Socialized National Defense?


What I don’t understand is why Republicans think that government cannot do anything right at home, but can’t do anything wrong abroad. We can deride government workers as inefficient and inept, but any criticism of the military is anti-patriotic. Why do we think that military officials and soldiers are any better or more effective than our civil servants? So if a national health care system would amount to socialism then surely  spending trillions of tax payer dollars on the military is socialized national defense. And if, as we are lead to believe, we have the most state of the art military and the finest soldiers the world has ever known, couldn’t the government also do the same for health care?

Have you heard the load of crap coming out of Republicans mouths these days as they shriek and shiver at the idea of universal health care? They complain about how offering all citizens health care, kind of like the way every other wealthy democracy in the world does, would result in long lines and a total lack of choice. Hold on a second, that is exactly what the American health care system is like: long waits and insurance companies refusing to cover the costs of the procedures you need. They say it will be like going to the DMV, but it only took me 15 minutes to renew my drivers license last year. That’s not so bad. When was the last time it took anybody fifteen minutes at the doctor’s office?

Presently the U.S. health care system costs about 50% more than the next most expensive system in the world, and Americans are not healthier or live longer than their counterparts in the rest of the developed world. Yet Republicans tell us that we still have the best health care system in the world. Do they mean the best, as in the best socialized national defense in the world? Meanwhile, the solutions these guys propose are not only incredibly irrelevant but are offensive to our intelligence. They blame everything other than the insurance companies — obesity, junk food, smoking, and our sedentary American life style– yet of course they are also completely against any legislation that would significantly reduce any of those scapegoats (the heavily subsidized mega-farms, tobacco companies and oil give healthy donations).

Why the full-court press to scare people away from affordable health care? It is time someone got honest with Americans and took frequent commentator Kitapsiz’s golden rule to heart: follow the money. For the past 50 years there has been massive lobbying and communications blitzes to brainwash Americans into believing that universal health care, especially single payer (which even the Democrats are afraid whisper), is worse for our personal safety than say a public military is for national security.

In Spain, for example, I have completely free health care, but I also purchase a very good private insurance plan for $50/month. My plan even includes psychological coverage for treating my recent pathological shift to the left. The system isn’t perfect, but people with serious illnesses do not get denied treatment and people do not go bankrupt. I am not saying that this is the model the U.S. should adopt, but certainly we can do better than Europeans. Right? We didn’t defeat the evil Soviet Empire just so we could have worse health care than the Europeans.

The fact of the matter is that our private health care system simply does not offer good care. Insurance companies are worried foremost about profits and therefore cannot make disinterested judgments on treatments. More importantly, their political influence only further renders them unreliable and not truly competing in a “free market”. Were there true competition we would have seen prices go down and not up. Imagine where we’d be if breathing air and running water were managed like our competitive health care industry?

In the meantime, the Mitch McConnells keep lying to us and we keep believing them. Is there anyone in America who honestly believes that they don’t pay too much for their health care? Even if we had to increase taxes to pay for universal care, we’d still end up saving money. And if you need a free market pro-capitalism rationale, here it is: the present system makes the U.S. less competitive. If you think of the U.S. like a company competing to attract and retain the best talent (aka, the argument in favor of the keeping the AIG bonuses), then as long as working and living conditions are worse in the U.S. than in other developed countries, there will be, over time, massive brain drain of qualified foreign and American workers to other more worker-friendly countries — regardless of the tribalistic self-absorbed view that We are Always the Best at Everything at All Times.

Think about it. Imagine yourself to be a rational and freely mobile worker. Were I to offer you the standard European package — 22 to 30 days paid vacation per year, four months paid maternity leave, free health care, retirement, good public transportation, low crime rates, limited television censorship, topless beaches, and similar purchase power –what would choose? That’s right. You’d go for the country with the guns and the death penalty every time.



Filed under Essays

7 responses to “Socialized National Defense?

  1. And if, as we are lead to believe, we have the most state of the art military and the finest soldiers the world has ever known, couldn’t the government also do the same for health care?

    Believe whatever makes you comfortable; we do have the most advanced military on the planet.

    Admittedly, it is socialism to have a “statist military”; no argument there ~ it is also, a violation of the Constitution to have a “standing military”.

    The difference between the military subculture and the larger subculture of the body politik is simple:

    For perception, nationalistic pride, honor, duty and service to the highest cause are the root of the military subculture.

    Regardless of perception, greed, sloth, apathy, elitism, exclusivism and debauchery are the driving forces of the/any body politik.

