Government Helping Us Save OUR Money

What does anybody have against private health & retirement plans? If some people take care of themselves, it is easier to provide for those who cannot or will not do so. Government has a legitimate interest in encouraging smart behavior through the tax code. If someone removes himself from the dependent population, we should praise him not punish with punitive taxes.

The mechanisms for helping wage earners help themselves are long established and tested. Since the middle of the 1980s, the Federal government has helped its employees with the Thrift Savings Plan allows employees to save up to $15,000 a year tax deferred and matches 5% of the employee salary. (click on TSP features & look at the returns) More recently, they have a health savings plan where participants can contribute up to $5000 per family tax free to pay for medical bills and insurance payments with pre-tax dollars.

We should be able to take care of ourselves with Health Savings Accounts, Roth IRAs etc. And these things should be expanded. Why not raise the Roth limit, for example?

Some complain that health savings accounts & tax sheltered retirement plans are tax breaks and when you give a tax break you giving people money. There are two answers to that. First of all, the government should not have prior right to its citizens' money. Letting you keep some of your own money is not the same as giving you money raised by taxes except in a purely technical accounting sense. Morally, it is very different. Second, it is the difference between an expense for consumption and an investment. Encouraging people to invest for their futures saves money and increases revenue later. "Investing" $4000 in a trip to Florida is not the same as investing it in a retirement plan. All spending is not created equal.

Of course the real argument is a dog in the manger appeal to equality. Not everyone will save money for their own retirement. That means that some people will be better off than others. A logical person would say, "Good, if some people take care of themselves the whole society will be better off". Good choices should be rewarded. The more envious among us will just see this all as unfair.

We have a choice. You have a choice. You can choose to save and encourage your government to make saving easier and more rewarding. Or you can waste your money on today's consumption and encourage your government to punish those who save by taxing them more. The choice is clear, as long as your vision is not clouded by envy.

We Americans don’t save enough. Our tax system still to some extend punishes saving. The simple fixes above could help change this situation. We can simply help people do for themselves or we can set up complex government programs to do the same things for people. Simple is better.

P.S. Think of non savers as the people on the escalator. Watch the director’s cut.

Posted by Jack at April 5, 2006 11:35 PM
Comments
Comment #138323
What does anybody have against private health & retirement plans?

Umm…. Private health plans are too expensive. Duh.

Posted by: American Pundit at April 6, 2006 12:03 AM
Comment #138326

Jack:

I had one of those health savings accounts at one time. If you couldn’t use it all within the year, you paid a high penalty, higher than the tax rate. I won’t be fooled into that again, ever.

Posted by: womanmarine at April 6, 2006 12:06 AM
Comment #138327

Seriously Jack. There’s a book by Barbara Ehrenreich called “Nickel and Dimed”. You should read it and find out how the other 80% of us live.

An HSA is useless if you don’t have $5,000 to contribute — but it makes an excellent tax shelter for those who already have a plan.

Posted by: American Pundit at April 6, 2006 12:10 AM
Comment #138329

Woman

I grew up at a time when dental care was less good and sugar was even more common. If I ever have any money left over, I just get one of my teeth fixed. You need to anticipate your usage, but it is a good deal if you do.

AP

I am not sure what you mean. It is a good and necessary thing to save for retirment. Anyone who depends only on SS better get used to cat food. People should save as much as they can and then save a little more. The future comes quickly. And the government can help by not taxing those savings. It is doing itself a favor by cutting the rate of future dependency.

So, yes it looks expensive, but considering the alternative it is cheap.

Posted by: Jack at April 6, 2006 12:12 AM
Comment #138331

Jack:

Like people can really anticipate what their medical needs are going to be? Come on, mr. realist.

Get a tooth fixed?

And if you don’t or aren’t able to anticipate your usage it’s a lousy, expensive deal.

Please, sing a different song for a while.

Posted by: womanmarine at April 6, 2006 12:16 AM
Comment #138334

I just signed up for a new health insurance plan today.
$410 for me and my wife (both age 48).
It has a $10,000 deductible, unless it is an accident, in which it is $5,000.
After the deductible is reached, 100% is covered.

