to earn respectability.

    That´s the new model of charity..
    Well, maybe we are so far gone that that´s the only thing that works today.
    In which case, Goldman Sachs & Co. have indeed replaced god..

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