Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sick in America Part 4

My remarks:

Stossel addresses the complaints about greed.

When Stossel compared cell phones to the old black Bakelite land line phones, Michael Moore bitched about being unable to get a signal in a certain part of town -- forgetting he's comparing his expectation of being able to make a phone call from wherever he happens to be standing to the being tied to a land line, where your phone was in a particular room of a particular building, and if you wanted to make a call when you were away from home you had to find a phone booth.

Stossel showed us what government innovation in automotive technology gave the world -- the Trabant, which had a glorified lawn mower engine.

Moore said that the government "used to be good at things" -- an admission that right now it sucks. He never does explain why he thinks that somehow health care will be something the government that screws everything else up will magically do right.

Stossel points to how many people come from other countries to the US for innovative health care. I'll point out an exception: cutting-edge stem cell treatments. Because each adult stem cell treatment regimen is treated like a new drug by the government -- instead of as an off-label use of an existing drug (i.e. stem cells from X part of the body), it takes years longer to get new developments in stem cell therapy in the US.

And by the way, people who think the profit needs to be taken out of medical care. Guess why there's so much hype about embryonic stem cell research, and so many calls for the government to pump money into it? Because treatments with embryonic stem cells can be PATENTED. Develop an ESC treatment regimen, and sit back and watch the money roll in. Develop a new ASC treatment, and you get to publish something nice about it in The New England Journal of Medicine and be respected by other doctors. But you don't get money every time one of them uses the treatment you developed. Why is there no screeching from the left about the driving profit motive behind ESCR?

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