Medicare Math

The ratio is 3 to 1. The “3” is how much Medicare recipients are receiving. The “1” is what they paid. Still though, you can see from this NPR report why most people call Medicare an entitlement. According to a…

“Free” Kidney Treatment

In October 1972, Congress decided that the federal government should pay for treating chronic kidney disease. Concerned that care went primarily to those who could afford it, Congress proclaimed dialysis and transplants an entitlement for almost all of us. They…

We Are Living Longer

Using data for 2009 from death certificates in all 50 states, the national Centers for Disease Control has concluded that we are living longer. A male infant’s projected life span has risen .2 years to 75.7 while a female infant’s…

Fiscal Commission Deja Vu

On Amazon (“gift wrap available”), you can purchase the 1995 “Final Report to the President” of the “Bipartisan Commission on Entitlement and Tax Reform”. During February, President Obama announced the creation of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.…

Tax Payers and Entitlement Receivers

I wonder if we should be concerned. Lecture 32 of “Thinking About Capitalism” from the Teaching Company looks at John Stuart Mill (1806-1873), James M. Buchanan (1919-  ), and Mancur Olson (1932-1998). Concerned with the impact of democracy on capitalism,…

A (Mind Boggling) Entitlement

I guess we can all agree that citizens have basic rights. But vacations? “Traveling for tourism today is a right. The way we spend our holidays is a formidable indicator of our quality of life,” according to Antonio Tajani, the European…