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There are several reasons I believe a public option system would help the American People. One of these reasons  I will write about today. It comes from one of the greatest lines ever written by man. It starts thus:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…”

What do these words have to do with health care and education? Well, besides being some of the greatest and most noble words ever put together, they are also a lie. Men are not created equal, some men are ugly and some are handsome, some are smart and others are stupid, some are born with money and some never have enough to cover the bills. Nothing is more self evident than the fact that we are never equal, and that is where health care and education enter the picture.

For this great social experiment to work, for democracy to be anything more than a nice idea, we must tip the scales in favor of the masses. The government must act as an agent for the people, and as a counter-weight to the rich and the corporations that the common man has no hope of opposing.  A healthy and educated common people will vitalize democracy. The very purpose of our democratic government is to create a balance of power, a task in which it is miserably failing. One way to bring it back into balance is by making sure that common people, all of them, can gain an education and go to the doctor.

“they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness”

The connection between health care and life, is obvious. A bed-ridden person has no liberty and little happiness.

The connection to education, I feel, is this, Socrates said that the unexamined life is not worth living. A life worth living is a life in which there is self-examination, and self-discipline. A life that is lived with the understanding of our role as members of society and our responsibility to contribute, uphold, and sustain that society. This was the purpose of higher education a century ago. It will return to this if all members of society are permitted to learn.

True liberty is making choices, and having the ability to weigh those choices. True happiness is enhanced in many ways, through achievements, through character, and through being a part, an active part, in something greater than oneself. This is the goal of education, this is the goal of democracy.

Democracy is government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Health care is medicine of the people, by the people, for the people. Education is learning of the people, by the people, for the people.  A sick and stupid population is not worthy and not capable of democracy.

The challenge of our democracy is social alchemy. It is to make the lie that all men are created equal true. It is to balance power, to foment life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all.

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4 Comments

  1. Do you read what you write? This “tipping of the balance in favor of the masses” is the opposite of Liberty. It is tyrannical coercion and a direct punishment upon those that succeed, which would have the inevitable effect of either stifling success or encouraging the successful to move elsewhere.

    As for the rest – education and healthcare provisioning have little to do with Life or Liberty except insofar as no man should be denied access to whatever levels of each he can earn.

    Do not conflate opportunity with result or forget that Liberty requires the possibility of individual failure.

    • Thank you for your comment. I don’t think that successful people are 300% more successful than they were 30 years ago, but they are making 300% more. I think the argument that they are punished by the government opposing them is foolish. It is because of the government not opposing them that we are in the economic distress we are currently experiencing.

      As for the rest, take away your education and your health, then tell me how little it has to do with the quality of your life.

      I have failed at quite a few things, I am not giving up yet, that is part of Liberty, as well as life. You can’t legislate against it, and I don’t want to.

      • My quality of life might be reduced; it would certainly be altered. Still, it would be my life, maintained by my choices as opposed to being mandated by others.

        And don’t place too much stock in “education.” What passes for it these days in America isn’t all that hot since it fails to teach basic common sense and self-reliance.

        In the words of my late grandfather, “We keep getting book learning and life learning all messed up.”

  2. Obviously, Jonolan, you’ve never had to deal with life without health. You seem to be functioning without the benefit of an education, however, because your comment is arrogant and ignorant to the plight of those without options. The fact is, health and education offer options. Options are the key components of freedom, which is the cornerstone of our country, and that’s exactly what our government is expected to uphold. Our freedom. Our options. In other words, our health care and our education. Sure, the government is expected to protect its citizens as well, but everyone seems to forget–at least in the United States–that education and health care are just as vital, if not more vital, than our national security.

    Great post, prole. Here’s hoping Congress pulls its collective head out and sees the necessity of health care reform with a public option. Then on to education reform. I’m sick of Corporate America running the show.


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