It's so good I have to post the entire transcript.
"Your Freedom is Likely to be Someone Else's Harm"
RUSH: The Associated Press, you know, this is pretty wild even by AP standards. This story is, I think, an apology for a random act of journalism they had last week.
Remember the story we had, AP reported the penalties on smokers, the
fines in Obamacare starting in 2014. The insurance premium penalty.
They gave two examples, somebody 55 years of age, some 60 years of age,
and the 60-year-old smoker, under Obamacare, one year from now, in
addition to whatever his health care premium is, will pay a penalty of
$5,100. This has suddenly been discovered in Obamacare, and that, as I
say, implements next year. For the smoker that's age 55, the penalty is I
think $4,500, on top of the premium.
I started joking last week about, "Well, why stop there? Why don't
they put a penalty in there for obesity?" And, lo and behold, AP has a
story: "Do Penalties for Smokers and the Obese Make Sense? ... Attempts
to curb smoking and unhealthy eating frequently lead to backlash:
Witness the current legal tussle over New York City's first-of-its-kind
limits on the size of sugary beverages and the vicious fight last year
in California over a ballot proposal to add a $1-per-pack cigarette tax,
which was ultimately defeated. ... Why provoke a backlash? If 1 in 5
U.S. adults smoke, and 1 in 3 are obese, why not just get off their
backs and let them go on with their (probably shortened) lives?"
This is the AP story. Why not just get off their backs and let 'em
go on with their shortened lives? And then AP answers it. "Because
it's not just about them, say some health economists, bioethicists and
public health researchers. 'Your freedom is likely to be someone else's
harm,' said Daniel Callahan, senior research scholar at a bioethics
think-tank, the Hastings Center." And after all, that's why the left
really wanted Obamacare in the first place, because your freedom is
somebody else's harm.
So now everything we eat and anything we do or don't do will affect
everybody else's health insurance rates, and this is why they wanted
health care. Once they are allowed to regulate your behavior and what
you eat, what you do, you don't eat, and relate that to health care
costs, they have the power to control it, and that's why they wanted
this. That's why they wanted Obamacare. It isn't about making health
care better. It's not about improving insurance. It's not about any of
that. It is about control. And it's about control because you don't
know what's best for you, and therefore, you could do great damage to
So somebody raised the question, "Well, look, if somebody wants to
smoke, let 'em. They'll just die sooner and they'll be less of a burden
on everybody," and then that's when the bioethicist said, "Well, wait a
minute, that smoker's freedom is somebody else's harm." And so they
said, "What do you mean by that?" "Well, he's just not gonna die. He's
gonna get sick first, require all kinds of treatment for cancer, maybe
lung cancer, health treatment. So this guy's freedom to smoke is gonna
cost all the rest of us a bunch of money." So the bioethicist is making
the case for all these outstandingly huge fines for all the behavior
that the government sees as unsuitable. And they've now added obesity
Not only does AP contend that the smoker penalty's a good thing, they
now say there should be a penalty for being overweight, and it's
exactly what I predicted on Friday when I did this story. I was laughing
about it, I said, "Well, you know, if they do this on smoking, they're
going to have to come in and do the same thing on obesity." And now
they've done it. We discussed this smoker penalty last week. I'll
never forget it, and I started joking. "Well, how come the obese get an
exemption?" I'm sure you remember. How come the obese get an
exemption? Here comes AP saying they went out and talked to
bioethicists, "You know, the obese shouldn't get an exemption. The obese
ought to pay a health insurance fine if they're overweight because
that's gonna cost all the rest of us, because the freedom that they
engage in that results in their obesity is costing all the rest of us
And so in two AP stories we actually get the truth, for people
willing to acknowledge it, and the truth is that your freedom is the
problem, particularly if your exercise of your freedom is in an
unapproved way. If the exercise of your freedom happens in a way they
don't approve and it leads to higher costs for everybody else, then
you're gonna pay a fine, buddy. And that's why they wanted Obamacare.
Now they can legislate all kinds of behavior, even behavior that has
nothing to do with health per se, but they'll claim it does because of
the costs. Gun control is not about guns. It's about control. It's
about people control. Gun control is about people control. Pure and
simple, and nothing more.