Republican U.S. Senate candidate Dave Westlake has a lot to say on a variety of issues that Wisconsinites are concerned about, and in the first part of an ongoing series, we’re going to explore Westlake’s ideas on these issues. Today’s focus is health care, an issue that’s been in the news a lot lately, and an issue Westlake has a lot to say about:
There is perhaps no more misunderstood issue that is debated in American politics today than that of healthcare. Some say it’s a right for all citizens. Others say our healthcare quality is inferior to other countries. Still others say that hospitals, clinics, and health insurance companies exploit patients, trading off money for care. None of these are entirely true…but they (and many other related issues) are not completely void of fact either. In each case the answer is subject to individual interpretation of past experiences, present conditions, and future projections…but in all cases, there is one constant–healthcare has become extremely expensive.
As in most economic scenarios, I believe that the free market will develop the most efficient solution to our healthcare conundrum. Economically speaking, when markets reach equilibrium, they’re functioning at peak efficiency…but efficiency does not come without a cost. It is therefore incumbent upon plan participants and sponsors to measure what costs are acceptable what cannot be tolerated, then negotiate all that falls between these ends of the spectrum. The government, in turn, plays the key role of allowing the plans designed in the private market to operate without bureaucratic roadblocks or undue intervention. The government should NOT play a role as the single payer and decision maker on who gets care, where it is administered, when it is offered, or how much the health system gets paid. Put plainly, complete government takeover of the healthcare system would be more likely lead to the demise of our nation’s physical and economic health than it would lead to the cure of it.
I support a free-market solution to the healthcare issues in the United States. A private sector solution that forces efficiency and market equilibrium based on economies of scale and comparative advantage will not only lower the cost of healthcare throughout the nation, but it will improve quality and make it significantly more accessible to everyone who needs it.
For those of you keeping track at home, that’s 321 words, but no tangible solution to all the currently ails our health care system. There’s multiple references to the free market, but no actual ideas on how to reign in skyrocketing health care costs, ensure coverage for more (if not all) Americans, or improve the quality of the care Americans receive.
If Dave Westlake’s health care “plan” were a sandwich, it would have an awful lot of bread but no real meat. As that old TV commercial asks, “where’s the beef?”