A good take on all the “other” reasons the Stalinist health plan should be defeated. It starts with Life, continues with economic reality, goes through subsidiarity, and ends with government control over everyone and everything in the field. From Catholic Online:
Opinion: Is Health Care Reform for Bureaucrats?
By F. K. Bartels
Many of these elected officials have set themselves against the sanctity of life and the Natural Law.
GLADE PARK, CO (Catholic Online) – While our society has, it seems, reached a point at which it might be possible to provide reasonable health care to every American, there is a veritable hornets-nest of ramifications let loose by the idea of “reform”. One thing is certain, any changes in legislation will likely result in far-reaching and unforeseen effects; therefore there are numerous serious questions which should be thoroughly resolved prior to committing to any type of “reform”.
At the foundation of these questions is the issue of whom should be handed the responsibility of re-working health care. One would think such a question would be addressed at length before any decision as to how to proceed is made. However, the federal bureaucrats currently residing in office find such a question irrelevant; for they have placed themselves as sovereign “reform” kings and queens, as dictators of whatever changes they deem appropriate.
Bear in mind many of these elected officials have set themselves against the sanctity of life and the Natural Law; they have willingly and with thoughtful purpose aligned themselves with organizations such as Planned Parenthood and the Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Transgender (LGBT) movement. These men and women continue to insist that taxpayer dollars be used to fund elective abortions; they promise to elevate same-sex union to the status of marriage between a man and woman; and they have forced our children to be exposed to “alternative lifestyle month” in public schools; et cetera. It is clear that federal bureaucrats are not merely off-course, rather they have willfully embraced abject moral disorder.
On September 26, 2009, Archbishop Raymond Burke wrote, “The administration of our federal government openly and aggressively follows a secularist agenda. While it may employ religious language and even invoke the name of God, in fact, it proposes programs and policies for our people without respect for God and His Law. In the words of the Servant of God Pope John Paul II, it proceeds “as if God did not exist” (Reflections on the Struggle to Advance the Culture of Life).
Jeffrey A. Mirus, co-founder of Christendom College, expressed his concern over placing our nation’s health care solely under the control of the federal government. “At what point does it become too dangerous to put health care in the hands of a government which, over the past generation, has consistently allied itself with the culture of death?” (This Rock, Nov.-Dec., 2009).
Laying aside the morally bankrupt condition of our present administration, many are, nevertheless, of the mind that the federal bureaucrats in Washington are the right choice for “reform”. Apparently they have ignored – or are unaware of – several facts. First, when the federal government seizes control of health care it will dictate who gets care, when they get it, and what care is received. Is this level of control ultimately advantageous for the common good? Second, the bureaucrats will fund “reform” with public taxpayer dollars, which will quickly drive private insurance companies out of business. In the end, this process is none other than socialized medicine. The world’s classroom has already quite satisfactorily shown that socialized medicine is a bad idea. Which brings us to the principle of subsidiarity.
On August 22, 2009, Archbishop Naumann and Bishop Finn issued a joint pastoral statement titled “Principles of Catholic Social Teaching and Health Care Reform”. The section titled “Preamble to the Work of Reform” explains the principle of subsidiarity, and how it applies to health care reform. (diocese-kcsj.org/_docs/Joint-Pastoral-Health-Care-Reform-08-09.pdf).
“This notion that health care ought to be determined at the lowest level rather than at the higher strata of society, has been promoted by the Church as “subsidiarity.” Subsidiarity is that principle by which we respect the inherent dignity and freedom of the individual by never doing for others what they can do for themselves and thus enabling individuals to have the most possible discretion in the affairs of their lives. The writings of recent Popes have warned that the neglect of subsidiarity can lead to an excessive centralization of human services, which in turn leads to excessive costs, and loss of personal responsibility and quality of care.”
