"A healthy 30-year-old young man has a good job, makes a good living, but decides, you know what? I'm not going to spend $200 or $300 a month for health insurance because I'm healthy, I don't need it. But something terrible happens, all of a sudden he needs it. Who's going to pay if he goes into a coma, for example? Who pays for that?" asked host Wolf Blitzer.
Paul, a medical doctor, first responded by saying American society is primed to believe government would pay for it.
"Well, in a society that you accept welfarism and socialism, he expects the government to take care of him,' he said.
When pressed on the question, Paul responded: "That's what freedom is all about, taking your own risks," to applause from many tea party backers in the audience.
"But Congressman, are you saying that society should just let him die?" asked Blitzer, to which several voices in the audience cried out, "Yes!"
To his credit, Ron Paul himself said no, but his own answer is a bit unsettling in its own right, and reveals a terrible knowledge of American history.
"No. I practiced medicine before we had Medicaid, in the early 1960s, when I got out of medical school. I practiced at Santa Rosa Hospital in San Antonio, and the churches took care of them. We never turned anybody away from the hospitals," said Paul to additional applause. "And we've given up on this whole concept that we might take care of ourselves and assume responsibility for ourselves. Our neighbors, our friends, our churches would do it. This whole idea, that's the reason the cost is so high. The cost is so high because they dump it on the government, it becomes a bureaucracy," he added.
Congressman, we tried that for the first 150 years of America, and we ended up with people who were starving in Applachia and dying in our streets. Old people were living in the most extreme forms of poverty until the New Deal, and I note that your own experience with treating the indigent began in the 1960s, well after the New Deal's fabulous implementation of safety nets.
Indeed, most Americans never even had health insurance until after World War II, when FDR's mandatory disability insurances were expanded to cover illnesses and injuries off-site. A government program YOUR HOSPITAL BENEFITTED FROM to treat the indigent. Idjit!
Lest you think those in the audience who actually shouted "Yes!" were some form of liberal plant, I give you this:
Paul, an unapologetic isolationist, defended his views, and said that Santorum’s contention that the country was attacked by Al Qaeda because the terrorist organization resented America’s position in the world was wrong.
“This idea that whole Muslim world is attacking us because we’re free and prosperous, that is just not true,” Paul said.
Many in the crowd began to boo and hiss, drowning out Paul as he attempted to explain Muslim sympathies for the plight of the Palestinians.
Clearly, a position more in keeping with liberal doctrine, that American hegemonic ambitions had more to do with the terror attacks of 1983 and 2001 than our "freedoms" or prosperity.