Re: The Education Function

Michael Lorrey (
Fri, 11 Dec 1998 19:24:49 -0500

KPJ wrote:

> It appears as if Terry Donaghe <> wrote:
> |
> |Nonsense! In a pure capitalist society charities would not have to
> |unfairly compete with the government. You seem to forget that it's
> |perfectly acceptable for individuals to VOLUNTARILY donate money to
> |charity. No coercion involved. Also, healthcare in a free market
> |driven economy would be much cheaper.
> Some will donate. Some don't.
> I for one have never donated one single monetary unit. And nobody I know do.
> (Where are these great spenders? I would like a donation. :)

My parents have given 5% of their income to Catholic Charities and the catholic Church their entire working lives. I'm sure if they were not taxed so much, they would give more. They are not very wealthy at all, they are hard working professionals who are struggling to put together a decent retirement nest egg now that all of the kids are out on their own.

I have frequently done volunteer work in the past. I would guesstimate that I've done at least several thousand hours of volunteer work in my life so far.

> So... I am somewhat concerned that voluntary charity will raise much less
> money than the sums delivered through taxes.

Its a matter of the amount of money and volunteer time given times the utilization coefficient increasing the actual value of the donated resources. Governments are heinous wasters of money on welfare programs. Moreover, most private charities try to build up sizable endowments to earn investment income off of, so they can maintain a long term level of spending. Governments almost never do this, they just chuck it out the door as fast as possible.

> The healthcare would probably become cheaper.
> But you also get what you pay for. The quality will not raise automagically.
> People with a small wallet would *have* to buy lower grade healthcare.

Hardly. Some of the best hospitals are run by religious groups, and do an amazing lavel of charitable work as they can. Religious affiliated hospitals have more than twice the level of charitable health care work than secular non-profit hospitals.

> A healthcare plan only works if you have made money to store into the plan.
> People with bad health from the start, where will they get the money?
> Maybe I simply have a dark view of the human spirit.
> Maybe humans would real nice if they had a free market?

You must have been badly treated as a child. Without having to pay 60% of their income in direct and indirect taxation, everyone would be able to afford better private health care policies, and those who were more wealthy would be able to donate a greater percentage of their income to provide health care to lower income people.