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Healthcare

There is No Fundamental Right to Healthcare Insurance

Healthcare by way of insurance companies providing medical coverage in exchange for payment plans is a privilege that must be earned by the individual. Private companies exist to make a profit in this free-market, laissez-fair economy that we call the American Republic. The United States became prosperous and affluent because individual liberty enabled capitalism to thrive. Hard working entrepreneurs built companies that served others in exchange for compensation. People always chose where to buy health insurance by shopping in the private insurance marketplace. Hence, they took responsibility for their lives by earning a living to pay for their coverage out of free will. All the while, the U.S. government was largely removed from this equation because it maintained its long-held duty of protecting personal freedom in a capitalist system—not insurance company profits.

The American people saw the damaging effects of Obamacare once it took root in 2013-14. Thousands of individuals lost their ideal coverage plans unique to their circumstance, and business owners suffered heavy financial burdens by having to cover employees with government-mandated plans in order to comply with the law. Therefore, the agenda for state-regulated healthcare for everyone is absurd.

The Modern Climate of “Healthcare is a Right”

This myth held by the progressive left is a flaw in reasoning that endangers the American people. It threatens the strength and vitality of a society built on virtues of hard labor, personal responsibility, and personal stewardship. Technological innovation in medical science is a result of these qualities. When people demand that the government care for them by providing free healthcare, someone still has to pay for the treatment.

If it’s not the individual paying for her own medical appointments—it’s the taxpayers. The government does not earn money. The only money it has is what it TAKES from us. If Congress passed a law for universal healthcare to everyone it would draw higher taxes from the population in the form of new programs and policies.

This financial burden would be felt in another way on the taxpayer whether through gas tax, income tax, tolls, sales tax, etc. Pick your poison. In other words, you’re going to pay one way or another—because nothing in life comes with a free lunch!

There is a ripple-out effect on imposing free “healthcare for all” that is not the least bit desirable. Everyone will suffer in one way or another because the economy is fundamentally connected. Jobs only exist because there are needs. People want to earn money, and so they work as doctors or medical engineers in fields that directly affect healthcare. People get sick and need to see the doctor. Someone has to pay the doctor’s bill, and the money has to come from somewhere. This simple math is both logic and common sense, which democratic socialists seem to deny.

Not only will a socialist healthcare system put enormous strain on business owners (i.e. Obamacare), but it will adversely affect the field of medical science by hindering advancement in innovation.

Stifling Medical Science and Innovation

In a socialist healthcare system, the reason scientific ingenuity is at stake is because the means of production are at the whims of the state. All creative efforts to improve medical equipment and hospital technology are stifled by congressional regulation, which always finds ways to impose limits, thus slowing down progress and innovation. Government moves at a very slow speed toward improving or developing anything because its very nature is to suppress through coercion.

This affects both profits and the volition to engineer more qualitative technologies. For example, if the state governs medical equipment prices, and what does and does not get admitted into use in the healthcare industry, the incentive to innovate will wane.

No one wants to build something if a cap-limit is imposed on how much the biomedical company, for example, can charge for the product’s redistribution into hospitals or laboratories. The flexibility to come up with new methods of practice and technologies stiffen when the government owns the means of production. Big Brother must approve of almost every new idea and the price at which it is sold.

Think about it, if the government virtually owns and controls the healthcare industry by guaranteeing every American coverage—you better believe they will have a say in the technology used, the industry pricing, and the salaries paid to doctors. Before researching this I naturally assumed that universal healthcare would have a binding domination over all healthcare economic factors. Then, I stumbled across this article:

In our messy and fragmented mix of public and private health care there is no effective leverage to put in place good but painful ideas. Government might manage to implement some of them, but only after a long and difficult fight. The private sector has never shown much capacity to do so and, with its market philosophy, it would surely resist government’s efforts to impose cost control mechanisms.

Universal care is the only tried and effective way to control costs. The European health care systems do so effectively by means of a strong government hand. They use—among other tools—price controls, negotiated physician fees, hospital budgets with limits on expenditures, and stringent policies on the adoption and diffusion of new technologies. The net result is that they keep annual cost increase within the 3–4% range, have better health outcomes than we do, and achieve all of this at significantly less cost. With the exception of the United Kingdom and Italy, there is little rationing and there are no waiting lists for care.

