Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Evil, Stupidity, and Health Care

"The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread."

This quote by the famous French intellectual, journalist and man of the letters, Anatole France, captures the essence of the evil folly of Republican inaction on health care. It could be easily adapted to read "Republicans (and blue dog Democrats) in their majestic impartiality and enduring faith in the power of the free market to let all prosper, will allow the rich as well as the poor to go without needed medical care and health insurance."

That is, I am afraid, the degree of absence of empathy and of idolatry of the free market that one large part of the population and its elected representatives have displayed in the health care reform debate. The combination of evil, from political leaders who have scared the throngs of the gullible into believing that fairness in health care equals death panels, the advent of "socialism" and the death of the free market, and of stupidity, of the people who let themselves be scared, brings to mind another famous saying by the already mentioned French intellectual, Anatole France: "Stupidity is far more dangerous than evil, for evil takes a break from time to time, stupidity does not."

May both the evil and the stupid reap what they are unrepentantly and unwittingly sowing.

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