    One protects the herd, the other maintains and controls the herd.

    Guns and death penalty? Oh HELL’S YES!!!

    Mmmmmmmm, wille zur macht on the big stage, I’ll take it every time.

    The other choice is the abject state of the American society now: the ruse of “positivism” as we effeminise the populace to make control that much easier.

    I guess you’d prefer metrosexuality and entitlements for all?

    Responsibility? “Pfft, screw that.”
    Accountability? “Oh, rather not.”
    Personal ownership of actions? “Not on my watch; hey, pass the bong.”

    That which is free, is not toiled for; that which is not toiled for, is unearned, and is not worthy of anything, save enmity.

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium

    Socialised {insert object here}, has already been historically proven to fail.

    Seriously, get your head out of the media, the fiction, the non-information, the falsifiable beliefs.

    Pick up books with bodies of referenced, peer reviewed fact: Dr. Shermer, Dr. Cosmides, Dr. Comings, Jonah Lehrer … no, I’m not kidding.


    “The following have been pronounced dead at the scene of empiricism, and duly laid to rest:

    Free Will
    Social Contract
    Free Love
    any so-called “Messiah”
    Messianic prophecy
    alleged “sacred texts”
    a random guy named “Squiggy”
    et al.

    The only known survivor is Ignorance, and the filthy little sod is still running amuck, somewhere. Authorities request your help in tracking down this insidious perpetrator, with all haste.”

    ::::We now return you to your regularly scheduled drooling, panting, sighing and listless demeanor::::

  2. eric

    I guess I would prefer the “free” option as opposed to the present system that through big money and the helping hand of congress has never been subject to any free market in the true sense and does not actually offer health care but denies it. The fact of the matter is that the present health care industry is coddled and entitled.

  3. el gran huja

    Wa? I’ve never had any problem getting treatment for my gonorrhea here in the states. When i get an outbreak the emergency doctors are very prompt in response and very respectful. That does not happen in Spain…you become the subject of conversation for doctors when they go out for tapas.

  4. eric

    That’s only when they’re eating pinchos de cabrales

  5. I guess I would prefer the “free” option as opposed to the present system that through big money and the helping hand of congress has never been subject to any free market in the true sense and does not actually offer health care but denies it. The fact of the matter is that the present health care industry is coddled and entitled.

    Okay, you are doing it again. “Free”? WTF in this world is EVER free? Name something, I know for a fact you can’t find anything that is actually “free” …

    While I have to say that there is some degree of entitlement regarding the operators of healthcare … again, what have “We, the People” done about it?

    Nothing, so again we can say “nullum gratuitum prandium”.

    If you think socialising healthcare is going to make it “free” in this country, you just aren’t paying attention. Anyone with any sense, who understands how costly this will become, is out screaming about it …

    You also seem to be ignoring the fact that for the past 100 YEARS, it has been the openness of our system that has made the most substantial, effective, innovative, progressive healthcare available ~ anywhere on the globe ~ an-ee-wa-aer.

    American doctors/scientists have been responsible for more life saving treatments, medicines, procedures … you name it … we’ve been the driver.

    But now, the geissennutzer, Chairman Maobama, thinks he’s going to come along, with the real entitlement mentality, and make it “free” …. how does 60% tax rate sound to you? Is that free? When no one but the wealthiest can live, because the rest of us have to give it all to the government? Is that free?

    What about when Chairman Obama really does get his hands on the wealthy? What then? Oh, wait, they have money, and they can move out of here, (assuming they have the sense), and take their money elsewhere, so it doesn’t get stolen from them via entitlement.

    There goes tax revenue.
    There goes the remaining employment.
    There goes future opportunity/investment for small business.
    There goes charity monies.

    All so those who don’t want to have to work for anything, can “have”, on someone else’s earned efforts …

    Nullum gratuitum prandium ~ no free lunch.
    7 billion hominids on the planet, and only 1 billion, (or less), actually serve a purpose to the rest of the planet.

    Herd culling has been a necessary function for at least the previous 2.4 billion years, the Universe provided it before, time for the next round.

    Socialised healthcare = cosmic, epic fail.

    el gran huja, sorry to hear about the Clap, hope you get that drip cleared up.

  6. eric

    You’re right, it’s not free. Like our national defense, it’s financed by the Chinese 😉

  7. Sho Nuff cugino!!!!

    Sho nuff.

    I hope it changes though, I sound bad enough singing the National Anthem of America, it would be REALLY horrible to attempt the Chinese version …


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