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Paying for Health Care: A Primer

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Since it looks like nationalized health care is a done deal and it appears the United States has run out of money, I have come up with a primer on paying for this wonderful plan. Wait! Someone’s got to pay? What? You think money grows on trees? It comes from the Mint, silly!  Before anyone accuses me of being anti-health care, please note that I personally don't have much in the way of health insurance. However, I will admit I do not like buying something sight unseen or paying for this nebulous service on credit. Please feel free to exchange the word “tax” for “fee,” “contribution,” or “assessment.” I personally am favoring the term “duty” as it implies a sense of altruism. Levied duties double in that if it costs more to do something, it might just change ‘bad’ behavior. A two-fer, if you will.

Ten Ways to Pay for Health Care

1. Tax cigarettes and other forms of tobacco. There’s already a tax, but tax some more, and while you’re at it, get the people coming and going, the growers and the users. A smoking habit is a one-way road to lung disease and death. Those with emphysema are straining our health services. They should pay more.

2. Make pot and recreational drugs legal, then do the same as in #1. Supposedly, marijuana is one of California’s biggest cash crops, but the state can’t cash in since it’s not legal. Might as well throw the other drugs on there, LSD, peyote, crack, meth, etc. In addition to a boatload of cash revenue, the border drug wars may die down. If we make our own, why import?

3. Increase the alcohol tax. I know, it’s already taxed, but damned if those alcoholics don’t need more attention via recovery clinics and 12-step programs. Imbibers add to the cost of health care. Duty the makers, too. If hops growers and vintners have to pay to put the product out there, it will lower the demand. You have to get the hops growers and the people who sell beer- and wine-making machines, too. There's going to be a huge backlash of people making their own.

4. Obviously, there must be a surcharge on fast food. Taxing fast food is a two-pronged approach meant to save the environment. In addition to empty calories and God-knows-what added to the offerings, I have a problem with the literal garbage emitted by fast food restaurants: the paper napkins, containers, pop cups and straws. What would Al Gore do?

5. Twinkie Tax or the Ho-Ho Assessment. All junk food must be taxed. Chips, caramel corn, candy. (Oh, the insanity of it all!) Obesity is a number one strain on our health system, leading to all sorts of problems: heart disease, diabetes, you name it. White sugar is bad!

6. Tax the raw "good" food that can be made into junk/fast food. These items include butter, eggs, milk and cacao beans, because everyone knows you need those ingredients to make a bitchin’ chocolate cake.

7. Tax the immediate air around us, which we breathe. That’s right, it’s for the CO2 emissions, although don’t tell my angel trumpet plant. I’ve been breathing on it all winter long in an attempt to revive it from death. I figure it's the next thing the government will try to co-opt.

8. Fat tax. There should be a tax on each person for undue BMI. People should be taller than their circumference, unless humans are going through some sort of evolutionary process I missed since the TV has been turned off. This would be a wonderful incentive for those who need a kick in the pants to lose weight. [raises hand] That would be me too.

9. Lazy tax. There should be an immediate excise on electronics, TVs, cell phones, computers and video games. Throw cars and motorcycles in there too; many people can walk, and if they can’t, they should. Just think, we would all be fit if we would get off our big bums and move a little. Of course, there will be a special dispensation for those who purchase a WII-Fit.

10. And finally, a 90% excise tax put on those who voted for the current health care bill or who want and support it. If you think the current health care reform bill is such a great deal, put your money where your mouth is.

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About Joanne Huspek

I write. I read. I garden. I cook. I eat. And I love to talk about all of the above.
  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    At least, Joanne, you comprehend that when you haven’t got any money, you have to pay for the goodies you can’t afford somehow. Explain that to the health-care-reform-crazies, who can’t seem to cotton onto to the fact that once they’re done screaming about “free” medical care, somebody has to pay the doctor to eat. Otherwise, all those nice gentlemen (and their families) from India, Israel, Indonesia, Nigeria, Arabia and all them other places most Americans can’t find on a map will just go home.

    The insurance boys don’t have any worries. They’ll just hire thugs to shoot anyone who complains too much at the “Americare” billing office…. Oh, and what to do about all the missing doctors? Just hire Mexican illegals to work at $10 an hour. Do you think anyone will know the difference?

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Make that Honduran illegals – I don’t want to piss off Clavos….

  • http://joannehuspek.wordpress.com Joanne Huspek

    Oh boy. No “satire” label. I’m a running target.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Better running, Joanne, than stationary.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/christine-lakatos-/ Christine

    Do they still make twinkies?

  • John Wilson

    The outside cost of UHC is about $90billion per year , which we could get easily by withdrawing from Iraq, which is about half of the $192billion cost of our Occupation Armies in the mideast.

    Does anyone still believe that the Iraq occupation serves any useful American interest?

    We could pull out of Afghanistan too, since we have no real interest in the Taliban, other than that we consider them morally inferior, therefore eligible for practice bombings, etc.

    There’s also plenty fat in the $760billion defense budget, a proven waste of money.

    No new taxes needed. Just better deploy the ones we have.

  • Clavos

    I’m all for withdrawing (NOW, not in phases) from both Iraq and Afghanistan, and while we’re at it, we should withdraw ALL our occupation forces around the world: Europe, Asia, etc. Once we have them home, discharge half of them, cutting the entire DoD budget by at least 50%.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Joanne,

    If we roll back all the tax cuts and deregulation that have brought us all here to begin with, then your other taxes are probably good ideas.

    My idea is really putting your money where your mouth is. wouldn’t you agree?

    Or, is this satire? Because I really can’t see the humor.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Clavos,

    That’s a very good idea! Are you serious or being facetious?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Joanne –

    You do realize, of course, that there are tens of millions of Americans who can’t have health insurance because of their pre-existing conditions, don’t you? My oldest son is one such American. Thank you very much, but I apologize not at all for even one word I’ve said or posted for health care reform. When it’s your family member – your child – that can’t get health insurance in America when he could in any other first-world democracy on the planet, you tend to have little patience for those who claim that health care reform will somehow bankrupt the country and surely drive us into communism.

    In other words, when you know that health care reform might well make the difference between life and death for your own child, it changes your perception quite a bit.

    That said, I wouldn’t have any problem at all with your ideas except for the obviously-sarcastic numbers 8 and 10, and putting that increased revenue towards paying for our health care reform…which – if the non-partisan CBO is to be believed – will actually more than pay for itself and decrease the deficit somewhat. Of course, such a possibility is beyond the imagination of most conservatives….

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Glenn,

    Can I second your comment? It is very insulting to read this article, when you have a health problems in your family, and I’m sorry to read about your little boy.

