Freeman

ANYTHING PEACEFUL

What's Sauce for the Goose...

MARCH 25, 2010 by SHELDON RICHMAN

Supporters of Barack Obama’s pro-industry health insurance overhaul are absolutely right to condemn the threats and acts of violence that followed the House vote on Sunday. All decent people should join in that condemnation. It is immoral on its face, not to mention the taint it leaves on the cause of diminishing government power.

By the same token, the advocates of ObamaCare should also have forsworn violence. Unfortunately their plan embraces it. Failure to comply with any of the countless forthcoming regulations and mandates will bring fines to the violator, that is, deprivation of his or her property. Failure to pay the fines will bring further sanctions including, eventually, arrest and imprisonment. Resistance to arrest and imprisonment will bring … you know what it will bring — the mighty wrath of the State. All because a peaceful individual abstained from complying with a mandate.

If universally accessible and affordable medical care is worth achieving — and it most certainly is — then it is worth achieving exclusively through peaceful cooperative methods. That means without the use of government, which, as George Washington reminded us, is not reason or eloquence but force. Although they could have done otherwise, those responsible for ObamaCare chose to rely on threats of violence to get their way on the grounds that the end justifies the means. They have surely set a bad example.

Advocates of freedom must not sink to their level.

ABOUT

SHELDON RICHMAN

Sheldon Richman is the former editor of The Freeman and TheFreemanOnline.org, and a contributor to The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics. He is the author of Separating School and State: How to Liberate America's Families.

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