Health Care Fallacy #3

Tyler Cowen’s third health care fallacy is,

Let’s start with a correct claim:

The fiscal outlook is grimmer than before, therefore we should spend less on health care reform than I used to think.

I’m willing to make a comparable admission when it comes to tax cuts, so will you sign on to this claim about health care and revise your policy prescriptions accordingly? (Unless of course your previous estimate had forecast the current revenue situation; Nouriel Roubini could claim this.)

If you do not sign on to this claim, you are committing the third health care cost fallacy. Note also that your support for non-revenue-intensive means of health care reform might well go up, for related reasons.

Think of it this way, you are planning on buying a house and you and your spouse both work. Suddenly your spouse loses her job. Do you go ahead and buy the same house you were looking at when you both had a job, or do you scale back and look for a less expensive house?

Photo by Flickr user Brooks Elliot used under the Creative Commons license.

FILED UNDER: Economics and Business, Health, US Politics, , , ,
Steve Verdon
About Steve Verdon
Steve has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and attended graduate school at The George Washington University, leaving school shortly before staring work on his dissertation when his first child was born. He works in the energy industry and prior to that worked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the Division of Price Index and Number Research. He joined the staff at OTB in November 2004.


  1. John Burgess says:

    Umm Steve? I think recent history has answered that question thoroughly:

    Go right ahead and buy that house, unless a more expensive one comes into your line of sight. Then buy that one!

  2. Steve Verdon says:

    Heh, yeah.

  3. Drew says:

    John and Steve –

    Of course, those who do that silly stuff end up in foreclosure. But don’t worry about government. With the government, they just increase taxes. Um, of course they do owe on Medicare, and Medicaid and SS………….uh, hold on a minute guys. Listen, can I get back to you on this?

    Hey Timmy!! Tim!! What do they call a US Govt foreclosure??!!

  4. Bithead says:

    What do they call a US Govt foreclosure??!!

    “An Obama.”

  5. G.A.Phillips says:

    What do they call a US Govt foreclosure??!!

    “An Obama.”

    lol, nice.

    I call for a foreclosere on the US Govt.

  6. Ron Greiner says:

    Didn’t the Soviet Union go into foreclosure?

    U.S. politicians have not passed Socialized Medicine yet.