You know, like most people, I don't normally engage in political discussions in my day to day life as such discussion is generally viewed as rude and polarizing. In business or even social settings, it is a generally accepted rule of thumb that politics is an unwelcome guest and is considered a faux pas. Instead, the general consensus is that we should maintain a high degree of political anonymity so as not to be seen as intolerant of anyone having an opposing view point. So political discussion is not really appropriate unless you are in your home among family or friends, and then they should share your view for the discussion to be appropriate, so politics has been privatized.
Someone once told me that the last virtue of a scoundrel is tolerance. This is because once a scoundrel has extracted all other virtues, he preaches tolerance because that is how he justifies his lack of virtue. I think in some ways, this is how I see political correctness. It is basically the belief that your opinion must not infringe on anyone's feelings, since feelings are the ultimate measure of truth in our generation. In the name of political correctness, we have demonized or discouraged direct and frank dialogue on any number of issues of great importance. Keep important matters of opinion private or else you might hurt someone's feelings, which is intolerant and unacceptable. It does not matter how wrong the person is. No, they must go on in blissful ignorance. Well, I for one believe that all ideas and truth claims do deserve an equal voice (freedom of speech) but does not infer, nor would it be logical to infer, that equality of speech is the same as equality of merit or truth. In fact, this cannot be so. In logic, this is called the law of non-contradiction, meaning two statements that contradict cannot be equally true. One idea is superior to other when it has passed the appropriate tests for truth claims. As with all truth claims there is such a thing as exclusivity.
I am not a politician and I have never claimed to be. I am not a medical professional nor a lawyer. In fact the majority of us are none of the above. This makes us all somewhat less than qualified at fully understanding the nuances of the 1000+ page Healthcare Bill. I am not exactly sure how long it would take to read such a bill, much less understand the language it contains. It seems to me then, that the amount of time allotted to review such a document (72 hours) is a bit insufficient. If someone told me to read a 1000+ page book in 72 hours, I could probably do it, but I would likely internalize very little of it and I would probably not get much sleep in the process. This is not a criticism of the bill but it is, I think, a fair criticism of the process.
Beyond this, I find the logic for the socializing of our Healthcare system a very poor one. We all agree the current system is in need of reform. So the option is to reform or not to reform. Agreed. The massive jump in logic for me is when the term "reform" has been equated with only one option: government run healthcare. Why is that? Generally when there is a problem, there are many potential solutions to that issue. I see no difference in this case. To assert the notion that there is only one solution to the reform of US healthcare, and that solution can only be to socialize it is, for me, degrading to my intelligence. I would compare this with the following illustration I have come up with: "Hey doc; my leg is broken. Can you fix it? Well yes, it is broken and you can't keep walking on it while it's broken. Well, it looks like the only solution is to chop it off and replace it with a prosthetic one which I can get from the government. Doc, you mean there are no other options? Nope. If you don't cut it off, it will just stay broken. The only person who can fix your leg is me and the only place to get a new leg is the government. Outside of this, there can be no fix. But Doc, can't we fix it without chopping it off? Can't we fix the broken bone and keep the rest of the good things about it? After all, it is mine. Besides having a broken bone, isn't there a lot of up-side to keeping my own leg? Nope. Nurse, please bring the government in to vote on whether the patient should purchase a new leg or keep his broken one."
I know I have just over simplified a very complex issue, but this is how government run healthcare seems to me. This is how it has been sold and quite frankly, it ticks me off. Brand the bill and its objectives whatever you want, but it is step one for a single payer option. It is a massive new entitlement which will be just as poorly run as Medicare, Medicaid, and Welfare. The independent government research offices have now estimated that 56% of all Americans will be forced to abandon their current healthcare benefits and opt for the government run version. Those who are uninsured, must be insured or face stiff penalties. In addition, since no one can be denied benefits for preexisting conditions, private insurance providers will be forced to offset this cost somehow. This will either require higher premiums or government subsidy, which will be funded by the American people. This will effectively break the back of the private system as we know it. Explain to me what I am missing and why government run care is the ONLY option?? Love to hear from you on this one.