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expatriate's picture
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OK -- of all the reasons to oppose Obamacare, am I the only one that sees it as a threat to civil liberties?

The military just went through a debate over whether to ban tobacco use by troops in order to cut health care costs. The tobacco lawsuit was based on health care costs to society. All the rhetoric about fast food, obesity, etc, keeps talking about how much such things cost society in terms of health care.

So if we socialize our medical system via an entitlement program that costs trillions, how long do you think it'll be before government starts using its power to enact social legislation on the auspices of cost containment? Think about it:

- Tobacco use is costing us too much for health care -- increase regulation or ban it.

- Fast food is causing an obesity epidemic that's costing Obamacare too much -- impose draconian standards and prohibitions that drive restaurants out of business or transform them into something different.

- Head injuries cost us way too much -- impose a national motorcycle helmet law.

It's a real Pandora's box -- just think of the things you could justify by saying government has a right to control because it pays the medical bills.

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i think a built in penalty would be far better:

smokers are not eligible for lung transplants

obese/poorlly \controlled diabetics are not eligible for kidney transplants

head injuries without a helmet get put on the donor list

it is still your choice Thumbs up

CVC
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Thumbs up

expatriate's picture
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That's my point -- the idea that government thinks it has a right to become a nanny state to protect you from yourself. Don't get me wrong -- I don't smoke and don't ride without a helmet. But I don't support elimination of tobacco or establishment of helmet laws. If people no longer have the liberty to make their own decisions regarding personal safety, diet choices, etc, then what do they have?

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Our current system already controls certain areas of health care. Let's say you need a new liver, and you blew your own due to drinking too much. You're not going on the transplant list, unless of course you have a ton of money to pay someone off.

Insurance companies have to approve many procedures now, and if you don't like their decision, you end up having to appeal - or more like beg!

At least now you can still appeal to entities other than the government if you don't like a decision. I envision appealing to the government a huge nightmare!

expatriate's picture
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Just imagine an insurance company with the power to legislate to its advantage.

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I think Obamas way is more dangerous and expensive. But to deny someone healthcare or needed procedure because they smoke or drink more than you might see fit is just as draconian and almost as dangerous minded.

Location: Butte, MT
Joined: 01/02/2006
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In principle, I don't really have a problem with Obama trying to revamp the healthcare system. I do have a huge problem with the way he's trying to ram the bill through without any significant debate. The Director of the CBO has made comments that Obama's plans are basically unsustainable. If that's true, and likely is, they need to come up with a better idea, figure out how to make it sustainable, then let our other elected officials debate the merits of it or lack thereof, and if it holds up, pass it. The Obama is trying to handle this is not cool. Something like healthcare reform is going to have extremely far reaching effects and lengthy debate is absolutely necessary for a stroke this broad.

expatriate's picture
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I don't want to say "I told you so," but here's an example of what I'm talking about. The theory goes that obesity is the medical scourge of America, so we should use sin taxes on fatty foods to finance health care and force Americans to make healthy food choices. It started with tobacco, and now it's food.

Nationalized health care is a huge step toward an Orwellian nanny state.

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/booster_shots/2009/07/tough-love-for-fat...

WesternHunter's picture
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We can blame the government all we want until the country we all know of no longer exists. But it's Americans (we the people) who have completely given up our ability and freedom to choose what's best for us, and have empowered the government to protect us from ourselves. Most people today just don't realize that you can't have freedoms without responsibilities. It's just not possible. In many aspects we've done it to ourselves with all the complaints and lawsuites against the tobacco companies and the fast food industry over the years. People in this country these days make choices then when those choices have dire consequences we want to turn around and place blame on everything and everyone but ourselves. It's we the people that have started this ball rolling. Now the government has figured it can use that monemtum to eventually control every aspect of our lives. Yes I will fault the government for taking advantage of this momentum, but it's the people who have demonstrated that they can't handle their freedom to choose and take responsibility for the consequences of their actions.

I don't smoke, rarely eat much fast food, never engage in dangerous activities without the proper safety equipment, and only drink in moderation. I also do not support elimination of tobacco, helmet laws, or elimination of certain fats in food. The American people deserve the right to choose, and make those choices for themselves. I make my own safe and health concious decisions with no hand-holding from the government. Getting too fat? Blame yourself!! Eventually come down with drug, tobacco, or alcohol related illness? Blame yourself for your lifestyle choice!! Simple as that. Once we start doing that then maybe the government will bud out.

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WesternHunter wrote:
We can blame the government all we want until the country we all know of no longer exists. But it's Americans (we the people) who have completely given up our ability and freedom to choose what's best for us, and have empowered the government to protect us from ourselves. Most people today just don't realize that you can't have freedoms without responsibilities. It's just not possible. In many aspects we've done it to ourselves with all the complaints and lawsuites against the tobacco companies and the fast food industry over the years. People in this country these days make choices then when those choices have dire consequences we want to turn around and place blame on everything and everyone but ourselves. It's we the people that have started this ball rolling. Now the government has figured it can use that monemtum to eventually control every aspect of our lives. Yes I will fault the government for taking advantage of this momentum, but it's the people who have demonstrated that they can't handle their freedom to choose and take responsibility for the consequences of their actions.

I don't smoke, rarely eat much fast food, never engage in dangerous activities without the proper safety equipment, and only drink in moderation. I also do not support elimination of tobacco, helmet laws, or elimination of certain fats in food. The American people deserve the right to choose, and make those choices for themselves. I make my own safe and health concious decisions with no hand-holding from the government. Getting too fat? Blame yourself!! Eventually come down with drug, tobacco, or alcohol related illness? Blame yourself for your lifestyle choice!! Simple as that. Once we start doing that then maybe the government will bud out.

Good post!!!

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