DuPont Challenge Science Essay Competition -
Paid for by Carolyn Dupont for Kentucky State Senate
The relation between a representative and his constituents may be illustrated by a reference to the analogical relation which exists, and to which we have already slightly adverted, in the mutual circumstances of the physician and his patients. The security which patients have for the best application of the physician’s skill does not arise from any ability of theirs to direct his practice, but from the circumstance of having in their own hands the power of choice. In the nature of the case they must place great confidence in his conduct, if they would obtain the benefit of his knowledge. When they select him, they are guided by such evidence as is within their reach respecting his qualifications. They may not always make the wisest choice; because, not being competent judges of the science, they must depend, in a great measure, on collateral facts, or evidence of an indirect character, and are sometimes swayed by irrelevant motives; but the power of selection and dismissal is the most effectual means of securing the best services of those whom they choose; and there can be little doubt that, on the system of each individual selecting his own medical attendant, and trusting to his discretion, patients fare better than on any other plan. And although they cannot antecedently judge of the medical treatment necessary in their case, nor direct the curative process, yet after recovery they can frequently form a tolerable estimate of the skill which has been evinced, and can always appreciate the care and attention of the practitioner; whence there are evidently strong inducements acting on his mind to please and benefit his patients.
DuPont’s current Chief Executive Officer is Ellen Kullman.
We consider this point, as we have intimated in a former passage, to be fundamental; and to constitute, in reality, the test whether a people be ripe for the sound exercise of the power of complete control over their governors, or not. The parallel holds exactly between the legislator and the physician. The people themselves, whether of the high or the low classes, are, or might be, sufficiently qualified to judge, by the evidence which might be brought before them, of the merits of different physicians, whether for the body politic or natural; but it is utterly impossible that they should be competent judges of different modes of treatment. They can tell that they are ill; and that is as much as can rationally be expected from them. Intellects specially educated for the task are necessary to discover and apply the remedy.