On the ‘Sacredness’ of Government Health Care

There is no doubt that the political class believes the “system” to be sacred. This is not surprising: Any ruling faction needs an established religion to control the people, and health care is the most likely candidate in this secular age. After all, Henry VIII claimed to believe that the Roman Catholic Church was “sacred” (and advocated it so well that the pope named him “Defender of the Faith”). However, when the Church interfered with his marital preferences, he didn’t abolish established religion, but substituted his own “sacred” Church of England.

The share of people who want fundamental change in health care is about the same in every country. The reason that people in other countries are more meekly acceptant of the status quo boils down to basic public-choice theory. Most people are healthy, and not sufficiently motivated to organize against the government’s control. Because any private interests in the health “system” are utterly dependent on government for their revenues, there are no interest groups to lobby for freedom.

Indeed, the growth of government health-care since the failure of Hillarycare a decade and a half ago (through SCHIP, Medicaid expansion, and people aging into Medicare) has already created conflicting incentives for interest groups in the health sector. Let’s face it: If we didn’t have the Tea-Partiers on our side this year, the “health-care industry” would have long since caved in.

Americans would be utterly offended by politicians asserting the power to decide which church is sacred. I cannot believe we would allow them to establish a “sacred” health-care system!

Nothing contained in this blog is to be construed as necessarily reflecting the views of the Pacific Research Institute or as an attempt to thwart or aid the passage of any legislation.

Scroll to Top