Political View | Mark A. Hurt, MD

Do you have a political point of view? If so, what and why?

Yes, I have a specific point of view politically.  It is the politics of Objectivism, the philosophy of Ayn Rand.

Objectivism advocates capitalism in politics, capitalism being the political system based on the principle of individual rights, where all property is owned privately.  Under capitalism, the government exists only to secure individual rights, and nothing more.

For me to explain why capitalism is the proper political system would take volumes, but the short answer is that it is the kind of system appropriate to man's nature.  It is the only political-economic system that regards man as a trader - a contractual animal - not as a sacrificial animal.

Ayn Rand defined and explained capitalism better than anyone else in history, so I refer you to her works. The essence of her defense of capitalism was on moral grounds, not on practical grounds.  It is true, however, that capitalism is also practical; but, this is an effect, not a cause.  The cause is a man's right to live for his own sake, sacrificing neither self nor others. When markets are free from government interference, most people will benefit, prosper, grow richer, and have more services available to them. This phenomenon is true historically. This is not, however, the reason to uphold capitalism as the proper system. Capitalism should be held up as the proper system because it is the only moral system of human interaction ever devised.

The United States of America, in my lifetime, has moved from a semi-capitalist political state to a fascist state.  Fascism is defined as a political state where the government regulates businesses heavily but claims that the business is someone's private property.  As a physician, I state without any hesitation that medicine is no longer even semi-private.  With the passage of the new health care bill in March of 2010, the markets in medicine have been relegated to the status of servants of the State.  The prices are fixed for physicians' services, there are codes of silence that are irrational (HIPAA) and unintelligible, and there are "official", government sanctioned, diagnoses that are covered by the CPT codes (Current Procedural Terminology), the coding system "owned" by the American Medical Association, which is the only system that the government acknowledges for payments to physicians for Medicare and Medicaid patients, under fines of thousands of dollars for "wrong" codes.

Capitalism, properly defined, is a benefit to man as such, as manifested in each, individual human being.  As a system, it can provide a structure by which government secures rights and makes it possible for individuals to live in freedom and without fear of the government or from other men.  The fact that we do not live in such a system today in the United States is pathetic, but it can be changed, provided that individuals in the United States discover what capitalism is and take action to restore it.  That is one of my tasks for the future.