    Have you written a new article yet? One that counters this one would be nice to read. I look forward to reading it if you have plans for one.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Glenn,

    This is so true, what you write.

    Please,don’t ever let anyone discourage you.

  • Ted

    the greater point is look at how much control over our lives the gov is going to want to exercize when they are footing the bill. except number 2 because that would be worth it.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    Your idea on the military sounds wonderful – in theory. As a far-left liberal moonbeam-watching liberal, I’d love to see the same thing. Problem is, you’re giving a simplistic solution to a hideously complex problem…and the judicious use of a sword would only make this particular Gordian knot much, much harder to unravel.

    But you know as well as I that nature abhors a vacuum, and for that reason we cannot – repeat, cannot – do as you suggest. Do you doubt for even one moment that our presence on the 38th parallel has prevented another Korean War (actually a continuation of the one that never officially ended)? Do you doubt for even one moment that China would not have invaded Taiwan had we not been there? Why do you think Japan tolerates our bases there?

    If – after the election this very week – Iraq turns out to be sufficiently stable, then YES, bring the troops home…but such stability can’t be determined overnight. Wait a few months to verify stability…and bring ‘em home. Interestingly enough, this is precisely Obama’s timeline, isn’t it?

    The bases in Europe presently serve only one positive purpose – as a staging area to logistically support our troops in the Middle East. Once we leave Iraq, we can at least partially draw down our bases in Europe.

    Afghanistan? We’d be foolish to leave. Why? Because if we leave, Pakistan must either invade Afghanistan or allow it to be used as a staging area for al-Qaeda. The Pakistanis haven’t forgotten al-Qaeda’s offensive to try to take Islamabad last year…and neither have the planners in the Pentagon. If we leave, then we put the despotic Pakistani regime in peril…which wouldn’t be bad, except for this particular despotic regime has nuclear weapons which would then be in the control of al-Qaeda.

    Do you really want to risk that? I don’t think so.

    Furthermore, as long as we’re next door in Afghanistan, Iran will NOT consider attacking Israel. I believe I can safely state that we will not leave Afghanistan until (1) Pakistan no longer faces a serious threat from insurgents, AND (2) moderates take power in Iran.

    I suspect you knew every bit of this…but you just wanted to blow off some frustration about our deficit spending. So I figured I’d give you a link to a graph showing where most of our deficit came from.

    I wonder if you’ll take the info from the graph – which are drawn from hard-and-fast numbers, mind you – and start throwing the blame where the blame is truly due. But I doubt it.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Jeannie –

    Thanks – and I’m working on an article now. I can personally guarantee that it will tick off our conservative friends no end. It’s actually rather sad and might even seem a bit distasteful to us liberals…but a small part of us will say, “See! I knew it! I just knew it!”

  • Clavos

    Glenn,

    When you go back to the real source of the story on the deficit (Matthew Yglesias is a poser and in this instance is just purloining another’s work), you find the breakdown of the contributors to the deficit is as follows is as follows:

    Cost of the “business cycle” (euphemism for recession): 37%

    Bush’s insane spending: 33%

    Obama’s spending: 30%

    So, it would seem that the responsibility can be more or less equally assigned to the two most recent administrations and the recession.

    Solution? Let’s get rid of the presidency — they’re all crooks and bums, anyhow.

    As to the withdrawal of our troops worldwide: I don’t care if Kim takes over S. Korea, and the Chinese are Welcome to Taiwan.

    The bases in Europe are not necessary even for staging for the Middle East. A little better logistical planning, with modern transport capabilities, would eliminate that “necessity” — and save a lot of money — ours. There are literally hundreds of wide body jets currently stored out in the deserts of the southwest, which the government could charter from their owners, thereby pumping money into our economy (as opposed to Europe’s), and putting a lot of people back to work.

  • Clavos

    I wonder if you’ll take the info from the graph – which are drawn from hard-and-fast numbers, mind you – and start throwing the blame where the blame is truly due. But I doubt it.

    See, that’s the problem with you — you make a lot of unwarranted assumptions about virtually everything you ponificate on, and most of them are erronous, as are most of your fallacious conclusions.

    In this case, you’re assuming, because you think you have me pegged as a Republican, that I won’t be willing to blame Bush the lesser for his profligate spending, and you are as usual, completely wrong. I am neither a Republican, nor a supporter of Mr. “nucular,” whom I consider to be a typical unlettered, southern redneck country bumpkin.

  • Arch Conservative

    While it’s all the rage right now to savage the insurance companies and retell sob story anecdotes about people who cannot afford their health care what we most often leave out is the fact that our own personal lifestyle choices are one of the biggest factors driving health care costs.

    The last time I checked there were no reports in the news about CEO’s from Blue Cross or Aetna holding guns to people’s heads to make them eat a second piece of pie after dinner. There are no men in suits from Harvard Pilgrim going from house to house sabotaging treadmills and other physical exercise apparatus.

    While we certainly need to keep on an eye on the insurance companies, the narrative that they are the only thing wrong with our system is ludicrous.

    Illegals, defensive medicine, tort reform, preventative medicine, lifestyle changes….

    Anyone claiming to be able improve the system by focusing solely on one aspect of it is selling something you don’t want or need.

    We don’t need more taxes on unhealthy things. We need more self restraint and more shame…..That’s right SHAME…..If you eat yourself into becoming a fat bastard whose ass takes up two seats on an airplane maybe it’s time to put down the f-ing ho hos

    If you’re a 17 year old girl and you think it’s cool that you already have a kid or two…..maybe you need a smack upside the head to knock some sense into you.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ted,

    If I could Re. #13,

    How much of your personal freedom has been taken away, because you are a registered driver, a library member,or a current voter?

    This bill will begin to bring us back to sanity.

    The private insurers are, an instrument originally, used by the medical profession for billing purposes. However, somewhere down the line the insurers got really greedy and realized that they could make huge profits by, denying coverage, cherry picking, and dictating what the doctors could do in-order to provide health care. Preventative care went right out the window, and we want to bring it back.

    Please allow me say again, that the right to vote was not amended until two years after the civil rights bill passed; we have to start here.

    So, the government will not have greater control, you see I have VA single payer and there is no-one in Washington causing me any problems.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Glenn,

    I can’t wait! I like your writting and look forward to more.

    I’m working on something right now, although it’s not about health care. I’m not going to stop fighting for health care reform. I just have a lot to bitch about! :)

  • http://joannehuspek.wordpress.com Joanne Huspek

    Ahem, SATIRE? Although I truly believe a whirlwind of taxes is coming down the pike to pay for this monstrosity and the other wild spending.

