A Question about a ‘Progressive’ Idea

Rather straightforward:

So you take issue with the current U.S. health care system: Why is it considered ‘Progressive’ to nationalize it?

Nationalizing anything is about as non-progressive as it gets. Actual progress in human government was made when America was founded and power was taken away from government and divided with the separation of powers – but for some reason – it is referred to as ‘progressive’ (i.e. making progress) to go back and hand power back to government.

It’s like The Chewbacca Defense. That does not make sense.

Socialized Healthcare and ‘Tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims’

Boy is this audio appropriate today:
Part 1:

Part 2:

Whatever you thought of Reagan, there was one thing true about him – he understood the fundamental epic failing of socialist philosophy applied to government. Socialism comes in the form of friendly ideas with the best intentions. It ends in Tyranny.

C. S. Lewis put it this way:

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

Contrast all of the above with President Obama the other day:

audio ht: Levin

Taking rights from some, to make rights for others

The heading basically sums it up, but Mark D. Taylor lays out a pretty clear explanation why healthcare doesn’t factor in as a right:

“A right is something that does not impose an obligation on anyone else.”

Not to mention – rights are things that individuals intrinsically hold – apart from government. The Bill of Rights is a list of rights that the government cannot infringe upon, not a list of what government can provide. Note that it is assumes the individual already has possession of that right – and government is set up to protect it.

Who are the 47 million Americans who ‘don’t have health care?”

In 2006 the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 46.6 million are people without health insurance. You hear this number all the time today in discussions on what our public policy should be towards health care (particularly – socialized healthcare). But who are these 46.6 million people? Here are a couple things you probably won’t hear from politicians, whether Democratic or Republican:

  1. Of that 46.6 million, 9.5 million were not United States Citizens
  2. Another 17 million of those people live in households exceeding $50,000 and could purchase healthcare but choose to invest their money in other things.
  3. 18 million were between the age of 18-34, most in good health – and either not in need of coverage – or chose not to purchase it (that includes me for a while there). (Also, note that this stat likely overlaps with the one above as commentor Kottcamp reminded me.)
  4. 70% of the non-elderly population that become uninsured in a given year – are reinsured in less than one year.

Here are a couple other statistics about healthcare in Canada and Europe:

Canada:

  1. More than 825,000 Canadians are on waiting lists for surgery and other necessary treatments.
  2. 15 years ago the average wait for Canadians was 9 weeks – today it’s 15 weeks.
  3. Over the past 10 years, 11% of physicians trained in Canada have moved to the United States.

Britain:

  1. More than 1 million citizens are waiting for hospital admission.
  2. Another 200,000 are waiting to get on the waiting list.
  3. Each year – the national health service cancels around 100,000 operations.
  4. Britain has a government agency that’s sole purpose is to limit citizens access (rationing) to prescription drugs.

Some other important items:

  1. 85 new drugs hit the U.S. market from 1998-2002.
  2. During that same period – only 44 of those drugs became available in Europe.
  3. More than half of the 175 billion dollars in health care technology products purchased throughout the world are produced in the United States.
  4. Between 1999-2005 the United States was responsible for the sale of 71% of new pharmaceutical drugs (the next two largest – Japan and Germany accounted for only 4% each).

[ht: DC Examiner, Levin]

Socialism FAIL: Demanding More of Something You Think Sucks

In general I would be willing to bet that in one way or another, most people feel that the American government is broken and/or failing in many ways. Try topics such as: Energy Independence, Border Security, Education, Welfare Reform, Social Security, etc… 

So here’s the ten million dollar question: Why do we want more government? Why do we think that giving more money to government and expanding or creating huge new government bureaucracies would fix these problems? 

If we are are upset with the direction that Social Security is heading, how can we possibly think that the government could handle the massive and vastly complicated healthcare and oil industries? 

Consider the following audio:

And this isn’t something necessarily exclusive to Barack Obama. President Bush’s ‘No Child Left Behind’ policy is a classic example of a crappy one-size-fits-all big government fail. Many of McCain’s ideas (especially concerning environmental issues) are also thinly veiled ‘government solutions’. What evidence do we have that positively support big government solutions?

The government is supposed to serve the people. In what other instance would we think more money would fix crappy service?

Situation one – You go to a restaurant and you get terrible service: the waiter is rude, they don’t bring you what you ordered, and then an hour later when they do it’s cold and soggy – is it logical to leave a huge tip and decide to come back to that restaurant more often?

Situation two -You take your car in to be serviced and it takes twice as long for them to fix it as they first quoted you, and they charged you twice the price even though they don’t really fix the problem – Should you agree to pay twice your promised price? Should you return to that business with a larger problem or recommend it to friends?!?

With government programs, it’s an even more absurd situation. Once a government program is in place YOU ARE FORCED TO PAY THEM more money through taxation for FAIL-tacular service.  That crappy restaurant you went to…oh well, the community has decided that that’s where you are going to eat and spend your money. Those jerks that screwed your car over…too bad, the votes are in and that’s where the collective has decided you will be required to take your car…

Don’t be fooled – big government solutions are what Socialism is all about. The government takes a huge amount of your hard earned money so the elected few can decide how and were to waste it. (Note who has the deciding power there.) Whose judgement on how to spend your own money would you prefer: Yours, or Washington’s? Would you rather take money from your own wallet and choose how to spend it – or be forced to pay into the collective and let the community vote how you should spend it? The latter is exactly what you will get with Socialism.

