Video From Fiorina’s Past Surfaces, And She Can’t Be Happy- Conservatives Will Be Furious

Did Carly Fiorina at one time support an individual mandate like the one Obamacare has? Video has recently surfaced showing that she in fact did.

In a CNN interview in 2013, Fiorina was asked by former CNN host Stephanie Cutter:

So do you agree with the mandate idea? That is a Republican idea, came out of the Heritage Foundation, one of our co-hosts, Newt Gingrich, was behind it. And the ban on preexisting conditions? Do you agree with those two provisions?

Fiorina responded:

I actually do agree with those two provisions. And I think Obamacare remains an abomination, and let me tell you why. First of all, I think no one should be denied health care because of pre-existing conditions. And I think there are many more efficient ways we could have dealt with this other than Obamacare.

Although many Republicans used to support the individual mandate, since Obamacare put one in, it has become unpopular.

In fact, a 1990s Heritage Foundation proposal advocated for a mandate.

Fiorina spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores told CNN:

She was agreeing with the Heritage proposal, which said that there would be some type of catastrophic care requirement — set up a little like auto damage liability insurance — aimed at reducing taxpayer costs of unexpected ER visits. Not what Obamacare required, which is actually high end insurance coverage.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson, and Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse, all Republicans, introduced health care bills last spring; none included an individual mandate.

What does Carly Fiorina’s past support of an individual mandate mean in her pursuit for the Republican nomination?

The Economics Of Hillary Clinton

In a recent Labor Day speech to union workers in Illinois, Hillary Clinton declared that if she is elected president of the United States, she would make sure that “some employers go to jail for wage theft and all the other abuses they engage in.” Her incendiary comments were obvious “red meat” for the audience, but it also helped to clarify her own economic views and how she would govern if elected.

Even though Clinton is somewhat mired down in a scandal involving her email servers used while she was at Foggy Bottoms, it seems that she will survive it — as she and her husband have survived every other scandal that has defined their political careers — and be the official Democratic Party nominee. Given the current state of US politics and given the fact that there doesn’t seem to be a Republican challenger who can stand up to her star power, at least from this current vantage point, it seems Clinton will slide into the office for where she has been “destined” since 1992.

Given that there is a very good chance Clinton will march into the White House in January 2017, we should scrutinize her economic beliefs and her proposed economic policies, as we may well have to be living them in less than two years. Not surprising for people interested in economics of liberty (or, better put, the economics of prosperity), Hillary’s policies will disappoint and disappoint greatly.

If one combines that Clinton line with other things she has said about economic policy, as well as what is written on her website about what she calls “the economy of tomorrow,” a picture emerges that does not bring confidence to anyone who understands the role freedom plays in a market economy. Like Bernie Sanders, whose policies and viewpoints I already have covered, Clinton takes a hardcore statist approach to economic policies.

When she was First Lady, Clinton spoke of “channeling Eleanor Roosevelt.” In the current campaign, at least what she declares on her website and in her stump speeches, she also channels Eleanor’s husband, Franklin. Although Clinton claims that her proposals are part of “the economy of tomorrow,” the hard reality is that they essentially are the economy of the New Deal, and the part of the New Deal that created so much damage that a Congress dominated by Roosevelt’s own party repealed much of it. Like her primary opponent, Bernie Sanders, Clinton is trying to revive a second New Deal.

While Franklin Roosevelt placed his policies under the umbrella of the “Four Freedoms,” Clinton has characterized her proposals under the aegis of the “Four Fights” in which she promises to “fight” for this and “fight” for that. She especially claims to be fond of the American middle class, so we should see how her plans advance middle-class prospects.

Actions vs. Rhetoric

Before examining Hillary Clinton’s economic proposals, however, I remind readers that this is not another screed to satisfy the Hillary-phobia Republicans and what they have expressed in the past two decades. This opinion piece does one thing: scrutinize her economic ideas, and allow readers to make their own decisions about her candidacy.

