Dems to Seniors: Drop Dead
And you can take that title literally, too. Because that is where we are headed with the health care bill before Congress. As Erick Erickson points out:
I think, given that the member of Congress who drafted H.R. 3200 read and take seriously people like Klien, Yglesias, and Singer, we should be very troubled by Section 1233 of H.R. 3200. The section, titled “Advanced Care Planning Consultation” requires senior citizens to meet at least every 5 years with a doctor or nurse practitioner to discuss dying with dignity.
The section requires that they talk to their doctor, not a lawyer, about living wills, durable healthcare powers of attorney, hospice, etc. Given the progressive intelligentsia already being on the record in favor of euthanizing the elderly, it is no small leap to see where the Democrats are headed with this.
Legally forcing senior citizens to have “death with dignity schedules every few years is just another way to say the government wants to make sure seniors know it is time to commit suicide to save the system money.
If you can’t see this, then you’re just being intentionally obtuse. Forget all the kind rhetoric about “dignity”. Let’s call it what it is: Geriatric Euthanasia. And let’s be very clear about why we want the old people to die: We’ve sucked all the economic productivity we’re going to get out of them, and it’s more convenient to kill them than it is to assume the financial burden of their care. You can pretty it up with all the flowery language you want, but at the end of the day, it comes down to, “You cost too much to keep alive. Just die.”
Frankly, it’d be far more honest just to have a “caretaker” just show up at the appropriate age, and double-tap the senior at the nape of the neck. At least that would have the virtue of honesty, and would spare everyone the hypocritical stench of pretending to care about the “dignity” of the elderly when the real concern is to try to ensure they don’t become a drain on the public purse.
So forget any notion you have about producing wealth your whole life to save up for your golden years. The new paradigm is to produce all the wealth you can, and when you’re done, you need to die so that those of us who remain can spend it instead.
And why should this come as a surprise? This is the direction we’ve been going for a long time. And it is, in fact, the logical end of the idea that health care is a “right”. Because once the community as a whole has a “right” to the labor, property, or wealth of any individual member, then there are no rights at all. There are only privileges that are extended at the wish of the community, and that can be withdrawn at will.
There is no liberty under any scheme of communal “rights”. The highest value of community rights isn’t freedom, it’s democracy. Whatever the “community” chooses is, by definition legitimate, as long as it’s democratically chosen. No medical care for old people? That’s fine, as long as the community decrees it. The trouble is that democracy is value-neutral. It is amoral. if democracy is the highest expression of legitimacy, then it’s perfectly alright for black people to be slaves, as long as the majority thinks it’s OK. Black people would vote against it, of course, but if they ended up in the minority, well, that’s the way the cookie crumbles. Sorry, black people. You lose. By the way, your name is now “Toby”.
Thanks for participating in the democratic process, Toby. Now get to work.
We see the same thing in the Honduran situation. Mel Zelaya was elected president. Therefore he’s legitimate, so it’s a very, very bad thing to depose him, even if he acts unconstitutionally. Because we’ve fetishized democracy, the Obama Administration and the OAS, assume that deposing him is a way of illegitimately thwarting the people’s will, rather than preserving a legitimate constitutional order.
That kind of thinking forgets that democracy is not a value. It is a process that is only legitimate insofar as it is animated by constitutional order that values human liberty. Without that, it is merely a form of tyranny, different only in process, rather than kind, as compared to the tryanny of a single individual.
For the most part, we’ve abandoned the idea of individual liberty as the primary American value among the political class. So, we see nothing wrong with counseling senior to “die with dignity”. It’s better for everyone, really, except, perhaps in the proximate case of the individual senior.
We’re now seeing the fruits of collectivism starting to bloom fully in this country. The country I was born in is gone. But I’m glad I got to see it before it died.