    Also, this is not written to be mean spirited. I myself have a pre-existing condition, and I can get health insurance. It’s costly, yes, and it doesn’t cover much, yes, and I had to sign off on my pre-existing condition for a year. We were also able to secure health insurance for our employees who wanted it who had pre-existing conditions. Yes, very expensive.

    I’m with Clavos in that the military should pull out of the Middle East. It’s not fair to the people who live there and it’s certainly not fair to our soldiers. However, if they are decommissioned once home, I imagine the unemployment would skyrocket into the 20% range or higher. MORE money out the door.

    We’re being ruled by a bunch of elitist rich politicians, both Democrat and Republican, who have one gravy boat of a health plan (for life) but can’t cut spending anywhere. The easy way is the tax highway, but that’s going to send everyone underground.

    Oh, yeah.

  • Clavos

    We’re being ruled by a bunch of elitist rich politicians, both Democrat and Republican, who have one gravy boat of a health plan (for life) but can’t cut spending anywhere. The easy way is the tax highway, but that’s going to send everyone underground.

    Quoted for Truth.

  • Boeke

    It isn’t money that fuels opposition to UHC, it’s just plain meanness.

    The numbers don’t support the anti-UHC tax arguments.

    Government intervention and control doesn’t support an anti-UHC argument.

    Americans just hate Americans. We bear incredible ill-will towards our neighbors and compatriots.

    One would be well advised to ponder that and wonder ‘why?’

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    That’s one of the consequences of liberal societies – to create individuals who are not bound by any previous sentiment or sense of togetherness but who are governed instead by their own idea of self-interest and relative independence from the social context.

    The triumph of extreme individualism, one might say.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    The outside cost of UHC is about $90billion per year , which we could get easily by withdrawing from Iraq, which is about half of the $192billion cost of our Occupation Armies in the mideast.

    the military should pull out of the Middle East. It’s not fair to the people who live there and it’s certainly not fair to our soldiers. However, if they are decommissioned once home, I imagine the unemployment would skyrocket into the 20% range or higher. MORE money out the door.

    Okay, folks.

    Time for some realistic (as in not Obama administration bullshit) type thinking.

    You shoulda passed universal health care in the 1960’s. Universal health care is an excellent idea. But you didn’t for ideological reasons – you couldn’t swallow the word “socialism” without gagging. The AMA ran endless campaigns against it – until the insurance companies cut the doctors’ balls off about 20 years ago. Now a whole bunch of you are for universal health care. Wonderful, but you missed the boat by forty years. Too bad. But you have a president who is going to shove a monstrosity of a plan down your throats anyway. So how do you pay for it?

    Pull all your boys home. I think it’s a great idea. Especially outta Israel and Arabia! I wouldn’t decommission them once they get home – you’ll have to defend against the Chinese and Russians. But you will have enough money to pay for two years of this monstrosity of a “health plan” – assuming that the costs don’t skyrocket due to H1N1 flu. And after two years? Well, you’ll need to start shutting down embassies to all those important countries in the world, like Mauritius, Haiti, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname, most of the island countries in the Caribbean, and about half of the countries in Africa. And you need to shut down USAID (important stuff, like building highways for the “Palestinians” and other such bullshit). That may get you another 6 months money.

    Wow! You’ve paid for 2½ years of a health insurance plan that will bankrupt you.

    Wait, there’s more! You can legalize a whole slew of drugs, like Joanne suggests, and sell them as government monopolies (hey, socialism can be made to pay!). Right next to the America Billing Center will be the ACORN Ameripot Sales Center, run by one of the Obama kids! Buy your own paper, roll your own roaches, no more sleazy drug dealers on the street corner. Welcome to the United Druggie States of America!

    Remembering as I do the way Americans love to use drugs, that should get you a fortune of cash! Enough to pay for maybe four more years of medical coverage.

    Then the party is over. Why? Guys like me, and there are a whole lot of us, start putting in for Social Security. Now your government can blow off the expats applying for money real easy, but try to turn down the millions and millions of local yokels (including millions of well armed white trash) who will want what they was promised!

    Not only do you have a government that is stuck with a $1 trillion a year or more in health costs, now it is stuck with a huge amount of money going out to lazy bums like me who want – and who have earned – their pension money.

    And unless someone has had the sense to nuke the bastards by then, there is still Russia, China and the Arabs to pay off, too.

    So, the only solution will be to tell the boys at the Mint to get busy with the paper money, which will soon depreciate into total worthlessness (if it hasn’t by 2011 or 2012).

    Having learned from living on the streets to watch my pennies, I know that you Americans DO NOT watch your pennies. You guys haven’t got a clue, especially the “I-want-health-care-reform-now” crazies posting here.

    Your government will shove this shit down your throats – and then leave you high and dry with money that is worth nothing and the sudden reversion to a gold standard that will leave you all broke.

    Have fun, guys!

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    When you go back to the real source of the story on the deficit (Matthew Yglesias is a poser and in this instance is just purloining another’s work), you find the breakdown of the contributors to the deficit is as follows is as follows: Cost of the “business cycle” (euphemism for recession): 37%, Bush’s insane spending: 33%, Obama’s spending: 30%

    And exactly where did you source your material from? Yglesias sourced the NYT. As far as I can tell, you resourced…nothing. I recommend providing links to prove your claims, Clavos.

    So I searched a little more and found something by The Atlantic: “The Bush year policies — the tax cuts, wars and Medicare drug bill — added $700 billion to the deficit in 2009. The recession added about $500 billion. The stimulus package added a little under $200 billion. ”

    That particular reference came from this chart from the NYT using data sourced from the Congressional Budget Office.

    OKAY? So if you’re going to claim that The Atlantic, the New York Times, and the famously non-partisan Congressional Budget Office are ALL wrong…then at least do us the favor of showing us the proof of your claim, as in credible references.

    As to the withdrawal of our troops worldwide: I don’t care if Kim takes over S. Korea, and the Chinese are Welcome to Taiwan.

    Why? Because the Koreans and the Taiwanese are “a faraway people of whom we know little”? That’s a little quote from Neville Chamberlain that I think is pertinent to our discussion.

    But let’s say we do as you say, and all of a sudden China and NK take over Taiwan and South Korea, respectively. Do you really think that Taiwan and SK would go quietly into the good night? No, they wouldn’t. You would massive destruction of two major economies with whom we do a great deal of international trade. And then – once SK and Taiwan are gone, what happens to the third-largest economy on the planet – Japan? If you’ll recall, the Koreans and Chinese have little love for them, and in such a situation, we’d be their only hope.

    Ah, but I suppose the Japanese are only “faraway people of whom we know little”, too.

