Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

15 November 2014

The Patient Subjugation and Unaffordable Care Act and Progressive Elitism

As the time nears when Americans are once again being forced to sign-up for government approved health insurance plans, a string of pithy quotes by Jonathan Gruber, a chief contributor to the creation of the near-secret PPACA bill, baldly state that stupid Americans were easily manipulated into subjugating themselves to this law.  In fact most Americans have always opposed this law and very many were always angry that the Congress did not construct a bill of such a critical nature with due deliberation and discussion.  It did not even read the bill, as famously noted by Nancy Pelosi with her statement that the bill had to be passed so that it might be read!  It is true that Americans had been duped into providing the Democrat Socialist Party the presidency, a super majority in the Senate, and a majority in the House of Representatives.

All one had to know about the bill to oppose it was that individuals were no longer to be free to choose what medical care would be covered in their health insurance plans.  With some thought, some even realized that the basis for a government claim for the authority to dictate how an individual would maintain his mind and body, was a highly collectivist claim that government had a right of ownership in every individual's mind and body.  This is an appalling claim to anyone who understands and values the equal, sovereign right of every individual to life, liberty, property, the ownership of one's own mind, body, and labor, and to the pursuit of one's own happiness.  The government's denial of individual self-ownership is chilling and brutal.  This denial was a chief aim of the many Progressive Elitists in leadership positions in the Democrat Party, in academia, and in much of the media.

In the cause of achieving this universal claim of collective ownership of every individual's mind and body, the Progressive Elitists are highly united.  They often agree that lying, misdirection, bribery, and fraudulent voting are all very acceptable means to achieve the end of collectivism which they value above all else.

Progressive Elitists often state that everyone is morally obliged to sacrifice their own interest for, as they like to say, "the least among us."  This is not only a moral claim in their minds, but it is a license for the use of government force to make everyone give up their own interest in favor of someone the Progressive Elitist believes to be in need, either materially or mentally.  This claim of subjugation to the needs of "the least among us" has become more and more common on the part of Progressive Elitists.

There is a tradition and still a strong following among Progressive Elitists for the notion that government is the moral enforcer of the so-called pragmatist claim that the greatest good for the greatest number defines morality.  When real moral principles are deemed too hard to formulate, to defend, and to live by, such a weak nostrum is about all a society can fall back on, excepting religion and the commonly related divine right of Kings and their aristocratic and ecclesiastic enablers.  To be sure, the American Progressive Elitist does view the President as a King-like figure and themselves as the aristocratic and ecclesiastic enablers.

They also claim to be proponents of democracy, though that claim is modulated by their constant belief that most Americans are stupid, as was so clearly revealed in the Jonathan Gruber and Nancy Pelosi comments.  This was earlier revealed in Obama's claim that most Americans cling foolishly to their guns and religion.  That he also sees himself as a king is very apparent in his saying as President he can do anything he wants and in his continuing violations of the Rule of Law.

Progressive Elitists are in a bind given that they purport to support democracy, yet they think the People are mostly incapable of choosing their own values, managing their own lives, and of voting correctly as envisioned by the Progressive Elitists.  They must find a way to manipulate the unwashed masses to vote in a manner that will allow the Progressive Elitists to actually dominate and control the government.  Because the Progressive Elitist is sure that she knows what is best for the masses, deception through any combination of lies and misdirections is justified.  We have seen this in spades with the PSUCA (see title) or the Patient SuckA.

How do the Progressive Elitists enlist support from the People in democratic elections?  Usually it is by claiming that they are for all the People except the Rich or that they are the champions of the Middle Class.  In this way they are hoping to gain the support of the majority and they will commonly promise this majority enough special favors to try to win them to their cause.

Among their many deceptions is the idea that it is possible to achieve the greater good of the greater number through laws that affect many of our moral choices.  Perhaps it is the in-supportability of this idea that has actually pushed more and more Progressive Elitists toward the claim that government is obliged to primarily pursue the interests of "the least among us," though this claim is usually made to fellow highly educated people they expect to be fellow elitists.  The practical problem of achieving political power is complicated if the Progressive Elitists actually ask the Middle Class to give up its own interests.  This is not an easy sell.

Why is this notion of the greatest good for the greatest number unachievable?  If force is to be used to transfer some value from some to others and yet a majority has to be enlisted to support that use of force by the government, then it is not easy to have a big enough pool of victims from whom enough can be extracted to provide a noticeable benefit to the majority except when the majority is not much greater than the victimized minority.  So, on one issue the beneficiaries might be 60%, on another 55%, and on another they may be 80%.  If the beneficiaries are randomly chosen, the chance any one individual was benefited on all three issues is only 0.264.

