09.03.2013 0

The enslaving government health care ‘right’

The ObamaCare ConstitutionBy Rick Manning

We have all heard it said that health care is a right, an entitlement, a fundamental freedom that the government should guarantee.

Let’s assume it is.  A right on equal footing with those other precious liberties enumerated in the Bill of Rights to the United States Constitution.

The much debated Second Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the individual right to keep and bear arms, ensuring that every law-abiding citizen has the choice of whether to own and possess a firearm for their protection and the national defense.

However, no one, even the most ardent gun advocate interprets this right to convey a responsibility for the people of the United States through their taxes to be forced to subsidize the exercising of this right.

No legal argument has been presented that because a citizen has a right to keep arms, the rest of the citizenry should purchase the gun and ammunition for that individual.

No moral argument has been made that failure of the government to forcibly require firearm and ammunition manufacturers and those who actually craft the product to forego payments because some individual citizens find the cost of exercising their rights to be prohibitively expensive.

Yet, those who proclaim health care a right effectively attempt to do just this in the name of cost controls.  These controls effectively dictate the worth of the labor, training, expertise and ingenuity of the very doctors who without which, the system collapses.

The basic premise of those who believe that health care is a right is that the man or woman who spent their teens and twenties training to be able to provide patient’s the best possible medical treatment effectively becomes the slaves of the state due to the importance of their work.

Not only should they not be able to charge a non-government controlled price for their services, but they should only treat ailments within the government proscribed parameters.

Enslaving the best and the brightest under the guise of the people’s right to health care makes as much sense as compelling taxpayers to purchase guns for every citizen who desires one.

Yet it is the only possible outcome when a people decide that their access to the intellect, training and skill of another is a basic human right.  A right that demands that the mere decision to practice medicine or find a new procedure or drug that helps defeat disease, serves as the opt-in ascent to being fitted with government handcuffs upon certification.

A so-called right that puts the productive minority at the mercy of their overlords in the majority is no right at all.

It is as moral as an armed robbery, but the impact is even greater.  The right to health care is designed to turn doctors into quasi-government officials tasked with detailing  each of our most intimate medical issues to allow more cost-effective treatment options in the future.

The end result of the imposition of a new right to health care will be no health care at all.

With this government dictated right, the ballot box becomes the allocator of health resources.  The needs of the sick become subsumed to the whims of whichever disease group has the most powerful lobby.

Those who declare the right to health care are guaranteed to impose government treatment rules that inject the taxpayer’s consideration into the middle of the doctor/patient treatment decisions.  After all, if the taxpayer is footing the bill, then certainly the government should be part of the treatment decision making.

No need to purchase the most expensive medicine when a cheaper generic might be marginally effective.  No need to get an expensive MRI on that aching 60 year old shoulder, since the baseball dream is long gone.  No need to provide the 80 year old widow with a hip replacement.  After all, like a used vehicle, the utilitarian value of the persons remaining years cannot justify the frivolous mobility enhancing expenditure.

This is not news.  A majority of the U.S. House of Representatives knows this, the only question is whether they will have the courage to stop the current onslaught on our nation’s health care system by those whose words say “right to health care”, but really mean “federal government controlled health care?”

There may be no more pressing issue to face this Congress.

Rick Manning (@rmanning957) is the Vice President of Public Policy and Communications of Americans for Limited Government.

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