    The bases in Europe are not necessary even for staging for the Middle East. A little better logistical planning, with modern transport capabilities, would eliminate that “necessity” — and save a lot of money — ours. There are literally hundreds of wide body jets currently stored out in the deserts of the southwest, which the government could charter from their owners, thereby pumping money into our economy (as opposed to Europe’s), and putting a lot of people back to work.

    Do you know why major retailers do all their overseas shipping…by SHIP? Because using jets is hideously expensive. UPS and FedEx do it because the customers are willing to pay a high premium – but Uncle Sam ain’t so willing to fork over so much for using jets to supply Afghanistan and Iraq. Furthermore, you’re forgetting that our airborne refueling fleet is already stretched to its limits using three-decade-old aircraft (which is why Boeing and Airbus are presently still in a ten-year-old battle for the contract to build a new airborne refueling fleet)…so even if we DID get all those planes together at far greater expense than the overseas bases, we wouldn’t have a way to refuel them day after day after doggone day.

    Sometimes, Clavos, the simplest solution ain’t the best. This is one such time.

  • Clavos

    When you go back to the real source of the story on the deficit (Matthew Yglesias is a poser and in this instance is just purloining another’s work)…

    That pretty well indicated that I was referring to Yglesias’ source (the NYT), Glenn. [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor]

  • Clavos

    Do you know why major retailers do all their overseas shipping…by SHIP. Because using jets is hideously expensive.

    You don’t know what you’re talking about, Glenn. Having spent thirty years in the airline industry, I can tell you unequivocally they don’t, and it isn’t for most commodities.

    You would be astonished at the number of commodities that are air shipped, including clothing, footwear, electronics, perishables, etc. In fact, pretty much everything except bulk cargo and large, heavy items like cars, yachts, and heavy machinery. For years, I operated a twice weekly DC10 freighter between Brazil and a leading US shoe company located in the Deep South, loaded to the roof with nothing but shoes. The volume of freight handled by most airlines provides them far greater profits than the passenger segment, and all of the international carriers operate widebody aircraft configured as freighters. There are dozens of all-freight carriers operating all over the world.

    And, there’s plenty of fuel in the Mideast, Glenn, it’s what’s at the root of those wars — there’s no need whatever for inflight refueling, any more than there is now, for the commercial flights currently flying those routes.

  • Clavos

    In fact, the military is flying most of its materiel already, including such large, heavy items as trucks and APCs.

    We did in Vietnam, too.

    And what I was suggesting was chartering those idle aircraft, which would actually lower the costs (compared to freight rates on scheduled flights) significantly.

  • Clavos

    One other point, Glenn. FedEx and UPS are singularly bad examples to present as proof of how costly air freight is, because they are in the express business (and with the added extra of door-to-door delivery), not the air freight business , and they charge a huge premium for their services — far more than air freight commodity rates.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Joanne,

    This sounds nice for you, however, what about those of us who have, preexisting conditions that absolutely exclude any coverage for the care that we need?
    What about those that cannot afford to put food on their children’s table let alone pay for costly insurance?

    Don’t you see, that this, bill, when passed by simple majority will drive down costs, saving taxpayer money?

    I myself have a pre-existing condition, and I can get health insurance. It’s costly, yes, and it doesn’t cover much, yes, and I had to sign off on my pre-existing condition for a year. We were also able to secure health insurance for our employees who wanted it who had pre-existing conditions. Yes, very expensive.

    I say all the time that this is, the United States of America, and we all have the right to preventative quality health care; this is still the only industrialized nation on earth without, not-for-profit health care.

    Furthermore, Taxes are not such a bad thing when everyone pays fairly, based on what they can afford; the resistance to paying, them, should not stop us from joining the rest of the world, in providing quality health care for all of our citizens.

    :) I’m glad that this wasn’t satire, because this subject is too serious to take lightly.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    I say all the time that this is, the United States of America, and we all have the right to preventative quality health care; this is still the only industrialized nation on earth without, not-for-profit health care.

    The issue here is not what you have a right to. The issue here is what you can afford. You can afford a law that prevents health insurance companies from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions. You might be able to afford a law extending a basic basket of health benefits from Medicaid to the entire population. But that is about all, and that is really stretching it.

    This is not about ideology. I am a socialist, and I believe in universal health care. I also believe in not spending more than you have. And to be blunt, you Americans don’t have a pot to piss in. You owe everybody round the world, and you can’t pay your debts.

    This Obama-care and all the loud mouthed Obama mamas screeching for it like it’s coming to them is bullshit. Grow up!! You cannot afford this crap and you will drive yourselves into penury trying to finance it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    The way to go, Ruvy, is to nationalize healthcare industry – period.

  • Clavos

    The way to go, Ruvy, is to nationalize healthcare industry – period.

    OK, but why stop with health care? Why not all industries? If it’s good (and desirable) for health care, doesn’t it then follow it’ll be good for all industries?

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Clavos,

    The way to go, Ruvy, is to nationalize healthcare industry – period.

    The problem with this solution is that a philosopher is talking policy. Getting from one place to another is not Roger’s concern. He does not want to get his hands dirty with real issues. “Philosopher-kings” are like that.

    It is a real problem that Americans are denied health-care for pre-existing conditions. It is a problem that can be addressed without too much financial outlay. But a country that is broke (like the United States) cannot nationalize entire industries unless they intend to cannibalize the money made from them and stick them in the general coffers.

    While that is probably what will happen – resulting in third-world health care becoming common in the States – that is not the pig being sold to the piggish Americans.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Healthcare is the problem at hand.

    It’s no longer possible for well-intentioned and qualified MDs to operate at the business end. The horror stories I hear from my own sister and brother-in-law, both physicians, convince me that nothing less radical would do. Otherwise, we risk natural depletion of all qualified and well-motivated personnel, and the quality of care will be at the hands of those who care the least – when volume takes precedence over quality.

    My sister objects to putting doctors on salary, on ideological grounds, because it stifles “free enterprise.” But medicine, just like teaching, ought to be a vocation, when properly understood. The way I see it, doctors on salary shouldn’t be any less motivated to do the best job they can than those who are “in business” for themselves. In fact, the latter option becomes more and more prohibitive.

    Besides, I see no immediate impediment for salaried MD personnel practicing medicine outside the governmental framework. That was quite common in Poland in the ’60s, when I was still there, and despite the fact that medical practice was, by and large, socialized.

    Hence, those who can pay can still obtain “Cadillac treatment,” and everybody’s happy.
    In fact, I happened to belong to “the privileged” class at the time – my father being a stage actor and a member of “high society. Theater tickets and tickets to cultural events, in addition to being able to pay extra, went a long way.

    It worked, for me and my parents at least.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Ruvy,

    Your problem is not only that you suffer from hatred of America. Your greatest problem is that you suffer from lack of imagination.

