March 17, 2010

Don't Blame Kucinich

I'm not one for trading insults - it's not real debate. But Dennis Kucinich has just flipped his vote to a yes and it's tempting to throw a barb his way. Luckily I don't have to hurl insults, I'll let Dennis speak for himself.

“If my vote is to be counted, let it count now for passage of the bill, hopefully in the direction of comprehensive health care reform,” he said. He added, “I believe health care is a civil right.”
He believes health care is a civil right. It's certainly not guaranteed by the Constitution. Now if he's arguing that it is a basic human right, that's a different argument. But it's still a losing argument, because by that logic so are food and shelter. Those aren't rights, they are basic human needs. If they were rights then explain why there are millions of starving people in the world, without homes who coincidentally don't have health care either. There are people in America without shelter. Aren't food and shelter more basic than health care? Why isn't there legislation for that? Possibly because it would break the economic model of capitalism and socialism too. If food, shelter and health care were provided, practically NOBODY would work except the terminally bored.

Kucinich's statement also pre-supposes that health care is a more fundamental civil right than life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, all that sort of thing. In other words, a right not enumerated in the Constitution, at a time when health care problems must surely have existed as much as they do now, was somehow egregiously overlooked by the Founding Fathers. It took the likes of today's collective brain trust to fix that. Sorry, don't buy it. Maybe Dennis, you could re-read the Constitution and point out for us where everyone overlooked that civil right?

But don't blame Kucinich for what he said. He can't be held accountable for his own words. He's said some other off-the-wall stuff in the past. Like this gem;

As much as I want to pile on that, I won't. I wouldn't want to offend some other phantom civil right to dignity...

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