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Would-be rulers and the sheep

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When Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton debated Senator Barack Hussein Obama in Texas prior to the primary she scoffed at the idea of people voluntarily buying medical insurance.

"It would be as though Social Security were voluntary [or] Medicare, one of the great accomplishments of President Johnson, was voluntary. We would not have a social compact with Social Security and Medicare if everyone did not have to participate. I want a universal health-care plan," she said.

I guess this is what qualifies as meaningful political thought these days.

If one were to look closely at what she’s saying, she wants something ("universal health care"); therefore, people should be compelled to give it to her.

This without even giving a thought as to how the free market could accomplish the goal peacefully.

Heck, if you or I claimed something like that in private life, we’d be branded as fools.

If we went beyond expressing it out loud, then we’d be arrested for theft or extortion.

Just imagine the president of some health care company asserting everyone must participate in his company’s plan, regardless of what anyone thought or felt.

The thought boggles the mind and he’d probably be out on his ear.

But, presidents and presidential candidates seem to be exempt from the normal and reasonable rules of morality.

Why? We are all taught from the beginning not to hit others, not to steal their stuff, and always to keep our promises.

If we need the cooperation of others then we are expected to rely upon our skills of persuasion.

We should never use force.

These sound principles our parents taught us as children strengthen a decent, moral society.

When we become adults, we are still expected to observe them. Our bodies of laws, both criminal and civil, exemplify these prohibitions against murder, assault, burglary, theft and breach of contract.

So, why do the rules change when a politician advocates forcing people to go along with her grand schemes?

Why are normal rules suspended and different rules taking their place?

Why is it in the political world, people who have never bothered anyone may be coerced into participating in a politician’s scheme for no other reason that the scheme allegedly won’t work unless there’s universal participation?

That just doesn’t seem to me to be a good enough excuse. Of course, to some of our political elites, the people are just like cattle to be herded in one direction or another to please some whim or another.

Never mind the practicality of the notion or whether or not it will work. The main object seems to be submission.

It’s a gauge of just exactly how far removed politics is from normal reality, not to mention morality, that to even bring up this issue seems slightly odd. Comparing a politician to a common criminal just isn’t done in polite society, but think about it for a second.

Imagine if Hillary Clinton were your neighbor and she came up with a plan for a neighborhood association to provide a wide variety of services, including medical coverage and pensions.

"My plan just won’t work unless everyone participates," she asserts.

She then proceeds to threaten anyone who decides not to go along. What would you think of this woman?

If she demanded your money at gunpoint, you’d call the cops and have her prosecuted. And rightly so.

So, why do we give her a pass since she’s a presidential candidate?

Force still is force, is it not? What does it matter who wields it? The fact someone refuses to participate in government programs – Social Security, Medicare, universal health care – has not disturbed the peace, or assaulted anyone.

He’s simply minded his own business.

Why then should the government not just leave him alone?

That old "live and let live" principle used to be valued by Americans, but has recently seemed largely forgotten, even ignored. A modern oxymoron.

No one seems to want to face the important question: just where do government officials get the authority to compel peaceful citizens to finance and participate in their social programs? Some might even say the authority comes from the people.

But how can that be?

I’ve already stated we have no authority to initiate force against another. To do so simply makes us criminals.

So how can all of us together have such authority? We don’t.

Americans have let their freedom slip away because we’ve failed to exercise simple logic and common sense.

We’ve overlooked the fact that politicians have no power not possessed by private individuals. We’ve swallowed the propaganda that all people are created equal; some are just created a little more equal than others.

We’ve become like the subjects who were afraid to tell the emperor (empress) he was naked for fear of looking stupid. And, guess what? The politicians like the arrangement just fine.

Aside from the fact universal health care won’t work, it’s not up to the government to force participation.

We’re still individuals and live in a free country. At least we do until the next election, I guess.

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