The Road to Totalitarianism, Part 1: Health Care

Many children while growing up hear their parents tell them that “you are what you eat”. While this kernel of truth is appropriately simplistic for a child, as adults we know that diet is just one aspect of our overall health.

It could be said that just about everything you do in your life affects your health – what you eat, how much you eat, what you weigh, when you exercise, how much you exercise, when you sleep, how much sleep you get – all this and more affects your health.

No doubt you’ve heard the conventional arguments against health care – that it will lead to rationing, “Death Panels”, poor service, massive government debt – all of which are true, but there’s another angle to this that’s just as disconcerting.

If taxpayers are paying for your health care, then your health is a matter of public interest. If there is massive amounts of debt, then the public taxpayers will likely be even more interested in your health care, and how to reduce cost.

If the State is paying for your health care, the State then can start to proscribe new laws regulating your activity in order to lower the cost of health care.

Red meat? Too much can be bad for you. It is now forbidden for anyone to eat more than one serving of beef in a week. Or, if it helps make this more believable – trans fats are now forbidden. In fact, some members of congress want to prevent you from growing your own food by fining you one million dollars.

Smoking? Terrible for you. It is now forbidden for anyone to smoke. (And since smoking is illegal in bars, stadiums, and other outdoor areas, the places where a smoker can go to smoke gets smaller and smaller.)

Excerise? This is good for you. It is now mandatory that everyone exercise at least 15 minutes a day at a government licensed exercise facility.

Sleep? Your body and your health requires it. It is now mandatory for all citizens to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night.

And the list goes on, while the state takes more and more control of your life in order to lower the cost of health care.