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Guest Opinion: Is Universal Health Care What Jesus Had in Mind? Comments

Medical care is limited in supply. This is because facilities, equipment, personnel, and financial resources are all in short supply. The government cannot create any of these things out of thin air, although the Fed appears to be trying to do just that with the last item. Continue Reading

1 - 10 of 12 Comments

  1. KarlVDH
    2 years ago

    Medical care for profit is wrong. Period. Unless someone can show me where in the scriptures it suggests Christ billed people for the gifts of healing or any of the other ways in which he provided for people.
    1)The model of life established by Christ and the early Church eschews profit, and closely resembles capitalism.
    2) When the Disciples came to Christ (Matthew's Gospel) and informed Him that the crowd listening to him was hungry, his response was unmistakable: "YOU feed them." Only AFTER they presented him with their meager stores- five fish and two loaves of bread- was he willing to multiply their gift and feed the mases.

    Caring for the sick, the poor, ALL in need is OUR responsibiity. Asking why they're in need is NOT.

  2. John Mainhart
    2 years ago

    The reason that there is some truth in the original artical, and many of the comments written to critique the main artical, is that we tend to think about solutions to our problems as a national exercise. That is why the statement about subsidiarianism is so important even though it was dismissed as unworkable today. In our rush to have access to most of the latest technology in medicine we rightly presume that the only budget big enough to handle the problem is the national budget. This presents a serious problem and actually inhibits our ability to get the loving health care we seek and need. The family should be the first place to take care of the ill in our midst. Then the community picks up those things which the family cannot do. From that point on,the people who control the service are all controlled to a greater or lesser degree by the money available. That alone is a serious problem because the larger business in the medical field get more and more control of where the money goes and have more control over what the political system is willing to do. For example, I am a great believer in natural methods of improving health but the medical field prefers by far treatment by medicine.

    I could go on but my biggest objection to systems larger than communities having all but a very limited amont of control is that the further up the chain the decisions get from the person who is ill, the more the individual becomes a statistic and the more his emotional, physical and spiritual care suffers. There is no question that each creature of God is different and needs prersonal care when ill. Large places like hospitals and nursing homes tend to look to efficiency and in the process begin to serve the system more than the ,individual patient.

    I believe God wants us to serve the sick by being close to them so we can help the whole soul ,we are caring for. Hospice is a good example of individual care. Personal love for the sick will lead to less illness and less expense for all.

  3. Len
    2 years ago

    RafaelMarie....I don't think it's for you to say I'm going to hell.

    I was responding to your fear of universal healthcare as "Socialism".
    And I thought my response was balanced.
    Abortion is a heinous crime; just as not caring for all the sick (particularly those in most need) is a heinous crime. That is Catholicism.

    I'm not trying to build Utopia here on earth.......unless you see working for a world where the hungry are fed and the sick tended as "utopian" in some anti-Christian sense!(Very odd?)
    I see care for the poor and sick as the duty of all Catholics equal to opposing Abortion.
    Or must the poor of the earth await medical care until some wholly pure, wholly catholic version is created by the state?
    Oddly enough, although we've had abortion in the UK since 1967 I think the Catholic Church has won a lot of the argument. Most women now only need to see an alternative option and they will keep their babies. How do we as Catholics provide these other options?
    (And would they appear "Socialist?"). Trouble is the more Dog-eat-dog, busy-busy, low-wage/High-home-cost we become the more these options disappear.
    Economic pressure on ordinary people causes abortion just the same as promiscuity etc.

  4. Proteios1
    2 years ago

    To me it's absurd to think people or companies should profit or get wealthy at the expense of another persons health. Selective surgery maybe, but then I don't see why I would pay for that.
    I cannot defend physicians who have two houses and multiple foreign cars, etc. caring for indigenes and others. I've seen it, I've worked in those environments and its disgusting, quite frankly. But they will see salary decreases as the system falls under the weight of the wealthy. Hence all the physicians assistants, nurse practitioners, etc. the goal is to provide the skill and undermine the cost burden incurred by physicians.
    This isn't just my opinion, this is what's happening. Do agree with it. No. Having more modestly paid physicians that provide the peak skill for our national healthcare would be the way to go, but that isn't happening.

  5. J in Oz
    2 years ago

    Len is right on all counts. As an Australian citizen, I enjoy universal healthcare for just about everything except certain elective procedures, and even those are usually heavily subsidised. It is staggering to those of us who don't live in the USA how much money is wasted, wasted, wasted on the greed of big pharma and medical supplies business. It is very sad - indeed, pathetic even - that so many Americans see nothing but "evil socialism" when it comes to universal healthcare.
    I agree whole-heartedly that the inclusion (requirement) of contraceptive and Plan B-type pills is a dire breach of religious freedom. So please don't think I'm pro-Obamacare without reservation. Even the idea of an insurance exchange baffles those of us outside of the USA. Sadly, I don't think decent universal healthcare will come to fruition in the USA for at least another generation or more, if at all. Such a shame. A real travesty when it comes to caring for the sick; it seems as though precious few Americans have genuine access to decent lifelong healthcare. Worse still is the practice whereby one must be employed full time to even get insurance! That custom is so very strange - and grossly unfair.
    May God have mercy. Mother Mary, pray for us and especially for the sick of America.

  6. rafaelmarie
    2 years ago

    Wow Len,

    So you are willing to pay for your Obamacare with the blood of millions of the unborn???

