Wednesday, June 14, 2006

a quote of a quote - and some added quotes - on health care

Quite honestly I usually delete the free subscription e-mails I receive from Quinlin without reading them.

There is plenty of reading material in my inbox without diving into extra stuff. This letter contained a gem that updates a historic viewpoint. I'll give you both of them, and a bit more.

The historic one will be first - made by a European that traveled the USA and compared American liberties to the social disasters that were enveloping his native soil. This was just prior to the American civil war - before a strong central government was imposed. The civil war effectively ended independent states competing for citizens, and freedom has been increasingly lost since then..

"It's not an endlessly expanding list of rights - the 'right' to education, the 'right' to health care, the 'right' to food and housing. That's not freedom, that's dependency. Those aren't rights, those are the rations of slavery - hay and a barn for human cattle." - Alexis De Tocqueville (1805-1859)

The second shows our current state of affairs - with politicians competing for votes by giving away other people's money.
A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul." - George Bernard Shaw

If it is not virtuous for you to steal from others to pay your bills - you can not gain virtue by asking others to steal for you - it is still theft.

Here is the second quote - politicos are stealing in the name of others - and claiming it is virtuous.

In an April 12 guest opinion piece for the state's largest newspaper, three state lawmakers argued for establishing "affordable and effective health care" as a fundamental right for every Oregonian. But what Rep. Mitch Greenlick, D-Portland, gubernatorial candidate Sen. Ben Westlund, I-Tumalo, and Sen. Alan Bates, D-Ashland, are really advocating is a new, massive entitlement program where the state government, the taxpayers, should somehow be made responsible to provide health care for all.

Presumably these elected officials chose to use the language of rights rather than entitlements because "rights" are popular while "entitlements" have earned a negative reputation. Our rights define what we are free to do without interference. In the Declaration of Independence the founders list life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as among our inalienable rights.

Notice that these rights are not goods or services, not housing or health care, not education or food. The right to life, for example, does not mean that someone has to provide you with food and water; it means that you are free to work to earn your food and water and others may not steal them from you once you have them. ...The founders understood that rights are intrinsic ("endowed by their Creator" was their phrase); they belong to the people and cannot be given or taken away by the government.

The principle function of government is to recognize and secure these rights, rights that are paid for by the lives and struggles of those who established and fought for our independence and freedom. Entitlements, on the other hand, are obligations placed on one group of people to pay for benefits to another group.

A better solution would be to open the medical field to free market forces - driving quality up while lowering costs.

In reality the power and money of the American Medical Association prevents that.

I forget who said something to the effect " if you think health care is expensive now - just wait until it is free."

Take a look at a Brit's teeth if you want to see the value of a national dental plan - then consider that same disastrous approach to your overall health care.

A few closing quotes - just because I still can:

"The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery." - Winston Churchill

"Everyone wants to live at the expense of the state. They forget that the state wants to live at the expense of everyone." - C. F. Bastiat

"When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators." – P.J. O'Rourke


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