Saturday, August 15, 2009

I'm probably preaching to the choir

You'd think there was an election coming up what with all the political ads on the US channels. I'm pretty disconnected emotionally from the health care debate going on since it makes no impact on our lives. But it's impossible to ignore since everyone (the world over it seems) is going on and on about it. I can tell you that from the Canadian perspective, we're all scratching our heads going, "Are they really this dumb?" The last time we asked ourselves that was when Bush got elected the second time. Just a few of my observations.

1. Clearly there are some huge profits that are trying to be protected. Those who stand to gain from the status quo are being allowed to shape the debate. This is brokenness in action.

2. Note to protesters. If you want to be taken seriously, spell the words on your signs correctly. I know it's time consuming to make the signs so I suggest taking the extra step of spell checking it first. Otherwise, why not just wear a sticker on your forehead that says IDIOT.

3. I don't think there is any real news anymore. Even on the evening national news programs the anchors are "tut-tutting" and rolling their eyes at the stories they are delivering. This is not news, this is something more akin to propaganda.

4. That one sixth of your countrymen are unable to procure or afford health insurance is abominable. (And I'm surprised I haven't seen that last word paired with the president's name yet.)

5. Medicare is socialized medicine. It's already a part of the system. Try to pull your head out.

6. Finally, that once again, Americans don't believe that they can learn anything from other countries' systems. The hubris is staggering.

I don't expect everyone to agree with me. I mean if I were fat and happy with my insurance, I'd resist change too. But that's the "me first" attitude that so typifies America. I just can't believe that this whole idea that "the poor don't deserve health care" is something people really feel. There's no other word for that except wrong.


Anonymous said...

As one of the 47 Million Americans with no health insurance I agree with everything you say. The big companies are afraid when Obama says he's going to hold down costs. They have always been able to gouge at will. Government ran programs couldn't possibly be good. You mean like Social Security? Yes, the GOP was opposed to that too. FDR had the same arguments about socialism way back when. How much is it costing now to cover all of the emergency room treatments of the uninsured? ed

Frank B said...

I think a lot of us agree with you. The anti-health care noise is being paid for lock stock and barrel, and the numbers in opposition are not what they appear.

There are, however, so very stupid people in the US who can be frightened by out right lies, and do no seem to have the ability to check the facts.

GayProf said...

Americans have been told for decades that they need to nourish their greed and think of themselves first. Notions, like a commitment to their fellow citizens, are lost.

anne marie in philly said...

I hears employer offers NO insurance; he doesn't have to since he employs only 6 people. thank the FSM I am on spouse's policy, but if he loses his job, there goes our health insurance!

we are not old enough for medicare either! I am soon-to-be 55, he is soon-to-be 50.

right now, our insurer (cigna) tells us which doctors we can see (in network), how much they will pay for an office visit or a test, and how much we will pay out of our pocket. some f-ing suit in a cubicle decides MY healthcare, NOT my doctor and me! f-ing insane!

and the right wing asshats have their heads up their asses and parrot back whatever rush and bill and sarah tell them to say!

98% of this country is f-ing stupid!

Blobby said...

I'm so tired of these assholes crying against a healthcare plan.

Envoke social Darwinism, I say. Let the ones who complain about it get nothing.

G said...

Bingo!!! It is getting worse now that they are advocating violence. They are taking guns to town hall meetings. Hangings in effigy. Some one is going to do something stupid and all hell is going to break loose. We may move to Vancouver. Look out Davie street.

Mel said...

Considering I've been in favor of a single payer or socialized system since I first learned of the concept 25+ years ago, I guess I am a member of the choir. For all the good it's done.

Anonymous said...

Your analysis of the situation is very good. I only wish that others could see what you see. Here is an article which I read recently in a British newspaper which seems to assess the situation well.
Chuck, Montreal

Mark in DE said...

Your comments make perfect sense to me.

Anonymous said...

The problem with transitioning to a government run system is that you'll displace a lot of people.

My ex used to work in the coding section for Blue Cross/Blue Shield RI. I was told regular horror stories of what BCBS would pull.

And it was even exposed that they were buying influence in the legislature. Yet they still go on today, screwing people while they can.

wcs said...

Right on.

I could go off on a rant, but I'll spare you. You'd agree, and you've heard it all before.

