FEBRUARY 19, 2019 - New Braunfels, TX 4:20P
Many candidates have thrown their hats into the 2020 race for U.S. President, but one candidate is already blazing his own trail in this presidential race. William Hurst, veteran, and "progressive libertarian" from Birmingham, Alabama, took time out from his hectic campaigning schedule to speak with the Libertarian Times about his campaign.
He shared with us his platform and answered some questions about his future plans with libertarians in Comal County Texas and also from a corporate health insurance attorney from Wisconsin.
PHOTO CREDIT: BRIANNA HOSH
WILLIAM HURST - LIBERTARIAN CANDIDATE
Single payer healthcare is prohibitively expensive and chronically underfunded in every nation that adopts such a system. How would your plan avoid a heavy tax increase, cost controls, and imposing long patient care delays?
“insanity is: doing the same thing, over and over again, expecting different results" -Not Einstein. I think that following the actions of other countries, in exactly the same ways, reflects the insanity he never so aptly described.
Higher taxation being necessary for free public healthcare, seems to be an accepted misconception, much like the prior quote being attributed to Einstein. The money already exists for the basic healthcare of every citizen. Through elimination of waste and laws preventing some of the harmful practices inherent towards and from our current healthcare system, the funding would not only already be present, but, we may even be able to lower taxes overall, while still paying off debt.
The unfortunate part of capitalism, when it comes to healthcare, is profitability. Profit does not account for the well being of a person, only the view of a service provided to gain money. As healthcare advances under a purely capitalistic setup, the overall care will continue to decrease in trade for profit, whereby, it decreases profit in every other place. If a company does not profit as much, it will fall to competition that does. If employees work while sick in order to afford healthcare, the company and the employee lose. Cost controls wouldn't be a necessity, so long as the providers accept a guaranteed and steady income for providing these funded services, or choose not to accept payment or provide the service. I would suspect that any provider would openly accept and willingly adhere to a set of rules to gain assured payment over providing services that may not pay at all and control their own costs to accommodate. This would, in a way, circumvent the inherent issues of the for-profit method of healthcare.
The healthcare I seek is a free alternative, not a single payer setup for all healthcare, and I do not want to remove the options for insurance, only provide an assured method of remaining healthy and alive, to enjoy freedoms just as well as have freedoms to enjoy. I want the ability for a non government subsidized volunteer option to exist, and to eventually take that responsibility out of the hands of lawmakers.
This would benefit the for-profit portion of the healthcare market and allow them to provide a better service without the need to deny individuals with an existing need of healthcare or the inability to afford it. If you boil it down, these people have 4 choices currently; Lie about pre existing conditions; beg for charity; put themselves into an unpayable debt; or potentially die. None of these options are representative of liberty. The insurance market must raise rates to accommodate for the absolution of basic healthcare needs, which costs the consumer who may not get sick, far more over time. Need we mention that insurance in and of itself is socialistic and works better with more contributors, yet it also works in a capitalistic environment?
Free healthcare is not about forcing people to use it or provide it, as long as there exists a basic public service to meet a need that lacks a choice, where quickly all choice is being removed.
The “long wait" argument also has a flaw that seems to be overlooked. The flaw being: there is already a much longer wait. What is the minor inconvenience of a couple hours wait time, in comparison the sometimes month or year long wait to be able to afford healthcare while you are sick, making it harder to get the money needed to get better? With more money being guaranteed and available, if we lift restrictions on doctors to allow basics-only offices and doctors to exist, there would be a very large market for this, relieving the potential overload of minor health issues, heavily reducing the cost of healthcare overall, and providing far more medical jobs.
Healthcare is a situational service, many times without the ability for a choice, as such, we cannot define it in the same ways that you would any other business, because it is not inherently a business. Not many people have seen a person With 60% of their body having 2nd and 3rd degree burns, unable to take pain meds, begging for their life, screaming in agony, and willing to kill themselves to end the immense pain they are suffering through, if only they could move enough to do so. If you have, telling them, “I will treat you, but, only if you can pay me now, or have good credit, otherwise I wont provide my services" seems rather absurd and cruel. I know that this is an extreme and it is not all black and white, but, if we allow the healthcare system to become completely free-market monetized, this is an eventuality. The free market accounts for consumer choices to govern businesses, however, the consumer cannot make a secondary choice if they are unconscious. They can’t learn from a decision that results in death, others can, but, do we disregard the right of a person to remain alive or safe from harm, so that others can benefit from their loss in a free market?
Principled libertarians, typically, only believe in and advocate for negative rights, as opposed to positive rights. Negative rights require no actions from others to have, while positive rights require others to act or give resources in order to have. Your healthcare and education plans seemingly fall on the side of positive rights. What do you say to those traditionalist libertarians, who will argue that this goes against the negative rights that they have been advocating for all along?
