For many people (and yes I’m jumping to conclusions and making sweeping generalizations here) “No one should die because they can’t afford health care” is the weasel way of saying “I want someone else to pay for it” without sounding like a panhandler. So, take what follows with a grain of salt, OK?
On that note, someone’s Facebook status said:
No one should die because they cannot afford health care, and no one should go broke because they get sick. If you agree, please post this as your status for the rest of the day.
No one should die just because they were born in sub-Saharan Africa, either. But they do. Doesn’t make it fair, but it happens. For every “poor” or underprivileged Westerner complaining about their lack of “health care” (NB: even the poorest Americans have access to better health care than, I would venture to guess, 85% of the earth’s population has ever had), there are a million people living on $1 and a cup of rice each day — so cry me a fucking river.
Every one of us will die at the crossroads of some particular circumstances, time, and place.
Some of us die in our sleep. Some of us are merely in “the wrong place at the wrong time.” Some of us will die because the technology to cure what ails us has not yet been invented. Some of us will die because we made poor choices that presently impact our ability to care for ourselves. And some of us will die unfortunately through no direct fault of our own, because we can’t afford to pay for the technology that does exist.
To lament the fact that some people die under seemingly inopportune circumstances is folly; it ignores the lion’s share of the equation. Financial circumstances are a scapegoat, because at nearly any time and place where the individual isn’t DOA, a change in financial circumstances might forestall death for a few hours, days, weeks, or months.
You’ll get no arguments from me, if you say that “health care is too expensive”: blame the AMA cartel, the FDA, blame “Big Insurance”, etc. But National Healthcare is healthcare fascism, the insurers want guaranteed profits, guaranteed customers for life, and Uncle Sam to pay the bills. They want to sell you your own welfare.
You’ll get no arguments from me, if you say that “the system” needs to be reformed: specifically it needs to not be a system at all. People aren’t permitted under the law to care for themselves or to arrange for the care of others. Or because the consumer is not the customer, and the customer enjoys certain tax privileges that the consumer does not, etc. Or because people have been conditioned to believe that “insurance” should pay for an annual check-up and dental exams and all sorts of other routine maintenance instead of just providing for accidents and serious illnesses.
The problem is that health care, medicine, long term care, etc., is damned expensive. Government is the problem in health care, which keeps it unaffordable.
Asking or forcing others to pay the costs which you can’t afford will do nothing to actually solve that problem, it just shifts the burden, fucking up someone else’s life circumstances, exacerbating the problem for the future.