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Subject:  Re: Is health care a right? Date:  10/9/2010  7:07 PM
Author:  JoshRandall Number:  533399 of 876451

That brings us to the notion of the “right” to health care. As human beings, we want to see people succeed to the point where they can feed, clothe, and care for themselves independently, as that establishes true personal freedom. However, none of us have the right to confiscate the services of a doctor or nurse without their consent, and without their ability to set a price for their time and expertise. We don't have the right to walk into a grocery story to demand apples when we're hungry, either, although we should have access to the market without bias when we can properly compensate its owner for the goods.

Arguing that we have a right to health-care goods and services disconnected from our individual ability to provide that compensation takes us down a much different path than that envisioned by the founders. It owes much more to schools of thought where private property rights have little or no meaning, where the individual gets subsumed by the society in which he lives, and where all property belongs to the people as a whole. We have seen massive experimentation with those systems in the 20th century, and they had several points in common: they resulted in a sharp decline in individual liberty, in production, and in standards of living.

The founders understood that property rights would secure liberty and the greatest good for the nation as a whole. That's why they declared the “pursuit of happiness” as an unalienable right, and not the end result of happiness itself. They knew that creating a government that respects private property and the innate rights of individuals over their government would create the best opportunities to achieve happiness for the largest amount of people. The 20th century proved them correct, for those who paid attention.

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