I didn't watch this weeks' Rebublican debate in its entirety, but did get to watch Ron Paul's defense of a private market healthcare system with no role for healthcare. His libertarian defense - if a 30 year old uninsured male has a catastrophic illness it's his fault for not planning ahead - is of course a very cynical view of the world. Ron Paul's response is simply that in the old days, when he started as a physician, churches would chip in to help out someone like this. Is a safety net that is the church any better than the government? Either way, the conclusion is a safety net is needed. People make bad choices, sometimes they aren't in the position to make the right choices, and either way, uninsured people are bad for everyone (e.g. pandemic viruses, orphaned children). We need a safety net! Should we systematically put churches in that role? Whats the difference!
And relatedly, Jon Huntsmann staffers were disgusted by this line of reasoning too.