Obama is the antithesis to a free market economy and freedom in general. For conservatives, the market has become a utopian ideal that will never be attained on earth but must be worshipped nonetheless… As sequester day dawned, with its arguments about what, how much, and how urgently we should be cutting from government spending, an odd and intellectual note rose in Arkansas. Governor Mike Beebe, of Little Rock, was at last prepared to allow the Medicare expansion that Obamacare demands, but only by way of enrolling his citizens in private exchanges, even though, as Politico reported, “enrollees with private exchange coverage may get a similar mix of benefits as they would get in Medicaid but could face higher co-pays, deductibles and other costs.” Why pay more for less? Well, the Arkansas Times reports that “Beebe said that for some legislators, subsidizing folks to buy private insurance was preferable to directly covering people through a government program for ‘philosophical’ reasons.” The notion is that there is some inherent virtue or “philosophical” virtue in a market solution even when the market solution costs more and does less would have baffled Adam Smith as much as it will likely baffle the people of Arkansas. In cases like these, the market becomes not an instrument of prosperity but, rather, an icon of piety—an icon oddly favored by those who are otherwise rightly critical of undue utopianism and idol-worship. Read more: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/comment/2013/03/the-se...
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