As regular readers will know, your humble Devil is no fan of the medical profession: sentences such as , and "when will these fucking medical types shut their fucking cakeholes and get on with their job of patching people up?"
might have led viewers to conclusion that I think that doctors are a total bunch of fuckers who should be beaten to death with their own stethoscopes.
And said viewers would be correct. But it's nice to see my view validated by Sam Bowman at the Adam Smith Institute
"People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public"—Adam SmithAs usual, Adam Smith was right. Today I can think of no trade about which the above is more true than the medical profession. I don’t just mean doctors’ use of occupational licensure laws to keep their prices artificially inflated. Politically active groups of doctors are possibly the greatest single threat to personal freedom that there is in the UK today. Their motivation isn't necessarily their wallets, but their egos. Bullies like to use the state to push people around so they feel powerful.
As I outlined in my commentary
on Working Class Patients And The Medial Establishment: Self-help in Britain from the mid-nineteeth century to 1948
, David Green states very clearly that the medical profession are actually motivated by both "their wallets"
and "their egos"
The organised medical profession had long resented the dominance of the medical consumer, and particularly resented working-class control of medical "gentlemen". The BMA were equally anxious to obtain more pay and, above all, higher status for doctors.
As regular readers will know, the combination of the BMA and the private insurance companies led directly to the destruction
of the Friendly Societies
—social corporations that provided primary care and unemployment benefits for the working classes—through the lobbying of MPs involved in the 1911 National Insurance Act. [Emphasis mine.]
The essence of working-class social insurance was democratic self-organisation: amendments to the Bill obtained by the BMA and the Combine [the private insurers' trade association] undermined it. Doctors' pay had been kept within limits that ordinary maual workers could afford: under pressure, the government doubled doctors' incomes and financed this transfer of wealth from insured workers to the medical profession by means of a regressive poll tax, flat-rate National Insurance Contributions.
I have said it many times, and I shall say it again—doctors are not your friends and the medical profession couldn't give two shits for anything other than big, fat pay-cheques. And, as I said back in June 2010
...whilst the doctors continue to run our medical services, and continue to bribe, bully and poison our rulers—and whilst our rulers still have the power to force us to obey these bastards—we will never be free...
They medical profession are a bunch of thugs, driven by self-importance, conceit and greed, whose only motivation for existence is to bleed you dry and then present you—or someone near to you—a massive bill. But, they are also suffer from an almost incredible arrogance in that they believe their every prognostication to be gospel, every utterance to be truth and every opinion to be law. They are cunts of the very first water.
So, since we have now established this principle, let us see what has driven the ASI's Sam Bowman to attack the bastards on this occasion.
There’s a sad example of this in today’s call in the Lancet, a medical journal that is often used as a political mouthpiece by campaigning doctors, for the government to introduce a “fat tax” to curb obesity.
Of course, the proposal is utterly specious. It's pretty dubious whether the "obesity epidemic" claims are true or not. And which diet plan should be implemented? Is it bacon, sugar, bread or something else that makes us fat? Will political parties of this fat tax utopian future be divided between the Low-Carb Party and the Low-Fat Party? And what if fat people's early mortality rates mean that they actually save the government money in pension and care home bills?
The doctors err even by their own logic. As Will Wilkinson has pointed out, if fat taxers thought things through, they would favour a tax on fat people themselves, not on the food they eat. Taxing food punishes people who exercise so that they can enjoy Big Macs, but not people who are so lazy that they balloon out while eating a balanced diet.
Of course, to the average doctor—who has coddled and protected, in importance and financially, by the state for a century—corporations must automatically be evil (otherwise they wouldn't actually sell things, right? They'd do it out of charidee); not only that, but the Ordinary People, the hoi polloi, are too stupid and bovine to make their own choices.
Of course, this should be no business of the doctors': their job should
be to shut the fuck up and do their job of patching people up (and charging a suitable fee, of course). And in a free society, that is precisely what would happen.
However, we do not live in a free society: we live in a Welfare State*. And in the Welfare State (and particularly this one), the health service is administered by the state and the doctors are the gate-keepers. It is the hoi polloi, who pay for this health service, of course, but—since we are given no choice about it—we are (as I have said many times) in hock to the state
The state is the provider of a service: the National Health Service in this case. Because the state provides and "pays" (through taxes, of course) for this service, it has the power to dictate to the population.
Obesity costs money over and above a "normal" person's treatment. Even if the obese person has private medical insurance, they cannot opt out of the NHS because they are forced to contribute to the NHS through their NICs. And, in fact, because of various laws—an ambulance can only take you to a state A&E, all GPs are employed by the state—no one can opt out of the state-provided system entirely.
In this way, everyone is in debt to the state. And as long as everyone is in debt to the state, the state, fundamentally, has the right to tell the population how to behave. And this debt can never actually be discharged: you are in debt to—and thus subject to the whim of—the state from the moment that you are born until the moment that you die.
And, remember, there is no actual contract to sign (or not sign) so the government can—and does—keep on shifting the terms of this agreement as and when it likes. It's a little like Lando Calrissian's bargain with Darth Vader in The Empire Strikes Back: "This deal just gets worse..."
