Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Paul Krugman is a Fraud and a Liar

Now, I am no economist, nor do I intend to obtain any kind of degree in economics.  I am satisfied with my career so far (see my Linked In profile for my career information), but I am also not naive and have read a book or two (well, it was one, but a good one) on economics.  I did this largely because economics is not a required course in college or government school, even in the International Baccalaureate program, and I believed that I was missing out on some important lessons on life, the universe, and everything.

Now, economics is the study of the use of scarce resources that have alternative uses.  There are some very simple and fundamental principles that define it and that are ultimately unavoidable.  Stemming from these basic laws are four prominent schools of thoughts: Keynesian, Chicago, Austrian, and Socialist.  Each school of thought falls somewhere on the political spectrum as right-wing (Austrian), center-right (Chicago), center-left (Keynesian), and left-wing (Socialist).  The spectrum I am discussing here is where right-wing is least government interference in economics to the left-wing which is the most interference in economics.

Now Paul Krugman is a Nobel prize winner for economics, a feat that is no small matter, and something that I do admire because I will probably never, ever acquire a Nobel prize of any kind in my lifetime.  Paul Krugman is also a Keynesian economist who believes that government controls and regulation are needed, but some private management is allowed.  He also has a blog at the New York Times website called “The Conscience of a Liberal.”  I am introducing him in this way so that when I tell why I have titled my post as such, you will know that this man has a definite political bias from which he is operating.  Not that I have a problem with that, so long as someone can recognize their own bias when making honest assessments of issues.

This past Saturday, he made a post called “Why the markets can’t cure healthcare” and already, if you have lick of common sense, you will know that he is totally wrong.  In his post, he claims that most major surgeries must be paid for by insurance, because most of us peons cannot afford it on our own.  He claims that, in no uncertain terms, that insurance companies treat you like a liability and consider the cost-value of your care when they pay for it.  The implication is that insurance companies will let you die to serve their own greed.  But the solution he offers is no better because already we have liberal Democrats claiming that mandated insurance is necessary because the uninsured are a burden on society.  What happens once we have a single payer (or Socialist) medical system in place and the government decides that the obese, the elderly, the handicapped, and the under-evolved (see the old eugenics movement for information on that one) are an unfit burden on society?  Instead of an insurance company, which tries to pay for things on a case-by-case basis, you will have a government bureaucrat who has a procedure that he or she follows for everyone, regardless of the history of the individual.

Another thing he focuses on is the marketing of health care to the individual.  He claims it is impossible to market prices on things like brain surgery because so few people need it in comparison to the general populace.   But this is a huge fallacy itself.  When I was in Los Angles on business (great to visit, a nightmare to live at), I heard on the car radio at least one commercial for cosmetic surgery per commercial break.  The cosmetic surgery business is booming in LA, largely because appearance is very important in the entertainment industry.  Right now, all other forms of treatment are not marketed to us largely because we usually get referrals and/or call our insurance company to find a doctor who is in-network.  If we had to pay for it all ourselves, then I am sure that most private practice doctors would advertise to us more and more.  I already hear radio ads in my area for hospitals, so why would such a thing be any different.  And if we had the cash, we could negotiate with doctors the cost of the services they are offering or go to another one.  It is kind of like buying a car, another borderline necessity, where the smart shoppers always find the best deal in town through thorough research.

Here is the thing though: Paul Krugman knows all this.  I am almost certain that he is not a stupid man who fell into a Nobel prize for the field he is an expert in.  He knows that the free market system works.  If he does not know, he is either incredibly naive, which I doubt, or severely blinded by his own ideology.  And if it is the latter, it is so much so that he is lying to himself about what he knows to be true in order fulfill a misguided belief system (any belief system that requires you to lie about anything is not worth following).

So really, Paul Krugman is a fraud and a liar when it comes to discussing economics because he will use his intellect to further his own political ideology.  That is the essence of intellectual dishonesty.  Remember, I was a big Ron Paul supporter, but I called for his resignation when I found out he placed earmarks in the stimulus bill and then voted against it, knowing it would pass.  I am a rational mastermind and as such I look for the solutions that work.  I also have a huge sense of integrity and so I abhor lying and hold honesty as one of Mankind’s greatest virtue.  Paul Krugman lacks integrity because he is deliberately pushing his agenda and distorting economic theory to suit it.

The problem is, Paul Krugman wields more respect among those in power than I do and probably ever will.