Laura Rosen Cohen’s first column at the Freedom Press blog is a great piece about Canadian health care:
Sometimes I go to the grocery store and watch the psychological drama of regular men and women exchanging quarters for shopping carts and vice versa.
Sometimes on their way out, they forego returning the cart in order to give it to a perfect stranger—but not before the twenty -five cent piece has exchanged hands.
I have witnessed a commitment to that quarter in blizzards and downpours.
For the average Canadian, twenty-five cents cannot be an unduly harsh addition to the weekly shopping bill. So why can one see the almost obsessive phenomenon of returning the cart for the quarter?
The answer, I believe, is that once someone has physically handled and departed with a sum of money, the psychological impetus to have it returned is (almost) irresistible. The transfer of the coin is a very real, physical act, imbuing value onto the currency and the transaction.
And this, in a nutshell, is the root of the problem with the Canadian system of socialized medicine…