Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Darwin says there can be no national health care

There are all sorts of pro and con arguments out there. But sometimes a short but poignant statement is the key to a strong stance on any issue. So here is mine on health care:

At any given moment, half the country is obsessedly competing for a Darwin Award.

From smoking, to fast food, to couch potato-ing, to drug abuse, to willful acceptance of pollution, to people dying from drinking too much water.... there are so many people living so unhealthy of a lifestyle (or just being plain stupid) that it would bury the entire country's economy and place an overwhelming financial burden on those who work hard to live a healthy lifestyle. The draconian level of government control required to make a national health care model work in the US would stretch the constitution far beyond its limits. It is not a question of what serves the greater good of the country. Clearly it would serve the greater good to keep every citizen as healthy as humanly possible, even if that required locking people up in a prison just to "help" them avoid doing anything unhealthy. But such a country could hardly call itself free.

I'm not saying I'm not for some type of nationalized health care. But each person needs to be able to decide for themselves what level of health care, and the requisite level of lifestyle restrictions, they want to impose on themselves. Sort of like a checklist. For example, if you want to smoke, then there would be certain types of medical treatments you would not be eligible to receive.... such as lung transplants. But how exactly would the government protect itself from fraud, ie, smokers claiming to be nonsmokers? Therein lies the dilemma. Sooner or later, if you want to have your "free" health care, you'll have to take a chip in order to get it. This is where the national health care debate is heading.

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