    In doing so, you may get your utopia here on earth, but when you die, you will inherit the eternal pains of hell!

    Give me death here on earth before I lose soul for exchanging MY well being for millions of the voiceless!

  7. Len
    2 years ago

    Wow RafaelMarie,

    So you recognise that socialists have provided medicine for all, in order to gain power?
    But even it that is true, and tyrannical movements do good things to gain power, is that proof that we shouldn't do those good things?
    Have these good things become evil things because they were done by people we don't like?
    In fact Christianity gave atheistic Communism its whole moral and propagandistic power by abandoning the early Christians vital ethics of sharing. (See Acts 2 & 4 where the early Christians held all in common). Atheistic Communism and Socialsm picked up this vital piece of Christianity which we had left down and clobbered us with it.
    The Church could have responded by humbly acknowledging the abandonment of this ethic and re-appropriating it, but mostly it stood with the rich and accepted the conflict as being one purely about metaphysical beliefs. The Church left down the idea that the world was made for all, that “Distribution was made unto every man according as he had need” and that “No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had”. The devil was ready to pick up the forgotten Gospel to attack the Church with her own neglected Truth (but emptied of its spiritual essence).
    Thus he spreads confusion.
    Stop worrying about "Socialism" bogies. Re-adopt the good things your enemies do. God teaches us through them. When Catholics do what Socialists do, but suffused with spiritual motives and love, they do it far better.
    Again I urge, please follow Catholicism as our only "ism". We are THE universalist Christians. With Catholicism there is "neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus". (Gal 3:28)Will you deny your brother in Christ (the one in need) medical help because it is also done by "Socialism"?
    On judgement day when Christ says "Did you tend the least of my brethren..." Can we say "Well I thought it smacked of some ...ism!"
    Please don't cut Catholicism to fit into Americanism (or more correctly Reaganism) it is MUCH, MUCH bigger than that.
    The state has taken over medicine in many countries and the poor get treatment. Perhaps only the state can afford "care for all" today?
    For us it would be nice if these institutions were still infused with Christian spiritual purpose; but we also see they are not totally devoid of charity and genuine care and concern from the many workers in them of all faiths and sometimes none.
    In the seventies the top one percent average income was 9 times the typical american male wage; now it is 30 times and growing! This is not Catholicism; it is not Capitalism regulated to serve the common good; it is a new extremist barbarism, which trys to demand your support as a false patriotic (or "anti-socialist") duty.
    Read the wonderful social encyclicals which are full of wisdom and balance. And it cannot have escaped you that Pope Benedict used his New Year Address to condemn "unregulated capitalism" for contributing to world tension and deplored "hotbeds of tension and conflict caused by growing instances of inequality between rich and poor".
    This is Catholicism.
    This is Catholicism just as much as the fight against Abortion.

  8. rafaelmarie
    2 years ago

    "One of the traditional methods of imposing statism or socialism on a people has been by way of medicine. It is very easy to describe a medical program as a humanitarian project... Under the Truman administration, it was proposed that we have a compulsory health insurance program for all people in the United States, and of course, the American people unhesitatingly rejected this... In the last decade, 127 million of our citizens, in just ten years, have come under the protection of some privately-owned medical or hospital insurance. The advocates of [socialized healthcare], when you try to oppose it, challenge you on an emotional basis... What can we do about this? Well you and I can do a great deal. We can write to our Congressmen, to our Senators. We can say right now that we want no further encroachment on these individual liberties and freedoms. And at the moment, the key issue is we do not want socialized medicine... If you don't, this program I promise you will pass just as surely as the sun will come up tomorrow. And behind it will come other federal programs that will invade every area of freedom as well have known it in this country, until one day, as Norman Thomas said, we will awake to find that we have socialism. If you don't do this and if I don't do it, one of these days you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children, and our children's children, what it once was like in America when men were free."[21][22]...Ronald Reagan

  9. Darlene
    2 years ago

    I have little to add to this article, but to say it is excellent.

  10. Len
    2 years ago

    As a UK catholic I am astonished by the convoluted contortions used to preserve the intrinsic barbarity of USA medical care.
    Do not we preach that ALL humans are of equal value?
    Do not we (as catholics) believe that "Faith is as faith does" (Our works show what we really believe).
    The above is Catholicism cut to fit Americanism ; but we are called to cut our nationalisms to fit our Catholicism, which demands that there are NO divisions of peoples.

    It is not true to say there is a pot of X dollars available for medical care. There are choices about tax and spending. There are taxation options available in the utterly obscene transfer of vast wealth to the top 1% in the USA since the seventies . There are spending options; would Christ spend on medical care for the poor or the military-industrial complex?
    And how much is time, money, people and materials are wasted in "accounting" your "customers"? We do none of this.
    Doctors are not made from "thin air" but they can be trained.
    Do not believe scare stories about the UK Health Service. It ia a fantastic venture ; the dearest thing to all Brits. It has problems, but it could never be otherwise.
    The parable of The Good Samaritan was told in response to the question "Who is my neighbour" and the response was "Whoever is in need". And that is how judgement is made "Did you feed me when I was hungry etc"
    Remember Aquinas only justified private property insofar as it served the common good. Capitalism (as currently running) has become a monster there to protect the few and their obscene priviledge. The economy was made by man for man; man is NOT made for the economy (see social encyclicals). Goverment is there to use the fiscal system to ensure that capitalism serves THE COMMON GOOD.

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