    So spare me your fucking epithets and think instead of those I could apply to you. I won’t, because I don’t want to and won’t insult your beliefs. But it would surely be a sign of relief if you tried to disengage this discussion beyond the realm of the personal.

    Can you rise above it and be a mensch for a change, or will you insist on being a yenta?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Kwetch was the word I was looking for.

    It describes you to a tee.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    Maybe you could back out of the middle of the United States’ health care reform bill debate, you really don’t really have a horse in this game, do you?

    OH that’s right, I forgot, you do have relatives here, So why do you not want them to have quality care?

    Please refresh my memory, when you have time.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Clavos,

    When someone says, quoted for truth, then they should provide a link to prove it, shouldn’t they? I noticed the absence of a link in #22.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Kwetch was the word I was looking for…. You’re not in Poland now, Roger. K-V-E-T-C-H is how it is spelled.

    When we lived in the States, my wife and I used the same clinic as GP’s. We got to know one of the physicians rather well outside of the professional setting, and she described how the practice had sold out to an insurance firm, and how she hated it. She described the no-minds she had to answer to and often did procedures and tests just to spite the bean counters she had to deal with. She got so disgusted with it all, that she sold out her share of the practice and stayed home to raise her kids.

    If medicine becomes a vocation like teaching is in the States, I feel very sorry for the patients. I saw the sorry state teaching was in, and the lousy salaries teachers made in Minnesota. If doctors are paid like teachers are, there will need to be tort reform real bad – there will be millions of fuck-ups daily at doctor’s offices as the good doctors (the foreigners) go home, and the natives mess up because they are not being paid enough to care anymore and as you put it, the quality of care will be at the hands of those who care the least – when volume takes precedence over quality.

    Finally, these are issues of administration that get very personal. The doctor needs to get paid. The equipment the doctors use need to be paid for. The structure presently in place, with a whole host of semi-medical functionaries under the “doctor-gods” needs to change so that the doctor – and not some flunky – deals with patients.

    But the bottom line in all of this, is that you Americans cannot afford the changes you need to be made on the governmental level because of the huge debts you have racked up on such wasteful shit as foreign aid, bases overseas that you don’t need, wars you needn’t fight, the refusal to stop terrorism on your own soil through profiling passengers, a “war on drugs” that is a joke, financing bad loans for ideological purposes, and loads of other bullshit your government has engaged in.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Maybe you could back out of the middle of the United States’ health care reform bill debate, you really don’t really have a horse in this game, do you?

    OH that’s right, I forgot, you do have relatives here, So why do you not want them to have quality care?

    Looks like you are having trouble answering my points there, Jeannie. So, you’re inviting me to back out of the discussion. Slick. As for my family in the States, to my knowledge, they have decent medical care. I want them to leave your country, because when the Obamavilles start to spring up in up-state New York, Jews will get blamed – just like they were in the 1930’s.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Teaching ought to be a vocation, Ruvy, it is not practiced as one. And I definitely don’t argue for adopting our teaching establishement as a model.

    What’s wrong with getting paid for professionals? Professors do, and so do NASA scientists. Is their work any less up to snuff for not being in business for themselves?

    The rest of your argument is non sequitur. When there is a will, there is a way.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    You miss the point, as usual, Roger. YOU are the one who used teaching as an analogy, not me. I simply expanded on your lousy analogy.

    More to the point, setting up a decent health care system requires going in to the clinics in the States and making sure that the doctors spend time with patients – even if that requires expanding a clinic’s hours. One of the things it requires for sure is getting rid of all the semi-medical flunkies at clinics who do the work the doctor should do and doesn’t. But it is not a matter of “where there is a will, there is a way.” It is a matter of the fellow leaving no will – dying intestate, as it were – and broke.

    You cannot afford to set up a decent clinical system that gets patients quality care from doctors because your country is broke. But heck, you don’t even think of such things as setting us a decent care system! I do. Public administration – not philosophy – was my major in school. It is what I was TRAINED to do.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Oh, and Jeannie,

    Your government interferes in my life. On the road leading to my village is a sign “USAID Building the Sinjil Highway for our Palestinian Friends.” That is on the road leading to my village. Then there are always the actions of your government pretending it has the right to tell us what to do in our own country.

    If the fucks in your State Department and the so-called “president” you have can interfere in MY life, I sure as hell can interfere in yours.

    You want me not to comment on “American” affairs? Get your piece of shit government out of my affairs!

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Well you sure told me, Ruvy. Do you feel better now? Good! :)Have a nice day and I really mean it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I wasn’t using the teaching as practiced in US, Ruvy, as analogy – only the idea of it. And you shouldn’t be the one telling me about missing points.

    The points, Ruvy, are that you are being motivated by hatred; and that you do suffer from lack of imagination.

    In fact, you’ve been constipated for years. So go and preach to your brethren on the other side of the world. This healthcare debate really is none of your concern, despite your claims to the contrary.

    You’re just dead wood in this particular respect. And you opinions are worthless precisely because you’re unconcerned.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    And in case you’re silly enough to pursue this debate, teaching is not nationalized in the US by any stretch of the term.

    The fact they’re called “public schools” has got nothing to do with the fact.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    The proposal of health care clinics is in the reform bill, that is why I have no trouble seeing, VA doctors. I no longer have to travel, ninety miles, just to get blood work done or whatever other need arises.

    I really believe that it is going to work out here, but hey, I’m an optimist, most of the time.

    I wasn’t trying to anger you earlier, Ruvy, I just wanted to talk.:)

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    We all have our ups and downs, that’s life.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    I’ll see ya later, Ruvy. :)

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    It’s getting late in Israel, Jeannie; after 01:00 Sunday morning. I have a long day “tomorrow”. So, I’m turning in now.

    See ya all, later.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    It must be time for all the gremlins and goblins to check in.

    Shabbat Shalom.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Bye, my friend from Jerusalem, please keep safe.

  • zingzing

    oh god. now healthcare is the death of the jews. who’s going to pay for that? should we tax jewishness?

    …we should tax people by their race. statistics could prove very useful…

    bullets (not guns, but people, because people kill guns, not people. wait.) shall be taxed!! bullets shall be attached to your online bank account, and for everyone fired, a fraction of the cost of the bullet will be deducted.

    or maybe just a general sin tax… like a national swear jar, i guess…

    instead of giving people tax credits for having kids, maybe we should tax them heavier, because god knows, giving life to something means that someone’s going to have take care of the fucking thing.

    tax credits for abortions!

    stairs shall be taxed! as will anything but carpeted floors! just in case you should fall on them, you understand.

    those who travel outside of their house or use their heart for anything other than blood circulation SHALL BE TAXED. god knows a broken heart is hard to cure and expensive through therapy.

    hospitals shall be taxed! so many people get sick and die there! tax the shit out of them!

    masturbation shall be taxed. shit makes you go blosnd. bliso. fuck. hold on. b.l.i.n.d. who’s going to pay for that?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Anything is “the death of the Jews” in Ruvy’s sight, especially if it germinates in America.

