With all the debate about health care "reform," I wonder how much choice individuals retain under the proposed new bills. There is a move to force health care professionals (doctors, nurses and others) to participate in abortions, or abortion counseling, without the right to excuse themselves. They could lose not only their jobs, but also their professional careers.
We see thousands of people being hastened to their death in the USA today, one way or the other, through rationing of health care, refusal to provide needed and beneficial treatments, the choice to deny food or fluids to the vulnerable, the imposition of dangerous medications upon patients who clearly refuse them.
During the debate about Terri Schiavo, numerous articles quoted doctors from all around the country who were astounded that "so much" was being made about the case. They uniformly were quoted as saying something like, "we make decisions like this every day!" If so many physicians make decisions like that every day, it is obvious that many thousands are hastened to their death every year in the USA.
We see the current push to make abortion a "right" up to and including birth (partial birth abortion) and to make euthanasia and assisted suicide, "rights." We see the massive increase in government expenditures for health care as a huge force that will certainly result in the legalization of euthanasia down the road.
When health care becomes too expensive to pay for, the argument will be made publicly (and has already been made in industry circles) that euthanasia is "necessary" economically to balance the books. There are articles about the economic benefits of euthanasia.
"Some must die, so that others must live" will be the motto of the elite death-dealers. Of course, the fraud and corruption that cost billions of dollars already nationwide, has not and will NOT be addressed, will NOT be stopped. Some are already, and some will, fill their own pockets at the expense of all the rest of us. Some, those elderly and disabled who are most vulnerable, will be told that they must sacrifice their lives, so the "system" can continue. This is where we are headed.
Randolph W. Pate tells us in his article, "Protection of Health Care Providers’ Right of Conscience: What Federal Law Says" what proposed federal laws say. See April 7, 2009 WebMemo #2385 http://www.heritage.org/Research/Religion/wm2385.cfm
"The Obama Administration is moving rapidly to overturn federal "conscience clause" regulations protecting health care providers who object to performing procedures that violate their religious beliefs or moral convictions. These regulations implement longstanding federal laws expressing the decided opinion of Congress and the American people that no individual -- doctor, patient, or other health professional -- should be forced to violate his or her conscience in the provision of medical care..."
On another front, mandatory (not "recommended") vaccinations may be coming: the continuing push for mandatory vaccination for the sexually-transmitted disease HPV (Human Pappilomavirus) as just one example (which will be a huge commercial boon to Merck). See: http://www.ahrp.org/cms/content/view/463/109/
When Texas Governor Rick Perry issued an executive order back in 2007 mandating girls get the vaccine, his order was overturned by the Texas legislature, forbidding such mandatory vaccination until 2011 (not totally forbidding it). What ever happened to patient rights, parental rights? Why don't the individuals have the right to choose for themselves?
When the government gets involved, it often comes heavy-handed to the table. Government uses the force of law to impose its agenda. We can complain all we want about the problems in private health care today in the USA, but if government health care becomes law, private health companies will either become part of it (3rd party administrators for the government) or they will go out of business. With private health insurance, as well as government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, there is still a choice to seek another option, however one may pay for it. With our current system, the government can protect the public from problems in private industry. With government health care, there is only one provider, the government plan. There is no "other party" to go when the government itself is the problem.
Even the unsuccessful 1993 Clinton Health Security Act would have forbidden any other plan; only government-approved care, treatment and providers would have been allowed. Violators would have been punishable as felons. In other words, doctors or others who provided care that was not already approved by the government, through the government plan, could go to jail! lose their professional license and their careers.
We all may want to improve health care and the treatment of patients, but do we wish to forfeit choice for the individual? I don't. And any government official who says that people will retain their choice of private insurance under the currently contemplated and proposed plan is, plain and simply, lying.
Even in my own family, I had to fight hard back in 1993 to make sure a safer form of the polio vaccine was used, rather than the potentially dangerous one being pushed on us by the health department.
The US government health department sometimes does not really care about "individuals," per se, when they set up a vaccination policy. They are interested in the "group," the "herd" (and that is the term they use, even for human populations in the USA). They talk about "herd immunity," which means they wish to provide vaccination or exposure to the largest number, whether they consent or not to being exposed. In the example of past polio vaccine policy, they decided to provide live, though weakened, oral polio vaccine, rather than the safer dead polio virus vaccine used in Europe for many years.
Why? As one health department physician explained to me: by spreading a weakened form of the virus around, people who don't get vaccinated will be exposed to the actual virus and develop some immunity as well. They didn't care that some people would actually become paralyzed from polio when they contract the disease, a rare but very real risk. The government decides that that individual risk is "worth it" to them. (But it isn't "worth it" to the very real person who gets polio!) See: http://www.nature.com/nm/journal/v13/n12/full/nm1207-1394.html
I can tell you that the government may and often does lie to the public (you) about what it is really up to. Is that shocking? I can tell you that government officials who are entrusted with "enforcing" the standards of care and protecting the public, do NOT enforce the standards of care. We see that every day in health care. Naive, new state employees who try to be thorough and actually enforce the regulations are either told to back off or are fired from their government positions.
The "big-boy" (or girl) network is very real. Powerful corporate administrators are friendly with powerful government administrators and judges. Powerful administrators make sure that donations are sent to the elected officials (and others) so that the government does not come down too hard on their industry. This is routine practice in just about every industry. See opensecrets.org The individual is simply lost in the machinery of big government, big corporations, the mutual protectiveness of those in power in the government and industry, and the greed and corruption.
See article about proposed "home visits" to assure vaccination under the health care reform plan: "Health Care Bill Will Fund State Vaccine Teams to Conduct ‘Interventions’ in Private Homes." http://www.cnsnews.com/public/content/article.aspx?RsrcID=51115
With forced vaccinations come assured profits for the manufacturers of the vaccines (whether they are truly safe or not). While I'm not against vaccines in general, which have saved millions of lives, I am against the obliteration of individual citizens' rights to make their own health care decisions.
When it comes to end-of-life care, the public has been "sold" hospice as a way to maintain individual choice about how they wish to live at the end-of-life. Forcing an early death upon the dying or chronically ill is the antithesis of hospice as envisioned by Dame Cicely Saunders, the prolife founder of the modern hospice movement. I am certain that universal government-run health care will eventually include legalized euthanasia, and often involuntary euthanasia.
When something like euthanasia becomes legal, there will always be those who misuse it to further their own agenda and finances. This would be the worst form of elder abuse imaginable, and it would all be done with government approval. We need reform, but we don't need to lose individual choice; in the future, it might cost our lives.