Paul Krugman weighs in on Ron Paul’s “let ‘im die” sympathies.
The incident highlighted something that I donâ€™t think most political commentators have fully absorbed: at this point, American politics is fundamentally about different moral visions.
Now, there are two things you should know about the Blitzer-Paul exchange. The first is that after the crowd weighed in, Mr. Paul basically tried to evade the question, asserting that warm-hearted doctors and charitable individuals would always make sure that people received the care they needed â€” or at least they would if they hadnâ€™t been corrupted by the welfare state. Sorry, but thatâ€™s a fantasy. People who canâ€™t afford essential medical care often fail to get it, and always have â€” and sometimes they die as a result.
The second is that very few of those who die from lack of medical care look like Mr. Blitzerâ€™s hypothetical individual who could and should have bought insurance. In reality, most uninsured Americans either have low incomes and cannot afford insurance, or are rejected by insurers because they have chronic conditions.
Krugman goes on to argue that the “moralists” of the Right think it is more moral to allow the poor, even poor children, to die, than to subsidize any part of health care with taxpayer dollars. This include poor children, as witnessed by the fight over S-Chip.