We also need to separate Clinton’s rhetoric from her own actions, and especially the economics of her current life, for there are no greater champions for what is derisively called “crony capitalism” than Clinton and her husband, and perhaps no two people in current public life have benefited from this economic hybrid more than the Clintons. Hillary Clinton will champion the middle class in her rhetoric, but the dynamics and the history of crony capitalism tell us that the middle class and the poor suffer the most from such an arrangement of political economy.

The Crony-Capitalist Clintons

(To the credit of some on the Left, a couple of Progressive outlets have exposed Clinton’s close ties with the firms that dominate an industry that she denounces in her campaign rhetoric.)

When Bill Clinton left office, he and his wife essentially had a negative net worth, as their legal liabilities well outstripped their personal assets. Thanks to some outside help, they were able to find lodging in the tony Hamptons, which is not exactly a middle-class suburb; and soon afterward, money began to fill their bank accounts. Because Hillary was tied to her US Senate salary, having been elected to office by New York voters in 2000, the couple depended upon Bill making speech after speech and collecting huge fee after fee.

The focal point of the Clintons and crony capitalism is not the huge speaker fees that both Bill and Hillary received (after Hillary left the State Department), however, but the role that the Clinton Foundation has played in turning the Clintons into multi-millionaires. To be blunt, the Clintons essentially ran a protection racket through the foundation that would have made Don Corleone blush.

When she was at State, Hillary would grant a firm some legal or administrative favors, and then the firm would make large contributions to the Clinton Foundation or had Bill make a speech with an accompanying honorarium that could take care of numerous middle class families for a year. For example, there was the case of the Swiss Bank UBS, as noted in a recent posting by The Atlantic:

The Swiss bank UBS is one of the biggest, most powerful financial institutions in the world. As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton intervened to help it out with the IRS. And after that, the Swiss bank paid Bill Clinton $1.5 million for speaking gigs.The Wall Street Journal reported all that and more Thursday in an article that highlights huge conflicts of interest that the Clintons have created in the recent past.

Not only did UBS pay Bill directly, but it also contributed more than $600,000 to the Clinton Foundation, and this hardly was the only time something like this happened. There are no direct examples of the quid pro quo in which someone might have hard evidence that Hillary sold favors at State, but one cannot help but look suspicious.

The critics of Hillary’s actions correctly note that trading favors for large sums of money and running a populist campaign do not go together. Furthermore, as this article examines her “populist” economic platform, one suspects that competition from Bernie Sanders and the shadow of Elizabeth Warren in the background have had a lot to do with Clinton’s newfound “discovery” that Wall Street has some shady characters (including those who have donated to the Clinton Foundation or paid Bill and/or Hillary a tidy speaker’s fee).

There is no doubt that Clinton, like Sanders and Warren, has a “zero-sum” view of economic activity, and thus believes she is fully-justified in promoting her own versions of economic statism. Furthermore, she and her husband, along with about everyone else in her circle, has done well personally by pushing “protection racket economics,” and has come to see businesses and business owners as bottomless wells from which to draw funds both for herself and for her pet projects.

Clinton, Alinsky, and “New Era” Politics

Unlike her husband, Hillary Clinton was a disciple of Saul Alinksy, the radical Marxist who employed social activism as a means of destroying both private and governmental institutions so that a “new era” could take its place. Like so many other radicals, Alinksy was a master of destruction and knew which buttons to push and how to organize people to demand favors for themselves; but he had absolutely no understanding of how economics works, and, he had no interest in finding out. The entrepreneur, in his view, was a bloodsucker, and eliminating that parasite was foundational to all of his activism.

While Hillary is not as ideological in her economic approaches as are Sanders and Warren (and even Barack Obama with his “you didn’t build that” mentality to entrepreneurship), she is just as destructive. An examination of her economic proposals on the campaign website demonstrates that hard fact. While she does not claim to be an outright socialist like Bernie Sanders (who apparently believes he can turn the entire country into Sweden, or at least Minnesota), nonetheless it is clear that Sanders — and Elizabeth Warren — have greatly influenced her campaign.

