Letter: What drives the Democrats?
Posted on Dec 11, 2013 - 01:03 PM Printer Friendly View
I have attempted for years to deduce what drives Democrats to do some of the things they do. An opinion piece by Robert B. Reich, Professor of Public Police at Berkeley, published recently in a local daily newspaper, has provided a breakthrough.
The article is about the Affordable Care Act and some of the issues surrounding it. When he gets to the part about financing it (he mentions the 3.8 percent surtax on capital gains and dividend income and the increase in Medicare taxes—“for richer people”). He then states that “It’s only fitting that those with higher incomes bear some responsibility for maintaining the health of Americans who are less fortunate.” At that point, he unveils the core of his argument: “This is a profoundly moral argument.” In a later paragraph he asserts “there would be no reason to reform and extend health insurance to begin with if we did not have moral obligations to one another as members of the same society.”
Up to this point I agree with The Professor, but now we’ve reached the point where we must decide what we “richer people” will do about it. The Professor’s solution (and, I dare say, most earnest Democrats’) would be to enact legislation to provide for the needs of these poor souls. Providing for those needs eventually comes down to money. Since the government has no money other than what it receives in taxes, it is obvious who provides that money—“richer people.”
The problem with this solution is that The Professor has taken what we all agree is a Moral responsibility and has made it a Criminal responsibility. It’s saying: “Contribute to their support or face a fine or jail or both.” He fails to recognize that one cannot legislate morality no matter how noble the cause. This type of legislation only makes “richer people” slaves, literally, to the poorer people—and that is a moral abomination we outlawed over a hundred years ago.
It’s a moral responsibility; let’s work on a moral solution.