The Future Perfect

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Who isn’t fascinated by the future?  Everybody is.  Some of the most spectacular Hollywood films along with a good portion of popular drama series’ and science fact shows on television take place either in the future or include elements of time travel in the plot.  The future unknown always appeals to people.

leonardo-da-vinci-flying-machines.2Artists like DaVinci, writers like Orwell or Asimov and others sprinkled their creations with technologies that were not yet in existence at the time.  From the atomic bomb to iPads, to the moon landing,  to the internet, all of these developments and inventions and more had been foreseen in art and literature many years before their actual realization.  It’s what distinguishes advanced societies from less developed ones.  It’s what imprints a culture; endows it’s population with a sense of accomplishment and feeling of superiority; that nothing we put our minds to can’t be done.  It’s what becomes hubris.

And who isn’t impressed with the technology that surrounds us today?  We watch and read science fiction showing us future worlds which seem entirely plausible.  We watch and read these dramas on devices once considered science fiction.  We live in an age without parallel in history (Although, every successful society has always believed that).  Our American spirit encompasses the notion of constant upward mobility through creative destruction.  Yes, today the United States is the most advanced nation on earth.  So was the Holy Roman Empire at its summit, Great Britain at its, and France, Italy, Spain, among others.  Each in turn rose and receded.

When you read the histories of these once great nations, certain sections may be devoted to describing how an average man, woman, or family lived, but for the most part you read about institutions.  Governments.  While it’s the average individual who actually, through industry and creativity, gives rise to nations, ultimately it’s governments that bring them down.  There are a number of pathways to a nation’s ultimate decline.  Overreach is probably the most common.  Whether it’s at the individual or on a national level, overreach leads to failure more often than not.  And overreach is a byproduct of conceit.  Which brings us to today.

Without a doubt we have been conditioned to the technology of the present.  Even the most basic of natural expectations, electricity and indoor plumbing once considered “luxuries”, have become necessities.  Flip a switch and there is light.  Push a handle and waste is carried out of sight and out of mind.  But, there are a whole lot of nations today still without either on a consistent basis because of government fraud and fecklessness.  Throw in all the other gadgets we possess here and now and use on a daily basis, and seem like absolute necessities, and no one can deny we live charmed lives.  So, it wouldn’t be unusual for a government, the self anointed intelligentsia, to just think it can assume control over large segments of society and the economy.  The ruling class are the smart ones.  To pols and bureaucrats who have never worked a productive job in their life, commandeering part of the private sector would be nothing more than something like a hostile takeover.  They are the public sector equivalent of “Masters of the Universe”.

What does the government know about running a business?  Nothing.  But because technology in commerce is so pervasive and facilitates the exchange of goods and services to an unprecedented degree how hard can it be?  After all, I can go online and order practically anything produced on the planet, and have it delivered to my doorstep.  It’s nearly like a food synthesizer on Star Trek (which is practically available now thru 3D printing).  How hard can it be to do the same with health insurance?  Problem is, computers are like low information voters.  Unless you tell them what to think and do, their use is severely limited.  They are useful idiots.

So, why is the Obamacare internet rollout such a fiasco?  Bureaucrats and political hacks whom have never created a useful product or service in their lives nor had much a real creative and intelligent thought believed that the simplicity of ordering online had every bit as simple a means to execute it.   It is highly likely they thought all they need do is plug in a computer, turn it on, Google “Health Insurance” and, voila, instant health insurance coverage delivered just as easily as a Twitter Tweet.  All that need be done then is to market the marvel, produce and stage the ubiquitous  infomerical.  So, they did.  You had what used to be the most powerful position on earth, The United States President, standing on the world wide stage hawking HealthCare.gov like Flo for Progressive Insurance (an apt moniker for liberal theology) or the gecko from GEICO (in which a man made of money (a politicians fantasy) is also a frequent commercial spot and whose company name stands for Government Employees Insurance Company).

l_system_down_healthcare1200It is absurd to think that some cloistered bureaucrat with a cast of minions all encased in a bubble shielding them from reality can actually produce a useful service.  This is hubris; an excess of pride and confidence.  Evidence abounds of the many failures of government policies, practices, and programs leading to many billions of dollars of waste, fraud, and abuse and yet no one wants to admit the obvious.  Who doesn’t know the timeless story of  “The Emperor’s New Clothes”?  Despite all evidence pointing to a complete and utter failure of nearly a billions dollars to build one simple web site that would sell insurance policies like Amazon.com sells consumer products, there continues to be a frighteningly large portion of the population who refuse to see the emperor has no clothes.  It is, unfortunately, our collective conceit and pride.  If the government can’t launch a website in 3 and half years at a reported cost of $634 million dollars, what possible argument can there be to continue allowing the government to take over the health care industry?  Supporters of a government takeover say the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) is more than a website.  Precisely.  The fact is, they botched something as ordinary as a website, something most 15 year olds can launch.  And they now believe that assuming 16% of the U.S. economy is something much simpler than that?  And we buy that?

Now there’s a push to blame the vendors for the debacle; the very people who have given us such awesome technology.  And the final absurdity:  Denying the explicit and multiple promises made that you can keep your insurance and doctor if you want. Period.  Why is no one out in the streets with torches and pitchforks shouting, “Kill the monster!”?  If none of us are willing to incessantly call our representatives day and night, left and right, until they run like the convicted felon and congressman Dan Rostenkowski out for a 1989 midnight stroll among rioting senior citizens, then we can add the name of our once great nation to the list of those who rose and fell.

The misappropriation of the health care industry by government fiat is overreach on a grand scale.  At some point soon the overreach of government at all levels leads to economic collapse and bankruptcy.  All those individuals past and present who built this marvelous nation will be crushed by the failures of a government brought about by leaders who think nothing of wasting the hard earned resources of others and who ultimately focus on their own position and survival at the expense of a nation.  It doesn’t take a science fiction writer or a Nostradamus to see how government run anything turns out.  In the words of Robert Fulford, “I have seen the future and it doesn’t work”.

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