The Health Care/Freedom Trap
Carol Platt Liebau
2/14/2012 10:29:16 AM - Carol Platt Liebau
The controversy about the HHS regs that impinge so grotesquely on religious freedom has opened a discussion of how ObamaCare is truly a Trojan horse, through which the government will gain power over a unprecedented chunk of Americans' liberty.
This story is another example
. In it, a state employee took it upon him/herself to confiscate a preschooler's lunch of a turkey/cheese sandwich on whole wheat, banana, chips and apple juice -- under the rationale that it didn't meet USDA healthy nutrition guidelines. Apparently, the Division of Child Development and Early Education at the Department of Health and Human Services (headed by Kathleen Sebelius, of the infamous anti-religious HHS regs, again) mandates that all preschool lunches must meet certain USDA guidelines, even if they're brought from home. And, of course, the state knows better than a child's parents what s/he should have in his/her lunchbox.
A lot of this nanny-state meddling has been justified on the grounds that it's "for the children." And indeed, all of us should be trying to feed children healthy food.
But once the state is involved in determining what little children can have in their lunch boxes, it's only a matter of time before abuses of the system will begin, with government workers acting in ways that are an insult to the way that free people should be governed.
"For the children" is one rationale for government getting involved in even the smallest or most intimate decisions that Americans make. But it's nothing to the intrusion that will occur if ObamaCare goes into effect. Then, the "public good" or "public health" could well be deemed to mean that the government has business telling all of us how we conduct our lives. As health care costs are increasingly publicly borne, the government gets an ever-greater justification for telling us -- not just the choices we must make for our children -- but the choices we must make for ourselves, all in the interest of "keeping [communally borne] health care costs down."