We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The problem with government-controlled health care is that it tips a fundamental balance, and an important psychological balance, between individual citizen and the state by transforming everyone into a client/supplicant/dependent in relation to the state in one of the most important areas of their life.
This is a paraphrase of something I read or heard in the past week. Wish I could remember who said it. Whatever. What it captures, I believe, is the reason the Left wants government health care. Power over your heart - literally. One step closer to that bowl of lentils - and serfdom. Guess what - your doctor won't work for you anymore. They will work for "the greater good." How about if your plumber worked like that? Or your lawyer? They are all just technicians, right?
I'd put controlled health care way, way out beyond the tipping point. Historically, the grant of universal suffrage seems to be the fulcrum for the beginning of the long (or short) descent to mob rule. The acceleration of the descent occurs when individual duties become collective responsibilities. In that respect, the health care issue is an important battle.
I wish there existed historical evidence of a society reversing itself once it steps on the banana peel of "one being of indifferent quality, one vote". If there is, I haven't found it. The 'Ten Thousand' did fight themselves back from certain death on the Tigris to freedom (of a sort) though, so I would never count the cause as lost.
Instead, insured become client/supplicant/dependents of HMO-corporations with the almighty bottom line to determine the best interest of a patient. And that's the better option? Many working poor who have only one choice (because their employers won't or can't help) -- government health care or NO health care -- might not be so suspicious to think that the government wants to control their entire lives through their health care. The rest, those who can afford whatever care their bucks can buy them, will continue to have plenty of free-market economy health care choices, relatively free from government control. Government health insurance is not government health care but, in the blog entry, I cannot tell to which the author referred. For some without it, government health care is a better option than not having care at all and in my 25-years experience, where I was required to use government health care, government doctors still put a patient's interest first and weren't fixated on shareholders and profit margins.
If memory serves, didn't the Canadian government legislate against their citizens having access to self funded medical care? Friends north of the border have voiced some complaints to me. Regarding employers providing health insurance, I wish that health insurance would be required by the government, but funded by the insured. That might ease the demand for services through offerings of various levels of insurance, and much like auto and other types of insurance, government can impact the costs and quality of that insurance.
States have interests, to be sure, and health care may be a legitimate one, if it's poor and/or poorly-distributed. But, the incentives need to be minded--they are different in a gov't vs a private system.
So far in our history, with few exceptions, federal programs do not return in services more than a fraction of the private dollars taxed into them. And often the unintended consequences are disasterous.
Note also that once the government controls health care, they have a new justification for every little nanny-state intervention that can be tied to health. Fatty foods? Gotta ban them, since they drive up the government's heath costs. Helmets and seat belts? Gotta wear them, else the government's health costs will be higher. We already saw this for the tobacco litigation. It is just going to get worse.