As such, no one in this country owns their own body; no one in this country owns their own life. Everyone is effectively in hock to the state because you can never, ever opt out of state provision.
Once again, it seems that Sam Bowman agrees with me on this...
The justification for pushing people around like this is the NHS. Shouldn’t people have to pay for their own illnesses? Well, yes – that’s how personal responsibility works. But having an NHS removes the personal responsibility, and artificial attempts to inject it into the system are doubly illiberal and wrong.
The government (and the electorate, for that matter) forces people to be in the NHS. You have no choice in the matter, and you can’t opt out of it. Jamie Whyte put it well: "first the do-gooders conjure up the external costs by insisting that no one should have to pay for his own medical care, then they tell us that they must interfere with behavior that damages our health because it imposes costs on others." This is perverse and illiberal.
Yes, and the doctors—and their spiritual buddies, the politicians—love it: this way, they can all feel important, and all line their pockets.
The tax would only affect the poor—rich people's spending habits wouldn't be dented. How easy it must be for doctors to pontificate about the need for a fat tax, knowing that such a tax would hardly affect them at all.
Indeed, what with doctors having to take on the treatment of all of these extra obese people, surely it must be time for another contract "negotiation"**—trebles all round!
This creepy, controlling paternalism has plenty of fans in politics on both sides of the partisan divide. Doctors are the politicians' enablers, lending the weight of their “expertise” to the nanny instinct of the political class in exchange for the feeling of being important.
Which is precisely the same relationship that the government has with Fake Charities
—many of which are also run by doctors and their creepy little acolytes.
No amount of expertise – medical or otherwise – should give somebody the right to interfere with another adult’s choices. Nor should democracy be used as an excuse to violate the sovereignty of the individual. If fat people are costing the NHS money, that's a mark against having an NHS, not against having fat people.
Quite. And all of this relates to the conclusion of my June 2010 post linked to above
Most of you will have seen—in the newspapers and, in particular, on blogs written by members of the medical profession—claims that doctors should be allowed to run the NHS, because they know what they are doing. Of course they do: they want to run your lives and giving the medicos control of the NHS would give them the ultimate tool to do so. That would ensure a much "higher status for doctors" and the edict would be simple—obey us or be left to die.
If you doubt this, just take a long at some of the news stories around, especially as regards the medical profession's urgings to deny healthcare to smokers, drinkers and fat people. True, the BMA tend to side with Fake Charities more than the insurance companies these days, but the process is the same; government-funded "medical advisers"—no less effective or poisonous than Grima Wormtongue—whisper into politicians' rights ears, whilst government-funded "charities" bolster the message from the left.
Our New Coalition Overlords™ promised to take on the vested interests but, narrow-minded as they are, they seem to mean only the bankers and other huge commercial interests whose establishment status flows from the rules and regulations imposed by government.
But no mention has been made of those other vested interests: those—like the medical profession—whose power, privilege and money is propped up by the government and funded by the blood of taxpayers. There are so many of them that a stupid person might find it difficult to know where to start.
But, actually, it is really very simple: if we want decent welfare for all, affordable medical care and freedom, we need to return to "democratic self-organisation". And if we wish to do that, we have to smash and utterly destroy the organised medical profession, and grind it into the dust.
We need to return these arrogant doctors, and their associated scum (a category in which I include politicians), to beings servants of the consumer, not the masters. But whilst the doctors continue to run our medical services, and continue to bribe, bully and poison our rulers—and whilst our rulers still have the power to force us to obey these bastards—we will never be free, and we will never have a proper, functioning society.
To paraphrase P J O'Rourke, when the legislators can decide what can be bought and sold, the first thing for sale are the legislators. And the medical profession bought them a hundred years ago.
Destroy the power of the BMA and the medical profession and we can begin to struggle towards freedom. Leave them in place—poisoning public debate and raping the freedom of ordinary people in order to gain money and prestige—and we will always be slaves.
All of the above continues to be true—nothing has changed. So every time that you see a doctor warning of some dire consequence of anyone's lifestyle, don't condemn their victims—that is the precise reaction that these fuckers want from you, the better to divide and conquer
Imagine, instead, how much you would like these bastards to stop hectoring you and bossing you about—and think, therefore, about how best to damage and destroy the entire medical profession. Think about how best to humble the arrogant, dictatorial doctors who urge the government to ban and tax your pleasures, how to put the lazy, hoity-toity nurses who starve their patients to death
back into their proper place and, most important of all, how to blast apart all of their evil bloody trade unions.
And try not to laugh too much whilst you do so...
* Not for much longer, of course, because the Welfare State is utterly bankrupt across the world.
** Where the doctors tell the politicians how much cash they want and how little actual doctoring they want to do, and the politicians agree. After all, it's not their money, eh?
Labels: civil liberties, doctors, dont say we didnt warn you, filthy corruption, freedom, Friendly Societies, medical care, NHS, overpaid wasters, The Welfare State, voluntary collectivism