Article 31 reads:
"First: Every citizen has the right to health care. The State shall maintain public health and provide the means of prevention and treatment by building different types of hospitals and health institutions.
“Second: Individuals and entities have the right to build hospitals, clinics, or private health care centers under the supervision of the State, and this shall be regulated by law."
There are other health care guarantees, including special provisions for children, the elderly, and the handicapped elsewhere in the 43-page document.
Under force of arms, President Bush imposed his particular idea of democracy on a people not asking for it - perhaps a noble undertaking in one context and a criminal violation of international law in another. Bush's followers are proud of the Iraqi Constitution, a model for the world, they told us.
So, according to the American political right-wing, government-guaranteed health care is good for Iraqis, but not good for us. Not good for you. They decry even a limited public option for you, but gleefully imposed upon the Iraqis what they label here as "socialism," with much Democratic Party member support.
Writer Mark Dorlester calls this Republican hypocrisy. More importantly, I see it as an admission by those involved in crafting the Iraq Constitution that they agree with the principle of single-payer healthcare. They see it as good for citizens, good for building a stable democracy, right for a government to be involved in providing healthcare for its citizenry. They didn't see it as inherently evil or damaging to a developing democracy's government or economy.
But they don’t think it’s right for us. Right for Iraq, but not for us.
Why would that be? That would be a question to ask. If it's not going to turn into Fascism, Socialism, economy-destroying evil in a democracy as sensitive as Iraq's, why would it do so here?
Dorlester also points to the $864 billion we’ve spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The total is more than (or, in the worst case, equal to) the funding required to guarantee minimally decent health care here.
In other words, the most senior members of the Republican establishment - and some Democrats like Max Baucus (D-MT) - have gladly spent more taxpayer funds to ensure health care as a Constitutional right in Iraq than they are willing to spend to give you any level of guaranteed coverage.
It would seem that U. S. citizens might find out if their Representative and/or Senators have supported or voted to fund the war in Iraq. If so, do they support health care as a civil right for you?
If the answers to those questions are "yes" and "no," respectively, you might consider less hypocritical representation.