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August 01, 2007


Arnold Kling responds to Thoma:

"Why is high spending on medical care a public policy problem at all? If the affluent were spending their own money to purchase health insurance or to pay for medical services out of pocket, I would see no need for government to "rein in" such spending.

"The public policy problem arises because our government allocates health benefits based on age rather than based on need. The public policy challenge is that we have obligated too much in future benefits to retirees relative to our likely ability to collect taxes. In that regard, I think that Samuelson has correctly identified the core issue. "

Wow, you've read Samuelson's columns since 1977? How old are you anyway?

Also, for the record, it's completely dishonest to lump Medicaid in among "programs that serve older people." Actually, it serves people of all ages, including a lot of children. But since it serves some senior citizens, I'm sure it's convenient to throw it in with Social Security and Medicare to boost an argument that the government is spending huge amounts on seniors.

Nyhan is tired of Samuelson's argument. I'm tired of people who ignore the enormous pending problem of entitlement spending on retiring baby boomers. Samuelson's critics don't even offer their own ideas. They just mock him. Real intellectual genius at work.

Nyhan believes in a free lunch, that's why he doesn't like or read Samuelson. He thinks that we can social engineer our way to prosperity---wrong!!! He rails against the elites, but he's one himself. Get a life.

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