JULY 22, 2009 5:31PM

Our Founding Father's Socialized Healthcare System

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                        The United States Marine Hospital, Chelsea, Mass.

While there were some who wished the new America could become self sustaining and avoid depending on foreign trade, it rapidly became apparent our economy couldn't stand alone without it. We relied on the private merchant ships of America to build our economy and fund our treasury, and the captains and owners of those ships relied, of course, on sailors to staff them.

The merchant mariner's job was physical and difficult, leaving them prone to injury. General illness, tropical diseases, wretched backs, sprained wrists, ankles and broken bones could leave a captain without enough crew to man the ship.

Our Founders realized that a healthy work force was essential to our economic health and growth. It was for this reason that, in July of 1798, Congress passed, and President John Adams signed into law an act “For the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen,” establishing the Marine Hospital Service.

This Federal government socialized healthcare insurance was funded by a tax that was withheld from the sailor’s pay, and then turned over to the government by the ship’s owner. This first payroll tax amounted to slightly over 1% of the sailor’s wages. An injured or sick sailor would make a claim, his record of payments would be confirmed, and he would be given a “chit” for admission to the local hospital. Some of these healthcare facilities were private, but in the larger ports Federal maritime hospitals were built.   

A year later, in 1799, the hospitals were opened to members of our Navy, until its own were established. (In 1936 the Merchant Marines were declared an auxiliary of the Navy during times of war and emergency, until then, they were always private employees.) 

As America grew, this system was expanded to the inland ports along the Ohio and Mississippi rivers and others. It eventually became our Public Health Service, led by the Surgeon General. 

We should take a lesson from our Founders, and view today's health insurance issue through the same lens. A healthy work force is more productive. We have enough disadvantages as we compete in the global economy without having to bear the costly burden of a healthcare system that in too many ways works in opposition to its purpose. We're draining consumer purchasing from other more productive areas of our economy to prop up a highly monopolized system that violates that forgotten third word of the free market phrase: competition. 

True competition would allow the public to participate. There is no valid free market theory that would reject that idea. That some would describe personal responsibility as surrendering our national interest to the profit motive of the few is a result of thoughtless ideology, not reason. 

If we ask the question "Are we being served, or served on a platter?" the answer reveals the action we, the people should take.  

Those who disagree are free to do so, but now stripped of the pretense that they are representing the principles of Our Founders, they should avoid that tidbit of sloganeering. Those saying the Constitution doesn't allow the citizens to provide for themselves are obviously wrong. What I have written about here is a prescription to cure that strain of ignorance.


I've updated this story to address the Republican (all but 1) attorneys general who have filed lawsuits claiming the insurance mandate is unconstitutional:

News: President Signs H-Care Insurance Mandate-212 Years Ago! (This has a copy of the 1798 legislation )

Here's more historical background information--

Sailor's health and national wealth 

Public Health Service-History

Social Security online - History

© Paul J. O'Rourke, 2009-2010

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nice try, but facts or history are not relevant. these jerks are determined that no one will pry any money from their hands.

keep smiling, the looming economic war will be a mere sour footnote to the collapse of the environment and consequent die-back of the human race, and most other species.

it's hopeless, lay in a supply of wine and dancing girls and watch the sun set.
They can never be bothered with facts so I will take the last part of your advice and cram a way. Fine article....
al, I have little hope of seeing real healthcare reform, but at least let's be clear about what we're really arguing about.
Interesting history, if one could disagree about the extent to which one had to do that in the form of the country, but there are clearly right wing nuts and left wing nuts and mad as hell centrists.
good to see mr loomis back her.
Dr Spud,
Remember to lightly salt it.

Yes, it fit in with the times, but it can fit now also. I'm a fan of free market, and especially that forgotten 3rd word - competition. If we continue with this fairly well monopolized, out of balance system, we are resisting, not enabling competition. Remember Hayek's saying about "socialists of either party." I think it cuts both ways. However, a private market solution is always the preferred default. But sometimes it just doesn't work.
Excellent article, Paul, at least for us, who want to believe that facts matter. But of course al loomis and Dr Spud are right that the feeble-minded would promote any lie that helps pay their salary :-)
Yes. A free-market health care system is a delusion. Good job.
this is such an outright falsehood you should be ashamed of yourself
You are simply a fool. The Merchant Marines were private employees of merchant ship owners, they were not the military/Navy. The Marine Hospitals were, a year later, opened to Navy sailors, until seperate hospitals were established.
It was not a temporary arrangement, it expanded as America grew and later became the US Public Health Service.
First you say I'm lying, then you acknowledge the fact of its existance...then you babble some out-your-ass crap that is laughably wrong.
My best advice for you is to shut your pie hole and let the triple digit IQ people handle things.
As astute as ever! Is it just me or is it ironic that the same conservative, American Enterprise Institute-loving, Cato Institute worshipping yappers that were all about "Hamilton and the Federalists" during the Bush admin are now hopping on "Jefferson and States Rights" during the Obama admin.... Do these people even care to read and know history? It seems like all this is just billboard politics to them! HRMPH. (rated, natch!)
Mornin', Kimberly

Yes, they're Federalists when a Republican is President, and anti-Federalists when a Democrat has the office. Much like our Federalist Society SC justices, except their State's Rights situational amnesia goes on in spite of who holds the executive.

Thanks for dropping by to comment.

Thanks for presenting this. It is one more example, among the so many that exist, indicating that some things are just better when not based on profit. I'm so tired of the discussion that I can't even muster a decent comment here, but you've already garnered a few comments from some of the people with mindsets that continue to retard American society to the point of eventually falling behind the rest of the world.

I'm afraid I'm in the same camp as loomis and Sudman; either do what you can to just enjoy yourself, or get aggressive and cram it down their throats. All of this back-n-forth in the media about BI-PARTISANSHIP is really just total bullshit to avoid accomplishing anything meaningful at all.

I alternate between the two options I listed above. Sometimes I just break out a little whiskey and get nicely self-medicated the old-fashioned, non-prescription way, and other times I go ahead and engage the ignorants when I encounter them.

Carry on...
Uh ..., that would be "SPudman"; Sorry Spudman.
Yes, Rick,
Arguing with the Trogs is pointless, so it's merely an amusement- like taking a magnifying glass to an ant's ass on a hot summer day.
I also alternate between the two options.
Thanks for the comment.

Now let's go kick some ideologue ass!
Please check my brief post today http://open.salon.com/blog/keeblerelves/2009/08/01/democrat_vs_republican_voodoo_economics_the_media
or just click my icon. Thanks
FYI: Under the current provisions within H.R.3200, the IRS is being assigned the authority to audit you every year to determine whether you have "acceptable health care coverage" or not. If the latter, you will be assessed a penalty tax. Title IV, Part 1, Section 401 et seq. Details in my just updated July 1 post.

Individually maintained heath care insurance "coverage" -- should these provision survive the legislative process to become law -- is to be viewed not as a "right" but as a federally enforceable "responsibility" -- essentially akin to the way we view mandatory auto liability insurance.

This shit is getting crazier by the day.

I agree. That concept has always seemed particularly disagreeable to me ever since I first heard about it before Obama was even elected. Total nonsense. Yeah, let’s penalize people for not being able to afford health insurance. WTF?!

Of course, there are exemptions and exclusions being discussed for that particular concept, so I suspect that it will not survive in a pure state; it will most likely be subsidized and specialized.
@Rick Lucke -
"I suspect that it will not survive in a pure state; it will most likely be subsidized and specialized."

Well, yes, if you look at all the things I posted, you will see the provisions for the establishment of yet another new bureaucracy within which to vet people for insurance policy "affordability credits" based on a sliding scale percentage of income up to 400% of the federal poverty level, for various family/household sizes .

We already have means-tested programs -- they're called "Welfare." How this differs materially escapes me.

