by Jon N. Hall 6/16/17
At some of the raucous town hall meetings this year, indignant constituents would tell their representatives that if it weren’t for Obamacare they’d be dead. Actually, if it weren’t for modern medicine they’d be dead; Obamacare is merely a payment system, (and a rather rickety one). The Left and their “useful idiots” at the town halls seem to be throwing up death itself as though it were some unthinkable tragedy, as though it should never happen. And if death does happen, it’s somebody else’s fault, probably a Republican.
Is it in the national interest for government to keep all of us alive for as long as they can, to insure that each and every one of us gets to take as many breaths as is physiologically possible? Few of us live for as long as we could because few of us live the clean, prudent lives that lead to max longevity. So I can’t get exercised if some are “cheated” of a day or two of life, especially since that day or two is so exorbitantly expensive. Much of the expense of healthcare is run up in our last days on Earth, when our prospects are already pretty much dead.
If modern medicine found a cure for death, but it was so monstrously expensive that few could afford it, Democrats would be grabbing their pitchforks and caterwauling that the rich are getting to live forever while the poor are being allowed to die. Democrats would insist that the eternal life afforded by modern medicine is a “right” and that the federal government should provide it for everybody, regardless of cost.
Some of the rich already store their heads in cryogenic freezers for future resuscitation when science comes up with cures. Is it not monstrous that this isn’t included in Obamacare’s list of “essential health benefits”? By not insuring that all Americans get their own cryonic vaults to preserve their remains for eventual revivification, Republicans are “literally” killing people. (If that sounds over-the-top, then you haven’t paid any attention to the reaction to President Trump’s pulling out of the Paris climate accords.)
Much of the cost of modern medicine in America is incurred in treating a very small fraction of us. About 5 percent of Medicaid users account for half of that system’s payouts, according to the GAO. The same numbers apply to the nation as a whole. Now this is just anecdotal, but I recently heard that an acquaintance of mine, a diabetic, had gone into a coma, had two major-organ transplants, and was still in a coma. If doctors are using such patients just to see how long they can extend their lives, should insurance companies have to pay for it?
Although some might think it inhuman, one might ask: why are we trying to keep some of these patients going? Should the decisions for pulling the plug on patients in persistent vegetative states who are being kept alive by machines be made by their loved ones or by those footing the bill? Consider the Terri Schiavo case. Taxpayers and insurers shouldn’t be forced to pay for such “healthcare.” After the brain has died, when all hope is lost, pull the plug and let Nature do her damnedest. And for those of you who aren’t (yet) vegetables: when Mr. Death smiles on you, just smile back; what’s the worst that could happen? You have no “right” to live forever, so embrace the natural order of things.
The Left has got masses of Americans thinking that they should have the same healthcare as rich folks have and that they shouldn’t have to pay for it. But if we have two types of patients, those who pay and those who don’t, perhaps we should have a two-tiered system, with separate hospitals and doctors.
Recently, President Trump praised the Australian healthcare system. But lefties who delight in what they think was a concession might want to look a little deeper into healthcare Down Under. In “Was Trump right in praising the Australian healthcare system?” on May 6, Australian psychologist Dr. John Ray summed up Australia’s two-tiered system thus: “our private hospitals are as good as our public hospitals are bad.” On May 11 at American Thinker, Dr. Brian Joondeph also took a sober look at the Australian healthcare system. At the website for AIHW, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, we can read more about that nation’s public and private hospitals. It seems that in Australia, if you want the best you pay for the best. But in America, separate but unequal goes against our belief that the best should be free and that someone else should pay for it.
On June 5, the Washington Post ran Ed Rogers’s “The momentum for socialized medicine is growing. Where is the GOP’s strategy?” Every Republican in Congress should read Rogers’s short article:
It looks as though there will probably be a consensus position among Democrats running in 2020 in support of a single-payer system. […] Could it be that Republicans are on the brink of defending Obamacare as the only practical alternative to the Democrats’ march toward socialized medicine?
So, the party that gave us Obamacare, which seems to be in a “death spiral,” is the same party that presumes to give us Obamacare’s replacement. It makes one think that Obamacare was deliberately designed to fail, because what the Democrats are offering up now is what they wanted all along: socialized medicine. Nonetheless, many voters will buy into the Democrats’ demagoguery. (Read my little idea for universal healthcare that is not single-payer.)
If the majority of Americans now agrees that everyone should have formal healthcare coverage, complete with an insurance card so that anyone can waltz into any doctor’s office for treatment, then they also need to agree on something else: how to pay for it. For Democrats, the solution to that problem is simple and it’s always the same: tax the rich and go further into debt. For Republicans, that’s not good enough, (one would hope).
Few in America are denied medical treatment. There may be a few wino hobos sprawled out underneath train trestles taking repeated slugs of Thunderbird who can’t find their way to the nearest ER to get that painful boil lanced, but most folks get treated whether they have an insurance card or not. In America, even illegal aliens get medical care. How else would illegals get U.S. citizenship for their newborns? (By the way, where are we on reversing that policy, Mr. President?)
Some think that the warring factions within the GOP are irreconcilable, and that nothing will come from the Obamacare repeal and replace efforts. But before they pull the plug on healthcare reform, Republicans should all agree to do at least one thing even if that’s all they do: scrap the mandates. And regardless of what else is in the GOP’s bill, it should state that the federal government cannot command Americans to buy things, even health insurance. Let the Democrats just try and reverse that.
Jon N. Hall is a programmer/analyst from Kansas City.