U.S. HEALTHCARE SYSTEM CHOICES: LAISSEZ-FAIRE ETHICAL WORLD?
The U.S. healthcare system cost around 15% of GDP. Other developed nations are spending half that and obtaining outcomes that are as good or better. Private health-insurance companies cost on average 3 times as much in overhead relative to Medicare, the U.S. governmental healthcare system for the old and some others. Medicare is a payer system, not a provider system. Medicare is not socialized medicine. Medicare pays private providers of medical services. The government doesn't own the means of providing the medical services and the medical personnel are not government employees in the socialistic sense.
There are more kinds of healthcare systems than there are developed nations. When Taiwan went to address its major healthcare problems a few decades ago, it looked at all the different systems in the developed world and came up with the hybrid that is working very well relative to the current U.S. system. During the current debate over the healthcare direction the U.S. should take, doing what Taiwan did in looking at all the options is the wisest approach. Coming up with novel ideas to suit the U.S. or just better healthcare in general is also wisest.
Once a system is chosen, not undercutting that system, whether it is rolled out in total or done in pilot projects, is wise. Undercutting systems for the sake of re-privatizing for greed is shortsighted and evil.
We have been hearing that the U.S. needs a U.S. system. The people emphasizing that are the same ones who are fighting to retain as much private control over the healthcare system as possible. Staying with a system that is designed not as to what is best for all citizens but to suit an ideology, in this case laissez-faire capitalism, to further or maintain a wealth disparity is also shortsighted and evil. Some people misbelieve that laissez-faire capitalism is best for all. Others though know better and simply used that mis-belief to allow them to further consolidate and monopolize for their private advantage at the direct, negative expense of the general public. They are highly selfish souls. In the Christian sense, they are antichrist.
The real issues come down to coercion and taking unscrupulous advantage. On one hand, there are those who want to pay as little in taxes as possible and see taxes as coerced. They are right about the coercion. On the other hand is the view that snake-oil salesmen flourish most in a laissez-faire capitalist environment. That is true also. The best of all possible worlds is the laissez-faire ethical world. The only place it exists is Heaven. Therefore, rather than debate laissez-faire capitalism versus coercive socialism or variants thereof, let us resolve to redefine the human character as being mutable to the extent that humanity can manifest Heaven on Earth and everywhere humanity may find itself in flesh or spirit.
So far, humanity has been aiming low due to evil shortsightedness, which is very unwise. We have named our species Homo sapiens sapiens, which means "wise man" — man here meaning human, not gender specific. When will we live up to the name we've given ourselves? Isn't it long since time? I say it is.
We are the only humans left on the planet. The last other human being was Homo neanderthalensis. Why did they become extinct? I greatly suspect that Homo sapiens sapiens wiped them out to take over their territory and in some cases to eat them. I would also be greatly surprised were Neanderthal DNA not mixed in with sapien DNA.
On the fleshly level, warring for territory and supremacy, whether the war is physically violent in the commonly understood sense or is a mental war, has been going on since the beginning. We can continue modeling our selves after that pattern, or we can become more enlightened and completely enlightened. There must come a time when people stop killing for territory and supremacy but rather finally realize the familial spirit of unselfishness that can bring total peace even to the "lower" species. That enlightenment comes from a higher place. That process of enlightenment is to bring that higher mentality to this carnal plane thereby elevating the plane. This is spiritualization in the right direction. It is Jesus's call. It is doable.
Those who don't mind paying taxes for the general welfare are closer to this mentality. Those who mind being coerced and the coercing of others are closer to this mentality.
The two camps are divided in the typical American consciousness between capitalists and those for a mixed-economy of capitalism and socialism. Freeways are socialist roads for instance. They are owned and operated communally. They are not direct user-fee oriented, although fuel taxes often go largely to such projects. They are mostly created from the general-welfare perspective, and commercial and private vehicles may travel them without immediate tolls. They are of course supported by various taxes. They are also nearly all constructed by private heavy-construction capitalist contractors. They are government paid but privately constructed. Single-payer healthcare is not exactly analogous because the hospitals and clinics are often not publicly owned or operated.
The issues go much further than this though. The choice is not merely between laissez-faire capitalism versus a mixed-economy or complete socialism where taxes still apply. There are other economic systems available as choices; and just as with looking at various choices available in healthcare systems, as Taiwan did, so too ought we to look at all the various choices available in economic systems. One such choice, and the best choice in my book, is the Christian Commons Project. It is non-coercive and does not require either taxes or money in the end. This is the state of Heaven, not in total, but in part.
Heaven has no money. There are no taxes. There is no debt. There is no trading for recompense. There is only giving and sharing. It is based entirely on ethical behavior. It is exactly what Jesus had in mind and still does. It is a voluntary place. No one is forced to remain there. No one may force his or her way in either. Such force is coercive, and Heaven is forever elusive to the coercive. This is the enlightened message. It is an option. It should always be there. Only the wicked at heart want to keep this option from you.
Now, in Heaven proper, there is no healthcare because there is no ill-health. The fact that there is that level is why I said earlier that the Christian Commons Project is part of the way to Heaven. It is though on the narrow way. It is not something choked by the cares and worries of this worldly world.
Please understand that even Jesus could not perform miracles when surrounded by unbelievers. When believers gather in the total absence of hypocrisy and in full understanding, the miraculous will occur. Where the miraculous isn't recognized, it is on account of the spirit of the worldly world intruding. The barriers are spiritual. The spiritual system is such that gifts and rewards on the higher spiritual level are denied those who are mundane only or allow themselves to be possessed by evil spirits, feelings, thoughts, words, and deeds.
Many are called. Few are chosen. However, all surviving at some point are all finally chosen — will have finally chosen rightly. The spirit of Christ does finally save the world. Sitting on our hands waiting is not what the Christ-mind has in mind. So, please help me with bringing forth the Christian Commons Project.
The following should appear at the end of every post:
According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":
Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.
Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.
Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.
Political Campaign Intervention
Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.
Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.
Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:
- Whether the statement identifies one or more candidates for a given public office
- Whether the statement expresses approval or disapproval of one or more candidates' positions and/or actions
- Whether the statement is delivered close in time to the election
- Whether the statement makes reference to voting or an election
- Whether the issue addressed distinguishes candidates for a given office
Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:
- The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
- Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
- We are not trying to influence secular elections but rather want people to come out from that entire fallen system.
- When we analyze or discuss what is termed "public policy," we do it entirely from a theological standpoint with an eye to educating professing Christians and those to whom we are openly always proselytizing to convert to authentic Christianity.
- It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
- We are not rich and wouldn't be looking for a fight regardless. What we cannot do is compromise our faith (which seeks to harm nobody, quite the contrary).
- We render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. We render unto God what is God's.
- When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
- We consider the IRS code on this matter as deliberate economic duress (a form of coercion) and a direct attempt by the federal government to censor dissenting, free political and religious speech.
- It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.
And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)