Campaigning for a New New Deal

Like Sanders, who wants our future to look a lot like the era of eighty years ago, Clinton’s “Economy of Tomorrow” looks a whole lot like FDR’s economy of 1937, as she channels Bernie Sanders (and maybe Eleanor Roosevelt again) for the newest edition of the New Deal:

  • Build “Infrastructure”: Once again, a Democrat trots out the “infrastructure” line complete with the promise of the massive public works programs that are reminiscent of the old Public Works Administration (PWA) and, of course, the Works Progress Administration (WPA);
  • “Invest” in Research and Education: One is reminded of Bill Clinton’s old stump line, “We’re gonna invest in education and the environment.” That means Hillary looks to increase federal appropriation for government-directed research and federal education programs that are dominated by standardized testing;
  • Raise the Minimum Wage: While not endorsing $15 an hour, Clinton still repeats the old saw that raising the minimum wage magically raises all worker’s pay, suddenly making everyone wealthier;
  • Bring Back the Unions: No Democratic presidential campaign is complete without a call to return to the 1950s, when a vast swath of the US economy was dominated by labor unions. It also was a time when massive strikes and deadly labor-oriented violence ruled the day. Clinton has vowed to do whatever is possible to shore up the generous-but-usually-underfunded union pensions;
  • Further Subsidize Higher Education: A Hillary administration promises to vastly increase student subsidies for college and “forever make college affordable and available.” How she will pay for this vast new entitlement is not on the website;
  • Expand Day Care: This has been standard Democratic presidential fare since Michael Dukakis based his 1988 campaign on day care for working mothers. Enough said;
  • Promote Universal Healthcare: What people were calling HillaryCare in 1994 is now ObamaCare, and Clinton promises to protect and expand it, all while both trying to “slow the growth of overall health care costs and deliver better care to patients”;
  • Expand Social Security Benefits: Increase Social Security payouts and bring more people under the SS umbrella. Again, Clinton does not state how her government will fund this huge new entitlement.

So far, the proposals look to be something akin to New Deal Lite. However, unlike Sanders and former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, who has declared in no uncertain terms that regulations place no hardships whatsoever on small or even large businesses, Clinton at least gives lip service to some of the difficulties small businesses face. Unfortunately, she also continues her party’s attack language on businesses in general, especially larger corporations.

  • “Cut Red Tape for Small Business”: Clinton says she will offer regulatory relief for small business enterprises and entrepreneurs. However, this is puzzling, given her open disdain for private enterprise, including her infamous remarks given earlier this year at a rally in Massachusetts: “Don’t let anybody, don’t let anybody tell you that, ah, you know, it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs. You know that old theory, trickle-down economics. That has been tried, that has failed. It has failed rather spectacularly.”
  • Provide Tax Relief for Small Businesses: She is not specific, but claims her administration will lessen tax burdens for small businesses, but not for “big corporations that can afford lawyers and lobbyists.”
  • Tap New Markets: Clinton promises to aid businesses in expanding domestic and overseas markets. She claims to support innovation, yet has brutally attacked the “sharing economy,” which has been a large creator of new wealth;
  • Improve Access to Capital: Clinton promises to bring together the “the best ideas from the private sector and government” to bring about more capital directed toward small business. The problem, of course, is not a lack of “ideas,” but rather the fact that so much capital has been misdirected, thanks to both Federal Reserve System policies and direct governmental interference;
  • Force Investors to Hold onto Stocks and Bonds: Clinton has resurrected the bogus criticism from the 1980s that market participants are myopic and only short-term in investment outlook, while politicians and bureaucrats care more about the long-term future. Commentator George Will even called for a law requiring anyone who purchases stock to hold onto those shares for a minimum of two years. (Economist Robert Higgs has noted that when governments are overtly hostile to private enterprise, business owners become uncertain about the future and are forced into making short-term decisions in order to survive the ordeal.);
  • Expand Employee Benefits and Force Up Minimum Wage: Clinton claims on her website, “When workers feel secure, they are more productive, efficient, and successful,” and proposes to require employers to add family leave and other benefits as well as increasing the minimum wage;
  • Rein in Wall Street: There is rich irony here, as few people have benefited more from Wall Street largess than Clinton and her husband. She defends the Dodd-Frank Act and vows to defend all its particulars, despite the fact that Dodd-Frank actually has favored larger and more politically-connected banks over the smaller community banks that Hillary claims to favor. In other words, she supports the supposed intentions of regulatory measures but quietly favors the results which turn the intentions upside down, all the while feigning outrage at the inevitable outcomes;
  • Promote “Green Energy” at the Expense of Conventional Energy Sources: This is standard fare for many in the political classes who claim that the “clean energy” sector is “creating jobs.” In reality, the new “green jobs” gobble up far more resources per unit of output than do conventional sources of energy and kill employment opportunities elsewhere.

