Tom says he's no Rick Santorum [3]. And thank god for that. In 2006, Santorum said he was against individualism, libertarianism, and much more [4]:

One of the criticisms I make is [of] this whole idea of personal autonomy ... this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues.

I'm certainly glad that Tom's no Rick Santorum. You might think Rick Santorums are rare in the UK. If only [5]:

I don't like choice. No, sorry that was a lie. I hate choice. I detest it. Simplicity is best. . . . 

To me, a hospital and a doctor serve a function. Its not complicated. If I get sick I go to my doctor, he gives me a prescription. If I get really sick I phone 999 they take me to a big white building and put me in a bed. Since when did it all get so complicated? I don't want to book a surgeon. I don't want to choose my care, to rate my food, to score my surgeon. This is not X-factor this is my health. I am an historian not a medical genius. I would much prefer it if my doctor or hospital made my choice for me. What scares me the most is that if my entire life experience of consumer choice has been frustration at the rise in prices, why should it be any different in the NHS? Am I crazy? Am I the only person who does not want choice?

That's lefty blogger Eoin Clarke applying the philosophy of Santorumism to healthcare. After reading his whole post at "The Green Benches" [5], including a story about the agony of choice at Starbucks, I wonder if "The Green Ink [6]" might be a better title for his blog instead.

I can't stand the Santorumist view that some jumped-up prig in government should be able to interfere in my private life. Most people in Britain shudder at the thought of Rick Santorum. And so they should. But they should also shudder at his meddling, father-knows-best worldview being applied to the rest of their lives, including their healthcare.

Privacy isn't just a good thing when it comes to sex. Santorum's collectivist delusions about controlling your bedroom are bad, but Clarke's collectivist delusions about controlling your healthcare are hardly any better.

Update: Simon Cooke has more thoughts on choice [7] in bread and cheese, and what that means for healthcare and education.