Yep, I think you've hit the nail on the head by mentioning the Republican propensity for "means testing".
The merchant marines were private citizens employed by other private citizens. They were not part of the military.
You don't know jack crap about this, yet you feel compelled to make absurd comments. Your series of comments here are the ass ramblings of a simpleton.
Now, go hit the books again and see if you can force a single coherent fact past that clogged knowledge filter.
you also fail to mention this from a history of the Public health service

'Lack of money, in addition to the lack of any supervisory authority, was another major problem for the MHS. The demand for medical services far exceeded the funds available. For that reason sailors with chronic or incurable conditions were excluded from the hospitals and a four-month limit was placed on hospital care for the rest. Additional funds had to be appropriated constantly from Congress in order to maintain the Service and to build the hospitals. Because of these problems Congress was forced to act and in 1870 reorganized the MUS from a loose network of locally-controlled hospitals to a centrally-controlled national agency with its own administrative staff, administration and headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Through this reorganization, the MHS became a separate bureau of the Treasury Department under the supervision of the Supervising Surgeon, who was appointed by the Secretary of the Treasury. The title of the central administrator was changed to Supervising Surgeon General in 1875 and to Surgeon General in 1902. Additional money to fund the reorganized Service was appropriated by raising the hospital tax on seamen from twenty to forty cents per month. The money collected was deposited in a separate MHS fund.'

The program was always underfunded which is exactly what would happen to a program today, because of this the taxes imposed where doubled, also because of the lack of funds rationing ensued which eventually led to the closing of all of what would become public service hospitals. Again nice try
Another meaningless response, Anthony. You don't get any credit for excessive cutting and pasting, and you have already completely discredited your ability to argue this point.
I think you may be missing Paul's point, Anthony, which I take to be that the Founding Fathers were not philosophically opposed to (and in fact supported) something that is consistent with what today's conservatives would call "socialism". Successful in the long term or not.
Rob nailed it. It doesn't mean socialized HC insurance is a Founding mandate, it simply means that, as an option to be considered, it is entirely in line with "Founding Principles."
and rob I appreciate your point but it is not enough to look at intention you have to look at results which when it comes to experiments like this are usually never good
what I've also proven is that even when administered on an extremely small scale by some of the brightest men to ever inhabit the continent, these types of programs still do not work & are destined to fail
Missing the point is, I think, a prerequisite for conservatism these days. Perhaps it always was. Another prerequisite is drawing illogical conclusions from written material based on "straw man" arguments.
"destined to fail"

That phrase seems to "fail" to explain the success of such systems worldwide.
You're "offended" because you're ignorant. I present the facts as they were, and you are dumb enough to cram that into a twaddle-brained idea of The Lazy Paying For The Productive.
You're the only one saying that, and it's cookie-cutter modern rightist tripe.
My great uncle was Jefferson and Madison's Secretary of the Treasury. Please, educate me more about that.
Then study the strict rules guiding corporations in our Founder's times. You seem to "think" they were laisssez faire advocates. Nothing is further from the truth.
One of the great joys of my life is spending a week or so every year in our friend's cabin on the Gallatin River, Big Sky. Patrick Henry referred to your great uncle as "A most astonishing man." I'm inclined to agree with Mr. Henry...and to suggest the same for Mr. Gallatin's most excellent contemporary ancestor.
I am flattered at the comparison with a man whose accomplishments and depth of knowledge will forever evade me.
I haven't seen the Gallatin River, but I hear it's nice. Named that as a result of his assistance in planning and funding the L&C expedition.
Thanks for the kind words.
Good hearing from you again.
Paul, thank you for this - not that education and facts will ever change a conservative mindset (a study a few years ago confirmed this) but it feels good to still have logic and reason on our side. I also appreciate you providing the links.
The tax was also paid by sailors who didn't need the service. In fact, modern insurance is all about those who pay premiums that are used on other's claims. That's what insurance is all about, isn't it? Therefore, I don't get why you draw athat distinction.
A familiar argument, Danny. Some pay, some don't, ain't that so unfair. Moving that into the contemporary argument, the answer is you're paying anyway. In fact, you're paying more because you're covering the costs of the "poor" avoiding preventive care because it costs, and dumping ER care for advanced illness onto the market because it's "free."
So, instead of blaming the poor who cost you because of a flawed business model, try looking at the insurance conglomerates who are plucking you like a scalded chicken because you can't make the real world connection that would inform most that tax or overcharge, it's all money. Be a capitalist. Respect business models that create incentive for performing the actual stated purpose instead of a monopolized creature that sucks disposable income from other market sectors, diminishing the whole of our economic ability.

Here's some more fun. Insurance is Marxist. From each according to his ability (to pay premiums) to each according to his need (claims.)

Wellpoint, Inc -- commie plot!
Your argument was easy to anticipate because it's not your argument. It's your regurgitation of largely unexamined dogma.

If you have fantasies about the validity of your recycled twaddle, you now have an OS account, and can create your own post.

As your argument stands, it's nothing but random junk, so locked in crapola you infer the current system is some sort of free market Nirvana.

Man up, make a post, share your wisdom with the masses.
You have a dink argument we've all heard many times. I refuse to complete your vivisection without an audience. You're not worthy of my time otherwise. So, make a post and show your ...smarts. If you do, I'll comment on it. See if you can take an droll opinion and make something of it.
Checkmate? With THAT wimp whine wank?
Sorry, Danny
I know you signed on for an account just to comment here, but you don't have anything new to say, and I have no obligation to respond to your weak argument.

If you're as smart as you think you are, make a post. Plenty of argument to be had here.

O'Rourke and Amant did obliterate your argument that the founding fathers were opposed to the principle. Like Amant said, the mere acknowledgement of its existence refutes your argument, success notwithstanding.

And beyond that, Dolpies, the founding fathers founded a country, not a religion. The notion that things must be done the way they did it, with their intentions intact is a silly, superstitious notion. Their intentions may or may not be discernible, but to run a government on the intentions of a man, or group of men forever makes no sense. Even religion does not operate that way permanently. That sort of thinking is worthy of the Taliban, not free thinking, 21st century secularists.
Amen, Bill Beck
The Constitution and intent it expresses is a pathway to reasoned action, not an ideological tightwire.
Besides, Anthony and ilk haven't really taken the steps needed to understand the nature of our liberty, they just read a few quotes from right wing websites and fake it from there.
They don't get how ignorant they appear to be when they declare an Anti-Federalist argument that is in reality a support of a Federalist position.
If Anthony ever drops in again, I have just given him a reason to be further confused. Let's hope he quits taking himself so seriously.
Dolpies fascinates me. He is a special sort of individual, of which there are many. The special thing about him is that h loudly argues in complete ignorance. Some people will notice when someone has more information about it, and at least take time to process it. While Dolpies sort just make things up and pronounce them with the certainty of laws of physics. I wondered about these people for years, and finally found something about them. There is a behavior called "the fallacy of centrality". It covers this sort of behavior where people believe that nothing out of their personal experience can exist. I was SO PLEASED to see someone else engage Dolpies because it allows me to observe that without being involved. It appears to be dishonesty on the surface, but what this "fallacy of centrality" states is that these people believe that things and concepts out of their experience does not exist. It is a sort of inability to see big picture concepts. DJohn argues in a similar fashion also. It was so sweet to watch you and Amant show him logic. And as you noticed, no sign of him since.
Too bad John Adams didn't have any wingnutz around to blather about how the Founding Fathers would be disappointed in him.
A Big,
Funny thing is Adams was a Federalist, the closest thing to our "conservatives" at that time. Anti-Federalists and Federalists agreed on this point.
Thanks for commenting
Just want to say hello to those linked to this from Daily Kos, and a thanks to the person who posted it. Spread the word.
Excellent piece, and bad news for the "rugged individualist" teabaggers drawing Social Security and Medicare. Here's some more bad news for them from my post Misunderdiagnosed:

First let's take aim at the Teabaggers and others who have turned this argument about healthcare reform into some sort of referendum on the Constitution. These ignoramuses need to be reminded that as citizens of this country, they have obligations under that Constitution.

