Since nationalization is in the news these days, I’ve been thinking a bit about a different kind of nationalization — specifically, the kind that happens when you’ve got a single buyer for a product, aka “monopsony”.
This is what the defense industry is today, an industry that has only a single client.
I’ve been noodling on what the health care industry would look like if the U.S. government moved to a single-payer system, and I think it’s probably something similar to what the defense industry has turned in to.
I don’t see this as necessarily a bad change. You’d still have a “market” system, in the sense that the U.S. government would constitute the entirety of the market. The government would put out an RFP, say, for a cancer treatment. The pharmaceutical industry would respond with various candidates and proposals.
As for competition, well, the race with the Soviets was pretty competitive. Isn’t the struggle against disease a compelling and urgent enough challenge to spur innovation?
Just some thoughts …