If these same issues were left to the private sector, most people might very easily arrange their affairs to benefit on each of the three issues or at least not to be hurt on any of them.  Surely on all of the issues before our Big Government now, a transfer to the private sector would commonly allow individuals to achieve 70 to 90% of their values.  In the private sector one has the added critical advantage that force cannot be used to make you enter into a trade that you do not think is in your own best interest.  In the government sector a victim is required and force must be threatened to make the victim yield his time, his income, or his wealth up to the Progressive Elitist re-distributor.

Now to be sure, the Progressive Elitist program does not aim to distribute the benefits randomly.  Some people are supposed to be the ones who are commonly to bear the hurt, in theory.  In practice, Big Government is little more controlled by the Progressive Elitists avowed agenda than it is a true expression of the democratic will of the majority of the People.  As I have noted over and over, Big Government is so vast and complex that the People do not understand what is going on and they commonly feel powerless to control it.  Even few, if any, Progressive Elitists can understand and follow the full scope of government actions.  This was richly illustrated in their contingent of full-time politicians voting for the PSUCA without reading it and later having to admit that they knew little about it.

Progressive Elitists who are not actually corrupt are also overcome by those who are corrupt and a multitude of special interests who fill the power vacuum to manipulate some government policies of particular interest to themselves.  Big Government becomes mostly a government not of and for the People, but one of and for the Special Interests.  Contrary to the claims of the Progressive Elitists, this is not correctable by electing or appointing better Progressive Elitist managers.  Indeed, the Progressive Elitists who see themselves as managing government actually have to turn to Special Interests for help in writing the laws which control actions in the private sector they do not themselves understand.  This happens all the time.  Some Special Interests are happy to do this for them so that they can design a law that gives them special favors or at least costs smaller companies, their future competitors, more to abide by than it costs them.  Complex laws and regulations tend to suppress smaller, hungrier competitors very well.

ObamaCare certainly has rewarded many special interests while depriving many individuals of the health insurance plan they wanted, the doctor they wanted, the convenience of using a hospital near them, and the weight of often much more expensive plans especially if a young male, but also for anyone who was healthy.  The AARP was among the heavily rewarded special interests, as were some other insurers.  So were many hospitals since many doctors had to give up their private practices and join hospital and clinic groups due to the computer records and financial pressures of ObamaCare.

Government can be designed so that it only acts in all of our interests.  There is only one way this can be achieved.  Government must be allowed only the power to protect the one value we all share.  That value is our individual rights.  This was recognized in our great Declaration of Independence.  A government so limited in power and scope was mandated by the People in our Constitution.  Unfortunately, the Progressive Elitist program has long required the effective destruction of the protections of our Constitution, for as Obama famously stated it is a roadblock to the redistribution of wealth and favors.  The Constitution stood in the way of his Progressive Elitist transformation of America.  Now the Obama Regime simply ignores it and any law they do not like.

Because the Progressive Elitist government model cannot improve the lives of the majority of Americans compared to their own self-management in the private sector, the Progressive Elitist has to have constant recourse to lies and misdirections.  The Middle Class must be deceived.  It is simply impossible to actually benefit "the least among us,", the Middle Class, and the necessary number of Special Interests.  It is an absolute certainty that most Americans will suffer from the Progressive Elitist Big Government model.

The only way we can ever bring back a commitment to constitutional and limited government consistent with our individual freedom is to live by an individualist philosophy designed to promote rational values consistent with the practical needs of life on Earth.  Objectivism is that philosophy.  A commitment to its principles would enable the People of the USA to elect officials capable of and dedicated to reforming our horribly errant governments.  We must transform these tyrannical governments too much under the control of the Progressive Elitists and their allied Special Interests.

