[OT] - Net Neutrality Is Marxist?

alpheus.madsen at juno.com alpheus.madsen at juno.com
Tue Apr 13 17:49:12 MDT 2010

From: Michael Torrie <torriem at gmail.com>
> Wandering way off in the weeds here, but your post proved my
> point rather handily.  You're totally stuck on certain
> freedoms which you claim will be lost while completely
> blind to other freedoms that have been lost already.
> Is the status quo really granting as much freedom as you
> think it is?

What makes you think I'm blind to my absence of freedom?  Medicare makes it difficult for me to negotiate prices with my doctor, state regulations prevent me from choosing what I would like covered, and what I wouldn't, and federal regulations prevent me from shopping for insurance in different states.

Of course, you could see the different effects of regulation in different states.  New York State has pretty draconian insurance laws; when my wife and I were comparing plans to Western US with options available in New York, we were amazed at the available options (a dozen in Utah, ranging from $280/month for a family of four, to over $1300 a month, vs New York State, which had one plan, for $830/month).

> Is freedom something that can only be granted to you?

Actually, no it is not, but the State could make it much more difficult to exercise freedom.  In Canada, for example, you could buy health insurance from a private entity, but since it's illegal for you to do so there, someone could be sent to prison for it. 

> Now I personally don't love the bill, but the status quo restricts
> as much freedom as it grants it.

Yes, and health care costs have skyrocketed as our freedoms have been taken away over the last decades.  Coincidence?

>> Furthermore, if I want to add a child to *my* plan, I would have
>> to get government approval for it as well.  Again, how does this
>> benefit society?  How does all this make us more free?
> Oh really?  Citation needed (and not from Glenn Beck).  The amount
> of disinformation circulating by the extremist--yes that is the
> right word--right is very dishonest.

Unfortunately, I can't remember where in the 2,000+ extremist bill this is--and yes, extremist is the right word here, too.  I'm not going to look it up at this time, either.

> The freedom to actually get health insurance for folks who
> current can't definitely makes those people more free.  Certainly
> the idea that I can never be denied coverage for a preexisting
> condition that comes up during a time I'm unemployed and without
> adequate coverage, is freedom to me.  To be denied coverage takes
> away my freedom.

So when your house floods, or burns down, you're going to get the appropriate insurance to get it paid off, right?  And then drop the insurance the next month.  Yeah, that's good for business!  Health Insurance can only work if the insurance agents get enough income to pay out their claims.  Requiring insurance to pay for preexisting conditions is going to force premiums to go up, and force insurance companies out of business.  Yep, freedom of choice!

This is an experiment that failed in Tennessee, with TennCare, that was modeled after HillaryCare.

>> What's wrong with making our own choices?  Sure, we're not
>> always informed, but when we want to be, we can be!
> While talking about freedom, I have to remember that in the
> LDS faith, agency is defined as the choice between binding
> myself to eternal obedience or eternal damnation.  Some choice.
> To make sense of it we have to look at the purpose of the choice
> and the consequences, especially when they travel far beyond
> our own person.  That's where the understanding of what freedom
> is starts to happen.

First of all, freedom can be discussed independent of faith; but to defend the LDS concept of freedom, I will point out this:

1.  There are many more choices than "Be Saved or Be Damned", and even that choice is more complicated than you make it out to be.  I have chosen to be a mathematician, and to work as a computer programmer to support myself and my family in that role.  Would I have been damned if I had chosen to be an economist, or a farmer?  I doubt it.

2.  There are many choices we can make in this life, that would damn us in *this life* if we don't fix them--regardless of what my eternal state will be.  I could choose to be an alcoholic, or a murderer, or to drive on the wrong side of the street, among other things.  My life would be just as destroyed in each instance if there were no God, or if there was an All-Powerful Just God Who Forgave Everything No Matter What We Did.

3.  To the extent that we are given a certain condition in life, and we are to rise above it, we won't be judged strictly on our choices, so much as to what degree we overcome the bad parts of our life to do what's right.  If we continue to choose to do what is bad, and *especially* if we choose to push the limits of evil, we will be condemned...but there's still room for everyone to fix their lives.

> In the meantime we often talk about freedom in narrow ways so
> much that we're completely blind to the forces that really
> are restricting freedom, such as the fact that we as a society
> are giving into fear, uncertainty, and doubt (from both the left
> and the right, as your post demonstrates so clearly), and allowing
> things to happen in the name of security that aren't quite right.
> We're also fighting wasteful wars that we can't win, etc.

I have lived under Socialized Medicine in England, and want nothing to do with it, thank you very much.  If this isn't "allowing things to happen in the name of security", I don't know what is!  While I cannot control the choices of those who involve us in wasteful wars, I would appreciate it very much if I could choose to make choices of my own, that may or may not be wasteful.

Giving Government power over our lives isn't going to make things better.  It doesn't work with the Post Office (the entity that keeps itself competitive by hiding behind a law that forbids competition), with steel (the Government found that it *could not* do better than U.S. Steel in making steel armor), or with numerous other examples.  Canada, England, the United States, et al have even demonstrated that it fails to do better in medical affairs as well.

Overall, this is why I desire freedom in general.

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