by Sally C. Pipes | Orlando Sentinel | September 24, 2015
Insurance Mergers: Weddings Mean Funeral for Healthcare
Sovereign Solutions Editor’s Note:
The linked article speaks for itself on the virtue of even more healthcare insurance mergers.
Less competition in the healthcare insurance market would translate to greater costs to be borne by many. Additional healthcare insurance mergers would reduce at least nominally competitive enterprises.
We do have one objection to the piece, however:
RELIANCE on government organizations to say “NO” to mergers is NOT the right-headed approach to this. It is government and cartel chicanery that brought this sad state about to begin with!
All of the actions that the State has taken to supposedly make healthcare more affordable has done the opposite. It may be the case that prohibiting mergers through State action at this juncture is better than not, but that is not going to help long term. At some point, if not now, additional healthcare insurance mergers [and much more] will come about and not be prohibited politically.
Any time State intervenes, especially for the stated purpose of “helping” to make something more affordable, we see such price escalate ever higher, to the point of even being more “out of reach.”
Consider housing. Now it takes 30 year subsidized mortgage notes at historically low and artificially kept rates of interest to “afford” a home in the US.
All of the various governmental programs, tax incentives, subsidies, and so many other things have only artificially goosed the housing market price-wise and permitted multi-decade lows in homeowner ownership!
And always be mindful that the State ALWAYS allows, because it does so for a price, various affected persons, people, and organizations of all types and sizes, to create rules, regulations, and even systems that advance their own interests and so at the expense of others.
Political economy, which is the use of the monopoly hold that State has over so-called legal force, fraud, and coercion, is morally wrong as well as economically stupid. Political economy means WIN/LOSE zero-sum and natural economy means WIN/WIN.
We should be wary of relying on the State to “fix” anything, least of which is healthcare!
The author of the linked article is clear and correct: more healthcare insurance mergers will spell even more troubles for the American healthcare customer.
However, in our opinion, the call for the State to simply stop mergers is rooted in folly and quite simply does not address underlying, root causes as to the issue of exceedingly expensive healthcare and healthcare insurance.