The Right Coast

June 10, 2005
O Canada, your health care system is funny
By Tom Smith

You can't make this stuff up.

It leads me to propose a kind of anti-Hayekian principle. Just as markets and other free institutions result in spontaneous orders that are more elegant and useful than anything we could have planned, so governments blunder into situations that are more bizarre and more hilarious (in a dark way) than anything we could make up.

On a more serious note, it always struck me as bizarre that the various leftotrons cannot see that there is a fundamental moral right involved in the freedom to pay someone to fix your body. If you were walking down the street with one of those Inuit arrows sticking out of your back, don't you have a moral right to give somebody money to get him to pull it out and fix you up? How is that different from the right to buy food? I suppose if you have something better than the market as a way of allocating food and medical care, you might have an argument, but of course, not only do they not have a better alternative, they have created enormous human catastrophes trying to prove that they did. At some point, don't you have to say, I'm sorry doctor, but the leeches don't seem to be working?

The question remains, will Canada slip towards sanity, or come up with something even more zany? Maybe, you have the right to buy medical services, but you can't use your own money? Maybe, you can buy medical services, but must pay in fish? It confirms the cosmic centrality of the USA: to the south we have tragedy, and to the north, comedy, eh?