Predictability and Control in Ritzer's the Mcdonaldization of Society

Topics: Medicine, Health economics, Health care Pages: 3 (980 words) Published: March 22, 2010
Predictability and control are major discussion points in Ritzer’s The McDonaldization of Society. These are points that have both pros and cons in regards to “irrationality of rationality” as evidenced in both the health care system and the health care debate in the United States. The “irrationality of rationality” can be described as the downside to something that is seemingly perfect, or seemingly rational. We must look at McDonaldization as both enabling and constraining (Giddens). The healthcare issue in the United States currently is sort of like a double edged sword, meaning that there is an upside as well as a downside to the situation. Predictability is what gives us peace of mind in everything we do. For individuals, businesses, and every day functions, predictability makes everything easier. With that said, society expects to have a rational and predictable healthcare system. When someone injures themselves or becomes ill, they shouldn’t have to worry about how much the care is going to cost them, they should have peace of mind knowing that their health coverage is sufficient and predictable enough that they know what they will be charged. A healthcare firm in Chicago is doing just that; their main goal is “to give special attention to the needs of small businesses for lower and more predictable healthcare costs by promoting affordable, alternative health insurance solutions” (CCOC). The only downside to this that I can perceive is if it becomes so irrational that it becomes restraining. If costs were to become standardized for certain procedures and specialties, they would have to be standardized across the board. If the entire healthcare system as an entity wasn’t working as a whole to have a rational reformation, then it would certainly lead to irrationality. Control is the largest factor in any way you put it in regards to both the healthcare system and the healthcare debate in the United States. While the push for government control...

Cited: Giddens, Anthony. The Constitution of Society. Berkele: University of California Press. 1984
"HEALTHCARE & WELLNESS COMMITTEE". Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. 21 March 2010
Ritzer, George. The McDonaldization of Society. Los Angeles: Pine Forge Press, 2008.
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