  • zingzing

    then tax ruvy! and tax america!

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I should think that Ruvy is already overtaxed. God bless his soul.

  • zingzing

    trust me, ruvy is already overtaxed. must be difficult being the ruvster.

  • Clavos
  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Talking about ruvster.

    But seriously, it must be difficult for the old chap to be getting up every morning with the same old baggage on his shoulders and getting through the day. In total agreement with you.

    BC must be heaven sent for such as he.
    It keeps him from going insane.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    I couldn’t help it, Clavos, I looked and now I want to change my name to, Sunny Muffins!:)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Stick with Button Pusher. It fits you to a tee.

  • http://www.maskedmoviesnobs.com El Bicho

    “It keeps him from going insane.”

    We need a second opinion

  • zingzing

    sunny muffins is sick, sick shit. i can’t believe they allow it on tv. i’m so angry about all the violence on the television, except i keep my wife’s severed head up there, so you know… i’ve got no room to complain.

    that show is sporadically brilliant, although i’ve only seen a few episodes. that is the seth green thing, right? robot chicken? right. maybe.

  • zingzing

    actually, i have no wife. bitch is dead to me.

  • Clavos

    Yes, it is a robot chicken piece, and yes, it’s brilliantly sick and funny at once.

    Glad ya liked it, zing. Kinda figgered it was up yer alley.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Hi Joanne,

    Well, you’ve seen where this comment threat has been taken.

    The utter unwillingness and inability to intelligently discuss public policy details by anybody on this thread (except maybe you) leaves someone who knows how to run a business with nobody to talk to.

    Roger is out of his league discussing public administration. So are zing and Jeannie. And the problem with programs is details – and the costs the details manage to ring up.

    Talking about the ruvster….

    I won’t be around to comment today. I’ll be too busy with other stuff to sit by a computer and read idiotic screeds about Foucault and Marx – or cheerleading screeds about how everyone is supposed to get behind THE ANOINTED ONE because he is only trying to get you your rights, etc., etc.

    Obama’s record as a promise breaker and major disappointment (to you Americans) is well established all over the political field. I needn’t indulge in details.

    And I won’t miss anything zing has to say – for fuck’s sake!

    So, you are on your own today. Have fun, Joanne….

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    Two things that I want to say to you this morning:

    1. I hope that I have not insulted you. I should have referred to you as my friend from Israel not Jerusalem. If this was inappropriate, I’m sorry that I used the wrong word.:(

    2. IMO, you do not have to posses a business degree or own one in order to have a say in politics, or any other subject. If you read, study, and listen to others you can gleam enough knowledge to add your perspective to any subject on Earth.

    This is one of the biggest problems that we all have in this world, I included.

    If I could just let go of some of these preconceived notions of mine, then I could move so much further towards reaching my goals in life.

    :) One of my biggest problem now is that I went from not punctuating to becoming a commakazi! So, today I am studying the comma. I’ll see you later.

  • zingzing

    what was the point of your comment ruvy? that you’re far too busy to comment? not that it’s worth having the discussion around here, because none of us know what we’re talking about (which, of course, means that we don’t necessarily agree with you). we’ll all agree that you’re much better than the rest of us, if that’ll make you happy. you’re not an arrogant blowhard at all. that good?

    and where exactly have you imparted any wisdom, except doubt? and if you’re not predicting doom, how else do you fill up your time anyway? i’d bet that we can all figure out what you’re going to say before you even say it by this point. so why bother? oh, you’re not.

    joanne’s big idea (well, sort of…) is to tax everything that’s good in life. your big idea is that we can’t afford it, so why bother. not exactly rocket scientist level analysis.

  • zingzing

    burger king, i think. meh. anyone can get down on their luck now and again. i’d bet that’s a pretty tough hole to dig yourself out of, so got to give him credit for that.

  • Zedd

    I thought you were serious at first then realized that its just another pronouncement from another out of touch, reality deprived, clock is ticking oblivious, weeeee thinking, frightening member of our society.

    Can we at least make an effort to look at what’s really going on in the world and our country… just a little??? It’s free, no cost involved. The Paris Hilton, Sara Palin, malaise thingy is old.

  • Zedd

    Actually the dumb act is rather putrid. You have some brain cells. Can you at least google instead of simply pronouncing the same stale political yarn. Okay you hate taxes. Who likes them??? Move on. We have a huge issue in our hands. Where are the solutions? You know those things that pop up when you actually use your brain.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    That was a low blow and I apologize to the ruvster. But then again, with an MA in public administration and his breath of experience . . .

    Well, you know what I mean.

  • Zedd

    roger!

    how could you!

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Stoop so low, you mean?

    I ain’t no saint, Zedd. At least I try to apologize for my transgressions when I see the error of my ways.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    The examples you gave of air freight are all LIGHTWEIGHT. When you’re talking about HEAVY equipment – tanks and their parts, Humvees and their parts, hundreds of pallets of ammunition, pumps, piping, valves, industrial-sized generators, and all the rest of the logistic demands of a war effort – the equation is radically different.

    And there’s one more concern – did you pick up on the news stories last year of our troops’ supply convoys being ambushed in Pakistan? Now why are they being ambushed in Pakistan? The answer’s actually fairly easy – much of our supplies are coming overland from India, and as much as the Pakistanis hate the Indians, they’re allowing us to supply our troops by convoy through their nation.

    Now why wouldn’t we want to supply our troops by air? For the same reason the Russians had a real problem back in the 80’s – shoulder-launched anti-air missiles. You don’t hear about them using such right now…but it’s not because they can’t get them. It’s because we keep our air traffic there to a minimum to keep them from having a target-rich environment.

    Clavos, when the military does something, there’s usually a good reason why. When a flag officer receives orders to accomplish a certain mission, he will do his best to make it happen with a minimum of risk to personnel, materiel, and funding…in that order.

    But that is not to say we shouldn’t slash the military budget. First on the chopping block should be my beloved aircraft carriers, the most expensive single item in the military (except for pensions, benefits, and other personnel costs).

  • Tony

    What if we stopped spending billions on creating tools to kill people and use that money for healthcare? I know every good, patriotic American should have no problem with their tax money being sent to kill Arabs and build schools in Iraq, but maybe its time we divert those billions towards the infrastructure of the country and the well being of American people.

