I know I linked to him once already today, but Francis Cianfrocca’s column on Medicare Advantage – which is very much worth reading in full – neatly summarizes, in response to criticism from Obama and Pelosi, why it is necessary for businesses with shareholders to make a profit:
Everyone gets that you have to pay salaries to the people who do the work for you. But you also have to pay the people who provide the capital to start and grow the business (and create the jobs) in the first place. That obligation never goes away. Even though Nancy Pelosi has recently been howling about the fact that insurance companies make billions in profits, she never stops to think that: A) we wouldn’t have large, efficient insurance providers without capital; and B) the health insurance sector provides terrible returns to investors relative to other sectors because it’s already over-regulated; and C) most of those profits are used by pension funds to write monthly checks to retirees.