Despite Clinton’s newfound populist rhetoric, her economic agenda reflects her own lifestyle of practicing crony capitalism. Other than her promise to remove “red tape” for small business startups, Clinton’s economic propositions follow the same depressing line that we have seen from Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren: private enterprise extracts wealth from the economy, while the expansion of government power builds wealth and employment opportunities.

If one briefly can summarize Clinton’s policy-making viewpoints, it is this: Hillary Clinton believes that an economy should be a tool of the state and reflect the political interests of Washington. Anything else is called “greed,” or “profits before people.” Private employers and business owners should not seek to be profitable, but rather to be virtuous, with the necessary virtue being decided by Clinton herself.

Hillary Clinton, a beneficiary of the very worst aspects of crony capitalism, has decided after all that she is an economic populist who wants to “share the wealth.” No one is mistaking her for Bernie Sanders or even Huey Long; but, nonetheless, she is a thoroughgoing statist telling voters that the way to improve the economy is to make it more difficult to produce things and force up business costs.

She clearly is not claiming to be a free-enterpriser and stands by her view that state control of economic exchanges will result in more exchanges and improved employment prospects and increased income. What she does not say is that the very economic burdens she promises to lay upon businesses will further erode the prospects of the American middle class she claims to support.

The economics of Hillary Clinton are first and foremost about expanding the power and scope of the US government, and as government gains more control, the more employers and business owners need to be in the good graces of American politicians. To be blunt, Clinton believes that people like herself can continually loot US businesses, with business owners paying their protection money without complain. After all, Hillary knows best; just ask her.

This commentary originally appeared at and is reprinted under a Creative Commons license


The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

Envy, Economic Destruction, And Moral Decay: Pope Francis And Bernie Sanders

Both Pope Francis and Bernie Sanders seem to be down on capitalism, and they support the imposition of more economic regulations, and higher taxes on “the rich,” in the name of reversing “income inequality.” Which means taking more wealth and income away from the producers, the innovators, the entrepreneurs, the providers of jobs. Which ultimately causes slowed productivity, factory shut-downs and higher unemployment. And then these socialists and fascists call for more interventions, more bureaucratic intrusiveness into private industry, and ultimately, government seizures of whole industries (like health care).

Yes, they are both fascists as well as socialists. But “fascist” sounds bad, unlike “socialist.” That has “social” in it. “We love people!” So Bernie calls himself a “socialist.” And while I don’t think Pope Francis calls himself a “socialist,” I’m sure he probably doesn’t object to that description.

As opposed to “fascist,” which sounds like “Hitler” and all that. But both words have economic meanings, and that’s important.

In my simplistic view of things, I see socialism as “public ownership of the means of production” which really means government ownership, which means bureaucrats usurping ownership away from the people. It is theft, in actuality. And fascism supposedly allows for private ownership, but the controls over the industries, property, contracts and labor are seized by those covetous and power-grabbing government bureaucrats. Both socialism and fascism are enslavement of the people.

As I have stated in the past, the minimum wage is an example of economic fascism. Bureaucrats order employers to pay workers not less than a certain amount. The choice is: pay the worker less than demanded by ignoramus bureaucrats and go to jail, or cut those jobs if the employer can’t afford it. Most employers choose the latter rather than going to jail. So that’s a fascist control usurped by bureaucrats over the wage part of the private contract between employer and employee.

