Facing no principled opposition, except perhaps from the lonely voice of Ron Paul, Obama is merely doing what John McCain would have done, and what George W. Bush actually did – brazenly violate the Constitution by sticking the corrupted nose of government in a place where it holds no jurisdiction or authority.
As to the practical argument, Americans have been so successfully brainwashed into thinking that government can or should solve all their ills, that they readily look to government to remedy problems which government caused in the first place. Brezhnev once said socialism was irreversible, and to a large extent he was right. Once weaned on the public dole, Americans reflexively look to government on matters where it has no constitutional or even practical role. The great paradox is that when Americans are asked — in a purely general and philosophical way — if more government involvement is good or bad, they overwhelmingly impart an anti-government view. But when a specific problem arises in the morning affecting their lives, they invariably turn to... government.
Health care is the perfect example of a monstrosity whose problems were caused almost exclusively by government meddling.Pointing to its myriad problems, politicians then claim that only more government intervention can solve them. As the late Harry Browne once said, “The federal government knows how to break your legs, hand you a crutch, and then say, ‘If it weren’t for government, you wouldn’t be able to walk.’”
Right now, government spends half of every health care dollar in America — more than insurance companies, employers and individuals. Health care costs are through the roof. Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) are now so powerful that politicians are fighting over whose “Patients’ Bill of Rights” is more effective in protecting people from HMOs. Of course, it was government that made HMOs so powerful in the first place.
Before the federal government intruded into health care in the 1960’s, health insurance was affordable to virtually everyone.
Just as automobile insurance is not used for oil changes, gasoline and basic repairs, health insurance was not intended to cover every
conceivable medical service.
The “Medicare + Choice” bill included demands that managed-care providers add more services without being compensated for them. So many providers were facing dreadful losses that over 100 chose to leave the Medicare system entirely, forcing over 100,000 senior citizens to find new plans.
Medicaid is a federally-sponsored program which provides health care to low income people and to nursing homes for the elderly. Though it is run by the states, 50 to 75 percent of the money comes from the federal government. Already, this is a recipe for disaster. In order to make up the difference for what the feds don’t provide, states generally raise taxes while upward price pressures generate. The states frequently exceed their budgets. Oregon instituted strict rationing of health care to bring medical costs under control. The Republican governor of Tennessee was forced to break a campaign promise and propose the first income tax in state history, citing out-of-control Medicaid costs as his reasoning.
Before 1965, the poor had access to charity hospitals, free clinics and low prices for health care.