pay Paul reached its apotheosis when the State decided it
was entitled to expropriate hospital endowments. These
contributions, which were both numerous and generous,
"ere made by donors voluntarily, and frequently for specific objects.
I am amazed that so many people in lower-income
groups have not yet discovered that a State-controlled
hospital service, supposedly available to all sections of
the community, must inevitably increase rather than
diminish their anxieties when illness descends upon them.
Today, there are infinitely more people competing for
admittance to the hospitals. Really ill people are swept
aside in the mad rush for medical treatment.
1 Here is much hypocrisy in the British political scene.
' do not resent the Socialist higher-ups who, when sick
themselves, seek and obtain till the amenities that characterized our now largely discarded private medical practice.
' Would not prohibit our Socialist masters from obtaining
telease from their sufferings anywhere in the world. If
*Wiss, or French, or German medical science is their last
n°po, let them go to those countries for treatment ancl
Bood luck to them. All I ask is that thereafter they either
Preach what they practice, or practice what they preach,
"hy are we willing to barter our heritage eif freedom for
* spurious social security which even those who plan it
know is a synonym for a regimented and totalitarian
The architectural specifications for nationalized medicine were originally assembled in a governmental report
by Lord Beveridge which bears his name. The British
Public has got what it asked for ancl what it deserved.
Il(' pity is that when something critically substantial
°nlci have been done about it, the public allowed itself
0 he taken in by a political emphasis on benefits that
"lS|niiateel that the other fellow, whoever he might be,
Quid foot the bill. Today, the whole nation is paying
•rough the nose for its fantastic- incapacity to recognize,
the propitious moment, that even in the crazy arithmetic
Marxian ideology something for nothing does not
,r> the Beveridge Report the author laid down two
Peeifie assumptions for a National Health Service.
i Ssi"nption "A" is that it is the duty of the citizen to
''P well. Assumption "B" is that it is the duty of the
£tor to exercise harsh certification.
1 these' assumptions are not pious pleas to patient anel
^,,ctor to be good children. They are stern, dictatorial fiats.
., "' author of them implied their necessity on the grounds
■ '" "n actuarial basis lor a National Health scheme xvas
-Practicable otherwise, and I am not disposed tei contra-
him. In effect, these assumptions are' whips to be used
,lnd when the powers that be determine that doctors,
Patients, or both, would be all the better for a little
"'shiiK'nt. Both doctor and patient have already e.xperi-
l(',(l tin- whips in action.
II s the months pass it becomes increasingly obvious that
.Ministry of Health is stiffening its attitude toward
wen* ' |»'
on to \
I. ..I/'. *
w «uiauj err
(i 0|c;tl certification. It insists that the doctor must toe
line or fall out of it. His prescriptions are vetoed. He
it 1„> economical. His last word on what is or is not
lii.,i' '''' '"'" his patients becomes only the first word from
-r saiietinninir authority. He has voluntarily placed
in the ignominious position of having to beg for a
t|"'" salary, lie is being made to realize more and more
he is no longer his own master professionally be-
^ Forim News, June. 1956
cause-, economically, he is a servant of the State. It is not
difficult to foresee that when he has been thoroughly
softened up he will hardly notice that he has become
harsh, anel is fully capable of acting accordingly.
The patient who has been told that it is his duty to keep
well has nothing to laugh about either. He is just as likely
a recipient of the whip as his doctor. The way things are
developing economically must, sooner or later, produce a
situation in which he will not be able to afford to be ill.
LIeaTH ancl infant mortality rates are acid tests of the
efficiency of a medical service. American private medical
practice can confidently face comparison with British
nationalized medicine on these two aspects of social xvel-
fetre. In both categories Great Britain comes off second
best. Harold E. Stassen, after investigating the workings
ol State medicine in Great Britain, summed up his impressions in the caustic comment: "The British experiment has
resulted in more medical care of a lower quality for more
people at higher cost."
It is astonishing that many people in Greeit Britain do
not even now realize, despite a large dose of socialism in
practice, that the State, as the State, docs not possess a
single' nickel. Its occasional outbursts of generosity are
made when the State decides tei return a portion of the
money it has already extracted from the pockets of the
people. I suppose we shall one day wake up to the fact
that the ever-increasing strength of State purchasing
power is the measure of the decline in the purchasing
power of its citizens.
We are not et violent people. One of our most majestic
contributions to civilization is surely the manner in which
we have demonstrated to the world that revolution is ;i
poor anel bloody substitute for evolution. Even the politic ians know this. They believe that half a loaf is better
than no bread. They know that when it is eaten it is comparatively easy to persuade hungry people to devour the
other half. Every scrap of socialistic legislation has been
imposed upon us by the installment plan.
If there is an unpopular word in the vocabulary of
Socialists, it is the word "socialism." They hide it behind
the skirts of "Labor," or, when hard pressed, behind the
austerity curtains of a "planned economy." The nationalization of medicine is an integral part of the Socialist
State. It may prove to be the last and strongest link in the
chain that is being forged for the eventual communization
eif Great Britain.
The total abolition of private medical practice would be
a national disaster. But this is precisely the ultimate intention of the political powers that be.
The late Sir Ernest Graham-Little, who represented the
University of London in Parliament, was profoundly inter-
esleel in the welfare anel management of University
College Hospital, one of the hospitals which the Ministry
of Health acquired under the National Health Act. Sir
Ernest himself gene me the following fact which I reveal
without comment. The running costs of University College
Hospital under voluntary administration in the year 19.3S
were £125,000 (roughly $350,000). In the first financial
year of nationalized medicine thev increased ten times to
the colossal sum of £1,125,000, or roughly $3,500,000.
JPjieiMixiii necessity is forcing many doctors to adopt a
mercenary attitude. A per capita fee which works out at
a gross payment of roughly fixe cents a week per patient
is hardly calculated to produce a prosperous and dignified