“We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

The simple truth is the common defense and the general welfare, just like police and fire protection, are too important to be left to those motivated only by the profit motive, and companies like Halliburton and United Healthcare ought to be all the proof anyone needs of that sad fact.
Well, Tom
I think we have them covered. Maybe they'll realize they're Tories, not Patriots, and surrender to reason or face deportation.
So we're saying that forcing people to buy into a government created system is exactly the same as forcing people to buy into a private for-profit system? Hmm...
No, Bonny,
I'm saying the precedent for mandates exists. I'm against private insurance purchase mandates.

Thanks for finally confirming my suspicions all along, that people like you (ie conservatives) all really DO want to live in a world of immortal, super healthy, super human Charles Atlas mutants, and have no problem throwing out the feeble elderly and disabled. I never thought I'd actually hear someone admit to that claim, even knowing they secretly believe it. Of course, that mindset is one that comes from a place of "It can't happen to me", because if you really believed you could become one of us, you'd be pushing for all the help you can get just to survive
Bill B. references, '"the fallacy of centrality"'

Indeed, he's right. Another common psychological shortcoming is, "Naive Reality," the laughable notion that we all share your view on, well, anything. Life in the me-safe-here-bubble, the life of a coward.

My first Economics professor was a former Wall Street player who cashed out. He pointed out the obvious to us, that we live in a MIXED ECONOMY WITHIN A MIXED GOVERNMENT SYSTEM. Kind of obvious, laissez-faire being historically a sure sign of chaos and suffering; socialism meaning no private property- the very thing that makes America what it is and so OBVIOUSLY not in practice and never will be.

A cursory review lets anyone conclude what the secular, mason Fathers felt about "entitlements"; much talk of taxes, pensions, hospitals- just like today; just like in Antiquity.

Don't be shocked I totally agree our system for providing Health care in America is broken. Twenty three years ago when my daughter was born my Insurance company paid a bill of over 7500 dollars and I paid at the door the day she was born 2500 dollars. Within a month we received another bill from two doctors, none of whom I'd ever seen and I was there and the hospital, lab, and others for over 5000 dollars. I didn't pay, they sued, I sued and I won but what did I win...did they stop their fraud? Did they give everybody a break? No...I didn't win squat...it has become worse.

We need to enforce the laws on the books, we need to set up clinics for the poor, but we do not need to mandate the American people have to buy a Insurance Plan.
This belongs on the front page of SALON. Great post. Rated.
The truth, apparently, will not be setting those people free. Rated!
I don't favor private, for profit insurance purchase mandates.
I'm all for a system similar to our Founder's.

Interesting and illuminating story, given it was 23 years ago and things have gotten worse.
Thanks also Sheila and Xeno.

I think this should have been EPeed back when "Public Option" was in the news and being criticized as unconstitutional. That's when I wrote it.
I say we do away with the mandate to buy as well as Medicare and cade and combine them all. We get the same coverage the Congress has.
An excellent article for the point it covers, which does seem to be a historical point rather than economic, operational, or financial. Those who distrust and despise the concept of concensus government (sometimes referred to as "democracy") will ignore this, just as they ignore whatever conflicts with their opinions.
I appreciate this more than I can say. I just wish it was required reading. Unfortunately, when people are on a mission, facts count for very little.
Hello, Cruz. Thanks for reading my piece.
good article, good post.
The "Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen" certainly isn't a "precedent" for socialized medicine. It is, in fact, further evidence that the Founders - at least this Founder - was not in favor of socialized medicine. First of all, this Act was in play for a very specific group of people... seaman. It's fairly similar to our requirement that, if you choose to drive a car, then you must purchase auto insurance. It's not a mandate on the population, its only a mandate should you choose to partake in this particular activity (in the "Relief Act", that activity would be being a seaman). Clearly Adams saw some overwhelming reason why this particular group of men doing this particular activity should fall under this provision. And secondly, you have pointed out that, once again, a Founding Father - in this case, Adams rather than Jefferson - had health care thrust directly onto his plate so that it was foremost in his mind while he was President and yet he did not recommend, he did not put forth any directives, he did not give any orders, and he did not even offer a suggestion that the federal government should provide health care for all the citizens. It is only further evidence that Adams did not consider that providing health care for the citizens a role that government should play. The left seems to be missing the neon elephant in the room... they are (apparently unwittingly) underlining, highlighting, and bold-facing the fact that Adams, with this "Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen" sitting on his desk right in front of him waiting to be signed, clearly had the possible source of inspiration, the means, and the opportunity to at least suggest that health care for the general population should be publicly funded. Not just relief for sick seaman, but relief for sick anybody. He could have called it the "Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Citizens". Yet he made no such suggestion, formally or informally.

It should also be noted that the "Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen" that Adams signed was not a mandate providing that a citizen could be forced to purchase a product from a private seller. So, sadly for Left, there is no "precedent" there either.

Now, I don't know why Adams thought this "Act" was necessary, so I can only make a "gut" reaction to it, and that reaction is... "yuck". But keep in mind that Adams wasn't too far removed from signing the "Alien and Sediton Act" as well, and I'm not terribly fond of that one either. So maybe ol' John was just having a bad stretch. Anyway, his "Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen", for whatever his reasons were, good or ill-advised, certainly doesn't set any "precedents" for ObamaCare.
I don't suggest it as a precedent for "Obamacare." I use it to demolish the Right's oft made claim the Constitution doesn't allow gov in healthcare. I say as much if you'll go back and read it.

Anyway, the concept is the same. Economic motivation for establishing a healthcare/HC insurance system. I am in favor of the Founder's self-insurance scheme as opposed to the terrible business model private scheme we have now.

You should also note the Founders didn't instantly search for a "free market solution," so we can also slay the idea they were laissez faire "classical liberals," or Libertarians. They were obviously not conservatives, as they went to war with conservatives.

So, the Liberal Founders, without fanfare and as a simple matter of course, established America's first federal, single payer health insurance plan...and built a few "socialist" hospitals.

Think of a new argument, given that established fact, as yours isn't a very good one.

I’m not sure I understand your claim that you were using the Relief Act to “demolish the Right's oft made claim the Constitution doesn't allow government in healthcare”. Firstly, I’m not sure the “Relief Act” was ever challenged on Constitutional grounds, so I don’t think it works for you as a Constitutional precedent (again, keep in mind that Adams also passed the Alien and Sedition Acts, which WERE historically denounced as unConstitutional, so his simply signing the Relief Act into law is NOT a indicator of its Constitutionality). Secondly, the "Right" isn't opposed to government being "involved" in health care. I don't recall any Right wing discouragement toward building Veteran's Hospitals and providing for the health care of veterans. But, in any case, if that was your reasoning, wouldn’t Medicare have provided you with a better example for you to use in your self-claimed “demolition”? I mean, government is much involved with the health care of certain of our citizens as we speak - veterans and the elderly, specifically. Nevertheless, what the Right IS opposed to is socialized medicine, whereby the government uses taxpayer monies to provide health care for the general population… in effect, using MY earnings to provide for SOMEONE ELSE’S health care. Again, the "Relief Act" does not provide a compelling argument – or an argument at all - for the government involving itself in providing for the health care of the general population. On the contrary, Adams’ signing of the “Relief Act” offers a compelling indication that he did NOT consider providing health care for the general population a responsibility for the federal government (as I explained in my above post). Furthermore, like Adams, Jefferson also pondered the idea of health care for the population. In fact, he stated plainly that a "healthy citizenry" is imperative for a "successful democratic society". And yet, even though he considered a healthy citizenry as fundamental to our national success, he absolutely abstained from suggesting that providing for the citizens’ health care was within the purview of the federal government.

Paul, you are certainly entitled to your opinion, but you are not entitled to the opinion of the Founders. These two Founders were quite clearly NOT supportive of government-provided health care for the citizenry. And the Relief Act does not provide precedent for socializing medicine for the population as a whole either Constitutionally or in effect.