Have a nice day! :)

em said...

I love you.

Now is the time for every American who agrees with you to be active and fight the greed of the health insurance companies. They will succeed in watering down healthcare reform if we don't.

Write letters to the editors. Visit your elected representatives. Call them if you don't want to visit. This is the congressional switchboard number. (202)224-3121 I believe without a robust medicare like public option available on day one included in the final bill this will not be real reform. We can push through real reform if we work on it.

Also I'm calling the White House (202-456-1111) every day this week and letting them know that regional co-ops are not acceptable to me because they won't change the status quo enough to be real reform. I was for single payer, but Americans are too afraid of the health insurers lies, so we can't have that system. Without the public option though, insurers will have no meaningful competition and there is no way anything will change. That's what they want, and they are paying 1.4 million dollars a day, blood money, raised from our premiums, to fight against American best interest.

Fight with me, everyone who thinks the current American Healthcare system is a failure! We can do it.

BTW, did you see the thing about RAMUSA being in Inglewood at the Forum? An organization formed to provide medical access for rural people in third world countries here in LA for a week, providing healthcare to people who don't have access otherwise. Some of them are uninsured and unemployed, but some of them aren't. Yay, capitalism as the best way to treat our citizens' health!

Ur-spo said...

I thought you spot-on.

latt├ęgirl said...

Since the rest of the choir has spoken (or sung), I'll just say thanks for writing these thoughts.

I also agree with your view of the news, such as it is. I stopped watching the news; been awhile now; the choice of coverage and the incessant spin and analysis made me ill. For me, no news is good news. The less I know, the better. Some folks argue that I'm willfully ignoring what's going on in the rest of the world. Yes, I am. I gladly leave the placard-waving, hand-wringing masses to their own devices, and work to make my little piece of this world as happy a place as I can.

dpaste said...

Can't say I disagree with any of those points.

Rebekah said...

As these comments show, not all americans are believing the hype. Not all americans are resisting change... All the 300+ pages of ideas of health care are not what people want to read. It takes thoughts, not sound bites, and when people stop reading the news or watching the news and only get their daily dose from an internet site with which they already agree, change also comes slowly.

We need healthcare for everyone, and we need it now, but after that, the details are what are bogging a lot of otherwise sane people down. I'm not talking about the stupid "death panel" comments either.

This takes thought.

carlnepa said...

Amen Amen and Amen to everything that's been written. I live in Pennsylvania where Northeast Blue Cross (and not for profit health insurance provider) has racked up $400,000,000 surplus but refuses to say where they'll spend it and on what. In the meantime they pay local politicians like State Senator Bob Mellow from Lackawanna County $30K/year to sit on their board, presumably thinking about how he and his state cronies can get their hands on that delicious surplus.

Geisinger Health Care, another supposedly not for profit health care and HMO provider, which also dominates coverage in our area, pay it's CEO something like $2,500,000 plus bonuses and all kinds of tasty goodies. They pay accountants to tell me I can't take more than one Prevacid per day while he's getting paid this kind of money. I get billed for $250 deductible every Sept 1 that's due immediately. I get nasty letters saying this bill is due now. I see to Geisinger doctors,I use Geisinger facilities for tests whenever I can and I still get bills that my Geisinger HMO doesn't cover the charges from a Geisinger facility. When you ask, you're told that the HMO and the facilities are separate entities. But wouldn't you think they'd know what they charge? I guess they're too busy worrying about how many Prevacids I take.

nae-nae perkins said...

You know I agree with you 100%. As you know, my partner lost his healthcare when he became unemployed three years ago. When that loss happened, he stopped taking his anti-depressants as well as some other important medications because basically, it came down to being able to afford the meds or having food on the table and a roof over our heads. The selfishness and greed of my fellow Americans is staggering. If only Canada would accept Healthcare Refugees, we'd be in Vancouver in a heartbeat.

Lemuel said...

I could not agree with you more!
As for "abominable", my mind races to your second point and I have my answer: they a) do not know the word and/or b) cannot spell it. :)

Patrick said...

Yup, I'm singing with ya. I really don't understand why people believe a socialized medical system would be more of a mess than a military, police, firefighters, or public schools. And some of the most rabid protesters against a single payer system I know are themselves on medicare. They just don't see the comparison. Makes me a little crazy.