This new posting on Michael Siegel’s blog shows us the consequences of a whole series of “principles” that have been initiated with smoking bans.
Siegel comments on a recent article in The Telegraph, showing that “a survey of British physicians revealed that many support the denial of medical treatment to the elderly as well as to people with ‘unhealthy lifestyles,’ such as smokers and the obese. Also on the list of those to whom medical treatment should be denied – according to many British physicians – are people seeking ‘social abortions’ or fertility treatment.”
While we share the contempt that Siegel feels for this new, revolting turn taken by many in the British medical class (and not just the British one, we may add), we cannot help but make further considerations.
Our readers know that doctors and "Public Health" have the ears of politicians today to a grievous degree and to grim result. Simply and certainly the medical class should not be allowed to have any special political power as a class. That statement is not based on prejudice, but on historical facts, the most blatant of them being, in recent history, the fact that about 50% of the German physicians were volunteer members of the Nazi Party in Germany (BMJ 1996;313:900). (stored copy here). "…The operant paradigm of medical practice during the Hitler period was that of the physician as a ‘selector’ acting on behalf of the state in order to improve the health of the nation (Volksgesundheit)". – BMJ No 7070, Volume 313 (stored copy here).
Furthermore, it is conveniently forgotten by many today that eugenics was an international movement, and that medicos were the greatest promoters of its atrocious policies not merely in Germany but worldwide. In many other countries and times the physician class has sided with brutal and repressive political movements.
Now we have medical associations in England, Canada, and in too many other nations to mention, advocating and implementing brutal repression and control over smokers, "improper" eaters, and other heretics to Healthist ideology. As with the eugenicists, these Frankensteins delight in scare tactics, false information, arrogant paternalism, and epidemiological fraud, while displaying utter contempt for suffering, and for humanity.
There are reasons for this. Throughout history the medicine man has always been regarded as some sort of mystical person with the power of life and death — the magical healer that you had to keep satisfied (the chief of the tribe included!), or he would not “make you live," as he had the ultimate blackmail in his hands: that of the medicine potions.
With that kind of frightened veneration bestowed on them, there is little surprise that the weak-minded ones (and there are a lot of weak-minded people around: look at how many believe the “smoking kills” ideology!) let it go to their heads. They think themselves gods. They believe their opinions are science and — what’s worse — they believe their perceived omniscience makes their tyranny a natural form of democracy. They must be right. They always are right. Therefore all must agree. Therefore their edicts are democracy.
If 90 doctors out of 100 “believe” in something that is not genuinely demonstrated (the hysterically viewed “evils” of smoking being a typical example) their haughty concurrence becomes scientific proof in their own eyes, and unfortunately, also in the eyes of the fools who worship them. In short, science “shifts” from what it should be (concern with objective reality) to subjective opinion on speculation by majority — the most dark and unscientific attitude there is. We are back to superstition then. That’s where we are.
John Dalberg Acton was right: "power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely". The solution to this problem is equally simple: take their power away — socially and politically through legislations that limit those powers. There is no reason to believe that the medical class is more credible than any other class, or that it acts on better faith. Quite to the contrary!
We must — urgently — smarten up about this. Doctors are nothing more than mechanics of the body and no better than engine mechanics. Indeed, the engine mechanic knows 100% of the machine he fixes, while a good doctor may understand 1% of the complexity of human life. Take careful note that technicians generally do not make good philosophers. Doctor Kildare was in the movies. Doctor Mengele was real.