As for the Founders not being "Libertarian", well that one is kinda silly. The Founders wanted government involved in our lives as little as possible. The defining document of this country is a document meant to LIMIT the role of government and to inhibit its future encroachment. The original Bill of Rights of that incredible document provides a list of no-nos that the government CANNOT do to overstep its bounds and to infringe upon the life and liberty of the Individual. And the very founding document of this country – the Declaration of Independence – is a document written in response to an oppressive regime, declaring its repudiation of an over-reaching government. If you don’t want to call that “Libertarian” that’s fine (although, if we are limiting our word choices to “Conservative, Liberal, or Libertarian” when applied to our Founders, "Libertarian" is obviously the one that fits best. Certainly “Liberal” is the least appropriate by a country mile). You can deny history, Paul, but sadly for your cause you cannot change it.
Libertarianism rose out of Classical Liberalism which did not show up in America until the 1830s. The Founders were Liberals, period. That's why the Liberal Constitution and Liberal Declaration of Independence. We, the People....that's not Libertarian...too collectivist.
All those ideas of "limited government" individual freedom, etc, are Liberal. "Limited" doesn't mean small, it means the Constitution limits what We, the People may ask of each other. That's why the negative liberties of the B of Rights. It limits.

I enjoyed this statement(and the whole paragraph, actually)--
"You can deny history, Paul, but sadly for your cause you cannot change it."

Evidently, PB, I'm not denying it, I'm teaching it. That you're ignorant of America's Liberal heritage, and that the Declaration and Constitution are the world's most famous expressions of Liberalism, is your deficit, not mine.

If you're going to get preachy, it helps to know the meaning of the words you use. Offering up your analysis as instructive certainly looks funny when you don't know what you're talking about.

As to the 1798 act--
The principle is exactly the same. Economic motivation causes action resulting in that 1798 single payer system.
That isn't a claim the Founders wanted it for all, but it also does not refute they wouldn't, given the same economic motivation, or for that matter, public demand. That you explicitly state it does prove they wouldn't, or to claim because Jefferson considered, but did not act, proves it...and that "proof" means they are actively against it....is such a childish display of logical fallacy it should be an embarrassment to deliver it. I take it you were never on the Yale debate team...

A guy who presumes to preach on Libertarianism and Liberalism, yet has no clue of the distinctions, similarities and therefore meaning of the words...and ladles up a bowl full of post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy....wants to explain things to me...Thanks, PB, I'll chuckle about this intermittently through the rest of the evening.

I think you need to spend some more time in the minors before trying to step up again.
Libertarianism rose out of Classical Liberalism which did not show up in America until the 1830s. The Founders were Liberals, period. That's why the Liberal Constitution and Liberal Declaration of Independence. We, the People....that's not Libertarian...too collectivist.
All those ideas of "limited government" individual freedom, etc, are Liberal. "Limited" doesn't mean small, it means the Constitution limits what We, the People may ask of each other. That's why the negative liberties of the B of Rights. It limits.

I enjoyed this statement(and the whole paragraph, actually)--
"You can deny history, Paul, but sadly for your cause you cannot change it."

Evidently, PB, I'm not denying it, I'm teaching it. That you're ignorant of America's Liberal heritage, and that the Declaration and Constitution are the world's most famous expressions of Liberalism, is your deficit, not mine.

If you're going to get preachy, it helps to know the meaning of the words you use. Offering up your analysis as instructive certainly looks funny when you don't know what you're talking about.

As to the 1798 act--
The principle is exactly the same. Economic motivation causes action resulting in that 1798 single payer system.
That isn't a claim the Founders wanted it for all, but it also does not refute they wouldn't, given the same economic motivation, or for that matter, public demand. That you explicitly state it does prove they wouldn't, or to claim because Jefferson considered, but did not act, proves it...and that "proof" means they are actively against it....is such a childish display of logical fallacy it should be an embarrassment to deliver it. I take it you were never on the Yale debate team...

A guy who presumes to preach on Libertarianism and Liberalism, yet has no clue of the distinctions, similarities and therefore meaning of the words...and ladles up a bowl full of post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy....wants to explain things to me...Thanks, PB, I'll chuckle about this intermittently through the rest of the evening.

I think you need to spend some more time in the minors before trying to step up again.
You're sounding a bit flustered. No need to get angry. As it is, I believe my point was already effectively made and, since you have offered nothing new as a counterpoint in your last entry other than bluster and the almost pitiable "You-Don't-Belong-In-My-League!!" chest-thumping, I see no reason or need to continue the back and forth. For future reference, your fairly startling turn in tone, the clumsy Latin meant to impress, and the frantic referencing of Wikipedia is a litmus-clear indicator that you recognize that your basic argument is in need of a rescue, and that you further recognize you are unable to provide that rescue. And, as always, personal attacks are a no-no when you are trying to make a point. They are a “tell”. They reveal that you are desperate, unsure with your footing, and have no more bullets in your counterpoint gun. Deliberate calmness is much more compelling. Nevertheless, it has been nice chatting with you.

The Founders were concerned with eliminating tyranny and having control over their own governance. They placed, in the Constitution, limits on the extent of government power- that is not the same as what you mean by limited government, not by a country mile. To claim that they favored "limited government" in the "small government" sense used by modern libertarians and conservatives is so profoundly wrong as to be idiotic. Look at the way they regulated corporate entities for a concrete example. They wanted government to be fair and representative, but they were quite willing that it regulate extensively to achieve the "common good". Your are trying to cram history into your ideological box, and it does. not. fit.

You say: "what the Right IS opposed to is socialized medicine, whereby the government uses taxpayer monies to provide health care for the general population… in effect, using MY earnings to provide for SOMEONE ELSE’S health care."

What you describe above is
1) not "socialized medicine", which is when the government actually provides health care, as in Great Britain;
2) does not describe the legislation that passed last year, from which even the option to chose a public plan was removed;
3) you seem to miss the basic concept of insurance, which is that the insurance company, yes, takes YOUR money and, if necessary, uses it to pay SOMEONE ELSE'S losses- except when YOU are the one with the loss, in which case SOMEONE ELSE helps pay for you.

This ability to spread risk broadly has been crucial to economic development and entrepreneurship for at least 400 years.

I'm a serial entrepreneur, and by that I don't mean I bought a fast food franchise, but that I have put everything into ventures designing technology products- products that are built in the US, provide people with jobs, and compete internationally. That meant, in my case, quite a few years working without income.

The biggest impediment to entrepreneurship- particularly for freelance engineers, designers, and others who operate essentially solo or in very small groups- is the lack of access to affordable health care. As an individual or small businesses, the way things have been, insurance companies don't want your business. This is particularly true if you have a family member with any medical problems, or are over 50. And most start-ups are self funded and founded by middle aged people with ideas and experience, not by 20 somethings. How much does our economy lose when new businesses never get started because the entrepreneurs can't get decent health insurance? Because they, their spouse, or their child has some condition that excludes them or makes it prohibitive? Without the market clout of a big organization, at the very least they must pay much more for worse coverage, if they can get it at all.

The heath care system we have evolved is hamstringing the entrepreneurial and small business sector. Of the countries rated in the annual WSJ survey as being more business friendly than the U.S., ALL have a national single payer health care system, and all have lower costs. And better outcomes. They aren't forcing potential entrepreneurs to stay in dead end jobs because they have a sick child. But is is a basic economic reality that we cannot make health insurance work unless we are able to get nearly everyone insured. Absent a national system like other industrial countries have, the 15 year old Republican idea of a mandate is simply necessary.

As a business executive, I want to look at results. We now have a system that costs about twice as much as our competitors, and delivers much worse results overall. I'd suggest that looking at what more successful competitors are doing is a place to start. Like Paul, I think a government single payer is likely to provide the best results. But in deference to politics, I believe we should have set up a public plan, let it compete with the private insurers, and then see if it can provide care that people like more efficiently than private insurance companies. As Friedrich Hayek would suggest, we should use the market to discover the most efficient system. As he suggested, I expect that health insurance, defense, and some level of basic social welfare are things that government can provide most efficiently. But we instead chose to protect the insurance oligarchy.

