“When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living in society, they create for themselves, in the course of time, a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.” -Bastiat
The Internet community at Democratic Underground is rehashing an old piece of filth from Gawker, where heartless leftists accused Ron Paul of letting his campaign manager Kent Snyder die, due to lack of health insurance. Paul was criticized as if he was personally responsible for the pneumonia that killed Snyder, and not the virus itself.
Mr Snyder, 49, died on June 26, 2008, with hospital costs totaling $400,000. $35,000 of which was spontaneously donated from the ‘heartless’ libertarian community. The Paul campaign did not offer healthcare in 2008, and social democrats have pounced on this as a failure of the libertarian philosophy in regards to healthcare. If Obamacare had been in effect, Snyder would have been able to get care. That is assuming that the website would have worked in time.
In a presidential debate Mr. Paul said: “We’ve given up on this whole concept that we might take care of ourselves and assume responsibility for ourselves, our neighbors, our friends, our churches would do it.”
Where social democrat’s outrage falls short of any moral high ground is in the belief that somehow Paul is directly responsible for Snyder’s death, and not the illness. In an episode of The Big Picture, Thom Hartmann accused Paul directly saying, “Ron Paul killed his employee!” And he added “and your mother was killed by a country that didn’t provide enough health care.”
Think before you speak.
My mother died as a result of complications from ovarian cancer, she did not die from the cancer directly. She died in part due to diluted chemotherapy treatments that caused liver failure. Why? A corrupt pharmacist named Robert Courtney in Kansas City was notoriously cutting down thousands of patient’s prescriptions in order to personally profit. So technically, a state-licensed pharmacist killed her. Isn’t the state then ultimately responsible for her death, considering he was authorized to practice pharmacy?
This blade cuts both ways.
What is at stake here is the fundamental question of whether or not an employer has a personal responsibility to provide for the healthcare for their employees. They do not. Not even many social democrats dispute this, as they oppose tying insurance to the workplace but they believe that the government should centrally plan healthcare. Libertarians just believe the opposite.
The difference is that one method requires force, and the other allows people to be free to choose. As Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) recently stated about the new Affordable Care Act, “Before we had Obamacare we had hundreds of choices, now we have four.”
Libertarians believe that it is the role of individuals to provide for ourselves and one another voluntarily, as many liberty activists did for Kent Snyder, and as my family, friends, neighbors & church did for me.
Penn Jillette summarized the critique of the left’s viewpoints on this when he said:
“It’s amazing to me how many people think that voting to have the government give poor people money is compassion. Helping poor and suffering people is compassion. Voting for our government to use guns to give money to help poor and suffering people is immoral self-righteous bullying laziness. People need to be fed, medicated, educated, clothed, and sheltered, and if we’re compassionate we’ll help them, but you get no moral credit for forcing other people to do what you think is right. There is great joy in helping people, but no joy in doing it at gunpoint.”
The government can’t keep people from dying, but they can let people get licenses to kill others. The only role that the state played in the finality of my mother’s life was the prosecution, incarceration and restitution provided to my family for Courtney’s role in her death. That may be the only legitimate role for government there is. And maybe that’s still pushing it.
Video – Thom Hartmann: “Ron Paul killed his employee!”
“Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all. We disapprove of state education. Then the socialists say that we are opposed to any education. We object to a state religion. Then the socialists say that we want no religion at all. We object to a state-enforced equality. Then they say that we are against equality. And so on, and so on. It is as if the socialists were to accuse us of not wanting persons to eat because we do not want the state to raise grain.” -Frederic Bastiat