I also opened an HSA (Health Savings Account):
[] It is not one of those “Use it, or lose it” plans.
[] It is a “Use it, or save it” plan.
[] Also, any unused funds roll over.
[] And the money put into it is 100% tax deductible!.
[] How do you use the plan? Just write checks (against the balance in the HSA account) or charge medical expenses to the HSA Visa card for medical expenses.
[] And, the funds also earn 6.15%. Not bad.
[] Also, you can contribute as much or as little as you like. It only takes $50 to start it.
[] The funds can also be used to pay for insurance premiums.
[] If you use the funds for something other than medical expenses, it is taxable.
[] Anyone is eligible.
[] Medical expenses also include dental and vision (pre-tax).

If you are interested in it, see: http://www.1hsa.com

Unfortunately, tax deductions like this make taxes more complex, and make potentail tax reform (if ever addressed) just that more difficult.

I got a 100% plan, because the problem with the 80%/20% or 70%/30% plans is that 20% or 30% of a small fortune is still a fortune. It is still economically devastating.

At any rate, the problem with Health Care costs is primarily due to unnecessary middle men, and those that don’t pay.

Massachussetts just passed a law that makes health insurance mandatory. I don’t know how that can work, but I’m sure many (at this moment) will say it is wonderful. We will see.

But, have you ever thought about the millions of people that work in the medical insurance business ?
Do you think they’re really providing you a necessary service?
Think again. Why pay all of these people unnecessarily?
Why not pay medical providers directly?

PROBLEM: Government and insurance companies set up a bureaucratic system with themselves as middlemen, resulting in:
(01) skyrocketing costs;
(03) increasing medical insurance premiums;
(04) increasing malpractice insurance for health providers;
(05) increased taxes;
(06) institutionalized medical fraud;
(07) proliferation of fraud, and ridiculously high, multi-million dollar judgments (making the ambulance chasing lawyers rich mostly);
(08) an over-complicated system, confused by too many parties with conflicts of interest;
(09) insurance companies making medical decisions instead of your doctors;
(10) medical care quality becoming increasingly unreliable and expensive;
(11) complicated billing;
(12) ALL attempts to control costs have failed, since government or insurance companies are the guarantors of final payment;

SOLUTION: Direct pay MEDICAL FUND PLAN(s):
(01) that is administered by the healthcare providers themselves;
(02) that eliminates all reliance on either the government or insurance companies (middlemen) between health providers and patients;
(03) that eliminates insurance company bean-counters from making medical decisions;
(04) that will help control costs, since government and insurance companies are not the guarantors of final payment;
(05) that will simplify billing;
(06) that will reduce fraud because there will no longer be an ignorant and indifferent middleman that doesn’t care about fraud, and merely raise insurance premiums or raise taxes;
(07) that is audited and monitored by an independent organization;
(08) Medical Liability Reform is needed also; many lawyers are getting unjustly enriched by other peoples’ misery, and driving doctors out of the profession;

BENEFITS:
(01) Elimination need for middlemen (government and insurance companies);
(02) People can pay directly into a Medical Fund Plan that is managed by the medical providers themselves, by people with medical knowledge and backgrounds; this will also reduce the number of healthcare workers being hired away by an insurance company to validate services and costs;
(03) It will save money due to inherent improvements in several areas (direct pay, simplified billing, reduced fraud, no middlemen, less bureaucracy, little or no government meddling, etc.).;
(04) Better health care (since Insurance companies are not trying to make medical decisions);
(05) Better profits due to all of the above; there is need for middlemen (government and insurance companies) to be profiting from people seeking health care coverage;
(06) It won’t solve everything, but it would be a big step in the right direction. What we’re doing now isn’t working;

Just like so many other things (such as government), over complication makes the whole thing ripe for abuse from every angle.

Healthcare providers could do themselves and their patients a huge favor if they simply eliminated the middlemen.

The insurance companies and government are like two giant anchors hanging around the neck of healthcare providers and patients as they struggle to swim upstream.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 1:05 AM
Comment #138336

You are so right Jack. My Dad always said people want “first dollar coverage”. By that he meant that people didn’t really want insurance, they want free health care. It’s a nice idea in an Ivory tower, academic kind of way. The cold, reality is that everthing has to be paid for. HSAs complimented with high dedcutiable medical insurance make a lot of sense. People don’t want to hear that because the want something for nothing.

Posted by: seatown at April 6, 2006 1:24 AM
Comment #138344
AP

I am not sure what you mean.

No kidding. Your post makes it clear that you have no idea.

