Spacefem (spacefem) wrote,

why universal health care made me not a libertarian

I just read a blog entry by Roger Ebert, of all people, explaining why he supports universal health care. You know what? I totally agree.

It's pained me lately. I was a good-hearted libertarian, who told everyone that the government screws up everything it touches, so why would we give it health care? Well honestly, it's because health care is already very, very screwed up.

I'm lucky. I have a great job with a great health care plan. But what happens if I get cancer and can't go to work? I could be dropped. In fact, I might just be dropped because my insurance company feels like it... there are hundreds of stories of people who were diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses, and then days before their surgery the insurance company calls and said, "You were treated for acne in 1994, that might have been cancer, we're calling this a pre-existing condition and not covering it." The system is broken.

I have friends who graduated college and were unable to find jobs with good plans. They refuse to even save money or be financially responsible, because what's the point of saving money if a single car accident will wipe you out?

Despite once being a libertarian, I have decided government should step in and do some things for the public good. I don't have kids in school, so it'd be easy for me to say, "Screw it I'm not supporting education." But it's in my interest to live in a society where kids are educated... this will come in darn handy down the road. It's also in my interest to live in a society where people are healthy to pursue their talents and contribute. I want curable diseases cured.

So I feel like I have no political home anymore. I still value some libertarian ideals... legalize drugs, end corporate welfare, protect personal privacy. But this health care situation is incurable. Being one of the few lucky ones doesn't make me blind to it. I don't want to be lucky. I want to be realistic. And people who I thought I agreed with are feeling so scared and threatened by the idea of government health care that they're yelling and crying in meetings. I'm just not with them.
Tags: politics
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