Don't Help Us Consume, Invest, Ctd

Yglesias doesn't buy Matt Continetti's division of government spending into investment and consumption. He argues that "the political convention is to use 'investment' to mean 'spending I favor' whereas 'out-of-control spending' means 'spending I oppose'":

Medicare is obviously a heavy subsidy for old people’s consumption of health care services. But that, in turn, constitutes a heavy subsidy for medical-related R&D spending. America has the world’s most bloated health care sector but we’re also world leaders in pharmaceuticals, biotech, medical equipment, etc., and I doubt this is a coincidence. Any kind of in-kind social welfare provision is in part a form of industrial policy. In the classic Milton Friedman critique of the welfare state, this is a problem. But in the Continetti/Brooks/Salam reformulation of the critique, it ought to look more like a feature. I wouldn’t swing 100% to the “just send money” side of the argument, but on the whole I think Friedman has the better of the argument.