Constitution And Univeral Health Insurance

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Rx.jpgAmericans today are politically occupied with either ideals, or greed. Universal health care is an ideal, and falls under the umbrella of all of the ideals specified in the Constitution's preamble; "to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity".

Certainly, universal health care would be considered by most Americans to be part of forming "a more perfect union" of the States. In a perfect world, everyone's health would not want for the expertise and skills of those professionals who seek to relieve suffering, prolong life, and maintain the physical and psychological well being of their fellow citizens. Universal health insurance is certainly an attempt to secure that ideal of a more perfect union. The reality is that the numbers of uninsured (PDF) are rising dramatically.

Is it just that a hard working single mother of 3 working 50 hours per week at several part time jobs, should go without health insurance whilst a Congress person receives the best health insurance in the nation on the taxes paid by that single mother of 3 and others like her? Is it just that a 6 year old child in one of the wealthiest nations on earth must become so ill as to threaten the child's life, and warrant taking the child to the Emergency Room, all because that child's working parent(s) cannot afford the extremely high cost of health insurance today? Is it just that doctors and nurses should be barred from helping that child at the first sign of illness in order that some may protect their pursuit of high profitability as private insurers? Surely, then, universal health insurance is a policy sanctioned by the ideal of "establishing justice".

If everyone in America were insured for health care, who among those insured could reasonably argue for domestic unrest as a means to deprive some Americans health insurance, while more privileged Americans retained their insurance? Is the difference between large profits and enormous profits good cause for the domestic instability and future bankrupting of the nation which, failing to provide universal health insurance reform will bring about?

Profits at 10 of the country's largest publicly traded health insurance companies rose 428 percent from 2000 to 2007, while consumers paid more, for less coverage, if they had coverage at all. This issue is causing considerable unrest politically. And if America fails this time to provide universal health insurance, social and civil unrest are sure to follow as the for-profit system continues to bankrupt a million more Americans per year going forward. Insuring all Americans who want health insurance certainly meets the ideal to "insure domestic tranquility" going forward.

The only folks in America who would argue that universal health care insurance would not promote the general welfare, would be those who profit, or hope to profit, from denying medical care and coverage to their fellow Americans. And their argument is false on its face, because it is their welfare, not the general welfare that under writes their argument. And if Republicans and Libertarians in total were arguing against universal health care insurance, they would still constitute a minority of Americans. The general welfare of Americans, clearly will be better served by universal health insurance coverage which the majority supports, and not the current private health industry oligopolies.

Liberty is an ideal. And precisely so, due to the fact that liberty is a very complex topic. The only complete liberty in this life and world is death. In death, one is entirely free of the dependencies, threats, insecurities, and forces; physical, social, economic, cultural, and political, which impede a living bodied person from exercising complete and total liberty. But, one need look no further than Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs to find that for the living, physical health frees a person to higher aspirations and other productive endeavors. Without physical health, employment, education, and opportunity all suffer or, are denied. We all know this, though some would refuse to admit so in a public forum today on the issue of universal health insurance coverage. Liberty then, in a very real and fundamental individual form, is better achieved with a healthy population, with affordable health care access, than one in which 10's of millions are denied health care access promoting ill-health. Ironically, opponents of universal health insurance implicitly argue for 10's of millions to obtain the blessings of liberty through death, rather than health.

That leaves one ideal outlined in the Constitution's preamble left, the common defense; or, what we often refer to today as national security. A healthy population is clearly in the national security interest. It doesn't take any intellectual prowess to ask if our nation would be safer with an unfit and unhealthy population and grasp the correct answer? The Swine Flu threatens Americans this Fall along with the seasonal flu variants of different strains. Would it be in the national security interest of this nation to have a quarter or third of its population culled over the course of several years by a multi-strained flu pandemic? Of course not. The economic consequences alone would undermine our national defense and security.

Therefore, universal health insurance coverage for all Americans wanting coverage, is warranted by the ideals of the U.S. Constitution, as well as the majority opinion of the American people. One would think, that with this much going for it, the sycophants to health industry profitability would not have a chance of derailing the health care reform that is mandated by the people, and the ideals of our U.S. Constitution.

But, such thinking would be incorrect. The power of wealthy special interests, such as that represented by the oligopoly in the health care industry, has already demonstrated their ability to turn all but, perhaps 2 Republicans, away from voting for universal health care insurance. And their power is greater than this. They also have funneled millions and millions of dollars to the Democrats with the intent of preventing solidarity amongst Democrats to pass such legislation.

The battle over American ideals on this issue is being waged between the public's motivation to influence their representatives to pass health care reform, and the health industry profiteer's motivation to derail it. Who will prevail over the Congress? The answer to that question rests with U.S. to act united, or not.

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on July 24, 2009 1:26 PM.

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