Monday, December 27, 2010

Price Controls and Life Controls

The New York Times published a couple of interesting stories lately on government plans for health insurers and for you:

"Health Insurers to Be Required to Justify Rate Increases Over 10 Percent" (12/21/2010)

"Obama Returns to End-of-Life Plan That Caused Stir" (122/25/2010)

In other words, the government will tell insurance companies how much they will be allowed to charge for their services.

And they will "encourage" doctors to help patients plan for their deaths.

My prediction: Over time, this will inevitably lead to government "encouraging" doctors to help patients decide that certain treatments to extend their lives are too expensive and not worth considering. The government will hijack the the trust patients currently place in their physicians to be their honest advocates and instead use financial incentives to have physicians promote the government's preferred end-of-life spending priorities.

But just don't call them "death panels"!

Unless ObamaCare is repealed, expect to see more such price controls and life controls.

(Links via ReasonPharm and Instapundit.)