Minnesota’s ban on the construction of new radiation-therapy facilities within a 14-county area is a presaging of what’s coming for us under ObamaCare: The smart people in charge will “rationally” decide what “the system” needs as far as health-care facilities.

Some economists have long argued that society “plans” best when individuals make their own plans, and voluntarily cooperate with each other to fulfill various wants and needs. As the Concise Encyclopedia of Economics notes that Hayek, “noticed, as Adam Smith had, that the price system—free markets—did a remarkable job of coordinating people’s actions, even though that coordination was not part of anyone’s intent. The market, said Hayek, was a spontaneous order. By spontaneous Hayek meant unplanned—the market was not designed by anyone but evolved slowly as the result of human actions.”

Yet due in large part to government’s substantial role in paying for health care, both Democratic and Republican politicians seek to direct a societal order into being from the top down: The Legislature orders the health department to establish a commission to forecast the demand for a particular healthcare service. The commission does it job,  and then the health department has veto power over whether there will be a new operating room, MRI machine or hospital in the state. Even more dramatic, in the case of radiation therapy used to treat cancers, the Legislature draws a bright ride line around 14 counties and says “NO new radiation facilities here!”

And that, friend, is what ObamaCare promises for us: Government committees determine what is a “wasteful” expenditure and what isn’t. That’s what the controversy over “death panels” was all about, as well as President Obama’s suggestion that your sick grandma “take a pill” rather than get a more expensive treatment. Another term for this logic is “rationing.”