Interesting how “liberals” are concerned when private businesses engage in “price gouging,” even though the free market’s raising prices at certain times actually benefits those most in need (as opposed to anti-price-gouging laws which backfire and cause shortages). But when the “liberals” artificially raise the price of labor (minimum wage), they really are “price-gouging” by legal force, and thus causing people to lose their jobs! (Some “liberals”!)

Now, Pope Francis and Bernie Sanders’s complaints are supposedly of the greed of “capitalism” and the “1%“. They want to crack down on Wall Street. In my view, Wall Street is just a de facto branch of the federal government, and is rigged to enrich the insiders at the expense of small investors. Wall Street is also a beneficiary of socialism. Example: The Wall Street Bailout at involuntary taxpayer expense. So Wall Street is not an example of actual free market capitalism.

Actually, there has been very little capitalism–that is, free market capitalism–in America, certainly not in Europe or any of the other areas of the world. There is crony capitalism, in which the established firms get in bed with the bureaucracy’s major power wielders, who write special legislation to pay off the insider established firms’ bigwigs, who have all the legal forces at their fingertips to get around whatever legislation is written that the smaller firms can’t afford to do. This is a main component of fascism, by the way.

Besides the minimum wage, one textbook example of crony capitalism and fascism (that some people have been mistakenly referring to as “socialism”) has been the ObamaCare law, or the Affordable Care Act. This law was largely written by the lobbyists of the pharmaceutical and insurance industries. They have benefited a great deal from this new health insurance racket.

In contrast, real capitalism is this: Free markets, i.e. freedom, in which everyone is free to do with one’s own person, labor, property, capital and wealth whatever one wants, as long as you don’t steal or use fraud, coercion or aggression against others. And that’s it. No governmental intrusions or guilty-until-proven-innocent controls, mandates, licensing, or reporting anything to the government. For those are all trespasses, in my view; and thus, they are criminal intrusions, which is what socialism and fascism are all about.

In contrast, free market capitalism is the way of life which, during the 19th Century, led to the greatest expansion in human prosperity and raised the standard of living of most of the people in society. It raised the standard of living of those at the bottom, as well as the middle.

And then in the 20th Century, the socialists and fascists came in and wrecked all that. Besides the Europeans and their socialist and fascist centrally planned economic policies and wars, in America there were Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt, the two major players whose socialism and fascism gave us the income tax, the Federal Reserve System, and FDR’s many, many fascist bureaus and programs, ordering people to do this and do that, or else.

The socialist redistribution-of-wealth schemes and takeovers of whole industries and/or fascist controls that Pope Francis and Bernie Sanders want to impose on America are an expansion of those which began over the last century. The policies they support are not those of promoting freedom, of liberating the people from the shackles of the State, but just the opposite.

Socialism and fascism are government enslavement of the people. Of course, they would never admit to that, just as the “tax” theft advocates don’t want to call their policies “stealing.” As I wrote in this earlier post, there are some people who mistakenly view the relationship between a capitalist employer and employee as like an “enslavement.” I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “wage slavery.” But in free market capitalism, everything is voluntary. The worker is not being forced to work at that place of employment. In a free society, all relationships and contracts are voluntary. In socialism and fascism, they are not voluntary — they are coerced, forced, compelled, ordered, mandatory, or prohibited by government bureaucrats who just like to order people around. And that’s one of the biggest differences between free markets and the socialist/fascist utopia envisioned by Bernie Sanders and Pope Francis.

Besides the personal enslavements, the results of economic policies that Bernie Sanders wants to impose on America, and Pope Francis wants to see globally, would be like the terrible conditions in Venezuela. Government’s socialist takeovers of industries and fascist price controls cause shortages and empty store shelves and long lines.

In America, just look at all the free market-directed grocery stores and food distributors we have, with minimal or non-existent bureaucratic intrusions. Prices are set by wholesalers and retailers, not government bureaucrats. No long lines and empty store shelves. That’s capitalism, freedom, and prosperity.

