Sunday, May 17, 2009

Ve haf vays . . .

[Welcome Industry Radar readers!]

For those who don’t like the free health care that is already, er, freely available, you will really not love the health care planned for delivery to you by crusaders such as the new head of the CDC, Thomas Frieden:

. . . an infectious disease specialist who is known mainly as an enthusiastic advocate of New York's strict smoking ban, heavy cigarette taxes, trans fat ban, and mandatory calorie counts on restaurant menu boards . . .

It's true that unhealthy behaviors affect the government's cost e.g. Medicaid; CHIP; benefits for employees of the City of NY; etc. That means these behaviors raise the tax burden. Hmmm, so as long as we're raising taxes, the thinking goes, why not instead raise taxes to finance "programs" designed to eliminate these behaviors? This motive is couched in benevolence - after all, it's "for your own good," is it not?

And when the government is financing all of "health care", just imagine all your behaviors it can think of to regulate, to save taxpayer money, "for your own good."

The entire linked article is worth thinking about. Thanks be to Jacob Sullum at Reason Hit & Run.

If this topic piques your interest I also highly recommend this short story - if you can find it. Hint: it seems like SF, but is actually a parable of a possible future. Certain characters in this story are truly trying to bring “wellness” to humankind. Their mission is benevolent and they carry it out out with integrity. Yet the result is . . . well, you read it. Worth your time - if you can find it.
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