Human Exceptionalism

Centralized Health Care Turns Us Against Each Other

A column in the Telegraph questions why obese people should have precedence in care over the elderly in the socialized NHS.  From “Why Should Fat People Take Precedence Over the Elderly in the NHS?”

Already the elderly are short-changed when it comes to nurses’ time. Nurses in hospitals plead to being too busy to look after their charges decently, and so elderly patients frequently suffer dehydration, malnutrition and a lack of hygiene.

This treatment is cruel and unfair: age comes to us all, and is not the result of  lifestyle choices. There are plenty of conditions, though, that are the direct result of bad habits, poor diet, and the wrong choices. These conditions range from obesity and diabetes to smoking-related diseases like emphysema. If a 20-stone, 30-something woman comes into hospital with a bad diabetic attack, does she deserve to be at the front of the queue or the back? She has chosen to stuff her face with Mars bars and Coke, and is now suffering the consequences of her choice. She cannot claim ignorance of the dangers of her diet: the Government has carpet-bombed us with health advice, from schools to GP practices. Class no longer regulates access to healthy living: everyone who can watch the telly, let alone read the magazines, knows that a high-fat diet will make you look bad and feel worse.

Here’s the moral of the story: Centralized health care turns us, snarling, against each other, grabbing for our own piece of the carcass, ready to exclude others to feed ourselves.  As in this terribly uncharitable rant, it breeds hate and disdain for anyone who can be identified as the “other” supposedly taking more than their due. Take heed!


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