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Quora Answer : Why do many progressives think that a libertarian who accepts universal emergency healthcare and bare minimum social safety nets is foolish/evil, and what more do they want?

Jul 13, 2018

I'm sure you've asked this question before Sankar Srinivasan and people gave you a fairly clear answers then.

But anyway ...

People think it's "foolish" because of that old English proverb "Penny wise, pound foolish". That is, sometimes an obsessive attempt to economise on small costs can lead to greater expense overall. The classic example is you buy the cheaper pair of shoes that last a year, rather than shoes that cost three times as much but last ten years.

Same with healthcare. It's cheaper to treat many medical conditions with prevention (regular check-ups, some preventative medicine, guided education for healthier living) to avoid the crisis, than to wait for the crisis to happen and then treat the symptoms and repair the damage.

So only treating emergencies, rather than having a systematic, "maintenance" model of health costs more overall.

People think it's "evil" because wanting to limit health-care to emergency treatment shows a willingness to allow people to suffer the pain, horror, risk of death etc. that comes from allowing illness to reach the emergency stage, just based on some hard-hearted principle of "I shouldn't pay for other people's systematic healthcare" even when that principle is going to cost more in the long-run.

You are literally saying : I prefer to pay more to see people suffer, than be obliged to help out earlier to avoid that suffering.

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