David Brooks calls some attention to that Goldhill article. He’s saying – look: enough with futzing with the window treatments, we’ve got to do something about the sinkhole under the corner of the house. I feel the same way, and yet…
There’s a tendency for us journalists to crave fundamental change – because it’s exciting. And because we like to believe that good ideas can change the world (because that’s our stock and trade). History is full of examples though, of big changes leading to big problems. There’s more success when the changes are of the tinkering sort – a gradual sort of coevolutionary growth between insurers, government, business and medicine.
The all-natural-Heidi-force in me wants big change of course. It wants a system that doesn’t push treatment (and kill hundreds of thousands a year with overtreatment). The inner Heidi applauds Bruce McCall’s Shouts an Murmurs:
Did You Know: Human illness adds two trillion dollars annually to America’s gross domestic product. Are you contributing your fair share?
and this brilliant miniature:
Q. & A. of the Month
Q: My current statement lists two hundred and thirty-one charges for “brain surgery,” even though I have had no brain surgery. How can I rectify this?
A: Invalid question. Brain surgery is not covered under your plan.