Last, PB, please get some help with your logic. Try stripping out the verbiage and diagraming your arguments- you will see they are riddled with fallacies. It's painful- like bad grammar or spelling.
You don't take an ass-whipping with the proper humility. Wikipedia? That's hilarious. Did 'ums hafta look up Classical Liberal on Wikipedia? Now that you accomplished that task, you might read up on Locke, Rousseau, Hobbes and Montesquieu -- the Liberal philosophers of the Enlightenment, and source of the Social Contract theory of our Constitution.
I could have used "post hoc reasoning," but as you had already displayed a deep ignorance of Liberalism and Libertarianism, I figured I had best give you something you could Google easily.
What did Wiki say? (chuckle)
You stepped off into it, rookie. Preaching the Constitution without knowing fact 1 about its origins. Blathering about the "Libertarian" Founders...50 years before "Libertarianism" emerged. Your post hoc conclusion about their solid stance against health care is a howler and a dainty slap in reason's face. The only thing worse would have been to throw in an argument about the decaying state of education in America.

If the Junior College in your area has an emergency room, have somebody drive you there, now.

Deliberate calmness is fine when one is engaged in a reasoned discussion. But for braying ideological wannabes, I have found ridicule more satisfying.

Come back anytime, PB.
Bravo. Several good points, including the strict state regulation of for profit corps in Founding America. Under those rules, our HC insurance companies would have been forced to disband long ago, for acting against the public interest. Of course, they also could have as easily been required a certain percentage of profit, and to show their financial records to the state legislature upon demand. They could complain, but weren't allowed participation in politics at any level, in any way. Those are just a few examples of many that would have our friends on the Right screaming about those Socialist Founding bastards!

Single payer is the best business model, as our competitors have shown (and our history, even in the 20th century). Many large American corps self-insure. Private competition is fine, as well as granting public monopolies to existing insurance companies to administer the plan, profit set as % of cost.

Hayek endorsed the idea, and did say we should plan for competition. That means enforcing competition at times. Hayek was a Classical Liberal, and his ideas on social insurances and programs...even minimum standard of living...show the range of thought within that segment of liberalism -- but not Libertarianism.

It is perfectly liberal to believe in Free Markets, but that freedom, like virtually every liberty, is qualified. We, the People live under a contract, not a might-makes-right state of nature freedom. If you want markets to function and capitalism to thrive, markets must also be regulated.

One major difference between Liberalism and Libertarianism is the former is about a functioning liberty for a society -- reason is used and "that it works" is a main consideration. Libertarianism is a theory of liberty for the sake of theories of liberty, and whether it works isn't a consideration...it is a fantasy, though. Strip it to its essence, and it uses rules in place of reason. That's Right-Libertarianism, but it's truly the only Libertarianism represented in America today.

Thanks for commenting, Firsk
I feel like we COULD have a single payer system and that all in all it would benefit almost everyone. The insurance companies would rather eat ground glass than let this happen. We all know that this is a huge barrier, as lobbyists operate with abandon in Washington. How, in a free market system, could this be incorporated?
Oh, and sorry Rick. Very perceptive article.
Ignore above comment. It was meant for a different post. Yikes.
The system we have operates to the great benefit of the insurance companies- and to the benefit of large, established companies generally, by making it more difficult for entrepreneurs to start potentially competitive enterprises. We can expect that those interests would lobby hard against any change that might alter their competitive advantage.

The health care system we have is expensive and ineffective compared to what other industrial countries have. In those countries health care is seen as a public good, like police or fire protection. Perhaps the more troubled experience of Europe in the 20th century impressed on them the fact that we are all in this together.

As soon as people start to live in communities the utopian fantasy world of libertarianism starts to have a sad collision with reality. Spreading risk and spreading responsibility turns out to be very useful for enabling progress and creating economic growth- a great liberal insight. If I have insurance, then I don't have to stash away hundreds of thousands of dollars for potential medical emergencies. That's more money I can invest in creative enterprises and job creation. This increases individual freedom more than it diminishes it.

There are rights enshrined in the constitution (not just in the Bill of Rights) that form the fundamental basis for our system of laws. There are also rights that we create or agree on through the application of those laws and the practical governance that they enable. There is no constitutional right to police protection, but the people have elected, through their government, to create police departments, local and national, and police protection it is available (theoretically) to everyone equally. They don't have to pay for it as individuals, it isn't withheld from the unemployed, rich people (theoretically) don't get better protection- it is perceived and promoted as a public good, as being in everyone's best interest and worth the cost we impose on ourselves. Nothing in the constitution demands this particular means, it's arrived at through the political process the constitution set up. We could all decide to go it alone and fight criminals as individuals. Neighborhoods could band together and hire security forces. Private armies could offer their services at a package discount, with deductibles. ("Do I have enough ammo to handle this gang, or should I call for help?") The Wild West worked, after a fashion (though it was not as "wild" in reality as the popular image suggests). So does the Libertarian paradise of Somalia. But individual security is expensive compare to public security, and in the end, not very secure. It does not promote economic growth, because a lot of resources have to be devoted to inefficiently and non-productively maintaining personal security. Most people (at least in urban areas) would not want to ditch their socialized police protection and revert to a private, or even employer provided, policing arrangement.
It is in this latter sense that nearly every other first world country sees health care- it is in everyones best interest to provide some level of health coverage to all. It's a pretty compelling case in my opinion, if only from a basic public health standpoint. The homeless addict with drug resistant TB is a threat, no matter how rich you are. Better that he be treated without question. But the fact that other countries spend a fraction of what we do and get better results is the clincher. We should be able to do at least as well.

I suppose there might be some bit of satisfaction in applying ridicule over actually making a point, but it seems a little "playground" to me. To each his own, I suppose. As for me, in a debate, I find it much more satisfying to win the points effectively enough to drive the opponent into applying desperate ridicule over actual substance. So I guess that, so far, we can both be satisfied in our little tit for tat. Sometimes things work out nicely, don't you agree?

Now, I'm not sure what the additional name-dropping of philosophers on top of your outburst of wikipedia-based definitions and goofy Latin was supposed to accomplish for you - I suppose another teenagesque attempt to appear erudite - but my "satisfaction quotient" is getting a nice boost, so I guess a "Thanks" is in order. When you feel like actually making a point, feel free. As for the word "Libertarian" being connected to the Founding Fathers, unless I'm mistaken, it was you who attached the word to them when you denied that they were Libertarian. Now, before you go charging back to Wikipedia again, your denial of their being Libertarian was based upon the definition of "Libertarianism" and NOT, as you now claim, that they weren't Libertarianism due to your apparently new discovery that "Libertarianism" hadn't yet "emerged" as a defined belief system during the time of the FF (I’m sure a discovery made in another one of your mad rushes to Wikipedia in search of a counterpoint). Instead, you were denying it based upon your notion that the Founders were "too collectivist" to be Libertarian (silly though that argument is) or that the Founders were not "looking for free market solutions" to health care (equally silly). Obviously we (that's both me and you, Paul) were applying the modern definitions of "Liberal", "Conservative", and "Libertarian" in our discussion of the FF, nt the archaic ones you brought up in your flustered reply. Now, you can deny that (and I suspect you will because otherwise you lose another point), but just to once again help you learn to recognize these things in your future debates, another desperation "tell" in a losing argument is to try to shift emphasis away from the actual topic and attack on fabricated and/or unrelated pretense. Your shifting the debate from the Founders to your archaisms is just such a pretense. I suppose we can start using the archaic definitions of words if you want to, but I’m not sure what the point of that would be. In any case, and once again just to make it clear to you, with our present-day definitions of Liberal, Libertarian, or Conservative, the word "Libertarian" is obviously the one that fits best for most of our Founders and "Liberal" is the least appropriate.

