This Obamacare is just a battle in a cultural war being waged in America. It's the war between the American value system and leftism. Lovers of America as an abstraction may be found on both sides, but it truly is a war for the real soul of our country. It's not about policy and whether the individual mandate should be instituted or not. It's about who we are as a people.
Our American values are deeply steeped in the precepts of the Bible and our Judeo-Christian traditions. Leftist values are based on the collective and statist values of Marxism. Line item by line item in all 3,000 pages, Obamacare attacks the American and biblical values we have held since our founding. Our Ten Commandments and American values say do not steal, but leftism steals the jewel in the American and biblical crown, our freedom.
Leftism steals our freedom to create excellence in health care. It does this by stealing profit. Profit is the great moral part of capitalism that funds the excellence, bounty, innovation, efficiency and yes, the kind behavior of doctors, nurses and staff toward their patients. Leftism replaces it with the much more costly and degrading waste of statism and socialism. It replaces profit with the gargantuan payments we will now make for the inefficiency, waste, mediocrity, unmotivated and often uncaring bureaucracy and "health care workers." Profit is why even the poorest American can get a top quality MRI scan tomorrow with a smile and why you wait six months in leftist Canada or England for one on a run-down machine and staff who are clearly government employees.
Leftism steals our freedom as citizens, doctors, nurses and hospital owners to act charitably. Leftism does this by banning profit, draining our wealth with confiscatory taxation and borrowing and crushing us under regulation. It silences the voice of compassion that elevates us. Who needs or can think of charity when the state says it will take care of such things, when it drains our resources to provide and when the politician calls it charity distributing money he never earned? We work to feed the government troughs. "Don't worry," says our federal leviathan, "our children will all be cared for from birth to death by kind government." We doctors and nurses punch our time cards and do our shift as "health care providers" — cogs in the machine of Big Government.
Leftism steals our freedom to choose. It's the glorious thing that the Bible and our American founders bequeathed to us. We are individuals free to choose if we want an insurance policy and free to choose when, how, with whom and if we even want medical care. The state says, "No! Even if the policies you've chosen that we said you'd not lose are lost, we have even better things to demand you have."
Leftism steals our property. It tells the collective they have a right to medical care. It tells them they may knock on the door of the hospital and steal the intellectual property and goods and services owned by the doctor, nurse, technician or janitor. It tells them nothing about obligations to pay for things they do not own. American values and biblical values tell us we have the right to work for and obligation to pay for things we do not own.
Finally, leftism steals the liberty of our children and grandchildren to live dignified enriched and healthy lives. Leftism degrades and destroys everything it touches. Millions of citizens now under statist Medicare hand their cards in reality to the hospital and say, "Charge most of my bill to my neighbor, kids and grandkids." Obamacare multiplies the theft exponentially. Soon, 300 million of us will say under the command of the left, "Charge it to the future!"
This is the war we fight. Obamacare is just a battle. It's not about websites or who gets a tax or penalty. It's about our souls as Americans. It's simply about freedom.
Howard Sachs, Chevy ChaseCopyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun