Tuesday, September 8, 2009

AAPS Warns What "Reform" Really Means

In their continuing series on myths about ObamaCare, the AAPS explains what such "reform" would really mean. Here is an excerpt from their 17th such piece, "Myth 17: Health care reform will establish a right to health care":
...Rights that Americans would lose under proposed reforms include: the right to buy true insurance, for which premiums are based on risk; the right to decline to buy a plan they don't want; the right to self insure; the right to reap the benefits of healthful living, hard work, and prudent spending; and the right to keep their medical records confidential. If the reforms evolve into a single payer, as many advocates intend, Americans would lose the liberty to use their own property to prolong or enhance their own lives.

Obligations that reform would impose on Americans include: continually proving that they had paid for coverage that the federal government deems acceptable; paying what the government deems to be their "fair share" for insuring persons below a certain income threshold; paying for procedures they deem to be harmful or immoral if coverage is mandated by government; and paying for expanded, costly bureaucracy.

America's extraordinary prosperity and technological progress occurred in an atmosphere of freedom. The losses resulting from a central chokehold on innovation are incalculable. Advocates of reform often attribute the high cost of American medicine to new drugs, devices, and procedures, and want still-heavier regulation to restrain these advances. Both Americans and the result of the world's peoples will lose if America is no longer the engine of progress.

Americans are being asked to exchange their birthright of freedom for -- politicians' promises. And to trade their natural, God-given rights to life, liberty, and property for government-granted privileges or entitlements.
Overall, their points are good. Americans must challenge the idea that ObamaCare is synonymous with "reform". Socialism is not "reform". And adopting the failed health care policies of Canada and Europe is not "change".

I do have one small quibble about their use of the term "God-given rights". Properly understood, tights are not something granted to man by God; instead, they are objective requirements necessary for humans to survive in a social context.

As writer Ayn Rand wrote in her essay, "Man's Rights":
The source of man's rights is not divine law or congressional law, but the law of identity. A is A -- and Man is Man. Rights are conditions of existence required by man’s nature for his proper survival. If man is to live on earth, it is right for him to use his mind, it is right to act on his own free judgment, it is right to work for his values and to keep the product of his work. If life on earth is his purpose, he has a right to live as a rational being: nature forbids him the irrational.