Of Liberal Bias and Economics

While working on another post using a video from the TV show Adam Ruins Everything, I got trapped in the cycle of watching YouTube video after YouTube video.

I was a huge fan the Showtime show Penn & Teller: Bullshit!

It was great, with Penn & Teller kicking sacred cows giving you the truth.

Adam Ruins Everything is that show for millennials.  The difference is, where Penn Jillette is a Libertarian, Adam Conover is a Liberal.

Occasionally Conover gets somethings right, like why trophy hunting protects animals, making the point that if an animal has some economic value, people will protect it.  More often than not, his economics lead the viewer to big goverment Liberal conclusions.

He did an episode on college tuition and why it is so high.  He goes into when Sally Mae became a for profit enterprise.

He did the same thing with hospital billing and healthcare, going to the issue of profitability in insurance and hospitals.

Watching this, you would come to conclusion that profit is bad, corporations are evil, and college and healthcare should be free.

Except, economics show you that the profit incentive leads to efficiency and development, with higher quality and lower prices.

When I was a kid in the 80’s a cell phone was a brick that cost more than the Mercedes it was plugged into.  I got my first cell phone in college.  Now 92% of Americans have cell phones or smart phones.  They are better, cheaper, and more available to all, and all driven by profit.

The economic point that Adam jumps over is that in college and healthcare, the consumer is disconnected from the pricing.  Every study shows that the reason tuition has gone up at the rate it has is because of the availability of loans.   Students have access to unlimited loans and so colleges can charge whatever they want.  Considering that studies say that 60% of jobs will REQUIRE a college degree by 2020 it fuels a system where kids have to get loans to pay huge prices to have any hope for an employable future.

The best way to cut the cost of college is to end the subsidized loan system and allow students to get out of loans by declaring bankruptcy (thereby reducing the number of private loans by making them riskier).  Without access to loans, college tuition will have to be competitive on the market and prices will drop.  Right now it is a cartel enabled by the goverment.

Healthcare is the same.  Consumers have NO IDEA what the prices they pay are because insurance is a terrible middleman.  Pull insurance and the enabling regulations out and the cartel crumbles.

The problem here isn’t the free market, it is that the free market doesn’t exist here.

When consumers are not directly involved in consumption, buying by competitive evaluation of quality and price the system goes out of whack.

When you don’t explain THAT, the obvious solution for millennials is government price fixing, which always fails.

This is the Liberal bias of the show,

Also, he hates the Suburbs.

Yeah, I get it, there is a history of racism.  So what?  What do we do now?  I’m not moving into a tiny apartment in a city, and we saw what giving loans to people who couldn’t afford them got us – the housing bubble and sub-prime mortgage crisis.

If all you are going to do  is tell me my house and lifestyle are racist even if I’ve never engaged in discrimination and don’t propose a solution, you can cram your entire argument up your ass sideways.  I don’t need to hear how I should feel guilty about how I live with no way to make anything better for anyone else.

One Reply to “Of Liberal Bias and Economics”

  1. In some ways, I’d like for free college to become a thing. Mainly to see those who want it to get it, good and hard.
    There’s two possible end results:

    First, everything gets so watered down that a degree becomes about as worthless as a High School diploma.

    Or, they get picky, and only the worthy get to go.

    Most likely we’ll get a combination of the two. The vast masses go to High School With Drinking, and the well connect go to the exclusive schools.
    Which, if you think about it, is pretty much the current system.




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