Friday, August 28, 2009

A Priest's Response to the Religious Left's "40 Days for Health Reform"

Father Robert Sirico, President of the Acton Institute, has an excellent article on his blog, in which he responds to the Religious Left's “40 Days for Health Reform,” a massive effort to muster support during the congressional summer recess for the Obama administration’s nationalization of America’s healthcare system.

Here is an excerpt:

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has argued that healthcare is a human right that should be available to all. “The Bishops’ Conference believes healthcare reform should be truly universal and it should be genuinely affordable,” wrote Bishop William F. Murphy, the chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, in a July 17 letter to Congress. Now, Catholics can agree or disagree with the bishops’ advocacy for universal healthcare—that’s a question of prudence not dogma. Tellingly, Bishop Murphy’s letter did not cite Scripture, the catechism, or any papal encyclical. It was argued from a basis in policy and motivated by the bishop’s honest desire for improvement in a system where one in six patients in the United States is cared for in Catholic hospitals.

But note also what the Catholic bishops did. They issued a clear and forceful call for a reformed health policy that “protects and respects the life and dignity of all people from conception until natural death.That non-negotiable insistence on the respect for life is, by and large, missing from the Religious Left’s campaign. What we get instead are bland assurances, parroted from White House and congressional talking point memos, that “life and dignity” would be forever safe under ObamaCare. I am not persuaded.

What else is missing from the Religious Left’s campaign? Plenty.

There is no acknowledgement that expanding federal spending by $1 trillion or more to reengineer the American healthcare system, and further burdening future generations with groaning debt loads, might be a bad thing. Or would the Religious Left simply have the government declare a Jubilee and disavow these debts when they become totally unmanageable? Is this too somewhere in Leviticus or perhaps Deuteronomy?

There is little or no recognition that other key institutions—the family, the Church, local civic associations—might also have a role to play in shaping reform. Certainly, no recognition for those civic and social groups that have a healthy distrust of an invasive state. Instead, we get the constant demand from the Religious Left that Washington must act. It is a sort of idolatry—the worship of Big Government as the solution to all of our problems.

There is a near total blindness to the fact that nationalized health systems in other countries are deeply troubled, even deadly. Horror stories about these systems are plentiful in the mainstream media. What about the common good? A 2002 report by the Adam Smith Institute noted the following about Britain’s state-run healthcare monopoly:
The NHS has a severe shortage of capacity, directly costing the lives of tens of thousands of patients a year. We have fewer doctors per head of population than any European country apart from Albania. We import nurses and doctors from the world’s poorest countries, and export sick people to some of the richest. More than one million people—one in sixty of the population—are waiting for treatment.
I strongly recommend that you read the entire article.

ObamaCare out of touch with U.S. physicians

A new poll finds that despite the American Medical Association's support for President Obama's healthcare plan, most specialty doctors strongly oppose the plan.

The American Society of Medical Doctors has released a poll of physicians that finds 86 percent of specialty doctors believe that the American Medical Association has become too political and has lost touch with the doctors it represents.

The American Medical Association, or AMA, which gave Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy its highest award for public service earlier this year, has endorsed President Obama's government-run healthcare plan. Seventy percent of the specialty doctors surveyed in the poll said they oppose current congressional and White House proposals for healthcare reform.

Jean Card, a spokeswoman for the American Society of Medical Doctors, says the polling shows that many doctors fear President Obama's healthcare plan threatens their ability to honor the Hippocratic Oath.

Click here to read more.

Obama Care Reform: This Congressman gets it!

 Congressman Mike Rogers' (R-MI) makes his opening statement on Health Care reform legislation:

Thanks, Fr. Michael, for sharing this!