Friday, March 12, 2010

Why Is Health Care A Commodity?

On my way to pick up my son from school today I was listening to Sean Hannity yet again short change a liberal caller's relatively legitimate question. Don't get me wrong here. I love Hannity. He is a stalwart for conservative values, and in certain areas he is incredibly well informed. Yet, on occasion, in his attempt to belittle and demean our political opponents, he will fail to see a huge opportunity to possibly convert a few listeners. This is one of those occasions.

The caller asked Hannity why health care is a commodity. Rather than explain how Sean came up far short in his response, let me delve into answering the man's question.

Health care is a commodity because people want and deserve to be compensated for their labor. Doctors, nurses, and technicians all perform directly vital services on patients. But the labor doesn't stop there. Hospital administrators, janitors, ambulance drivers and more are involved daily in the upkeep and facilitation of health care services. And let's not forget the drug manufacturers, truck drivers, office staff and thousands upon thousands of other people involved in the various other supplemental industries supportive of the health care practice.

All of these people have to be paid. All the people who many the equipment used by the doctors and nurses. All the people involved in safely disposing of dangerous items such as syringes and unused medicines must get paid. And, frankly, I am just scratching the surface.

Herein lays the first serious conflict. Unless you are prepared for no one in ANY industry to be paid for their labor, they you can not sufficiently justify compelling anyone in ANY industry to go without pay. Unless you are prepared for everything in society to be free, where no one pays anything and no one gets paid for anything they do, then you cannot isolate one industry over another for that very request. For as soon as you isolate such an industry, people, obviously still in need of money to pay for those things that are not yet free, will divert their career paths towards those industries where they can be sufficiently paid so as to afford the things that are not yet free.

Such utopian dreams are the makings of a very nice Star Trek episode, but carry little value or weight in a FREE society. There is no doubt in my mind that Socialist ideologues, like Obama and Pelosi and Reid, would love to bring about such a society. I mean, seriously, are these not the very same flower-power hippies who dreamed of this sort of world on Haight/Ashbury and in upstate New York in the sixties? Apparently those LSD-laced fantasies never really died. Now they are hoisting them upon the rest of us. To them, FREEdom is not about liberty but about everything BEING free. They don't want the responsibility of freedom. They only want the FREE. Did they care back then whether someone else had to pay for their FREE? No. Nor do they care now. They just want their FREE.

As a father of more than 20 years, I had only one thing to say to my kids as they were growing up when it came to issues like this. If I have to pay the price for YOUR actions, then you are not FREE to act that way. But when you are willing to pay the cost for your actions then you are FREE to do as you wish.

Of course, they would always push the envelope with me on these things. But it always came down to responsibility and accountability. They didn't like it that way, but they learned to temper their behavior to what they were willing to pay the price for and to show respect for my wife and me with regards to what WE had to pay relative to their behavior.

Isn't that what's happening right now in Washington. Our politicians have become irresponsible with regards to OUR money. They are writing checks for things THEY want, without regard for whose money it is they are spending. It is time, my friends, to close the bank account, cut up their credit cards and take away the keys to the mini-van. Their irresponsible behavior MUST be reigned in before WE have to pay the bills for their actions.

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