Saturday, October 31, 2009

National Healthcare: A 'Trekie's' Response to the Red Herring of Cost

I was recently sufing the web and came across this blog post by a compassionate Canadian: Marlene's Space: The real cost of Medicare. In it, Marlene laments the plight of the uninsured in America and their countrymen's apparent lack of concern. She recalls a scene of homeless Hawaiian women picking up soda cans who seem to bear the signs of untreated injury; then lodges the following complaint:

"It's hard for me, as a Canadian, to understand why so many Americans don't want everyone to have medical coverage. To me, it's totally illogical." (Actually the question is devoid of logic on so many levels, but that's another debate.)

To her query, a minimally informed American shipmate observes--I presume in perfect Kirk-ese--"Spock! (added for effect...) Spock! They think...the cost... is too high." (translation: "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one.") Sadly, our sub-space yankee emissary misfires her phasers in reply. So I, generously, shot the missing logic into Marlene's space (compassionately, set only to stun).

'Marlene, are you suggesting that no one in Canada walks with a limp and the everyone there achieves the fulness of their human potential because of nationalized health care? Fortunately most Americans prize their liberty; both to succeed and to fail. National health care is an abominable infringement on that personal liberty--and on the free enterprise system as a whole--for Americans and Canadians alike. Your American friend is limited in her appreciation of the breadth and depth of the problem.'

'For the realatively few Americans who want health insurance and can't get it (about 12 million is the real number--excluding, in all liklihood, the beachcombers you mention as they are probably covered by Medicaid), nationalized healthcare is the equivalent of swatting a fly with a sledge hammer. Maybe a steam shovel! And there are simply no objective, empirical data to suggest that it (at least as presently proposed) will save one thin dime of cost.'

'Your compassion is noted and laudable. But your conclusion that nationalized healthcare is therefore the only solution, reveals the depth of your indoctrination in the concepts of collectivism. You simply can't imagine any alternative, can you? Personally, I'd rather be hobbling around Hawaii collecting cans than trapped in a mindset that had no room for individual liberty and personal responsibility or the virtues of industry, free enterprise and excellence.'

It's sad that Canadians as well as so many Americans look to the state for largesse before seeing solutions to our healthcare ills (and countless other woes) in unencumbered private ingenuity, industry, and enterprise. And that's rational.

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