Dr. Ben Carson is a nationally recognized neurosurgeon and Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital. He spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast this week in which he outlined a simple way to fund healthcare without the need of a 2700-page law that will be implemented by faceless and nameless bureaucrats and death panels. President and Mrs. Obama were in attendance. Here is Dr. Carson’s healthcare solution:
“When a person is born, give him a birth certificate, an electronic medical record, and a Health Savings Account to which money can be contributed — pretax — from the time you're born 'til the time you die. When you die, you can pass it on to your family members, so that when you're 85 years old and you got six diseases, you're not trying to spend up everything. You're happy to pass it on and there's nobody talking about death panels.
“[F]or the people who were indigent who don't have any money we can make contributions to their HSA each month because we already have this huge pot of money. Instead of sending it to some bureaucracy, let's put it in their HSAs. Now they have some control over their own health care.”
Why doesn’t government like something like this? Because government’s not involved. There are no votes to be gained from people made dependent on government handouts.
You may remember Dr. Carson. In 1987, with a 70-member surgical team, he was the first surgeon who successfully separated Siamese Twins conjoined at the back of the head. In addition to many other honors, in 2008, President George W. Bush awarded Dr. Carson with the Presidential Medal of Freedom award, the highest civilian award in the United States.
His rise from struggling student to gifted surgeon is told in the book Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story. In 2009, the book was adapted for television and starred Academy Award winning actor Cuba Gooding Jr.
Dr. Carson is no stranger to controversy. In 2012, Dr. Carson was condemned by hundreds of faculty members, students, and alumni at Emory University because of his rejection of the evolutionary origin of life. Carson was to give the Commencement address. The open-minded and always-inquiring scientists didn’t like his views, so they pressured to have him disinvited.
In addition to his healthcare proposal, Dr. Carson had some things to say about the deficit, government spending, and the nation’s taxing structure. Following the biblical mandate of a tithe — ten percent — he made this proposal for an equitable taxing structure:
“I don’t like to bring up problems without coming up with solutions… What about our taxation system? It is so complex, there is no one who can possibly comply with every jot and tittle. That doesn’t make any sense.
“What we need to do is come up with something that’s simple. The inherently fair principle is proportionality: you make 10 billion dollars, you put in a billion. You make 10 dollars, you put in one. Of course, you have to get rid of the loopholes.
“Some people say, ‘That’s not fair! It’s doesn’t hurt the guy who made 10 billion dollars.’ Where does it say you have to hurt that guy? He just put a billion dollars into the pot!”
Presidents are citizens. They are not kings. There is nothing inappropriate about speaking the truth in the presence of any of our nation’s elected officials. Dr. Carson did it in a respectful but truthful way. Now if we can only get our elected representatives to do likewise.