Last night, at another GOP-TP candidates' debate, Rep. Ron Paul answered a hypothetical questioned posed by Wolf Blitzer. The question was asked about a young man who opted out of buying insurance because of the cost and then who became ill with a catastrophic disease.
"What do you tell a guy who is sick, goes into a coma and doesn't have health insurance? Who pays for his coverage? "Are you saying society should just let him die?" Wolf Blitzer asked.
'Yeah!' several members of the crowd yelled out.
Paul interjected to offer an explanation for how this was, more-or-less, the root choice of a free society. He added that communities and non-government institutions can fill the void that the public sector is currently playing."
In a country of over 300 million people, Paul stupidly suggested that churches and other private charities could cover the cost of someone's catastrophic illness. Perhaps this is his sneaky way of putting religious institutions out of business?
Then Paul contradicted himself with this remark at the end of his answer:
. "We have given up on this whole concept that we might take care of ourselves, assume responsibility for ourselves ... that's the reason the cost is so high."
Actually, the cost comes down when the risk is shared by hundreds of millions of people who pay into a system like Medicare.
Paul must live in a world where he sees no poverty or families that struggle with financial problems. Those are real problems for real people. Who goes to a church or other charity expecting those people to pay for long-term costly medical care to save a life? That's why we pay into a system where benefits are there for those who need them--Medicare.
The people in the audience who cheered at the suggestion that someone should die because he had no medical coverage are the same people who support getting rid of social security, Medicare, Medicaid, the ACA, the EPA, and the Department of Education. They support the elimination of police, firemen, and teachers' unions. They and the politicians they hope to place in power envision a Hobbesian nightmare for America--a nightmare of violence, abuse, and neglect.
Interesting comments on the HuffPost blog covering this issue:
"Ron Paul fails to point out the hospitals still get paid by tax dollars when they treat uninsured patients. People don't get turned away, not because the hospital is magnanimou
You can keep your "every man for himself"/ "only the strongest survive" 1850's worldview.
Why is Paul (or any bagger) even in the Goverment? The Government is clearly a waste of money, has no authority or obligation to do anything, and is evil. Why do so many of them want to be part of it?"
"When I was in magazine publishing
I thought about that tonight while watching the CNN Tea Party debate. Applauding Rick Perry's record on executions was one thing; applauding the suggestion that society should allow a 30-year-ol
Once could be forgiven as an anomaly, as an outlier. Twice?
That's today's GOP for you."
Go here to read Smartypants' take on the GOP-TP's shameful reaction last night.