    I don’t care which political party you support. By supporting either party you are essentially pledging faith in X politician to represent you and look out for your well being. And yet there are large factions of the American people who would rather trust companies (insurance, medical, pharma) that LITERALLY do not make money unless YOU CONTINUE TO BE SICK. Again, let me reiterate, if you were never sick again your insurance company, doctor, and drug provider would all go out of business. And yet you trust them to make sure you stay healthy instead of these people you so vehemently work and argue to elect and support. Is the irony in that really so in unobvious?

    Health care, as well as public works programs to turn out of work Americans back into consumers that can support the national economy, can easily be paid for by slashing the defense budget. No need to raise taxes, no need to further inflate our currency. Its all about priorities. And the priorities of the American people on both sides are idiotic at best and self destructive at worse.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Americans are the most individual bastards that have ever walked the face of the earth.

    And they pride themselves for the fact, invoking the notions of individual freedom and liberty.

    Idiotic, definitely, but all so American.

  • Clavos

    The examples you gave of air freight are all LIGHTWEIGHT. When you’re talking about HEAVY equipment – tanks and their parts, Humvees and their parts, hundreds of pallets of ammunition, pumps, piping, valves, industrial-sized generators, and all the rest of the logistic demands of a war effort…

    All can be, have been, and are, moved by air.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Jeannie,

    You needn’t apologize to me at all. You don’t push my buttons. And you don’t get me annoyed, either. I live in Samaria, or Ma’alé Levoná, or if you want to be fancy about it, Gush Shiló (that’s pronounced goosh sheeló), the Shiló Bloc. All these places are in Israel.

    I used to live in Jerusalem, in a southeastern neighborhood, know as Talpiót MizráH or East Talpiot. The neighborhood is also known as Armón haNetzív – the Hill of Evil Counsel. The actual Hill of Evil Counsel is the UN HQ – a fitting approbation for the United Nothings.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Hill of evil? I thought that’s where I lived!

    :)Thanks Ruvy, my brother thought that I might have insulted you by calling you that. I have my names for everyone here, and yours is one of the nicer ones! LOL

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    All can be, have been, and are, moved by air.

    Yes, that’s very true. But what you’re ignoring is that while you can move lots and lots of sneakers and shirts and jeans by air, you CAN’T move lots and lots of tanks and Humvees and industrial generators and fuel and water by air.

    I saw a study last year showing that by airlifting fuel bladders to where they were needed in Afghanistan, the end user – the Apache helicopter squadrons – were basically paying something like $140 per gallon for fuel!

    Clavos, you may have a wealth of experience with civilian aircraft. You’ve got some experience in the military too, IIRC. But you don’t have a whole career behind you. You haven’t had to see the big logistical picture from the military point of view.

    Your argument is really not much different from that of those who think that they could pretty much get rid of the Navy – why not just use missiles and long-range bombers and airborne Rangers. But any military historian (including a rank amateur like myself) can tell you that it just doesn’t work that way. Logistics, Clavos. A secure and robust chain of logistics is worth more than a preponderance of firepower – as we relearned in Vietnam.

  • Clavos

    Give me the more than three hundred widebodies currently stored in the deserts, and I’ll move the world for you — and a LOT cheaper than the military C5s can do it — at charter rates.

    Believe it. The aviation industry has been doing it for decades.

    The only reason it hasn’t happened already is the military doesn’t want to give up their hegemony over the logistics — protecting their turf.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/realist Realist

    There is one practical problem to your idea, Joanne: how do you collect such taxes? Dave has a loaded shotgun standing next to the door should any revenooer show up to demand Caesar’s due!

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Jeannie,

    IMO, you do not have to possess a business degree or own one in order to have a say in politics, or any other subject. If you read, study, and listen to others you can glean enough knowledge to add your perspective to any subject on Earth.

    A holder of an MBA or any other “business” degree would violently object to calling a degree in public administration a “business degree”, even though it is one – dealing with the business of the public. But that aside, I agree with you. I don’t need a special degree in fine arts to write a decent article or story, and neither do you. And neither of us needs a special university degree to understand what is going on around us. But my degree in public administration, my career as a manager of a fast food restaurant – AND having participated at the top level of running an anti-poverty agency in St. Paul – qualifies me to talk about how to administer a health plan in the States.

    There has been a intelligent discussion of public administration here – between Clavos and Glenn – over the logistics of moving heavy equipment by air. Unfortunately, this discussion does not enlighten anyone on how to improve health care delivery, and accessibility in the United States – except as it might deal with transporting heavy medical equipment by air.

    Windy philosophical arguments don’t either, and neither does cheerleading – which is mostly what you’ve been doing.

    The devils are in the details. For example, do you use disposable paper gowns, or cloth gowns sterilized? Do you use one time throwaway injection needles? Or do you sterilize injection needles that you purchase once and reuse over and over, sterilizing after each use? These little details determine how much a hospital has to charge just to break even on its expenses.

    Similarly, how do you structure a clinic? Do you structure it with dozens of para-medics who come in on the cheap, while using the doctor only for the most serious decisions? Or do you reduce all the staff to a minimum so that the doctor really knows his patients? Again, details, details and more details.

    In paying for any health plan, where your tax money will be used (assuming that miraculously, the dollar retains its value past mid 2011) to pay for health care and to structure it – a rather big and important question – is one that needs to be settled before you get “Obama-care” shoved sown your throat.

    “Hope and change” looked good in Oct. 2008. Now, from what I read and hear increasingly from your shores, people just hope they have the change to get by. Cheerleading for a dream got you Obama. Wake up and look at the details this time.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    Since the word Business is in the center of MBA, a business degree describes that bit of expensive paper.

    You have experience feeding the poor? Please continue in that field and improve nutrition in hospitals.

    When my father-in-law was in our local for-profit facility he refused to eat the out-sourced crap that they were trying to pass off as food, so the hospital staff let me prepare real meals at home and take them to him; even they knew that they were cutting the wrong corners in the never ending quest for the profit

    Eat Real exercise, and stay away from the Docs. -Leonard Danna 1919-2006

    :( I still miss him and I always will…

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    As far as who has the best ideas on how to run health care or cheer for it, how about we pass the damn thing and then get on the road to a healthier country in my lifetime and yours.

    I don’t care if you call me a cheerleader, because when it comes to OBAMA, I am.

    Give me an O!, Give me a B!, Give me an A!, Give me an M!, Give me another A! What’s that spell? OBAMA!!!

    :)Thanks! Have a wonderful day!