Of course "limited" means "smaller" in exactly the "sense used" by Libertarians and Conservatives. "Limited" does not mean "non-existent", however, which is what the Left would have us believe the Libertarians and Conservatives mean. Citing government regulation on "corporate entities" as your example of how the Founders didn't want a "limited government" is goofy. The regulations they provided as far as markets and "corporate entities" were concerned were put in place in order to preserve the free market. As a self-proclaimed entrepreneur, you should understand that a "free market" does not mean a market without rules and regulation. Monopolies destroy the free market, hence regulations on monopolies are necessary to preserve it. Again, Firsk, "limited" does not mean "absent", but it most assuredly means "smaller". The Founders wanted government intruding as little as possible into the world of business - just enough to keep it free and fair - and as little as possible into the world of the individual. They wanted individual freedom to extend right up until it encroached upon the rights of others. The model the Founding Fathers generated and intended was not based upon a bottom line "business model", as you seem to think it should be. It was based upon a "Liberty model". It was based upon the rights of the individual... where the INDIVIDUAL is the fundamental and most important and most protected unit. Hardly a business approach.

Now, I also disagree with you about your "good for business" conclusions concerning a "public option" for health coverage. Having an "public option" that is not beholden to any 'bottom line" does not represent a business competitor, it represents a business succubus. The "public option" will quickly become the ONLY option as it siphons all business from the private markets (it is just that siphoning that is the real impetus behind the Left being so enamored of that "public option"... the Left wants the Free Market to go the way of the Do-Do). If I have a "business" that is not beholden to stockholders, and that is guaranteed operating capital no matter what, then I certainly have a terrific advantage over private business which DOES operate under market forces and which MUST generate a profit. It is also absolutely against the Founding principles to pit the government in competition against the People, as a "public option" would. As Lincoln so aptly said, the government of the United States is "of the People, by the People, and FOR the People." It does not operate AGAINST the People.
Now let's look at your three points... Here's what you wrote:

"What you describe above is
1) not "socialized medicine", which is when the government actually provides health care, as in Great Britain;

Now, here's what I "described above":
"Nevertheless, what the Right IS opposed to is socialized medicine, whereby the government uses taxpayer monies to provide health care for the general population"

Firsk, you'll have to point out the difference because I don’t see it. Nevertheless, the term "socialized medicine" can certainly cover more area than your limited definition does (note "limited" means "smaller", once again). Single payer programs can certainly fall under the broader - and still acceptable - definition of "socialized medicine".

Here's what you wrote:
2) [What you describe above]... does not describe the legislation that passed last year, from which even the option to chose a public plan was removed;

Here's my reply:
I didn't say it did describe what was passed. I said the Right is opposed to socialized medicine. They are opposed to ObamaCare as well because of the sheer size of it and because it gives government way too much control. The Right also recognizes ObamaCare as a significant foot in the door to eventually socializing American medicine. In the future, try not to attack arguments I haven't made.

Here's what you wrote:
3) You seem to miss the basic concept of insurance, which is that the insurance company, yes, takes YOUR money and, if necessary, uses it to pay SOMEONE ELSE'S losses- except when YOU are the one with the loss, in which case SOMEONE ELSE helps pay for you.

Here's my reply:
No, it appears that you seem to miss not only the basic concept of insurance but also how it differs from Obamacare, Socialized Medicine, Single payer, etc. In the free market, you are not FORCED to pay for someone else's insurance (under threat of fine and jail). You are not FORCED to pay for insurance at all. Your insurance premiums are NOT paying for someone's health care who has NOT contributed to the pool. The insurance companies don't "take my money", Firsk. I GIVE them my money by choice. I CHOOSE to give them my money for coverage. I can choose NOT to give them my money, too, should I not want to buy their product. Unlike what ObamaCare wants to do, the insurance companies cannot FORCE me to purchase their products.. It is funny how willing the Left is to remove CHOICE from the People.

Now, I don't see any "fallacies" in my logic. I must have missed them while I was trying to dodge all the holes in yours.
You can spare me the broken wing flapping act, as you are simply uneducated on America's Liberal heritage, and not because you (and certainly not I) were using modern meanings. There are no modern meanings, there is THE meaning and your wrong meaning. There's THE meaning and the bubble-headed right wing hack pejorative.
All the Wiki-woo-woo blabber can't hide the fact you simply do not know what the hell you're talking about. I find it strange you show up again just to elaborate on the depth of your ignorance. Are you a political masochist? Quit insulting the Founders. They were educated men. They would have tarred and feathered you, and then shipped your Tory arse back to England.

Your reply to Firsk is equally hilarious, and your attempts to recover from your drunken stumble through political words and historical delusions aren't working for a moment, but I'll let Firsk handle that if he shows up again.
Happily, Paul, the English language is not as stagnant as your refutations of my arguments. Of course the meanings and nuances of words have changed over the last two centuries. Heck, the meanings of some of the very words we are discussing have made significant shifts in nuance even in the past two or three decades. But feel free to drop some more names and show off your Latin, because that's been really effective for you.
Sorry, the words have meaning. Liberalism and Libertarianism are philosophies, and do not change meaning. The most accurate, factual and truthful way to describe the Founders in political philosophical terms is -- Liberal.
This isn't the place for your Outcomes-Based, every child gets a star sticker blathering and almost-nearly-kinda-sorta, feels like, I presume, but if definitions.

Instead of crawling back here to whimper and cry, you should write your own post and display your depth of knowledge in a more public way. Give it an interesting title and watch the comments pour in.

If you can't do that, don't bother coming back here. You have nothing to add, nor anything intelligent to say.

Of course, "intelligent" doesn't mean what it used to mean.....(chuckle, guffaw, snort)

Put up or shut up, PB.
If you libs think that this in anyway says the founders would be for Obamabcare, then you're all nuts. This is as far of a reach as I have seen about this.

Did you know the settelers at Jamestown tried socialism? If not, this is where Capt. Smith said you don" work you don't eat. They learned, like our early leaders learned, that socialism doesn't work.

So how can we draw a link form our early leaders to this unconstitutional mandate?

To get back to this rediculous story.
Was every citizen a sailor at that time? How does this correlate to todays power grab by Obama and crew? I fail to see where the gov. told every citizen to buy insurance or pay the price. Also, if merchant marines were used in wartime, but simple sailors all other times, doesn't that sound like a very early version of the naval reserves? I'll make it easy, the answer is yes. So I believe we could rationaly say that the gov was simply trying to ensure an able bodied naval force.

Also one needs to consider that this act in no way tells the sailors to buy health insurance from a private firm. Now before you say "we know, it was a gov. agency therfore the founders would like all healthcare to be gov run". The federal gov has jurisdiction reagarding maritime law and ports. So it could require this because the have the authority under the law.

Also, if they thought this was such a great thing, why didn't they extend it to all sectors of the economy. farming, manufacturing were just as important as to the economy as maritime travel.
Please enlighten me, you libs have far more intellect than us moron conservatives.
I like the false equivalency, right wing propaganda story about the Pilgrims better. Same basic tale of communal effort famine followed by "privatized" bounty. After the 'failure" the families were ---given---free---handed to them, not based on any purchase--land of their own, according to the family's size. Bradford granted, according to his ability, to each family according to their need.
Damn Marxist!

Anyway, Angry, oft-told tales aside, Obamacare, and the private purchase mandate (that I don't endorse) isn't socialism. Social Security isn't socialism. The Founder's federal, single payer H-care system wasn't socialism. You should get with PB, above, and form a "we use words, what is the point of meaning" society.

Whoever read this to you skipped this rather blatantly stated part:

(In 1936 the Merchant Marines were declared an auxiliary of the Navy during times of war and emergency, until then, they were always private employees.)

So, your goofy idea about the Navy is...goofy.

Yes, the gov has jurisdiction over maritime law. That's nice, but has zip to do with the often spewed rant about government not having any Constitutional authority to be involved in healthcare.

You say:
"Please enlighten me, you libs have far more intellect than us moron conservatives."

Thanks for saying it for me, as I wouldn't want to appear condescending. Yes, "libs" are smarter than conservatives, but so are lab monkeys, pet ferrets and golf balls, so it's no claim to glory.

Back to the chatrooms, oh ye conservative blowhard....
The author displays an ignorance of our constitution and of our history. Article 1 section 8 of the US constitution clearly gives the federal government jurisdiction over matters of international and interstate commerce. Merchant shipping clearly fall within this preview. Mandating health care insurance for the general population clearly does not.

