With ‘Quality Adjusted Life Years’ and other such criteria for determining when to spend money on old people right around the corner (if not already here… *ahem* IPAB *ahem*), I found it ironic to see these two news items running at the same time today: When the 87-year-old resident of Glenwood Gardens collapsed at the …
Tag: universal health care
I was reading CS Lewis’s The Four Loves and came across the quote below. Obviously, Lewis is not specifically addressing universal health care or liberalism or the question of using the government to administer love. Even Christians can be found thinking that it is a noble expression of a loving society to have the government do the loving… and this with no apparent thought to the actual effect that this ‘loving’ will have on the people ‘loved’ and the attitude it fuels in the people-government doing the ‘loving.’ The most important thing seems to be that, well, people’s intentions are good, and it’s better to do something rather than nothing. Here is the quote:
This [is] Gift-love, but one that needs to give; therefore needs to be needed. But the proper aim of giving is to put the recipient in a state where he no longer needs our gift. We feed children in order that they may soon be able to feed themselves; we teach them in order that they may soon not need our teaching. Thus a heavy task is laid upon this Gift-love. It must work towards its own abdication. We must aim at making ourselves superfluous. The hour when we can say “They need me no longer” shall be our reward. But the instinct, simply in its own nature, has no power to fulfil this law. The instinct desires the good of its object, but not simply; only the good it can itself give. A much higher love- a love which desires the good of the object as such, from whatever source that good comes- must step in and help or tame the instinct before it can make the abdication. And of course it often does. But where it does not, the ravenous need to be needed will gratify itself either by keeping its objects needy or by inventing for them imaginary needs. It will do this all the more ruthlessly because it thinks (in one sense truly) that it is a Gift-love and therefore regards itself as “unselfish.” (pgs 50-51)
One purpose of the post is to highlight the obvious dangers, illustrated over and over again throughout history, and in the last century in particular, of having secular humanists and atheists in charge of bestowing rights. What they giveth, they can taketh. And they have often taketh.
But another purpose of this post is to point out to the many Christians calling for ‘universal health care’ that if you are claiming that God has bestowed certain rights such as health care, you’ve got to back that up somehow. Your sentimental arguments, sincere and well meaning, have as much weight to me as sentimental arguments like “God makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, don’t you want that, too?” have weight with atheists. In short, none.
Why? Does it mean that I am indifferent to those who struggle to receive adequate health care? Not at all. It does, however, have important implications as to how we proceed to address that issue