I’m just curious, Jack. Why do you think there are so many people who don’t have health insurance and private retirement accounts?

Posted by: American Pundit at April 6, 2006 3:35 AM
Comment #138347

I am agaisnt a national health care plan, as I see it as another big grab for middle income American’s wages.

What next??

Posted by: Everett Hatton at April 6, 2006 4:49 AM
Comment #138353

AP

Many young people don’t have heath insurance. They often don’t need it, so they risk it. I know how that is. I didn’t have insurance for about 5 years. Lucky I didn’t get sick.

The median family income in this country is around $65K. Everybody above this certainly should be able to save for retirement and afford health insurance. Most people below should also be able to save something. People have to think ahead. Don’t buy things you can’t afford. Wait to have kids until you can take care of them. And if you are still working for minimum wage after ten years in the workforce, you must be doing something wrong. Figure out what that is and cut it out.

There will always be poor and bad luck can hit anyone. That is why we have various forms of welfare. But we should encourage people to prepare for these downturns. Just because some people have trouble doesn’t mean we should inflict trouble on everybody.

Where I work some members of my staff abuse sick leave. They take every minute they have each year. They take mental health days. They take off when they have a little headache. They take off when the weather is nice. So when they really get sick, they have to go without pay or beg sick leave from others. When they are really sick, it really is “not their fault” but they put themselves in the situation where this bad luck really hurts.

Misfortunes usually enter through a door that has been left open for them.

Woman

You can’t guess perfectly, but there are some things you need every year and there are always some things that you can either do sooner or put off till later. Dental care is one such. Lazer eye surgery is another. Various little ailments etc. You also can use HSA the first three months of the new year, so you can use if you have too much and contribute less in the current year.

Posted by: Jack at April 6, 2006 8:02 AM
Comment #138355

Why do you think there are so many people who don’t have health insurance and private retirement accounts?


There are no private retirement accounts because of an obstructionist Democratic party that won’t even talk about any form of social security reform and are against health savings accounts because they want a universal plan that makes the government responsible for people’s health instead of them taking care of themselves. With more and more HSAs over time the insurance companies will fight among themselves to make it cheaper and cheaper for individual policies.

I like how Jack and d.a.n have at least a thought out argument in favor of HSA’s while American Pundit has simple one sentence ignorant responses. What is your proposal to health care and retirement issues?

Posted by: Nick at April 6, 2006 8:14 AM
Comment #138364

d.a.n-

Tax reform is the prerequisite to health care reform. That’s why I only advocate one first step: make all health care premium payments tax deductible.

Posted by: George in SC at April 6, 2006 9:10 AM
Comment #138367

Here’s a counter-proposal: Universal, single-payer healthcare system.

I know the response. “Yeah, that sounds nice, but it’s too expensive, you silly idealistic liberal”. Here’s the thing, though. WE’RE ALREADY PAYING FOR IT. In 2000, we spent $4,500 per person on healthcare. It is certainly a lot higher than that now, because it has been going up 10-15% a year. No other country spends as much as we do.

The fact is, our current system is so insanely inefficient and inhumane that it could have been invented by an Al Qaeda operative.

Posted by: Woody Mena at April 6, 2006 9:25 AM
Comment #138368

Jack good topic.
d.a.n. I would say another indirect benefit would be better health habits for the person and their family. You know, eat better, exercise more.When its coming out of your pocket it is a motivator. Also should a person swap jobs they would not have to worry about insurance and/or lack of insurance, waiting periods, pre-existing conditions etc.
The only real problem I see, and I am in the median income bracket, is Im saving what I can already and I live fairly modestly. If my employer would cut me in on the savings they would incur upon dropping my group insurence plan perhaps that would help.
The other issue is what about the transition period with a HSA. Lets say I put 2k in the first year and get an illness that sets me back 10k and I can’t work for 2 months which sets me back another 10K. 10k here and 10K there pretty soon Im on the street in a refrigerator box.

Posted by: j2t2 at April 6, 2006 9:28 AM
Comment #138371

“The more envious among us will just see this all as unfair”

And that is what it is all about Jack.
But its not “unfair” enough for them to start practicing what they preach is it.

