Health, Safety, and Regulation

Patient Power: Solving America's Health Care Crisis, by John C. Goodman and Gerald L. Musgrave (Washington, D.C.: Cato Institute, 1992). The authors provide a very thorough analysis of the issues in health-care financing and a well argued case for "Medical Savings Accounts" that would reinstate the power of patients as purchasers.

"Compassion vs. Control: FDA Investigational Drug Regulation," by Dale Gierenger in Policy Analysis no. 72, May 20, 1986 (Washington, D.C.: Cato Institute). Gierenger subjects FDA drug regulation to critical scrutiny and offers a free-market alternative.

Regulation of Pharmaceutical Innovation: The 1962 Amendments, by Sam Peltzman (Washington, D.C.: American Enterprise Institute, 1974). A pioneering study of the effects of state regulation of the drug industry, showing how safety regulations can actually decrease safety.

Searching for Safety, by Aaron Wildavsky (New Brunswick: Transaction Books, 1988). A critique of conventional wisdom on risk analysis that is critical of attempts to eliminate risk through regulation, offering instead suggestions for a broad range of risk strategies compatible with the market.

Free to Choose, by Milton and Rose Friedman (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1980). Chapter 7 ("Who Protects the Consumer?") and Chapter 8 ("Who Protects the Worker?") show how health and safety regulation often results in the opposite of its ostensible end and how the stated ends of regulation can be better met through voluntary market means.

Unnatural Monopolies: The Case for Deregulating Public Utilities, ed. by Robert W. Poole, Jr. (Lexington, Mass.: Lexington Books, 1985). Includes useful essays on the economics of natural monopoly, private contracting, electric utilities, and antitrust law and deregulation.

"The Perils of Regulation: A Market-Process Approach," by Israel Kirzner, in his Discovery and the Capitalist Process (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1985). Shows how state regulation interferes with the beneficient operation of the market process of entrepreneurial discovery.

Liability: The Legal Revolution and Its Consequences, by Peter W. Huber (New York: Basic Books, 1988). Shows how contract law can deal with problems of safety and liability.

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