Saturday, June 30, 2012

BP on Obamacare and a National Health Care System

Commenting at JMG's latest:

Re: Obamacare and electoral politics; actually I think the 5% in the middle who now decide national elections are likely tired of all the health care yammering, and go blank whenever they hear the words "individual mandate" and "job creators." They are going to vote on their gut feelings about the two center-right candidates they are being offered, just as they did in 2008.

You can also forget about the specifics of Obamacare or any other national health care plan; being post-peak oil means we are also post-socialism, whatever your feelings are about the "S" word. Socialism was a response to a time when the sources of inequality were political, financial, cultural, hereditary, etc. It worked when there were fewer people and more resources to go around. Now that "wealth" is imaginary and fundamental resources are truly becoming limiting (and expectations in the western world are for a lifestyle that can not possibly be sustained), socialism no longer has the capability to level the playing field at an elevation that the masses would find acceptable. Socialism was a product of the growth phase of the industrial economy. It is in the process of being disassembled worldwide now, not expanded.

The time to institute a national health care system in the U.S. passed decades ago. We no longer have the surplus wealth (of the non-imaginary kind) for this sort of thing, no matter how you design or attempt to fund it. We'll be lucky to keep our existing (and highly popular) socialist programs afloat for another generation.

Meanwhile, the true believers still believe: Why national health care is necessary to a sustainable food system (EB) by Sharon Astyk

A healthy, sustainable food system might actually obviate the need for a national health care system as she imagines it, if many of our health problems (including those of "aging") are linked to our diet. How many of the peoples with traditional diets, as surveyed by Weston Price, needed extensive health care? And what if first aid going beyond putting on band-aids and CPR were taught to the masses? (A medic or two in every neighborhood?) Kevin Carson's elimination of monopolies would be a better approach as it is compatible with relocalization, but hasn't every example of a national health care system so far gone in the direction of greater monopoly and not less?

Distributism and the Health Care System by John Médaille

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