The motivations of Pope Francis and Bernie Sanders, and most of the people on the left, should be viewed as dubious when they continually support policies of government theft of private wealth and government regulations which have mainly succeeded in causing higher unemployment, inflation and economic distress. The Left’s most recent anti-capitalist hero, French economist Thomas Piketty, wrote in his book, Capitalism in the Twenty-First Century, that a progressive, global tax on capital and individual wealth “would not bring the government much in the way of revenue, because it would quickly fulfill its objective: to drastically reduce remuneration…” As quoted in this Mises Institute article, Piketty writes his main point, which in my view mirrors most on the left: “The primary purpose of the capital tax is not to finance the social state but to regulate capitalism.” I.e., it is not as important to help the poor as it is to make the rich less rich. Which ultimately takes more opportunities away from the middle class and the poor, and makes the poor poorer as well — that’s how things work with these government interventions. We know that from actual historical and empirical evidence.

So really, Pope Francis and Bernie Sanders reflect the Left’s general sentiment of envy toward the successful, the entrepreneurs, and producers and creators of wealth. They promote the policies of wealth destruction and economic and moral decay. After all, promoting the stealing from others’ honestly acquired wealth and property is just that: stealing. And that’s immoral. They can rationalize the institutionalized theft all they want, but that’s what it is. This is also what motivates their obsession with higher taxes on producers to cure “global warming/climate change,” as well. In my view, they are not as concerned with cleaning the environment and preventing “melting polar ice caps and rising sea levels” as they are obsessed with taking more wealth away from the producers of society (and thus taking jobs away from the workers!).

This article originally appeared at Scott’s blog

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

Forget Obamacare: 100 Years Of Government’s ‘Managed’ Health Care

The term “managed care” entered the common lexicon in the 1990s, when contracted arrangements between physicians and hospitals on the one hand, and insurance entities on the other, became standard means to try to control healthcare expenditures. The origin of the concept is frequently credited to Dr. Paul Ellwood and his influential Jackson Hole Group, who introduced the idea in the early 1970s.

But in my 2-part series on the economic history of American medicine, I examined how healthcare has been “managed” from its inception in the late 1910s, when the Flexnerian reforms and the ensuing medical licensing laws began to influence (and limit) the type of medical care Americans could choose to receive.

Since that time, an ever-growing managerial class of academics, industry leaders, technocrats, and private foundation believers in “systems” and in a “scientific” approach to organizing society has been guiding the various government interventions which have shaped American healthcare as we know it today.

And if we take the Flexnerian reforms of the mid-1910s to be the very first set of interventions giving birth to the system, then the history of American healthcare as it subsequently unfolded is a stark illustration of what economist Ludwig von Mises described in his 1950 essay “Middle-of-the-Road Policy Leads to Socialism.”

In that essay, Mises argued that when the government hopes to avoid the extremes of pure capitalism and pure socialism, and chooses instead to selectively intervene in a sector of the economy to address a “market failure,” it will either fall short of its intended goal or generate new, unanticipated difficulties that are invariably greater than the ones initially confronted. The reason for the failure has to do with an intrinsic deficiency in knowledge, as proposed by Hayek and Mises, to the inability of government to assume entrepreneurial risk, and to other relevant factors as well (political incentives and bureaucratic inertia, for example).

By the time the failures and unintended consequences of the government intervention are recognized, many interests have become vested in keeping the status quo. As a result, the intervention is almost never reversed, but additional government measures are proposed instead. As these generate their own unexpected problems, repeated cycles of intervention in due time bring the sector more and more under the control of government.

That scenario seems to have played out in healthcare over the last 100 years, and the history of our medical system could reasonably be described as a “Misesian” tragedy in five acts as follows:

Act One was the institution of licensing laws favoring the AMA-led “scientific” care, ostensibly to improve the quality of medical education. Consequent to these laws were an acute shortage of physicians, an incentivization for more aggressive medical care, an unprecedented increase in medical prices, and a worsening of healthcare access inequalities.

Act Two took place after the Great Depression deflated that first healthcare bubble. A set of legal interventions was engineered to facilitate the establishment of health insurance and “rescue” the medical institutions which had invested in excess hospital capacity during the boom years. Consequent to these legal measures was a second wave of medical price inflation due principally to an underestimation of “moral hazard.” With this increase in prices, health access inequalities separating those holding health insurance from those without it increased.