Those special interests are not just rich people, corporations, and religious people as the Progressive Elitists claim.  Some special interests are rich people or corporations, but there are many more.  These include:
  • Christians who would use government to impose their values, commonly by requiring women to carry a fetus to full term, by denying same-sex marriages, or by claiming that Christian charity requires governmental redistribution.  Yes, some Christians are Elitists, some Progressive, some Traditional
  • Islamists who want to impose Sharia Law.
  • Environmentalists who believe man is evil, but all other animals are supreme.
  • Those opposed to carbon-based fuels for environmental and CAGW reasons.
  • Those who believe that profit is evil.
  • Labor unions who deny individuals freedom of labor contract.
  • Government workers
  • Green energy companies with subsidies and favoring mandates
  • Farmers with subsidies
  • Those who benefit from the ethanol mandate.
  • Users of the Export-Import Bank
  • Those companies protected by high tariffs
  • Banks with cheap money from the Federal Reserve
  • Too-Big-To-Fail financial institutions
  • Too-Big-To-Fail auto companies
  • Extended unemployment beneficiaries
  • Disability insurance recipients who used to work with the same disability
  • Food Stamp recipients
  • Employees whose employers are forced to do all the tax paperwork with its risks
  • Professions and jobs with limited competition due to licensing requirements
  • Accountants and tax attorneys due to the overly complex tax law
  • Trial lawyers
  • Insurers due to excessive liability awards allowing them to collect high premiums
  • AARP with its health insurance supplements and anti-youth political program
  • Home builders and mortgage lenders due to mortgage interest deductions
  • Beneficiaries of rent controls
  • Older home owners in areas with severe home-building restrictions
  • Existing commercial real estate owners where new commercial construction is denied
  • TV and radio stations favored by the FCC
  • Those near shale oil and gas formations with super cheap energy because governments are delaying pipeline construction
  • Russia and the Saudis because governments are slowing energy production here
  • Many, many more
The Progressive Elitist does not think we are capable of arranging and choosing our own health insurance, just as they do not think we can generally choose our values and manage our own lives.  As Tocqueville said:
A man’s admiration for absolute government is proportionate to the contempt he feels for those around him.
It is interesting to note that that contempt seems to easily transform into a disregard for the welfare of your fellow man and makes it easier to take advantage of him as a Special Interest manipulating the powers of excessive government.  The transformation of America implemented by the Obama Regime has richly illustrated this.

[On 26 November 2014, Prof. Walter E. Williams wrote a column called Elite Contempt for Ordinary Americans, which emphasizes the role of academics as a center of such contempt and their efforts to indoctrinate the young in college.]


Anonymous said...

You said, "Christians who would use government to impose their values, commonly by requiring women to carry a fetus to full term, by denying same-sex marriages, or by claiming that Christian charity requires governmental redistribution. Yes, some Christians are Elitists, some Progressive, some Traditional."

The same can be said of atheists and agnostics who wish to impose their religious beliefs on the people via legislative and judicial processes.

Here is the kicker. We all live in a theonomy. Every nation is a theonomous nation. The question becomes: which theology do we wish to impose? The theology of Christianity? The theology of atheism? The theology of agnosticism? The theology of Judaism? The theology of Islam? The theology of Satanism? The theology of communism? The theology of capitalism? The theology of collectivism? The theology of individualism? Etc., etc., etc. . . .

Charles R. Anderson, Ph.D. said...

It is certainly true that in countries with a religious majority who are not Christians, that the perceived teachings of that religion are often forced upon those who are not of that religious belief.

I am not convinced that atheism has a belief system associated with it that could be said to be even as unified as the varied beliefs of Christians. A lack of belief in a God does not yield quite the same set of beliefs that a belief in a god who makes various mandates upon humans does. However, some atheists certainly do wish to use the force of government to interfere with the religious beliefs of those who do believe in a religion. This is not right, except insofar as they insist that the government itself not favor a religious belief or otherwise interfere with the freedom of conscience.

Legitimate government protects freedom of conscience. It allows those who decide to worship a God to do so. It allows those who do not worship or believe in a God freedom from being forced to do so and freedom from any religious beliefs that use force to make people comply with those religious beliefs that would interfere with the equal, sovereign rights of the individual to life, liberty, property, self-ownership, and the pursuit of personal happiness.

Your comment seems to endorse the use of force by whatever set of believers is in the majority. The protection of freedom of conscience requires that no system of belief is imposed by the force of government beyond the basic protection of individual rights. Those who wish to practice from variant of Christianity, of Satanism, of socialism, or of Islam are free to do so, provided all of their interactions with other adults in the society are voluntary. Some may go to church, some may set up a commune farm, others may go to mosque, and others may dance naked around a campfire when the moon is full. Just do it on your own time and do not use force against others to make them join you. I do not want to be forced to join you, subsidize your activities, or waste my time waiting for you to finish your activity before conducting legitimate government business in the very limited realm of such business.

Most of the religious conflict that occurs happens because governments have taken on much to wide a scope and interfered with far too many of our activities. Because of this massive footprint, it seems that government is also constantly interfering in all manner of our belief systems. Well it is. The only way not to simply have the kind of majority dictation of belief systems that you seem to believe is inevitable and OK, is to insist on a highly limited government similar to that required by our Constitution. Those limits are because those who wrote it understood that the antagonism and the warfare over government power that you think inevitable was indeed inevitable under any big government model.