Consider is starving. Such action is considered

Consider the following case. Jim was saving his money
for his healthcare, but on his 40th
birthday, he decided to use all his life
saving on a new Corvette. Six months later he realizes that his poor lifestyle choices have resulted in him in having a series of health problems: emphysema, diabetes, and kidney failure. Due to
these health conditions, he now needs chronic care for the rest of his life. There
two possible healthcare solutions for Jim. The first solution is to put him in a
universal healthcare system where the government
will pay his medical bills. However, even though his medical needs will be met, he will not be treated with the
latest and greatest medical technology. The second option would be to placed Jim
in a pay-for-service system where he can pay for his medical treatments, but the service will not treat him until he pays. So which solution would be the best for
Jim?

            Is health care a right? According to Peikoff, health care
is not a right. Merely being existed in this world does not grant us the right to
healthcare. It is only a right to healthcare if one can pay for it. From the
American viewpoint, the only rights we
have are the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. They are
considered a right because they require
actions and efforts and the results of one’s actions
are for them to keep. One does not have a right to the other people’s property
just simply because one needs it or wants
it. For example, a homeless man can’t steal food from others or commit crimes simply because he is starving. Such action is considered as violating people’s right and
property. However, it is permissible when the others are voluntary agree to
share their products. It is evident that
the homeless man can’t afford his health care. According to Peikoff, it is
morally wrong for him to rely on the government for his health care because to pay his healthcare, the government gets its
money from the citizens through taxation. The homeless man did not provide any
action or effort for him to receive his rights to healthcare. His needs to
healthcare simply show that it is the
others’ responsibilities to provide him with health care. This contradicts the principles of liberty. Peikoff
states those who can’t afford their healthcare have
to rely on charity.

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            One of the significant
values in America is the equality of opportunities hence it should be
protected. Healthcare plays a part in protecting
the equality of opportunities, therefore, according to Bradley, healthcare
should be a right. Healthcare is also necessary for the enjoyment of our basic negative rights: life, liberty, and the
pursuit of happiness. An individual who is not capable of providing themselves
the basic needs, such as healthcare, to succeed in life will not have the equal
opportunity to pursue their life goals and happiness. Therefore, in order the
protect our negative rights, we sometimes require the positive action from others. We all have individual goals and life plans, and
most of our goals can become tangible when we are healthy. However, since we live in an imperfect world,
sometimes our journey may have setbacks. Illness
can be one of them. It can restrict our opportunities and life plans. Healthcare, therefore, helps ensure that our setbacks can be eliminated to ensure that we
have at least the minimum level of opportunities to succeed. Not all of us have
to luxury to make sure that our liberty is
protected therefore some have greater
needs from the government.

            Considering the case above, Peikoff would place Jim in a
pay-for-service system because Jim’s poor life choices resulted in him having
those health issues. He is responsible for his actions and the result of his actions. It would be immoral if the government were to pay for his medical treatments.
It would also be unjust for the citizens to pay for someone else’s action. Just
because he is sick and needs help with medical treatment, he doesn’t have the
right to someone else’s property. So Peikoff would suggest Jim pay for his treatment along with charity help. As for
Bradley, he would place Jim in a universal healthcare system because treating
Jim by providing him with his medical needs that will help restore him as close
as possible to his normal function. Even though Jim has made poor choices in
his life, he still has the right to
liberty that must be protected by the government. For Jim to pursue his life plans, he must be healthy, and therefore it is
morally right for the government to pay for his medical treatments.

            Peikoff’s solution to the case can be view as more successful than Bradley’s because Jim
should be responsible for his action. Every individual is entitled to the basic rights: life, liberty, and the pursuit of
happiness, and it is that individual’s responsibility to protect those rights
from others. One can’t depend on others to fulfill their needs or happiness. When Bradley’s response to the case
by saying that the government should pay for Jim’s medical treatment just for
him to be to pursue his life plans again, one could consider his response
misleading. If the government is responsible for making sure that citizens are
at least at the minimum level of opportunity to succeed in society, then one
could ask why do we still have homeless people in our society? They are clearly
under the minimum level of opportunity to
succeed. 

            I would agree with Peikoff’s solution to the case and place Jim in a pay-for-service system
because he should be responsible for the consequences of his action. He had the
option of saving his money for his
medical needs, but instead, he decided that a new Corvette is more
important than his health. It is not fair for the people who have worked hard
to earn money and are being forced through taxation to pay for Jim’s
healthcare. It is unfortunate that Jim is sick, but everyone is responsible for
their health, and it is our responsibilities to find a way to pay for own health care.