Tom Coburn on the health care bill

Here’s a statement from Tom Coburn on the passage of the health care bill. Thought I’d post it here because I happen to agree with it:

This vote is indeed historic. This Congress will be remembered for its arrogance, corruption and stupidity. In the year of 2009, a Congress ignored the coming economic storm and impending bankruptcy of our entitlement programs and embarked on an ideological crusade to bring our nation as close to single-payer, government-run health care as possible. If this bill becomes law, future generations will rue this day and I will do everything in my power to work toward its repeal. This bill will ration care, cut Medicare, increase premiums, fund abortion and bury our children in debt.

“This process was not compromise. This process was corruption. This bill passed because votes were bought and sold using the issue of abortion as a bargaining chip. The abortion provision alone makes this bill the most arrogant piece of legislation I have seen in Congress. Only the most condescending politician can believe it is appropriate to force Americans to pay for other people’s abortions and to coerce medical professional to take the lives of unborn children.

“The president and his allies genuinely believe that expanding government’s control over health care is the way to control health care costs, improve lives and extend life spans. I don’t question their motives, but I do question their judgment. History has already judged this argument and put it in its ash heap. The experience of government-run health care in the United States and around the world shows that access to a government program is not access to health care. Forty percent of doctors restrict access to Medicaid patients. Medicare already rations care and denies medical claims at twice the rate of private insurers. Nations like the United Kingdom with government run health care routinely ration care based on cost, and Canadians flock to the United States to escape waiting lines. Neither nation, incidentally, has managed to control costs as promised.

“Our health care system needs to be reformed not because government’s role has been too small but because it has been too big. Since the 1940’s, government’s role in health care has been expanded to the point that it controls 60 percent of our health care economy, according the non-partisan Congressional Research Service. If more government were the answer, health care would have been reformed long ago.


After looking through the news this week, I came across this comment from a casual observer that the media decided to interview.

“[Universal Health Care is] about human rights. It’s about morality. And denying people health care ranks right up there with genocide.”

This is one of those quotes that you read and start laughing, then blurt out, “What the heck,” and then get a very sick feeling in your stomach because the person believes this tripe without ever thinking about it.

Genocide is the act of intentionally killing off a people group because of that group’s race. It is the government (or para-military) sanctioned eradication of an ethnicity. Denying universal health care is the government saying, “Individuals have the right to choose their own health care” and/or “We don’t have the money to pay for it.” There’s a night and day difference. So that last sentence is just plain stupidity and underscores how many on the Left don’t know the first thing about moral equivalency.

Is it immoral for the government to refuse to pay for a person’s health care? It does depend on the situation. If the person put his life in harm’s way for the service of his country, or was injured while defending his country or doing a service for his country, then it is highly immoral for the government to refuse free health care (or even the best health care available). If, however, the person blew his hand up while holding onto a firework to see what would happen, it is actually immoral for the government to take other people’s money to pay for this man’s mistake.

But what about neutral parties? What about a person who has cancer, but can’t afford health insurance? It still isn’t moral for the government to use other people’s money to pay for this one person’s ailment. The reason is that by doing so (because there is always more than one person suffering), others are inevitably harmed. Thus, instead of a few people suffering, multiple people suffer. Rather, the moral thing to do is for the government to offer incentives to individuals who willingly give their money to funds and charities that help those who don’t have health care.

Either way, aside from being stupid, is just sick. The government refusing to have a universal health care system is very different from what Hitler did to the Jews or what the Hutu did to the Tutsi.

Taxes 101

What’s more effective and moral:

A parent who uses negative reinforcement to stop his child from acting out, or a parent who attempts to use positive reinforcement (though negative reinforcement will be needed at times)?

A boss who puts restrictions on his employees and adds rules, or a boss who gives bonuses and raises for employees who do more than is required of them?

A teacher who consistently marks down the grades of students for the smallest mishaps, or a teacher who adds points when the student does more than expected of him?

In most cases, though negative reinforcement is needed to “motivate” those who just don’t care, positive reinforcement works far better. When people realize they can get a deal for doing something, they’ll almost always do that “something.” So when it comes to health care, under a capitalistic system, doesn’t it make far more sense to offer substantial tax breaks to employers who offer health care for full time employees?

Doesn’t it make far more sense to offer even bigger tax breaks to those who give health insurance to part-time employees? Doesn’t it make sense to offer tax breaks to people who pay for their own insurance (which, by the way, contributes to the economy)? Doesn’t it make more sense to offer even bigger tax breaks for those who add supplemental insurance? Doesn’t it make more sense to offer a tax break to employers who pay double the minimum wage for their employees (and make sure the tax break supplements the money lost on payroll)?

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