Hey, what about the “Do not call list?” That was sweet.

One thing that bugs the hell out of me when the health care “debate” gets going is the knee-jerk reaction that if it’s a government program it obviously will suck.

The government has never gotten anything right, don’tcha know. Just look at how many things it’s mucked up! I mean, sure, there were a few things it’s done well–the Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe after WWII, the Voting Rights Act, the Civil Rights Act, defeating polio and smallpox, making sure we have safe meat and drinking water, the interstate highway system, labor standards like the 40-hour work week and minimum wage, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, landing on the moon and exploring the solar system, creating the internet, regulating commerce and banking so that we haven’t had a major depression in 70 years as opposed to once every 20 years prior to Roosevelt–but other than that? Government sucks.

John at Thudfactor has an excellent rebuttal to one of those knee-jerk questions (“When was the last time something you got for free was better quality than something you paid for?”).

I’m not saying that the government will automatically be better at managing the health care system of the country than the private sector has been, but at least let’s not start out with the ridiculous argument that it’s not even possible.

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4 Responses to Hey, what about the “Do not call list?” That was sweet.

  1. Thud says:

    Thanks! See also: rural electrification, one of the greatest government programs ever. We ought to repeat that for broadband. (The gov’t took over rural electrification because the for-profit firms refused to serve rural areas. “Too expensive,” they said. “Not enough profit.”)

  2. geeky says:

    Tap water is pretty much the perfect example of getting something for free(-ish) that’s better than what you pay for (bottled water): it’s better for the environment, and it’s actually regulated to prevent contamination, unlike bottled water.

    But we all know the moon landing was fake.

  3. Karan says:

    Is there a way to flip that stupid argument and ask…when has private industry made something better and affordable for “everyone”?

  4. Karan says:

    Wait, I forgot to add safer to that list…

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