Maybe the Republican congressman aren’t quite as crazy as they let on. (Yes, I know. I ended the sentence with a preposition. My English teachers in high school would kill me if they were still alive. Unfortunately, I don’t think they are.) Congress voted down a Republican sponsored bill that would have repealed Obama Care and replaced it with something that would cost 24 million people their insurance coverage. Apparently, there are enough Republican Congressman with some sense that helped vote this bill down. God bless them!
My wife and my son would belong to that 24 million that the proposed bill would have left coverless. My wife’s employer does not provide healthcare coverage for his employee. I am not going to use his name here, just his initials – RC. RC is a very nice person. He has done a lot for Elizabeth over the years that she has worked for him, currently as the owner of the restaurant where Elizabeth is the prep cook, as well as the McDonald’s she used to work at for a long time. One of the reasons that Elizabeth left McDonald’s was so she could go back to work for RC. That’s how much she thinks of him and I do to. He is also a good practicing Christian as is his wife and his sons. However, the prevailing philosophy here in Arkansas as well as much of the rest of the so is that healthcare is something individuals need to pay for themselves what the people that think that way do not take into consideration is that they are not paying their employees enough to cover the premiums for that healthcare coverage and still provide food, shelter, clothing, and other essentials for their family.
Nor do these people support the idea of putting severe pricing control on the insurance company. After all, the United States is the most capitalistic country in the world. The prevailing philosophy in this country is that capitalism is the best economic system ever, nor will there ever be anything better. Yeah, right! If you believe that, I have a bridge I’d like to sell you. Cheap! These people have to realize that capitalism is fueled first and foremost by unrestricted greed. For me, it is impossible to be both a Christian and a Capitalist. As Jesus once said, “you cannot worship both God and Mammon!” That is the God of greed and money, the God of the capitalists! They may pay lip service to Jesus and God the father, but we all know where their hearts really are, don’t we?
In the early chapters of the Book of Acts is the story of Stephen and the Seven Deacons. Even Stephen and the deacons were selected by the disciples of Jesus to minister to the poor by coordinating all of the contributions from the Christian community to assist the poor with food and clothing as well as other essential items. “From each according to his means, to each according to his needs.” That’s a quote from Karl Marx, the great prophet of socialism. Apparently, the disciples had read Karl Marx, even though he would not write his epic work, capital for another 2000 years! What the disciples commanded Stephen and the deacons to do for the poor was pure Marxist socialism.
There is another instance of pure Marxist socialism in the Acts of the Apostles. When St. Paul made his second missionary journey through Asia minor and Greece, he was commanded by Peter to make a collection for “the poor in Jerusalem.” Paul brought the money back to Peter and the rest of the disciples. That money was apparently used to support the Christian community in and around Jerusalem, many of whom were very poor, thanks to Roman oppression. I think that my quote from Marx applies here as well.
The point of all this, in case you haven’t figured it out yet, is that Christianity as taught by Jesus to his disciples and as they practiced in the first and second century of the Common Era are not compatible. Christianity was not meant to be a, to quote Nietzsche, “slave religion,” but rather a religion that looked after the poor. Go to the Gospel of Matthew and read the Beatitudes again. In that sermon, Jesus blesses the poor time and time again. He even performs the miracle so they all can eat their fill. That is not the capitalist way. A capitalist may have performed a miracle, but he would have charged the 5000 a fee for the food. Jesus and the disciples distributed that food for free.
I started this post out by talking about the defeat of the Republican plan to scuttle Obama Care. Obama Care is seen as unmitigated socialism by the conservatives in Congress, many of whom claim to be good Christians. How can you be a good Christian and charge people ridiculous amounts of money for something so essential as quality healthcare?! Did Jesus charge the lame, the blind, the lepers, the possessed, and Lazarus there? It appears to me that the primary reason people now become doctors is for the money! That is disgusting! People should become doctors to minister to the sick, much in the same way that Jesus and the disciples did millennia ago. Maybe if the doctors were more Christ-like they would be able to do something more for the sick then just alleviate symptoms. Maybe they would actually be able to heal people again. It seems that medical schools have eliminated the Hippocratic oath that doctors used to take upon graduation and replaced it with something I call the “Hypocritic Oath.” They do not promise to heal anymore. They just promised to do no harm. Yeah right! That’s why so many of them get sued for malpractice why they need such ridiculous liability which for their mistakes.
It is my considered opinion, for what it’s worth, that the reason the medical community, especially doctors, have declined substantially is because doctors have become shills for the pharmaceutical company. The pharmaceutical companies pay these doctors to prescribe their products. Maybe they don’t pay them cash directly, but the doctors get rewarded financially for supporting the pharmaceutical companies. Watch the Harrison Ford version of The Fugitive to see one example of how that works. And if you think that’s an isolated incident or even pure fiction, I suggest you do some fundamental research on things like now practice, bad drugs, and insurance fraud. Doctors take up their profession these days because it is “lucrative,” not personally rewarding from a moral standpoint.
To beat a dead horse, the culprit here, as in so much else that is wrong with American society, is our old friend capitalism. As they say, “money is the root of all evil.” Money is what makes the American world go round. Time to change that. People and their needs should be far more important than any form of material wealth.