In 1798 the United States was engaged in a war with France in which French naval vessels were attacking and seizing US merchant vessels. The seamen provided for in the 1798 act were sailors on the front lines of a shooting war. Once again this is clearly a power of the congress and not the states.

Interestingly the same congress that passed the act to provide for injured seamen, also passed the notorious "Alien and Sedition" acts that included sanctions against publications which sided with the French government with whom we were at war. Thomas Jefferson correctly condemned these acts as unconstitutional and helped Virginia and Kentucky to resolutions nullifying the unconstitutional acts.

Fast forward to today and States across the nation are enacting laws to nullify the unconstitutional "ObamaCare" act.
I loved your opening --
"The author displays an ignorance of our constitution and of our history."
Nothing more fun than a little trash talk before a game of one-on-one. That you heave the ball over the backboard and dribble off your foot does take the sting out of it, though.

"Mandating health care insurance for the general population clearly does not."

Medicare? Clearly you're no expert. Also, this 1798 act, not being about military conflict, sort of cramps your argument. If for a certain class of citizen, then obviously it could be extended to all.

We trudge on---

"So, this was about sailors involved in a shooting war."

Is that why they didn't specify that at all? I guess you can sort of sense what they meant, but were too illiterate to state in plain English. Further, oh American history skoller, describe the wars along the US coast, as this was soon expanded to coastal trade...and I can't wait to hear about the constant state of war on the Mississippi and Ohio rivers, where this system functioned to heal the combat injuries?

Again with the Alien and Sedition Acts!
Jefferson didn't spend a slim dime enforcing the A&S Acts, but did spend to build the first federal hospital for this system, as well as see that the system was properly administered. So did Madison, and those who followed, for a long time.

Fast forward to today, when Ken asserted his superior knowledge, then nullified any expectation of intelligence flowing from his words.

Thanks for coming by, ya ol' Consterntooshenel and hysstrie eggs-spurt.

On the upside, you can always write speeches for Michele Bachmann. You have her grasp of history and the Constitution.
SS not socialism? So when we redistribute wealth it doesn't fall under that umbrella. Hmmm I believe(as usual) you don't have a clue. Maybe you should see what the program and the dollars that go into it are being used for. And just like 99% of liberal ideas, its going broke. Your ideology is failing all across the globe. Have you taken a look at Europe and their financial woes? They don't even have a war to blame it on! They are the liberal wet dream and they are failing. It's simple, a society cannot pay for everything and expect to remain free. If we keep going the way we are, the gov will have no choice but to tax more and more. Soon we will have no choice but to take the gov cheese because we HAVE NO MONEY. Obamacare is socialism, how you cannot see that is beyond me. Why do you think they are raisning taxes? To redistribute money to the have nots-that is socialism. When you take from one and give it to another-that is socialism. We are in the mess we are today because we have a gov that has become our nanny.

I was stating a theory as to why the Gov. wanted the marines to be in good health-in case they needed them for a time of war-like they had used them. Not a real hard conclusion to make. Just a thought.

I'll humor you. Say they were in favore of it. Does it make it right? They did own slaves, didn't give women the right to vote etc. Not everything they did was perfect. But their ideasand vision of a society free of an overbearing gov was. They were fearful of big gov. Everything they did was designed to limit the gov power over the individual, not increase it.

Th bottom line is if they felt the gov. needed this kind of authority, they would have granted it in the constitution.

But as long as we get those "rich" people and make everything fair, the ideals and principles we hold dear be damned.

Your ideology goes against so much of what this country was founded on it makes me sick. You ignore what is written down in the constitution and try to make the rules up as you go. the liberal imterpretation of the commerce clause and general welfare proves this. Only a fool would conclude that the founders intended the gov. to have this much power under these clauses.

And this is why you liberals do not have a leg to stand on, the constitution goes against most everything you stand for.
Let me make this easy. You don't know what socialism means, and if we took your meaning, the Founders and the Greatest Generation who won WW2 were Socialists.
Your problem is you take your education from two disc jockey addicts and a half wit, half term moron.
So, bluntly, you are worse than ignorant, as you'd be better off not knowing anything than believing in such unstudied, ideological garbage.
The New Deal Liberalism 1950's and 60's had Americans making more money working less.
The Conservatism since 1981 has ran on speculation and credit and bubbles. It wrecked the economy as badly as communism did to the USSR.
So, Founding Fathers Fakir, take your Conservative-Tory butt to some other country and destroy their economy and sell THEM to China.
It's all conservatism knows how to do, besides making every pea brained reactionary crackpot in America think they have an adult argument to make.
The commentary here was enthralling! I noticed both of the ignorants, who blew like they knew what they were talking about, had trouble with spelling and grammar in school as well as history!

As you can tell, in reading your latest, I have hit all the links you embedded. I was unaware of this particular piece of history about a single payor system here. It is the only kind of system that makes any sense. I do not care for the term "Obamacare," however I don't think we should throw the baby out with the bathwater and repeal it. As was stated by the president at the state of the union, fix it.

Correct me if I am wrong, but aren't the variety and number of insurance companies to avoid the "dreaded" monopoly?

Insurance companies do use the money I pay them to pay for OTHERS when I am not using it. Unlike social security where the people have paid into it for years and it is therefore theirs and not a socialist program, insurance is for profit and always MORE profit. I don't agree that Americans should be forced to buy insurance from for profit groups, but there has to be an intelligent acquiescence to correct that portion of the bill.

I am not an expert on reagonomics or the others, but then it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that speculators drive up the price of oil and not the other excuses given the people. I have most likely kept talking when I should have ceased, but this post and commentary got my blood just to boiling!

Excellent post!
When I use public monopoly, I speak of a system that is like a privately owned utility company that has a monopoly right granted to serve a community, etc, at a fixed rate of profit. Sadly, less common now than it used to be.
"Obamacare"is predictable and inevitable political labeling, just as Hillarycare was, or adding "gate" to every scandal after Watergate. It's easier than anagrams or the full title.

Thanks for visiting and commenting on the various articles.
This following example isnt my work, i cannot recall whom i copied it from, but i just want to post it. This will be for all those Libertarians who yearn for Somalian Paradise. The following story should scare everyone who fears guberment ova'reach!
This morning I was awoken by my alarm clock powered by electricity generated by the public power monopoly regulated by the US Department of Energy.

I then took a shower in the clean water provided by the municipal water utility. Then, I brushed my teeth with that water, filtered to standards set by the EPA and my state.

After that, I turned on the TV to one of the FCC regulated channels to see what the National Weather Service of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration determined the weather was going to be like using satellites designed, built, and launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. I watched this while eating my breakfast of US Department of Agriculture inspected food and taking the drugs which have been determined as safe by the Food and Drug Administration.

At the appropriate time as regulated by the US Congress and kept accurate by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the US Naval Observatory, I get into my National Highway Traffic Safety Administration approved automobile and set out to work on the roads built by the local, state, and federal Departments of Transportation, possibly stopping to purchase additional fuel of a quality level determined by the Environmental Protection Agency, using legal tender issued by the Federal Reserve Bank and printed by the Federal Bureau of Engraving and Printing. On the way out the door I deposit any mail I have to be sent out via the US Postal Service and drop the kids off at the public school.

I park my car on the street, paved and maintained by the Department of Transportation, and put quarters issued by the United States Mint into the parking meter.

Then, after spending another day not being maimed or killed at work thanks to the workplace regulations imposed by the Department of Labor and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, I drive back to my house which has not burned down in my absence because of the state and local building codes and the fire marshal's inspection, and which has not been plundered of all its valuables thanks to the local police department.

I then log onto the Internet which was developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Administration and post on freerepublic and fox news forums about how SOCIALISM in medicine is BAD because the government can't do anything right. Keep government out of my Medicare!
Making the claim the framers were for welfare is to contrue history. The only bill James Monroe vetoed was the welfare bill. Although I disagree with their ideology, Franklin, Jefferson, and Madison were very clear about low taxes, given their claim welfare contradicts the Constitution.

