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MEXICO: Public health

Cameron Sawyer comments on Linda Nyquist's piece about health services in Mexico and about Mexicans who come here for free treatment: "I have to agree with Ronald. If we take Ms. Nyquist s argument to its logical conclusion, we would have a moral obligation to provide free medical care for the entire world, provided they can somehow legally or illegally get across our borders. Obviously such a policy would lead to rapid bankruptcy of the state and destruction of the U.S. economy, with the result that no one here would get any medical treatment. And having such a policy would provide an overwhelming incentive for every sick person in the world to somehow cross our border. Therefore it is absolutely right that illegal immigrants seeking free medical treatment at the expense of U.S. taxpayers should be deported. We have our own sick people to take care of, and as Ronald correctly notes, plenty of those do not get what they need.

The Mexican government should get its own house in order and allow the Mexican economy to develop so that money exists in the economy for people to have reasonable health care. The tragedy of socialism in poor countries is that there is not enough wealth to redistribute to improve anyone's lives to any great extent, and the attempts to redistribute what little there is kills the economy, making people's lives even more miserable. Socialism of one form or another is a possibly viable option for developed countries which are willing to sacrifice some absolute wealth for the sake of equality and social security, Sweden being the shining example. But socialism is simply suicide for poor countries. I hope that Mexico s market reforms are effective enough to bring some relief at last for Mexico's people.

Ronald Hilton - 8/8/03