I don’t like admitting I’m wrong. But I sometimes (often?) am. And when I am, as much as it pains me, I try to admit it. For instance, when I wrote about healthcare reform, I suggested that tort reform would be a meaningful component of reducing costs. Walter and Alex kindly set me right in the comments. Malpractice insurance is typically between 1% and 3% of a provider’s cost. So even if tort reform eliminated the need for malpractice insurance (it wouldn’t), we’d at best see a 3% reduction in cost. I, and I assume most rational people, would rather pick other fights.
So yesterday when one of my colleagues, let’s call him “Rush,” was going off to the guy sitting next to me about how tort reform was the holy grail of healthcare cost reduction, I calmly got up and engaged in the conversation. I politely explained what I had recently learned about the relative insignificance of tort reform. I would have even walked him through the math if I could have got a word in edgewise between his ranting on about “I don’t care, it’s still crap.”
And when I realized that this was not an argument but rather contradiction and that his only tactic was to call my position crap, I walked away. I never walk away from an argument.
Moments later as he walked back to his office, he paused at my desk and said “it smells like alcohol over here.” I don’t know if he was implying that I must be drunk to think what I think, but that’s the only explanation I can come up with.
But maybe he has a higher degree of certainty than I do that his position is right. Perhaps he knows something that can prove the very simple math involved wrong. Perhaps, as Glen Beck suggests when admonishing his followers to buy Gold, he even prayed on it.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Beck - Not So Mellow Gold|