Obama and the 'universal' pipe dream

'But whatever else universal coverage might bring, there is no evidence that it will bring economic nirvana. If anything, contrary to what the president suggests, the correlation runs the other way for countries with universal coverage such as Canada, England, France, Germany, and Japan. On nearly every economic front, their performance has been worse than America's—even, surprisingly, in controlling health care costs.

Contrary to popular perception, even though America is at the epicenter of the financial crisis, it has suffered less than its industrialized peers in terms of economic growth. According to the latest International Monetary Fund figures two weeks ago, the U.S. economy actually grew 1.1 percent last year even as Japan's shrank by 0.6 percent. France and England's both grew 0.7 percent, and Canada's only 0.5 percent—or less than half of America's. Only Germany did slightly better at 1.3 percent.'

Shikha Dalmia goes on to show why the concept of Universal healthcare is a flawed one. Yet what's interesting is how wonderful the concept sounds, when presented. That explains the 'perception' part. That is, perception about the US and financial crisis, about universal healthcare and its beneficiaries. As I have mentioned before, socialist policies sound so much better, though in reality socialism brings with it economic ruin.

Perceptions are a result of response to stimuli. In Marketing terms, consumers form perceptions based on marketing stimuli (Advertising, for eg.) they are exposed to. Perceptions formed thus could be far moved from reality. It wouldn't hurt the consumer to base a purchase on perceptions as long as the risk associated with that purchase is low. To the contrary, if the risk associated is high, I would recommend the consumer seek more information to move away from perceptions and inch closer to reality.

That's exactly what I would recommend the Americans. Don't listen to Obama's grandiose plans that sound sweet and then form judgements. Go out, seek information about whether universal healthcare supported by socialist governments have worked.

You will find it hasn't.


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