Fallacies of the Health Care Debate

August 1994, from Tom Isenberg:

CLICHE: "Health care is a human right."

RESPONSE: "No, health care is a product. And you don't have the right to force someone else to produce it for you. That kind of slavery is a violation of real human rights."

CLICHE: "Health care is a right".

RESPONSE: "Yes, you do have a right to health care. But no one has an obligation to give it to you. You have a right to bear arms, but no one has an obligation to provide you with a gun. You have a right to free speech but no one has an obligation to listen to you."

CLICHE: "Nationalized health care is necessary to give everyone access to affordable health care."

RESPONSE: "Then why don't we nationalize food, clothing, housing, jobs, transportation, sex, entertainment, and toilet paper? Doesn't everyone have a right to those necessities, as well? And what makes you think it will work better here than it did in the Soviet Union?"

CLICHE: "Gun control is a health-care issue."

RESPONSE: "Yes, without my gun, it is more difficult to defend my health from bad people and bad government."

CLICHE: "These opponents of nationalized health care are the same people who opposed Social Security, welfare, and Medicare."

RESPONSE: "Any decent person who could have foreseen the disastrous consequences of these programs would have opposed them. Let's not make the same mistake with our health care."

CLICHE: "Demand the same right Congress has: guaranteed health coverage."

RESPONSE: "Why stop there? Let's also demand the other 'rights' Congress has: $100K salaries, exemption from its own laws, and the power to control your life and spend your money."

CLICHE: "Clinton at least deserves credit for starting the debate on health care reform."

RESPONSE: "Yes, and we should thank O.J. Simpson for starting the debate on domestic violence."

CLICHE: "Americans should stop whining. Compared to other countries, Americans are undertaxed."

RESPONSE: "And compared to many countries, Americans are under-raped."

CLICHE: "America is the only industrialized country that does not provide 100% health care coverage."

RESPONSE: "And if all the other industrialized countries jumped off a bridge, would you too?"

CLICHE: "We're just asking people to pay their fair share."

RESPONSE: "Government is not about asking, it is about telling. And with the understood threat of violence if you do not fork over your 'fair share.'"

CLICHE: "The US spends a higher percentage of its GDP on health care than any nation in the world."

RESPONSE: "You get what you pay for, and that's why the US has the best health care system in the world. To lower costs, we must increase competition among suppliers (by deregulating the existing physician and insurance cartels and monopolies and legalizing competition among all would-be health-care and insurance providers.)"