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Warrl, I have a lot of respect for you, but you are young and you have obviously never needed serious health care.

Wrong twice so far.

It is impossible, let me repeat impossible , to have a free market without price discovery and comparison.

Well, you got that one right. Tell me how government regulations have improved price discovery. Tell me how tax incentives for expansive paid-by-someone-else insurance has improved price discovery.

The fact that government interference has made a mess of our health-care system is not a good argument in favor of more government interference.

It is IMPOSSIBLE, let me repeat,But please do not suggest that a free market works for health care when you have never tackled our #$%*ed up system.
IMPOSSIBLE, to discover the cost of any procedure from a hospital, even for elective procedures.

That's right. You can thank the government, in part (but not exclusively) through the aforementioned insurance incentives. There's no reason that a hospital couldn't put real fixed prices for routine procedures online, with adjustments for after-hours and weekends and emergency versus scheduled, and charge everyone based on that list - with prices set so that the hospital covers its costs and makes a reasonable profit on average. This patient has more complications and costs more? Well, that's where the "on average" comes in - the hospital will lose money on this patient. Or maybe the hospital buys insurance against such cases, and includes the cost of the insurance when calculating its prices.

Except... with the insurance system we have, there's no incentive to do that and in fact the published prices would be meaningless for most patients. And for that matter, it would actually be illegal in some states.

But please do not suggest that a free market works for health care when you have never tackled our #$%*ed up system.

Okay, I'll wait. Is it 1995 yet? Waiting's over. The system we have sucks, primarily because of government, and more government will make it suck more.

Oh wait.. it's well past 1995... and there's more government involvement, and the system sucks more.
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