Nonetheless, whoever owns the means of production (be it farms, weapons factories, oil conglomerates, pharmaceutical laboratories or whatever other industry we might name) is provided with three significant things: (1) an immense personal fortune that can be used for a life of luxury; (2) extensive excess wealth to “influence” the state to provide a market for their commodities and services; and (3) enormous surplus capital which can be invested at home or abroad to generate more capital, still. In so doing, the owners of the means of production gather more wealth, which in turn generates more political power which in turn creates more wealth in an ever upward cycle of more wealth and more political power. The result is that the United States government, the economic system and the direction of the whole of US society (and often times the whole of the planet) is steered in one direction – the direction which benefits those who own the productive forces of our society. As we are beginning to see today, these political and economic decisions are being made with very little consideration for the future of the nation or the world in mind. With just a brief review of each of the above concerns below we shall see that each problem is impossible to justify, has a relatively simple solution, and yet continues to exist. Taking one at a time, we know the following to be true:
The result of all of this is that the United States has become what Plato originally spelled out in and Michael Parenti made famous today – a plutocracy. That is, a nation which is ruled by the rich, where money is valued over “goodness.” Like the Cambodian generals who sold arms to their enemies our political system has been corrupted by those who steer some of the most powerful companies on the planet. Indeed, with their massive funding of political office-holders the rich have made it impossible for the United States government to have a “moral compass.” These wealthy individuals have created a type of Wall-Street Republic where office-holders have become a commodity (or security) to be bought and sold like any other commodity. To be sure, those that are supposed to represent the people have instead become an investment that the wealthiest amongst us use to perpetuate their own affluence.
Comparing the Government Systems of America and …
Although, I agree, American healthcare system is unfair and unethical, with resources spent on relatively few desperately ill patients, while millions of Americans have no access to basic health care services, many fear political intervention in light of past failures.
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It is worth noting here that while not discounting the fact that Saddam Hussein was a brutal dictator who was responsible for a number of atrocities, Iraqi citizens had the highest standard of living in the Middle East during his time in power. Some of the benefits enjoyed under the Hussein government for men and were free education kindergarten through graduate school and the provision of free health care services for every Iraqi citizen. Each is an impressive social benefit that not even the government of the richest nation on the planet – the United States – can lay claim to providing for its citizens. Was Iraq’s oil wealth used to fight wars, buy arms on the international market (including from the US) and allow Hussein and high-ranking Ba’ath Party officials to live lives of luxury? Yes. However, since the Hussein government has been removed, quality universal health care has declined to such an extent that at times it has become almost nonexistent. At the same time, the educational system in Iraq has suffered horrors that are frightening to consider. To be sure, more than 2700 public and private schools, kindergarten through graduate school, have been “damaged” (including, 84% of colleges and universities), destroyed, looted, have become too dangerous to attend (e.g., more than 500 professors have been assassinated) or simply closed. Creating the conditions that allow for the destruction of education within a society is the surest sign of moral decay. Yet, the above realities are regularly ignored by our political leaders ( the corporate press) who have created this war.
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Among the stakeholders in the formulation of a country’s health care system are governments, religious groups, non-governmental organizations, charity organizations, trade/labor unions, and interested individuals (Duckett, 2008)....