Thursday, June 18, 2009

Health Care Slavery

The Medical Services industry is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the USA. You'd think that with so much tinkering by government in the past that it would be perfect. Unless you know that regulation is what breaks industries, not fixes them. In fact, those who favor government intervention forget that government is the cause of the very problems it seeks to fix. Worse than this, politicians don't know that the solution for our health care problems is that the government stop doing what created them.

The New Health Insurance reform that the Obama administration is attempting to install is another example of the government trying to fix a problem by doing the same things that created the problem.

“Contrary to claims that government-imposed “universal health care” would solve America’s health care problems, it would in fact destroy American medicine and countless lives along with it. The goal of “universal health care” (a euphemism for socialized medicine) is both immoral and impractical; it violates the rights of businessmen, doctors, and patients to act on their own judgment—which, in turn, throttles their ability to produce, administer, or purchase the goods and services in question.”(1)

“The current system of employer-sponsored health insurance is a catastrophe, and it is a result of government intervention in the free market. Such intervention violates the rights of insurance companies, employers, and consumers by granting special government favors to certain insurance companies or plans, by forcibly eliminating options that would exist in a free market, and by forcibly seizing money from insurers and the insured. It artificially places employers and insurers between doctors and patients and leads to innumerable economic distortions. Employers and insurers dictate everything from which doctors and specialists employees will be permitted to visit under the plan, to the kinds of benefits that will and will not be provided, to the co-payments and deductibles that will be paid. Because third parties are paying for both insurance and health care, the employee-patient-customer has little choice in what kind of insurance or who provides the health care he receives—and plenty of incentive to visit a doctor anytime he has a runny nose. The fact that third parties pay for all health care increases the administrative costs for doctors as well as insurers, and those costs are passed on to consumers.”(2)

The media today seldom exposes the government as the culprit in our present circumstance. Instead they prefer to get into bed with the government; they prefer to be dutiful propagandists, complicit in helping the government promote the lie that medical insurance reform will actually reduce costs and improve services. They refuse to report to the people that government intervention in the medical services industry has caused the very problems it claims to be fixing.

Yet…“The American Medical Association warns physicians that, due to the lack of affordable health insurance (because of government rules), “more patients will delay treatment and . . . doctors will likely see more uncompensated care.” Hence, each year doctors are working harder and harder but making less and less money, resulting in a “critical level” of stress and burnout. According to a recent survey of doctors, “30 to 40 percent of practicing physicians would not choose to enter the medical profession if they were deciding on a career again, and an even higher percentage would not encourage their children to pursue a medical career.””(3)

President Obama’s new health care plan is nothing but more stress and burnout for the doctors. It is more re-distribution. The stated intentions of this plan are to ensure that people have medical insurance and that health care costs go down. But re-distribution of medical expenses requires intervention; intervention requires that the doctors be made into slaves who must pay for the growing costs created by government. The method of redistribution is to force all doctors into the system and then reduce payments to them below cost. In this scheme, the government is the authority on what doctors and hospitals should be doing and it will determine who lives or dies based upon considerations not necessarily in the best interest of the patients or doctors.

No one stops to ask the question. Why does the government violate the rights of virtually the entire medical services industry in order to fix problems that it created? Once again, we arrive at the basic premise of the Obama administration: sacrifice. For every problem the government creates, someone has to sacrifice. This is discrimination.

In order to reduce health care costs the government must routinely pay doctors less than cost for necessary services and treatments. In addition, the government will decide who warrants expensive treatments and it will seek to limit the range of options that would normally be available to a patient in a free market. This will not only reduce the level of care, but it will also reduce research and development for better treatments and medicines. It will create a brain drain in the medical services industry.

The government can’t legislate a right to health care. Any such “right” must be paid for by someone else. The government can’t induce doctors to participate in a program that loses money for them. And, more importantly, we cannot simply appeal to a doctor’s sense of charity (sacrifice) if, in the process, he won’t be able to pay his electric bill. For men and women who have spent significant portions of their lives preparing for the demanding work of caring for sick patients, what kind of future do you think doctors will have under a single-payer system? Who would want to be under the knife of someone who resents being robbed by the President's program? Who would want to be cared for by someone who must do it out of civic duty with no reward or compensation?

Why should a doctor work hard to save lives when he or she has been made into a slave? Doctors have a right to work in this society freely. They have the right to trade their skills for a reasonable price. Doctors, of all people, should be left alone to function without the interference of government. The same goes for nurses, hospitals, insurance companies, medical products manufacturers and drug companies.

Further, I hope your life (or mine) is not one that the government decides is too expensive to save. As Charles Krauthammer has said, "Death is cheaper." Will the government now insist that we have a moral obligation to die so the government can lower our medical expenses?

Moral Health Care vs. "Universal Health Care"

(2) Ibid
(3) Ibid (parentheses mine)

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