Giving health care to private sector not a fix

Jane Jacobs was an author who wrote several books on civilizations and their eventual demise.

In her latest and final book “Dark Age Ahead” she wrote about our current civilizations and it impending failure.

In a CBC Radio interview shortly before her death she spoke of the book and why she felt that our society would collapse. The central theme of her talk was that civilizations fail when its people “forget.” The most important thing that people in failed societies, and we in our failing society seem to have forgotten is that we are social creatures and that our well-being is a communal affair.

Ultimately my wellness is based on our wellness. In a healthy, functioning democracy we support each other through socialized, publicly funded welfare programs, public education and universal health care.

When we forget this our focus becomes one of narrow self-interest and a resultant neglect of the common good. Our materialistic, self-centered, over consumptive society bears witness to this state of affairs.

I believe that at the core of the malaise is a great fear and uncertainty. This fear and uncertainty is being manipulated by and for the benefit of a powerful elite few. Corporations and special interest groups through their government lobbyists are controlling the social agenda, the course of our country’s social evolution. Governments at every level are increasingly complicit.

Our social system is being permanently altered so that this elitist group can profit at the expense of the many. Another thing that we have forgotten or at least fail to mention is that the Fraser Institute is a partisan, right-wing think tank. The quasi research that they carry out and the resultant propaganda that appears in our local newspapers is meant to serve the social and economically conservative airs of their financial masters.

The ideologically-driven pseudo-science that they base their articles on is merely an attempt to convince us that our social system, as it exists cannot ensure unless we downsize and privatize every service that our governments provide to the people. “Nothing is to be left untouched.”

If the Fraser institute tells us that there are no poor people in Canada because the level of poverty is not as abject as that in Africa, or that people who use food banks in this country don’t really need the food but suffer the humiliation merely to save a few dollars or because it’s convenient, I would suspect their motivation.

Their latest attempt at manipulation of public opinion appeared in the Times March 23 (It’s Time to Consider Going Dutch on Health Care). Mark Rovere of the Fraser Institute sets forth more propaganda to advance the objective of the privatization of our health-care system.

If his recommendations were adopted we would see the Americanization of our health care system and the only winners would be the private insurance companies. We need only look to the United States and their health care failures to know where that will lead us.

Mr. Rovere trivializes the opinions of the Canadian Medical Association and mocks the Canadian medicare model that “had” served Canadians quite well until subsequent federal governments became agents of the private sector.

The federal government has chosen to ignore the Canada Health Care Act, it must be enforced. Federal transfer payments have been much reduced, the system must be properly funded again. Doctors and all others working within the system must be consulted.

The difficult decisions that need to be made cannot be left to politicians, administrators and health authorities alone. Look at the mess in the B.C. health care system because of this approach.

Mr. Rovere advises our politicians and policy makers to ignore the opinions of the Canadian Medical Association and other key stakeholders and calls the Health Care Action Plan unrealistic.

I suggest that the self-serving recommendations of Rovere, the Fraser Institute and its corporate masters with their privatization agenda be ignored instead.

The system can be fixed without giving it over to the private sector. This is a critical issue. This is still “our” system. We must not forget that.

Michael Albert Tadevic

Fruitvale