  • Arch Conservative

    “Having learned from living on the streets to watch my pennies, I know that you Americans DO NOT watch your pennies. You guys haven’t got a clue, especially the “I-want-health-care-reform-now” crazies posting here.”

    That’s just great Ruvy. You speak the truth but it hurts too many Americans to hear Ruvy. We’re too arrogant.

    I find myself facing an odd dichotomy lately. On the one hand I’m becoming so much more aware of just how arrogant, ignorant, and materialistic so many of my fellow Americans are.

    On the other hand I still cannot divorce myself from the idea that if my personal philosophy is that the individual, as long as they’re not harming anyone else, has the absolute right to be left alone by the state and other members of the citizenry to do pretty much whatever the hell they want, whenever and wherever they want to do it, then America is still the best place to be by far.

    I think it was Mark Steyn who pointed out in one of his books that I read the fact that life in modern day America over the past hundred years or so has been unique in that it’s been an extraordinarily peaceful and propserous period which has very rarely been seen in the course of human history.

    So while we are bitching about our corporate sponsored government (because we have the right and they are screwing us) we might do well to pause for a moment every now and then to appreciate what we do have and compare/contrast our own lives with those of others’ in other areas of the world today.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    Please read this article and my comment to Braden.

    I’m very patient with you, Ruvy and even allow you to insult me here on many occasions. I try to turn the other cheek, something that Christ taught to many of us.

    However, I am fed up with your attempts to minimize my intellect, contributions to this health care debate, and to this site.

    I can debate health care as well as you, if not better.

    I just happen to have a deep and abiding respect for you Ruvy, and that reason is personal.

    :)Have a nice day!

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Arch,

    “Having learned from living on the streets to watch my pennies, I know that you Americans DO NOT watch your pennies. You guys haven’t got a clue, especially the “I-want-health-care-reform-now” crazies posting here.”

    Please don’t judge people by what you think you know about them.

    I literally grew up in the streets of this country, and I didn’t always have the wonderful family support that I appreciate today. I am very thankful for my life and all that it has afforded me as an adult.

    Furthermore,I lost many friends to the street, six of them were very close to me and committed suicide. I don’t like to just fling this information out here, but you apparently could benefit from knowing these facts.

    So before you go judging everyone that posts here, do a little research, OK?

    We have a lot more in common than uncommon.

  • Ruvy

    Jeannie,

    The wind has died down and I don’t think it will knock out the electricity (like it did earlier in the day), so I can afford to answer you.

    1. Braden is a conservative blogger – did you catch that point? You need to sell him on socialized medicine. You do not need to sell me – not at all. I believe in socialized medicine and always have. I tried to see if I could move to Canada 35 years ago precisely because they had socialized medicine – and America did not. I agree with you that you should have universal health care!

    2. Now it is time for you to read one of my comments at this article by Joanne Huspek, comment #7. Follow the links. The links give you an idea of what you should have, and what your government should have instituted about a half century ago, when there was the real wealth to do it America.

    3. The issue is not whether or not you should have socialized medicine – you should! The issue is whether you can afford it. And the answer is that you can’t!

    As late as 1993, when Clinton was in office, the late Paul Wellstone introduced single payer universal health care. As late as 1993-94, you still could have introduced and not busted the budget, and in addition, you might have been able to even reform the way health care is delivered – so that instead of 5 minutes with a doctor, you would get 25, and the kind of care you deserve, instead of the kind of care that insurance firms are willing to pay for with your money.

    4. When I had a heart attack in Jerusalem at the end of 2003, one of my visitors was this woman we know who is an obstetric nurse who knows how to say “push” in 7 languages. She started top explain how using single use items (throwaway needles, etc) really raised the cost of health care. In Israel this means that nurses are rationed, and the patients families provide a significant part of the health care. But, because this fits in with the culture in the Middle East, it is not as bad as it might seem, were it adopted in America.

    5. The GP we go to here has one part-time secretary. That’s it. That’s all the two doctors need.

    6. But all this is irrelevant. What is relevant is that your nation is so deep in debt it cannot afford to assume the kind of expenses that a good national health care system will entail. You will go broke anyway because this incompetent putz you cheerlead for will bring you to penury through the trillions of worthless dollars he has ordered minted. But if your country passes this bill, you will arrive at penury even faster, and will find yourself overwhelmed in a society falling apart. And then you will really need the strong family ties you have managed to build for your family after growing up in an unstable and difficult childhood.

    Speaking to you personally, Jeannie, you deserve praise for having accomplished this. Too many times children with difficult childhoods pass the instability on to their own children, and I’m guessing you have managed to avoid doing so. May you continue in togetherness, strong with love and faith.

    7. The issues I have raised in this comment thread attempts to deal with why medical care expenses seem to skyrocket. You have addressed none of these at all. This does not say that you are not intelligent, or that you do not understand how to debate, or that your participation should be minimized.

    Jeannie, you are an intelligent and passionate woman who has overcome many obstacles in her life. And you are a very good writer. The mere fact that we disagree on things does not diminish my respect for you.

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Well Ruvy,

    I just read this comment and I will have to respond later.

    Jeannie

  • http://jeanniedanna.wordpress.com/ jeannie danna

    Ruvy,

    First, an apology to you, I don’t like hurting any one’s feelings that takes this much time, energy, and expensive electricity to comment directly to me.

    Second, we can afford to pass this bill and it will pass with simple majority.

    What others have already said on many of these threads, “Let’s pass this bill so that we can move forward towards a Healthier country.”

    People shout, cry, and lament that it is the economy that needs help first.

    However, the elephant in the room is this out of control privatized for profit monster.

    Until we address health care, we cannot begin to build this country back up from the ground where it lays today.

    :)Thanks for continuing to debate with me.

  • Sp. Bob

    The right wing media got to you:

    1. The bill actually reduces the deficit. If it had a public option, then it (the deficit) would go down even more.

    2. Where’s the government takeover? Nevermind that most of healthcare is already government (medicare, tax breaks for businesses, etc.) If, say, it was a government takeover, then you should be in favor of it. Here’s why:

    Let’s say we replaced our system with Japan’s (or anyone’s, really). Then the government would save over $1 trillion per year, we’d ALL be covered, and we’d see the doctor twice as much.

    A socialized system, combined with federal barganing for prices, would almost wipe out our deficit and be less of a burden on American businesses. Why are there so many car factories in Ontario and not in Detroit? Hmmm…

    A whirlwind of taxes is going to come down on America, and it is well deserved. Seeing as we’ve been fighting numerous wars now and lowering taxes, generally for the rich, I think high taxes is a great way to send the baby boomers off the cliff. And well deserved too.

    You conservatives pine for the 50’s but forget taxes for the highest bracket was 90%. That communist Eisenhower!