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ObamaCare, Dissent, and Liberal Hypocrisy

  

 

The debate over health care reform has become nasty, but, given the high stakes, is not unexpected.  A government take over of health care, the dream of the left, would, of course, pave the way for the fulfillment of its greatest hope: a permanent shift of the nation to center-left, the marginalization of Republicans and conservatives, and the chance to transform the nation into one great big welfare state after all. Once the government controls health care and hence the lives of its citizens, the march toward socialism will be irreversible – and limited government types will be left tinkering around the edges.

We have heard from prominent liberals and Democrats about the dissidents opposing ObamaCare at town hall meetings around the country.  They have been called “evil mongers” (Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid), “un-American” (House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi), "racists," "Klansman," and "domestic terrorists.”  They have even trotted out that ultimate smear, the N-word for... “Nazi.”

So now, if citizens voice concerns over a government take over of healthcare, the growing deficit, or the general expansion of government to grotesque proportions, they can count on their leaders in Washington to not only not hear them out but rather to malign them in the most repugnant and offensive manner; not just harmless, bible thumpers from the hinterlands, mind you, but gun-toting Nazi crazies.  When liberals were out of power during George Bush's two terms, they were in open rebellion against their government, which, of course, was praiseworthy.  Liberals in power, however, have developed an allergy to protests: they now expect citizens to be complacent and obedient, like sheep.

The effort by the left to slander opponents though is a well-honed tactic.  By demonizing the enemy, it places him beyond the pale, as an outcast or pariah, and therefore not suitable for public consumption.  Defiance to one's agenda is thereby "isolated" to small, "extremist" groups or individuals with no legitimacy.  In this way, the left has succeeded in silencing opposition for decades.   With the first black President in power, Democrats will define resistance to Obama's directives as racially tinged.  

It is duplicitous, of course, and they may not get away with it.  At least, the storm clouds are forming.  We still, after all, have this annoying little custom known as elections.  And, perhaps, there will be fallout from the aggressive push to nationalize healthcare and insult its legitimate critics.  It is reminiscent of the battle over HillaryCare in the early nineties, which presaged the "Gingrich" Revolution that swept Republicans to power in Congress.  Yet, even as Democrats sink in the polls, the nation may not be ready to hand control over to the Republicans.  Democrats also have the votes to push a partisan version of health care through and may want to do so despite short-term political setbacks.  Once a federal program appears, it enjoys eternal life.  A constituency forms, lobbyists gather, and the political class defends it to the death.  Long term, they will reap electoral benefits as more Americans fall under government auspices. 

And, so, despite any imminent peril, Democrats appear ready to roll the dice.  The only hope, really, is to kill health care reform (in its current incarnation) by educating the public.  The arguments are compelling.  The US is the world leader in cutting edge medical research and technology.  We produce more Nobel Prize winners in medicine than the rest of the world combined.  More than 80% of global biomedical research occurs in the US.  Europe, a former leader in medical innovation, has run aground under the heavy hand of spending caps and state run medicine, its once great pharmaceutical houses squeezed by government price controls and use restrictions.  Wait times for CT scans, hip replacements, or bypass surgery in socialized settings are prohibitive and would be unacceptable to Americans.  Our cure rates for cancer and heart disease are higher because we have better quality medicines and prompt access to screenings, imaging studies, and referrals to specialists.  We enjoy earlier diagnosis and treatment – which saves lives.  Americans are satisfied with the quality of their health care – and properly so.    

We can address the defects in our system through targeted free market reforms that do not require a revamping of one sixth of the American economy and undermining the greatest health care system in the world.  Relatively minor but effective reforms would include providing tax credits for health insurance premiums, offering “portable” employer based insurance, insurance for “pre-existing” conditions, purchasing insurance across state lines, Health Savings Accounts, tort reform, state wide “high risk pools,” health insurance “exchanges,” and subsidies for low income uninsured to purchase private health insurance. 

It is also reasonable to ask whether Americans want an administrative Mommy State to coddle them in place of the land of liberty they once knew, recognizing that a government that secures your every adversity will also be a land of limited choice and freedom; it will be a deformed, infantilized America overseen by bureaucrats who will decide matters of life and death (and much else).  We can argue on behalf of a vibrant and vigorous nation of independent citizens, capable of making their own decisions – and buying their own private health insurance.

 

 

Comments

  • Harold Moss

    January 17, 2010

    I agree with much of this but also think that the healthcare system currently needs to be improved...If I had the answer I would be working as a senator but right now my dog gets better healthcare than my wife, kids and myself...when he is sick, he gets to see the doctor right away without waiting while my doctor asks me to come in and wait for about an hour if I am lucky

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