Act Three was the establishment of government insurance programs to provide coverage for those most disenfranchised by the rapid expansion of employer-based health insurance, namely the elderly and the poor.

Consequent to the government provision of insurance was an astronomical rise in medical prices, again due to moral hazard among an elderly population naturally more prone to utilizing medical resources. This tremendous price inflation affected all aspects of the economy, but harmed the federal budget in particular and caused an ever increasing portion of GDP to be devoted to healthcare.

Act Four was the enactment of various legislations, from the Health Maintenance Organization Act signed under Nixon in 1973 to the HITECH Act of 2009, aimed at controlling costs by fixing prices and reducing utilization of healthcare by a variety of bureaucratic measures.

Consequent to that legislative spree, a consolidation of the healthcare industry occurred, with hospitals, private health insurers, and physician practices each merging into ever larger entities. As a result, the attempts at price controls were wholly ineffective; but the trend of consolidation also made the healthcare system much less responsive to the needs of patients. Patient discontent grew, and professional dissatisfaction among doctors and health professionals also emerged.

Act Five is being played out as we speak. To address the medical price inflation crisis, the Affordable Care Act of 2010 is forcibly extending health insurance to the entire population and introducing a number of provisions to try to control costs. To deal with a notable deterioration in healthcare quality (traced back, at least in part, to a variety of systemic disruptions in care), physicians are spurred into becoming employees of “accountable care organizations” or other large administrative entities that can mirror or adapt to the bureaucratic demands of the government.

Meanwhile, the private insurance industry is reduced to a small oligarchy which, given important new restrictions imposed on its business model, may not survive in the same capacity in the next few years.

Admittedly, the outcome that will follow the current stage of evolution remains to be seen. Will it really lead to total government control (Mises’s essay did not deem that to be inevitable), or will a private healthcare sector remain in operation? Will there be an unexpected good ending, or will the system collapse under the weight of its debt?

Only time will tell, but we may be reminded that according to historian Andrew Feffer, the notion that social and political affairs ought to be managed with “scientific” rigor and systemic planning is actually a hallmark of the American Progressive movement at the turn of the last century.

In that case, and to the extent that some of the country’s brightest managerial talent are to this day seduced into concocting for us policy “solutions” to the problems at hand, it may be appropriate to view the American healthcare system, at least as it stands today, not only as a tragedy, but as a real triumph of Progressivism.

This commentary originally appeared at and is reprinted here under a Creative Commons license

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

WJ Exclusive: 13-Year-Old Southern Black Conservative Shares His Unique Take On The Confederate Flag

C.J. Pearson, the popular pint-sized political pundit, recently spoke to Western Journalism on a variety of topics, including an issue that has affected his home state of Georgia. Stone Mountain was the site of a recent Confederate flag rally, sparking renewed debate over the divisive historical symbol.

While Pearson understands the painful past many associate with the Confederate flag, he expresses hope that Americans can move on to have conversations about issues affecting the nation’s future.

“While I do support the removal of the Confederate flag from public grounds,” he explained, “I do believe some activists have taken removal to the extreme.”

He went on to conclude that Americans “have bigger fish to fry.”

Specifically, he noted that the black community should look at the devastating impact of abortion.

“The Confederate flag didn’t kill 90,000 black babies last year,” he noted. “Planned Parenthood did.”

The teen, already expressing congressional ambitions, tackled other weighty topics during the interview – including a Supreme Court many conservatives feel has exceeded its constitutional boundaries.

“The recent ruling by the Supreme Court to not only preserve the Affordable Care Act was despicable and, to be quite frank, disgraceful,” he concluded. “The Supreme Court interprets the law. They don’t make the law. In regards to their ruling on gay marriage, it was clear trespass upon the states’ rights to choose how and to whom they distribute marriage licenses.”

Continuing his thoughts on the gay marriage ruling, Pearson shared his opinion that it was “less about religion and more about the judicial activism that was clearly on display for every American to see.”

Do you support this young conservative’s vision? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth