Diagnosis for Democracy
Insights into the State of Our Union
A Blog by Rob Tenery, MD


A New Push for 'Rights' from the Left *

By Rob Tenery, MD on February 11, 2019

There is nothing new under the sun says the writer of Ecclesiastes. Although this pronouncement is true and can be seen in many different aspects of society, nowhere is it more evident than in the newly elected Democratic Members of the House of Representatives and the scores of leftists who have announced or plan to announce their intent to run for president. The Democrat Party easily demonstrated their willingness to move further toward socialistic governance with the election of Barak Obama and the nomination of Hillary Clinton. With Obama, we got Obama Care, much of which has been stripped away by President Trump, with some assistance from a Republican Congress. When Hillary ran, she promised, if elected, she would advance policies that would move the country quicker and deeper into a government centric, socialist society.

Now that a new crop of hard left lawmakers was elected in the 2018 cycle, the scab that allowed the party to hide its true intentions has be ripped off. Many of the newly elected members promised their constituents that they would fight for ‘health care’ for all. They never explain what ‘health care for all’ will mean in terms of the availability and quality of care. Thus, they use the phrase as an empty term that each person gets to fill with their own ideals and dreams. The reason I say this is that health care is a general phrase that describes all the things a person does to maintain their overall health and wellbeing. The clever (deceptive) politician uses the phrase to indicate physician led and provided care of the individual.  They lead the people to believe that they have a right to physician provided care.

Civil and just societies should bear some obligations to those individuals who reside in areas under their governance with respect to health care needs. The first is provision of emergency care that would otherwise cause death or significant increased morbidity (difficult to measure with accuracy). The second is relief of suffering, not just pain (again difficult to measure). The last is protection of those individuals that they are in contact with from (contagious) diseases that would bring others undue harm (immunizations).

Health care for all should not imply the same level of care for all. Just delivery systems of health care, to be affordable, must have a ‘basic benefits package’ of essential needs. Then another, with more extensive options, for those who can afford and access those tests, treatments and surgeries, as long as they don’t take away from basic health care protections of those that can’t afford them.

Politicians like California’s Senator Kamala Harris have stated that health care is a ‘right’ and I agree with her to a point. It is each individual’s right and responsibility to take care of their health. What is not a right, and I profoundly disagree with her on, is that it is the duty of the government to collect from everyone to provide care for anyone. If the politician wants to attempt to reduce the cost of health insurance so that everyone can afford to purchase a plan that meets their needs, I am all for it, provided it is a free market solution.  The use of the government to force providers and insurance companies to provide a service that they are not properly compensated for is just another step into socialist economics. Since the people that work in the insurance and health care industries are self-existing individuals, they have a right to earn a living for the services they provide. If the government steps in and mandate that they do something not in their interest or at a cost below their skills and the level of services they provide, then they become slaves to the masses. 

This push toward socialism seems to be gaining traction in the United States. Take a look at this information from a recent Gallop Poll:

   *47% of Democrats view capitalism positively, down from 56% in 2016  

   *57% of Democrats now view socialism positively, little changed from 2010

   * Republicans very positive on capitalism, but only 16% positive on socialism1

When you have 29 and 77 year old elected representatives, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders, proudly pronouncing their affinity to socialism, it illustrates the increasing naiveté of those who are quick to embrace socialist thoughts. This is also an indication that there is something going wrong in our educational institutions.

When our primary and secondary education systems decide to abandon the true history of the United States and replace it with some idealistic hoped for country that can never exist, we end up in a place where more and more people start to embrace a defunct and corrupt system like socialism. On top of that, when we get nationally elected officials, all of whom should know better, promote ideas that will gradually lead to the adoption of a socialist form of government, we cannot help but to expect that a vast number of our fellow citizens will fall in line with these ideas.

It is a shame to have to say it, but there are far too many Americans who see it as their ‘right’ to have what others have. It does not help when you have lawmakers who put into legislation the means by which the government can confiscate the wealth of other to distribute it to those most likely to vote them back into power. Yes, we call it taxation. But at what point does taxing one set of citizens and confiscating their labor (earnings) and exempting another set of citizens from any such confiscation show equality by the government? The answer is that it does not. It is tantamount to slavery.

Far too many politicians in the Democratic Party are espousing taxation at astronomical levels on certain income because they deem themselves the ‘righteous’ assessors of who deserves what. They believe they can take what one person rightfully earns, deem it too much, and give it to someone who has not earned it because they have the ‘right’ to a certain basic style or standard of living.

If we don’t get the masses to understand that there is no right to what others have earned through their talents and hard work, we will face a grim future when the masses elect more of those with the same mindset.

1 https://news.gallup.com/poll/240725/democrats-positive-socialism-capitalism.aspx

                                                                                                                                                                             Odell Brown               

 

 





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