Here’s one of those amusing phony “news” stories that depends on twisting the meaning:
GOP Rep. Mike Coffman Says Single-Payer Health Care “Works”
“I successfully tested our health care system,” he said, with a laugh. “It works,”‘ he told the Post.
Of course the health care system worked for him, many Coloradans undoubtedly thought when they read the item in Saturday’s Post. Coffman, a Republican member of Congress who voted against the health care reform bill in the House last year, is covered by the Cadillac of American health-care plans, the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Plan.
The notoriously biased Huffington Post naturally uses this to good effect in scoring political points. However, there is a basic truth evident here.
The fact is that all the negative aspects of “government controlled health care” are eliminated if such programs are limited to a narrow group of people, especially if they are wealthy or old. Despite the ridiculous claims of “conservatives” that government-run insurance programs are inherently unreliable and wasteful when compared to private insurance programs, the real differences don’t show up unless the insured base is broadened.
Insurance is what it is: a method of externalizing and amortizing costs, with the insured betting they will get more than they pay in and the insurer betting they will get more than they pay out. It doesn’t “break even,” it isn’t a “fair exchange,” it doesn’t “encourage competition.” It’s nothing less than gambling, and if you are covered by a private insurance plan, you are no more moral or righteous than any other irresponsible social parasite.
The bottom line is that government-sponsored welfare is a losing proposition if it is offered to more than a small percentage of the population. Ideally it is offered only to those who are influential in maintaining the government’s legitimacy and control over the populace. Therefore it is stupid to offer it to insignificant tramps, unrepentant addicts, lazy moochers, unemployable scumbags, and overeducated windbags. It would have no practical effect other than as part of a public relations campaign appealing to the fake altruism of self-flogging, treasonous, hypocritical liberal elites.
However, the hypocrisy on the conservative side is also apparent. If a conservative government employee claims that the government is unreliable and incapable of managing a healthcare plan, what he really means is that you, a private citizen of mediocre net worth and political influence, cannot rely on the government to do anything for you and should not expect it to manage your healthcare. It’s like asking a private corporation to do something for someone who is not an employee, customer, vendor, investor, or board member. An oligarchical government cannot be expected to bother doing anything for anyone who is not a member of the ruling class.
Despite my radical tendencies, I don’t really have a problem with this arrangement. My problem, that is, the reason I blog about this pointless drivel, is that so many people lie about it. They lie about “democracy” and “the free market” and “taxpayers’ rights” and “workers’ rights.” Don’t BS about democracy if you don’t like mob rule. Don’t BS about the free market if you want preferential treatment for certain players. Don’t BS about taxes if you pay $3000 a year in property taxes while your kid gets $10,000 a year worth of public education. Don’t BS about workers’ rights if you are in a labor union that negotiates for you a wage-and-benefits package worth double what a private contractor can get.
Instead of lying about how righteous and moral you are, how deserving you are of everything you own, and how all the poorer, dumber, uglier people are in a massive conspiracy to deprive you of your right to happiness, why not just admit to the realities of power politics and social privilege? By that I mean accepting the fact that there are numerous benefits to living in a modern post-industrial society and following the (formal and informal) rules laid out by the authorities. Get over the pathological need to justify it and moralize about it. You didn’t personally create it, you don’t personally sustain it, and you don’t deserve the benefits of it.