Archbishop Naumann and Bishop Finn cited Pope Benedict’s warning that “The State which would provide everything, absorbing everything into itself, would ultimately become a mere bureaucracy incapable of guaranteeing the very thing which the suffering person – every person -needs: namely, loving personal concern. We do not need a State which regulates and controls everything, but a State which, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, generously acknowledges and supports initiatives arising from the different social forces and combines spontaneity with closeness to those in need.” (Deus Caritas Est #28).
The Catechism of the Catholic Church warns against excessive intervention by the state and the dangers of socialization: “Socialization also presents dangers. Excessive intervention by the state can threaten personal freedom and initiative. The teaching of the Church has elaborated the principle of subsidiarity, according to which ‘a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order, depriving the latter of its functions, but rather should support it in case of need and help to co- ordinate its activity with the activities of the rest of society, always with a view to the common good.’” (CCC, # 1883).
Catholic Medical Association (CMA) representative R. Steven White noted that “While health-care reform is more important than ever, existing legislation in the House and Senate—combined with President Obama’s push for hasty action—could make our current, flawed system even worse.” “Sound reform must be based on sound ethics and economics; but so far, the House and Senate bills meet neither standard.” (cathmed.org).
CMA also noted that there are “significant shortcomings in the economic and clinical aspects of current legislation. First, as the Congressional Budget Office points out, the legislation does nothing to reduce long-term costs. Rather, current legislation increases costs by hundreds of billions of dollars even after tax increases and creative accounting measures. Second, the bills’ attempts to control costs and increase access rely on heavy-handed government control that is antithetical to the rights of patients and physicians, and to good clinical care.” Further, CMA advises that the “House bill regulations make it almost impossible for any current health insurance plan to survive in a new government-controlled regime.” This would “remove the means for people to choose insurance which accords with their values and priorities.” (Ibid.).
Private insurance companies cannot compete with the federal government; for the federal government operates outside of a free-market system. The government can establish below-market rates for premiums, defer costs onto private companies, and increase taxes or the federal deficit to offset losses.
CMA noted that the result of these serious problems is that “sooner than later, [everyone] will be forced to become participants in the ‘public option’ plan and fully subject to the costs and regulations of government health care. When this happens, the American people will have lost the freedom to make important decisions about their life and health.” (Ibid.).
One of the most disturbing effects of what many are calling a government “take-over” of the health care system is inadequate provider reimbursement. It is certain that the federal bureaucrats, when squeezed by insufficient tax dollars, will lower reimbursement amounts for patient medical services. This will result in below-standard care and a reduction in the number of available physicians. Who wants to endure the ten-plus years of medical training only to graduate into a failing, government controlled system with meager opportunities and inordinate regulatory red-tape, preventing doctors from caring for their patients as they would prefer?
Archbishop Naumann and Bishop Finn advise that the proposed “reform” may result in changes for the worse: “Despite the many flaws with our current policies, change itself does not guarantee improvement. Many of the proposals which have been promoted would diminish the protection of human life and dignity and shift our health care costs and delivery to a centralized government bureaucracy. Centralization carries the risk of a loss of personal responsibility, reduction in personalized care for the sick and an expanded bureaucracy that in the end leads to higher costs.” (Ibid.).
The federal bureaucrats are proposing not legislative tweaks designed to improve our health care system, but rather sweeping changes which will substantially alter health care in America. Are these men and women qualified, in any way, to run our health care industry? Further, they have clearly shown, time and again, their disrespect for our unborn neighbors. Currently, over 3,000 precious unborn children are intentionally killed in America each and every day. Nevertheless, many of these “reform” kings and queens insist on funding such a barbaric, unspeakable evil with tax dollars. They intend to make each and every American an accomplice in the diabolical killing of the innocents.
We are indeed at a critical juncture in our nation. Call your senators and representatives now. Demand that they scrap the current proposed health care reform and start over. Demand that they protect life from conception to natural death. Demand they cease from proceeding “as if God did not exist”.
F. K. Bartels operates catholicpathways.com, and may be reached via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org He is a contributing writer for Catholic Online.