Saturday, January 2, 2010

American Thinker: Health Care and Our Inalienable Rights

With threats from federal officials to seize control over the health care system and further intrude into our private matters, many Americans are trying to find ways to protect their lives and liberty. Given America's dysfunctional economic situation that the federal government caused and has been making worse, government can only make the health care system go from dysfunctional to despotic. The regulations, mandates, and restrictions currently in place already violate the individual citizen's God-given, inalienable natural rights to "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness" referred to in the Declaration of Independence.


Anonymous said...

First point: how are life, liberty or the pursuit of happiness at stake with national health care?

Life, first and foremost, is at stake when deciding upon health care. The private system is essentially gambling on that life: when the risks get higher, so do the stakes. Rather than collectively ensuring that everyone will have a clean bill of health, therefore protecting life, we currently decide the price of care via "crap shoots". Just hope you don't turn up snake eyes, otherwise you might find your life in danger. Nationalized medicine does have a cost, yes, but it will guarantee that no one is abandoned because they become "too risky" and can't afford coverage.

Liberty does not thrive under private HC, it suffers. You have the illusion of choice - in the end, you can only pay what you can afford. If a company decides to up your premiums - sorry! Completely outside of your control. Your choice is limited by the volatile state of the economy. National medicine ensures you always have the option to see a doctor. That, for me, is liberty.

What any of this has to do with the pursuit of happiness is beyond me, though I believe it gets thrown in with the other two because they make a nice set. In essence, this is a matter of life and liberty. National medicine preserves them both - private health care abandons lives for personal profit, while simultaneously removing the illusion of choice through economic barriers (i.e. if I cannot afford to see a doctor, then the private sector has limited my choice - a choice which is intrinsically tied to my right to life).

Tom Anderson said...

You suppose that you will always have "the option to see a doctor." But your supposition is false.

Where demand is unlimited and supply limited there are only two ways these factors come into equilibrium. Either we allocate supply by price or we ration by withholding supply (in this case, service).

Socialism always rations, since it assumes everyone has a right to the services and goods produced by others.

If we fed people the way we provided medical services all a person would have to do is enter a supermarket, demand food, and the market would be legally obligated to give him what he wanted.

Obviously food prices would have to increase radically to accommodate the distribution of "free food."

Opportunities for fraud and gaming the system would become unlimited and would require ever greater and more complex levels of government bureaucracy to control fraud and abuse.

At some point the cost of food would become so high that queues would form outside the market and people would wait months, even years to get the free food, since food would now have to be rationed.

This is, of course, exactly what happened in the old USSR, and now happens in communist societies, such as North Korea and Cuba.

There can be no "free" lunch. That is a fact of nature, and no matter how many laws are passed that attempt to repeal the fundamental laws of nature, their consequences cannot be avoided.