Health Care Costs and Medical Technology | The Hastings Center

Government-Run Healthcare Focuses on the Collective and Disregards the Individual

Socialism of any degree among any sector hampers production. It destroys the volition to work because the government controls the incentives to make higher profits. Doctors will have to settle for the limits imposed on them by legislation. The consequences of socialist healthcare would fundamentally change how medical technology is used. It would place less value on the individual and instead focus on the greatest number of people. This utilitarian model glorifies collective welfare, thus depriving personal liberty and the duty to take responsibility.

Small Businesses Suffer Greatly

We already saw the austere conditions among companies that underwent changes when the Affordable Care Act rolled out. Mandatory healthcare coverage was imposed on employers to cover their employees if the workforce quota size was met. This immoral regulation can be likened to a mafia infiltrating a group of people, making them pay out money against their will—to avoid being fined or eventually thrown in jail. In this case, the motive behind mandatory healthcare infers that somehow people have a right to receive medical treatment at the expense of their employer, and more broadly, the American taxpayer.

The central argument I make throughout this article is that you do indeed have a right to healthcare; that is, if you earn it. You do not have a right to receive healthcare insurance that you didn’t pay for. Such collectivist redistribution is theft whether in the form of medical coverage, education, food stamps, etc. None of these products or services are free. Somebody has to pay for them, and ultimately it’s you and I.

The Purpose of Government is Not Redistribution

Regardless of how you color it, collectivism and redistribution of wealth is THEFT by coercion. Government is supposed to protect liberty according to the notion that natural rights exist. The true purpose of government can be likened to the immune system in the body, which is to protect the health and vitality of the organism. The immune system does not provide nutrition via minerals, vitamins, or macronutrients. It simply destroys pathogens and wounds through the production of antibodies, inflammation, and regulation of temperature.

It is a person’s responsibility to choose (out of free will) to eat healthy, exercise, and get enough sleep. This is the beauty of free will. We are at liberty to do as we please, but also reap the consequences of our actions.

We as individuals are governed by the dictates of conscience. Having awareness of our decision’s aftermath inclines us to be more mindful and make better choices, qualities that ought be instilled from a young age.

A mother teaches her son to clean up after himself, do his homework, and brush his teeth. She instills in him a sense of personal responsibility that carries into adulthood. This wisdom prevents him from making stupid decisions down the line. In addition she is training him to be autonomous and independent rather than reliant on her for the rest of his adult life.

It is not the parents’ job to look after their children once they are full grown. Similarly, it is not the government’s duty to look after the citizen’s welfare concerning healthcare or any other form of personal responsibility.

The idea of imposing universal healthcare for all—via collectivism and redistribution—is utterly moronic. It presumes that adult citizens lack the intelligence to take care of themselves, and also assumes that they are incapable. Welfare handouts, whether in the form of free education, food stamps or medicare, lower the standard of personal responsibility by treating people like dependent children.

Therefore, universal healthcare for all is immoral because it denies the mature obligation to look after oneself. Treating people like incapable children by spoiling them with freebees produces a society of irresponsible adults who never grew up.

Conclusion on the Right to Healthcare

Furthermore, while there is indeed a fundamental right healthcare per se, there is no fundamental right to healthcare insurance. In a free market economy the individual is sovereign, and not the collective. A person can earn the money to fund a personal healthcare coverage plan. An individual has natural rights to pursue life, liberty and happiness. This includes the ability to maintain one’s health to the fullest degree.

However, Medicare-for-all provided by the government is a socialist model that undermines the sovereignty of the individual because it shifts value away from the individual and onto the collective. Universal healthcare discourages the advancement of medical technology because the government-run system throttles spending by controlling medical equipment prices and doctor’s salaries. In effect, the overall quality of service and technology suffers as a result. Therefore, universal healthcare for all is an ineffective agenda that is destined to fail.

By Christopher S. Nawojczyk

Chris Nawojczyk is a Natural Law advocate, entrepreneur, professional trader, and athlete on a mission to promote individual liberty, personal sovereignty, and self-government based on the principles of the America's founding heritage. Chris served in the U.S. Marine Corps for 6 years as a commissioned officer, prior enlisted, and is working to earn his J.D. degree.

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