Monthly Archives: June 2014

Bishop Wester and Medicaid Expansion

6/23/2014

Recently, Utah’s Catholic Bishop John C. Wester released a statement arguing for Medicaid expansion, specifically calling on the Utah Legislature to accept Governor Gary Herbert’s Medicaid expansion plan. His words were direct and, at times, sharp. Bishop Wester’s moral defense of Utah’s poor and needy was on display. I like how he speaks. I appreciate a moral defense of anything. For me, there is no argument more important than a moral argument.

That said, I disagree with his endorsement of Medicaid expansion – and I disagree on moral grounds as well as a matter of good government. read more

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Moral Acceptability

Every year since 2001, the Gallup organization has surveyed Americans regarding the moral acceptability of 19 social issues. These social issues range from birth control to extramarital affairs, from divorce to suicide and from human cloning to medical testing on animals.

Of the 19, the most morally acceptable behavior is the use of birth control, even across party lines. Largely accepted, although with less consistency across party lines, are divorce, sex between an unmarried man and woman, stem cell research, gambling, the death penalty, buying and wearing animal fur, out-of-wedlock births, homosexuality and medical testing on animals. read more

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Minimum Wage

I got my first job when I was 15 years old loading groceries into cars at one of the nation’s first membership stores in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. I made $2.15 an hour that, for a 15 year old in 1973, was nothing to sneeze at. After a while I got a ten-cent raise and was promoted to work inside the store in its warehouse.

I remember vividly the day that the union representative from the retail workers’ union stopped by to sign me up. He explained all of the benefits to joining the union. I knew how hard I worked and I recall asking him how much the guy pushing the broom all day was paid hourly. The union rep told me proudly, “He makes the same as you! That’s the strength of our union!” I told him I didn’t want any part of an organization that would pay that guy the same as me. We did different work. Furthermore, I did more work than the other guy and I expected to be paid more. I didn’t have anything against unions – how could I, I was 15 years old? – but I had a strong sense of self-interest. read more

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