Public Development Of Antibiotics – Sure, Why Not?

There’s a rather fun call for the public sector to investigate antibiotics. As a result of market failure. To which the answer is, sure, why not, go for it. As long, that is, as the public sector is just one player in that market. So that we can see whether the public sector is actually better at it.

The basic analysis here is that antibiotic research doesn’t make a profit and that this is just and righteous.…

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Paying Doctors’ Tax Bills Doesn’t Actually Work

The interaction of pensions and tax rules means that some doctors – and other well paid professionals on a similar defined benefit pension path – face tax rates of over 100% on marginal earnings. Therefore, obviously enough, doctors in that situation tend not to do the extra work. This is causing chaos in the NHS.

It’s also an interesting example of the point that the Laffer Curve is obviously true. Or, to be precise and accurate, that there’s a rate of tax at which the substitution effect overcomes the income one and people really do withdraw their labour and we have a smaller economy.…

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What Is Jezza Burbling About Over Drugs, The NHS And Trade Deals?

I’m having a really hard time understanding what it is that is being moaned about over the NHS, drug prices and trade deals. Corbyn’s making a large deal out of what I can’t see as being a problem in the slightest:

There is a plot against our NHS. Boris Johnson is engaged in a cover-up of secret talks for a sell-out American trade deal that would drive up the cost of medicines and lead to runaway privatisation of our health service.

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Beer Then Wine, We’ll Be Fine

“I have taken more out of alcohol that alcohol has taken out of me“, declared Winston Churchill.

The national saviour and veteran tosspot was right not just for himself, but for his nation.

Because it turns out that here in the UK, drinkers pay for quite a bit of what we need doing.

But how much?

When we on the Right lazily claim that welfare recipients spend their dole money on “beer and fags”, the Left insists that this is a myth – that dole money is barely enough to live on, and there is precious little left over for recreationals.…

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American Medical Bankruptcies

There are indeed things wrong with the American system of health care. It’s not a system we’d recommend to anyone at all, despite the manner in which we Europeans get our pharma research subsidised by it.

However, even given that we’d still insist that it’s important to understand what is wrong with it. And it’s not medical bankruptcies:

It’s been over a dozen years since Susanne LeClair of West Palm Beach, Florida, was first diagnosed with cancer, she’s been fighting ever since.

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How Excellent, The NHS Pays Private Hospitals

This is a weird thing to be complaining about. The National Health Services goes and buys medical services from private sector providers:

The number of NHS patients having surgery in private hospitals has nearly trebled since 2010, sparking accusations that for-profit companies are benefitting from an “enfeebled” health system under the Conservatives.

NHS figures obtained by the Guardian show that it paid for 214,967 people in England to have an operation in a private hospital in 2009-10, Labour’s last year in power.

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Truly, The Guardian Is Written By The Insane

Or, perhaps, the Guardian is written by the ignorant, your call.

So, we’ve a screed from a GP about how appalling it would be if we replaced the National Health service with American style health care. OK, good so far, that American system is about the only one which is worse than the current NHS. After that it all rather falls apart though:

As a GP working in London, it is not uncommon for me to hear people say they can’t afford prescription charges, or that they don’t have the money to buy their medication until they get paid at the end of the month.

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About Polly Toynbee On The Shortage Of Nurses

Of course it’s true that anything and everything that goes wrong, or is not even up to the hoped for standards, is the fault of the Tories. The baby eaters they are.

This might not actually be quite true, despite that being the template for a Polly Toynbee column. An example here:

Exhibit number two in the Tories’ destruction of our health service: the NHS has just published its highest ever rate of vacant posts for nurses, at more than 43,000 missing roles.

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The Scandal Of Google Advertising And Abortion Provision

A reasonable and useful logical test is to stand an argument upon its head and then consider what is being asserted. This is not to use the logical fallacy of reductio ad absurdam, rather it is to try and examine the logical linkage between the parts of the argument. It can devolve into that other logical fallacy, tu quoque, but then all logical examination is prey to one or another of the possible logical fallacies.…

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Amazingly, Poor People Don’t Actually Want Health Insurance

The true measure of whether someone wants something is whether they’ll pay for it out of their own resources. Given the resources they’ve got, the varied things on offer, will they voluntarily spend their own money on this thing?

Yes, this is indeed an entirely different method of valuation from whether we think they ought to want it. Or even than we should take the resources of others so that everyone does get this thing.

Yet we find that when given the choice poor people don;t in fact want health care insurance:

Insurance take-up falls rapidly as subsidies decline.

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