Replace if repeal: A response to some critics » AEI Michael Strain

published an essay last weekend on Obamacare that made the following points: The ACA is in danger, both from the Supreme Court and the possibility of a Republican in the White House in 2017; a common liberal argument in the face of such danger is that the repeal of Obamacare “equals death;” and “repeal equals death” is not the argument ender that many liberals pretend it to be.

I back up that last point by arguing that public policy makes choices all the time that result in higher rather than lower mortality rates; that in a world of scarce resources such choices are inevitable; and that it is not necessarily immoral to support a policy change even if that policy change will increase the mortality rate. If you disagree in principle, then you should favor a 10 mph speed limit.

Furthermore, liberals aren’t advocating that the goal of health policy should be ensuring “that every person with a treatable disease or injury avoids death,” so they too understand this, and so should stop using the “repeal equals death” argument as if it were an argument ender. I also argue in the essay that conservatives have been guilty in the past of injecting too much talk of death into the health-care debate, and point to Governor Palin’s “death panels” rhetoric as an example.

via Replace if repeal: A response to some critics » AEI.

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