I am not a fan of constricting things to a binary option. The world, the universe, is not binary, to limit the mind in this way, seems foolish to me. I understand the reasoning to pursue negative rights for some things, however, I do not think all things (most especially healthcare and education) fit into a binary description of rights. I don’t think in binary, rather, I stay open to all factors at play.
I would say, put aside a standard concept of rights for a moment and think about how we have and keep those rights. Let’s focus on healthcare and education so that more people do not become slaves to the system in a whole and have the ability remain alive and to think for themselves.
Healthcare puts your negative rights into the full control of another person, in trade for a form of positive rights, unless that care is solely voluntary. Education works under the same principal, unless your education is solely comprised of environmental input. Parents teaching their children could be seen as a positive right to the child. I would think, at least, no person would argue that teaching a child is a parental responsibility.
Adding to the prior answer, my plans are essentially a moot point in retrospect, my position is one to allow or deny in the absence of a clear majority. For any libertarian to make a direct change from the office, it would require libertarian representatives in Congress, where this question would be absolutely important for the representation of libertarian values, as the definition of freedom/rights vary by every citizen and it is their choice for which view best fits, and Congress is inherently responsible for these definitions, through law. In the absence of this, any libertarian pursuit will be limited to small change, via seeking libertarian friendly congressional members to help introduce changes on behalf of the office. If I go in, and set the pace to essentially bypass Congress and force legislature from the office, I am only increasing the potential overreach that is available and is being fought against with trump.
If a libertarian fights solely for the domination of their view over another, especially from the position of president, this becomes an authoritarian principal. If, instead, we pursue the freedoms of all and attempt to best represent that, without an absolute view of which freedom is right or which right prevails over another, we stay true to the view of freedom in and of itself.
Generally, libertarians want less government, not more. By taking away people's rights to control their own healthcare and being out under government cost controls, this would take medical choices out of the hands of the patient and place it solely in the hands of bureaucrats. What do you say to people who are concerned, to reassure them that it will not leave them behind and lost in a bureaucratic nightmare, especially during a personal health crisis?
I question the very nature of the statement proceeding the question. This assumes people currently have control of their healthcare, or even have an option outside of the absolute basics that even a knowledgeable neighbor could remedy. Medicare is sought In blind faith by the “consumer", who, if they understood medicine, they would not seek the opinion of a professional for the majority of the issues that currently plague the ER. The side I focus on the most, is the one without any choice in the matter. At many points in life, this could be any person without an immense disposable income. Preservation of life, should not be a privilege that is reserved for those with money.
I think that this gives a greater choice to the patient, to be able to take the government provision for something, or pay for one of many other services. In a personal crisis, what I would suspect to be more reassuring to the patient, would be to know that even if all else fails them, they have the contribution and goodwill of every American behind them to protect their life in an emergency.
As president, some of these questions you present, would not fall on my shoulders to pursue, rather, support or deny on a basis that weighs the safety and freedom of the American people, even above any personal view I may have. This entails going against any proposal that may harm the people or hinder their overall freedoms. My ultimate goal is freedom and peace, while allowing the citizen to regain independence with minimal requirements to keep their freedom and peace. Any decision I make will reflect these goals, first.
Wasteful government spending is consistently out of control, with all government agencies purposefully using up their allotted funding, in order to assure continued or more funding in each fiscal cycle. How can we trust that this type of behavior, which has not only been tolerated, but, has been knowingly encouraged by government officials, change in the future, if you're elected?
Simply put, would seek an audit, then plan cuts accordingly based on the data. For the sake of honesty, I will say that I do not know for sure what this data may show. This is the point of an audit. Through observation and available public information, I can reasonably estimate that waste is in the area of hundreds of billions. While I do not agree that presidents should have this power, they do, so it would be advantageous to get the waste, corruption, and voter suppression out of the way under a responsible president, that will pursue this change, then hand the power of purse back to the house of representatives .
Removal of wasteful budgets, are sometimes nickel and diming all the small things into a massive total, in an effort to fully realize the extent of the damage. In this case, I would say, nickel and pennying, is a more apt description, as it costs us nearly two times the face value to mint a penny. Just the elimination of the penny can save us all $50 million or every American $0.15 a year. If we have a factual total, available to the public, the change would happen, almost overnight, or at least by the election cycle preceding the audit's completion. Maybe this will cause 2022 to be the year of the libertarian congress?
Change for the future, directly entails that all of my pursuits, efforts, and findings become public knowledge, and that transparency becomes essential to the role of president, so that it becomes a sought after trait for all officials.
WILLIAM HURST'S PLATFORM
FIND WILLIAM HURST AT:
On Twitter William Hurst (L) @William_J_Hurst
PHOTO CREDIT: BRIANNA HOSH WILLIAM HURST - CANDIDATE