Friday, November 21, 2008

California’s Newest Chronic Disease: “Preventionitis”

Another Day Has Arrived
John R. Graham, the director of Health Care Studies for the Pacific Research Institute recently wrote that "Politicians interpret [ ] exercises in crystal-ball gazing as proof that they can never impose too much government control over people for their own good."

Before we get to what they saw in the particular crystal ball Graham is talking about, we must understand several things: 1) crystal balls are the same, in this case, as what is meant by the phrase "counting your chickens before they hatch." Politicians look at scientific data, as we shall see, and being the modern politicians that they are believe they have the right to implement policy and law based on the data.

In fact, they do, and they should. To ignore science would be catastrophic in many cases, not to mention silly and ignorant. But where these modern politicians go wrong is: 2) believing that the Constitution is a "living" document that allows them to ignore the original intent of the powers given to the Federal government, and to ignore that some powers were strictly given to the States, with all the rest of the powers not enumerated given to the individuals, to "the people", not collectively, but individually, making each of us sovereign and able to stand against the un-Constitutional abuses of government.

How can we know that the powers not enumerated as belonging to the Federal or the State governments are "reserved" to individuals? We can know this, because "the people", when not considered at individuals, are either entities of their respective States with Constitutional powers enumerated to them; or entities of the Federal government, with Constitutional powers enumerated to them.

(There is a flaw in that fact, a flaw which became law with the "citizens of the United States" clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The States were empowered to protect their citizens from the over-reaching powers of the Federal government; we were never meant to be "citizens of" the Federal government. That clause literally and forever--until it is overturned--eliminated the original nature of the States as individual political entities united under law, and instead created, for the first time in Constitutional history, a single entity called the "United States."

(Before the Fourteenth Amendment we were Citizens with a capital "C" both in written law, and in popular writing such as newspapers. "Citizens" in the Fourteenth is spelled with a lower case "c" and never since have we citizens been Citizens.

(We belong to the Federal Government, which can manipulate us as much as the liberal courts will allow it to go. And if a court strikes down federal legislation or the policy implemented by a bureau, such as Health and Human Services, for example, there is always another day. Don't forget that the income tax was originally declared un-Constitutional, until another day arrived.

("Individual sovereignty was not a peculiar conceit of Thomas Jefferson: It was the common assumption of the day..."

And so, by the powers reserved to the people, we know the Founding Fathers meant, by "the people", to mean the individuals who make up the non-political entity called "the people," which is nothing more than the concept of all individuals considered as a group, e.g., "the people at Fox News," or "the people in prison."

The power to "impose too much government control over people for their own good" was never an original intent of the Founders, who all believed that governments instituted among men ought to be limited.

Now, just what is it that John Graham is talking about, above?

"A major driver of health costs over the last couple of decades is chronic illness such as diabetes and heart disease. It's time to add another chronic ailment to the list: 'preventionitis,'" writes Graham.

"Because much chronic disease is associated with bad lifestyle choices, many succumb to the utopian delusion that investment in 'prevention' – eating better, exercising more, and so on – will cut society's health bill.

Exercise and a healthy diet are of course good ideas. The 'investment' that preventionistas advocate, however, is not a personal commitment to oneself, a family member, or a friend. On the contrary, it is massive government intervention to change society's habits, paid for by tax hikes." [emphasis added]

The science that the government of California is taking note of is a report funded by three non-profit groups: the Trust for America's Health, the California Endowment, and the Prevention Institute. "They conclude," Graham continues, "that investing 10 dollars per person annually in 'prevention' in California would result in savings 4.8 times greater than the costs, starting five years out.

Overall, they claim that annual savings would be $1.7 billion, measured in 2004 dollars. Statewide health spending in 2004 was $166 billion, so we are looking at annual savings of one percent. Ten years from now the annual savings would go up to $1.9 billion (2004 dollars), which would be much less than one percent of overall costs, because health costs will be much higher in 2014 than they were in 2004, even after adjusting for inflation.

"Even so, such estimates are fantastically over-precise. Politicians interpret these exercises in crystal-ball gazing as proof that they can never impose too much government control over people for their own good."

Over-estimating is not the Constitutional problem. Neither is the crystal-ball gazing, nor the science. The problem is the corruption of the Constitution.

Certainly, modern society has problems to take care of that the 18th Century could never have imagined, from the kind of road, water and sewer infrastructures we have, to the infrastructures created by the use of electricity and the internet, to name only a few.

But these problems are made worse by assuming that because the Founders could not foresee them, we must ignore their--our--written Constitutional responsibilities. We cannot just willy-nilly do as we please depending on the Congressional, Judicial, and Presidential powers who are in office at the time of the decision making.

The Constitution must be changed as directed within the Constitution itself. Without that guarantee, we might as well quit pretending we rely on the Original Constitution and just admit that we manipulate it like so much Play-Doh.

Modern Americans who are not educated in the history of the Constitution, which is done on purpose by educators who become more left-and-liberal decade by decade, are in pursuit of absolute control over everyone else's lifestyle choices.

And instead of standing up and saying, "I refuse to control anyone's life," we all lie down and understand that we must allow ourselves to be controlled in things we wish we were not controlled, if we are to have the power to contol others where they wish they were not controlled.

That is the insidious and degrading power of modern liberalism. It must stop.

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2008 by Curtis Edward Clark and Naturalist Academy Publishing ®

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