Also, in my opinion, it is important to remember that just because you are fed up with the current government, this does not mean anything new would be better. I find this to be the huge problem with Sen. Obama’s campaign on ‘change’. Again, what change? Is increasing taxes so we can throw more money into the morass of government bureaucracy a good change from the current government? Is that really a change at all?

To me, this is a major concern in this years election. Which candidate is promoting the most government based solutions (aka: Socialism or Epic FAIL) to problems? That candidate will be receiving a fatty ‘No Thank You!‘ from wtc. Hopefully the other candidate will be open to criticism if they propose similar crappy big government solutions.

 

Socialism’s conflict with Liberty

Earlier I mentioned that I would be returning to the discussion over Socialism and its direct conflict with individual liberty. Yesterday I ran across some excellent audio that discusses the concepts of Liberty and Socialism and clarifies them in regards to the platforms of the current Liberal and Conservative philosophies.

I believe that these are crucial issues that must be understood as we are facing maddeningly high oil prices, steep medical bills, and national elections. It is critical for voters to understand that if they are voting for socialized solutions to these problems, ultimately they are voting for massive increases in governmental power and devastating reductions in individual liberty.

I have chopped up a great 6 part audio series from the Mark Levin show where he explains with great clarity Socialism and it’s conflict with the fragile American system which was originally designed to encourage liberty.

Before you listen, here is a small disclaimer. I want to point out here that I do not think people pushing socialized ideas are evil. Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and many people of the left are pushing for socialized medical systems. I do not believe that they are doing this out of evil intent. Heck, when I had a much more liberal understanding of politics (most of my life up and through college), I used to think Socialism wasn’t that big of a deal. I wasn’t evil for believing that way, and neither are you if you happen to think nationalizing health care is a great idea.

What I didn’t understand, and I urge you to at least consider, was that socialism ultimately cannot coexist with liberty.

So without further ado – here’s the audio. It’s a bit of a tour-de-force of the conservative viewpoint of the American Government. Part of it swings around to talk about the oil companies because they happened to be in the news that day. However, the oil situation is applicable here as many are advocating more governmental meddling, even complete state control. I guarantee that you will not hear these ideas on TV, in anything from Hollywood, or even school for the most part. I have outlined some of the points mentioned in each clip below and please feel free to leave comments. I am not asking you to agree, only to consider the ideas presented. Remember that clarity is far more important here than agreement.

  • Freedom (or liberty) is always competing with tyranny.
  • Ann Rand: “Socialism is the doctrine that man has no right to exist for his own sake. That his life and his work do not belong to him, but belong to society. That the only justification of his existence is his service to society. And that society may dispose of him in any way it pleases for the sake of whatever it deems to it’s own tribal collective good.”
  • The essential characteristic of socialism is the denial of individual property rights. – In other words, all things belong to the collective society – also known as The State.
  • Can human rights exist without property rights?
  • Tyranny doesn’t come at once in a democracy – it comes in pieces. (The idea that bad things come first as small “friendly” ideas wrapped up as: the children, the elderly, the environment, health care, etc.)
  • I want to point out here that Conservatism (not to be confused with “The Republican Party”) is about taking power away from the state and giving it to individuals, essentially – localizing it. This is the opposite of socialism.
  • Republicans, for the most part – aren’t really doing anything to help the situation.
  • The left creates enemies of the state, such as oil companies and Halliburton. But most people don’t know anything about these companies and how they do business, let alone how many jobs they provide.
  • Sen. Obama somehow gets to decide what’s appropriate for people to discuss about him and his presidential campaign. Here’s the current list of people/topics concerning Barack Obama that he says are “Distractions” and we shouldn’t be concerned about: Tony Rezko, William Ayers (American born terrorist, formerly part of the Weather Underground), Bernadine Dorn (Ayers wife), Jeremiah Wright (Sen. Obama’s pastor of 20 years – because apparently, Obama wasn’t at church on God Damn America Sunday, or The Government Created AIDS to Kill Black People Sunday, etc. and he had no idea that Wright held these views) Michelle Obama (Barack’s wife who we aren’t suppose to criticize even though she gives stump speeches all the time and has been a central force in his campaign).
  • The constitution is a set of guild lines so that the federal government would nurture individual liberty and not hinder it.
  • The Government’s villain of the day – Oil companies. But most people don’t realize how much control the government already has of the oil companies.
  • We shouldn’t be relying on the government to provide for our needs.

The rest of the world is increasing supplies, looking for more sources or oil – and we are not. The main argument I hear is that we should be looking for alternative sources of energy. That’s a nice thought – except that we will need oil to find those alternatives!

Currently – our entire economy revolves around oil. We cannot just abandon it in search of some magical futuristic (currently non-existent) form of energy. And don’t even get me started talking about Nuclear energy. Guess what – the environmentalist have blocked that idea too with their junk science. Read this article my buddy from work sent me: Inconvenient Truths: Get Ready to Re-think What it Means to Be Green. In particular this bit on Nuclear Power.

The last segment addresses the question of whether “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” includes things like health-care, etc. This bit is especially important as it outlines the idea that the government is so disconnected from the individual that it cannot effectively provide these services.

I hope that this post has been helpful in illuminating some of the problems with the idea of Socialism.

I have written a more extensive series on Socialism called: Why Reject Socialism. You can read it over at Appeal To Heaven.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.