What Adams and the Federalists did has nothing to do with Welfare. It was a hospital for sick and injured seamen. For the most part, the problem with liberals, and neocons, is they spend too much money they don't have.

The framers' understanding of any idea is rooted in their adherence in the principle authority of the Bible. I could be wrong, however God doesn't play favorites in levying taxes. When Joseph became Governor of Egypt, he taxed everyone the same.

The framers never demanded the King or land Barons, or the wealthiest Americans: George Washington, and Charles Carroll, should have a higher tax rate than everyone else.

The ideals of the Framers have been kicked to the curb. It is our simple corrupt trade policies that have destroyed our economy. In the last ten years we have lost 10 billion in revenue that went to China. A drop in the bucket, but our jobs are gone. If China didn't make all our products, there wouldn't be a recession.
You write:
"The framers' understanding of any idea is rooted in their adherence in the principle authority of the Bible. I could be wrong,..."

You are wrong. If you don't know history any better than that, why comment at all? That explains your similar confusion over what general welfare means.
Hit the books, oft, then come back after you learn some US history.
Thin-skinned, insulting, condescending, and addicted to his special vocabulary. That's our boy, PJOR.
You forgot to add -- ...and has more readers on this one piece than the entire scope of Gordon Osmond blog blatherings.
I am not thin-skinned, Gordie. No one with your limited knowledge could ever insult me anyway. I just borrow the chi of the similarly ignorant and redirect it to demolish their attempts at argument.

You aren't arguing, which is the only indication of intelligence one could extract from your comment. You wisely avoid challenging me on the facts. You're kvetching like an adolescent having an angst attack, which fits a pattern that extends to your political commentary in general.

If you ever recover your testicles and find the upper area of your gray matter, you should try challenging me on the facts. I'd be glad to drag the corpse of your argumentative ability through the meanings of political words and the structure of a reasoned argument. We can call it Weekend at Blarney's.

One church I attended as a youth had a glassed-in room at the back where parents could take a crying child and listen to the service without disturbing others. I now declare your comment box as the Crying Room for this post.
Having lost my magic vocabulary de-coding ring, I never bother with substantive discussions with you. Your endless blatherings put me in mind of a room full of feathers. I prefer to argue in more rational environments.

I was commenting strictly on your childish reaction to confrontation, contradiction, and conquest. Your response to me proves my case.

I consider my select readership on OS as a badge of honor. Something about quality v. quantity springs to mind, at least mine.
You're back?
I didn't need to know your convenient excuse for being limited to griping. It's obvious that if you had the ability, you'd do more than whine.
I don't want to be cruel, but is it too much to ask that you experience your dotage somewhere besides my blog?
You are wrong. If you don't know history any better than that, why comment at all? That explains your similar confusion over what general welfare means.>

The entire Republican structure of our government, which is everything: written constitutions, separation of powers, literacy through bible reading, regular elections, the secret ballot, the federalist principle, Puritan Social Contract in the DOI, religious toleration and separation of church and state, started with the Puritans of Calvin, who took it from Jews.

This is history given Calvin told us he took these principles from Exodus 18, Deut 1, and the New Testament.

“The gallant Struggle in America, is founded in Principles so indisputable, in the moral Law, in the revealed Law of God, in the true Constitution of great Britain…”
-John Adams second “Clarendon” letter as printed in the Boston Gazette, 20, Jan. 1766.

“[O]ur citizens should early understand that the genuine source of correct republican principles is the Bible, particularly the New Testament, or the Christian religion.”
-Noah Webster, History of the United States (New Haven: Durrie and Peck, 1832), p. 6.

Even the infidel Jefferson understood our rights come from the Bible:

“”Well aware that the opinions and belief of men depend not on their own will, but follow involuntarily the evidence proposed to their minds; that Almighty God hath created the mind free, and manifested his supreme will that free it shall remain by making it altogether insusceptible of restraint; that all attempts to influence it by temporal punishments, or burthens, or by civil incapacitations, tend only to beget habits of hypocrisy and meanness, and are a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion [Christ] . . . .”
-A Bill for Establishing Religious Freedom, Section I.

Here is the Penman of the Revolution:

“”Kings or parliaments could not give the rights essential to happiness… We claim them from a higher source — from the King of kings, and Lord of all the earth.”
-John Dickinson, An Address to the Committee of Correspondence in Barbados, 1766.

You can check out my website for more information.
Gee, oft,
And here I thought the real story was the one taught for the last 200+ years.
I guess we can forget Locke, Rousseau, Hobbes, Montesquieu and Blackstone. It was the Calvinists!
Peddle that revisionist crap to the troglodytes.
It only makes intelligent people shake their heads and laugh.
Gee, oft,
And here I thought the real story was the one taught for the last 200+ years.
I guess we can forget Locke, Rousseau, Hobbes, Montesquieu and Blackstone. It was the Calvinists!
Peddle that revisionist crap to the troglodytes.
It only makes intelligent people shake their heads and laugh.>

I understand your frustration. But you have to search for the truth these days. You won't be able to know that Calvin basically formed our nation without reading the framers' words themselves. Our greatest historian George Bancroft, a secularist mind you, is the one who wrote "Calvin virtually founded America." Read their own words, not what they teach in schools.

As to Locke, he was only a small personal influence within a handful of men, notably Jefferson and Paine, and only after the DOI. All of our doctrine was formed by the Colonists years before. His social contract theory was discarded by the Colonists because it left God out of the picture. The chief Calvinist explained our social contract was with the Lord:

"The people of this country, alone, have formally and deliberately chosen a government for themselves, and with open and uninfluenced consent bound themselves into a social compact. Here no man proclaims his birth or wealth as a title to honorable distinction, or to sanctify ignorance and vice with the name of hereditary authority. He who has most zeal and ability to promote public felicity, let him be the servant of the public. This is the only line of distinction drawn by nature."
-Samuel Adams, An ORATION Delivered at the State-House, In PHILADELPHIA, To A Very Numerous AUDIENCE; On THURSDAY the 1st of AUGUST 1776.

Rousseau was not an influence; especially to Christians.

Hobbes was not an influence; especially as Hamilton hammered him in the Farmer Refuted:

"There is so strong a similitude between your political principles and those maintained by Mr. Hobb[e]s, that, in judging from them, a person might very easily mistake you for a disciple of his. His opinion was, exactly, coincident with yours, relative to man in a state of nature. He held, as you do, that he was, then, perfectly free from all restraint of law and government. Moral obligation, according to him, is derived from the introduction of civil society; and there is no virtue, but what is purely artificial, the mere contrivance of politicians, for the maintenance of social intercourse. But the reason he run into this absurd and impious doctrine, was, that he disbelieved the existence of an intelligent superintending principle, who is the governor, and will be the final judge of the universe."
-Farmer Refuted, 1775.

Montesquieu and Blackstone were the most quoted of the framers, and Christians.
It's easy to develop a fraudulent version of history once you ignore the parts that prove you wrong.
The Constitution was not based on religion, the Bible or the Calvinists.
The Constitution blatantly rejected the colonial cliques' previous versions of social contracts and replaced it with a secular template.
No amount of accounting the various religious beliefs of some segments of society changes that simple, debunking fact.
In fact, to insist on a lie seems to reject Christian honesty, and to declare a supposed religious intent of the Constitution -- and in spite of its obvious use of language -- is precisely what our Founders were against. Try to remember the first man to call for a separation of church and state was Jesus Christ.

I understand how fanatics drift to rewriting history to conform to ideology, as the Soviets, Chinese and Germans used the technique, but this is America.

Your problem is twofold, most likely.
1. You paid good money for David Barton's DVD set, fulfilling Barnum's sucker born every minute maxim.
2. You begin with your conclusion, and work towards proving it, rather than letting the facts prove themselves.

Anyway, nothing you can say will persuade anyone with intelligence, and the idea history has been perverted for a couple of hundred years is a hoot.
You are done commenting here, as I will no longer accept any more of your crackpot website delusions. You're a time-wasting fanatic, nothing more.