We’ve shown in the previous Mental Lever why single-payer is a phony, misleading term. Essentially, there’s no real single-payer in left-statist schemes, such as “single-payer” healthcare. The term single-payer is inherently fraudulent. But it does encode a deeper statist desire and danger…
What left-statists really want to achieve is a single-price.
Single-payer systems replace millions of natural prices with an artificial, single-price set by politicians or bureaucrats. You can know that…
- prices are largely natural when you see them vary from town to town, corner to corner, store to store, and day to day.
- a price is artificial when you see that the price does not vary with geography or time.
Natural prices prevent shortages by accounting for local conditions of supply and demand. Natural prices regulate both production and consumption. A higher relative price sends two signals at once — conserve me, and make more of me. A lower relative price gives a green light to consumption while allowing productive resources to serve more pressing needs.
The artificial single-price can do none of these things. It is a political price set for a political purpose. Statist programs like Medicare and Medicaid dictate single-prices for all the services they fund.
Highly statist countries like the Soviet Union, Cuba, and Venezuela, do the same thing for their entire economies. The result is shortages, poverty, and often death. So keep it in mind…
Single-payer really means single-price, and single-price means suffering.
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In his 2017 book “Blitzed: Drugs in the Third Reich”, author Norman Ohler traces how the National Socialist German Workers Party pushed the dangerous drug Methamphetamine on the German people. The Party wanted people using the drug because it made soldiers more belligerent and kept workers awake, working longer shifts.
What the Nazis understood, is that the expensive side of Karl Marx’ principle, “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need”. is the need. If only people’s needs could be made less, the existing resources could be made to stretch.
The crude solution practiced by the Party, was to encourage people to take a drug that shortened their lives by raising the risk of stroke and heart disease.
Workers maintained on methamphetamine, thought the Party, would live industrious lives until sometime in their fifties or sixties, when they would abruptly drop dead of a massive heart attack or stroke.
Healthcare in Nazi Germany could be very affordable, if nobody lived long enough to require much of it.
Disturbingly, there were prominent people in Britain and the US who agreed with these theories. Some of them actually emigrated to Nazi Germany, because democratic institutions made the pace of social change too slow for their liking, and they wanted to see what a dictatorship could accomplish. Others continue promoting statism here.