Why does all savings and planning have to be some sort of govt endorsed plan?
Two of the best plans (in my area) are called “Best Choice” and “Always Save” food brands.
If your an adult, then it is up to YOU, not govt, to plan for your retirement and health needs.

j2
“The other issue is what about the transition period with a HSA”

Welcome to the Dependent States of America.
The people have been trained to depend on govt for everything and themselves for nothing.

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 9:54 AM
Comment #138376

Allan Hubbard, part of Bush’s economic team, took to the New York Times op-ed page three days ago and made the case for health savings accounts. It’s all about using the marketplace to keep costs down. (Importantly, he didn’t say anything about the fifteen percent of Americans who have no insurance and how they will cope with health problems that their savings can’t handle.)

We all agree – Democrats and Republicans both – that costs are too high. But Hubbard’s remedy (and therefore Bush’s solution) falls so flat it would be laughable were it not so serious. The day after the op-ed came out the letters to the editor were filled with so many examples of how the approach simply will not work. Several examples:

According to Bush, we should “shop around” for the best price. Great idea in theory. One letter writer reported how he called three different doctors and asked for the price of a routine physical. None of the doctors provided a price. “It depends” was all they could say. How does one “shop around” with an attitude like that in the industry? How does Bush address that problem?

Another writer talked about trying to make any sense of the “options” the medical industry gives you after you’re under their care. When a doctor says you need one of two possible procedures, is cost the determining factor? Never. It’s all about what will bring you back to health. Plus, once you are admitted to a hospital, what is a patient going to do, check into a different one for a lower rate? Is this really what Bush is proposing?

Let’s get serious. You cannot price compare the cost of heath care beyond comparing health plans. There is no “market” for the “consumers” of health care to exercise their demand power over. If Bush cannot come up with a solution that directly address the problems in the failure of the health care market, then the only solution is national health insurance.

Posted by: Steve k at April 6, 2006 10:42 AM
Comment #138377

kctim,
Wow,the dependant states of America sounds like a topic that merits its own article and discussion. With any major transition the will be a period of adjustment, problems and oppotunities to sort out. There should be a plan in place to make the dependancy tolerable or the overall goal will be shot down.

Posted by: j2t2 at April 6, 2006 10:42 AM
Comment #138380
j2t2 wrote: The other issue is what about the transition period with a HSA. Lets say I put 2k in the first year and get an illness that sets me back 10k and I can’t work for 2 months which sets me back another 10K. 10k here and 10K there pretty soon Im on the street in a refrigerator box.

That is a good question.
True, an HSA can’t prevent disaster.

An HSA is not a replacement for Health Insurance.

However, as the HSA grows, it can help you afford higher deductible insurance, which makes the insurance premiums more affordable.

The HSA covers what the deductible will not cover.

To me, this new type of HSA is more like owning insurance, rather than renting insurance. What I put in it is always mine, and earns 6.15% interest, and is tax deductible.

To answer your question, HSA is not a total replacement for heatlh insurance.
Health Insurance, especially in the beginning, is needed too (if you can afford it).

In time, the HSA will allow you to have a higher the deductible, and a smaller monthly health insurance premium.

To me, HSA’s are a win-win for the owner.
You can retain and own a portion of your insurance, rather than renting it, and never seeing a penny of those premiums ever again.

To me, it is a no brainer.
The only people don’t need a HSA are those that have low cost Health Insurance that covers most or everything. Even then, an HSA that is tax deductible and earning 6.15% is not a bad thing is it?


George in SC wrote:
d.a.n-
Tax reform is the prerequisite to health care reform. That’s why I only advocate one first step: make all health care premium payments tax deductible.

As you know, I’ve advocated a tax reform system that has no deductions whatsoever.

My fear of deductions of any kind is that it will open the flood gate to countless other deductions, as we now have in our current perverted tax system.

However, that has crossed my mind often.
If I were to ever consider any kind of tax deduction of any kind, and if it would not pave the way to countless other tax deductions, I would support a deduction for health care expenses and insurance, because I hate the idea of being taxed on certain things such as food, medicine, and health care. That is why I despise sales and property taxes. They hammer the poor the most.

But, deductions pose many complications to the tax system. And, we may be trying to overlap a tax system and a welfare system. It may be better to keep the tax system simple, and provide assistance (welfare) for those that need it?

I’m a bit undecided still about the best way to handle taxes and health care expenses.

Perhaps, an end of year refund of income taxes, for qualified healthcare expenses would be the easiest approach.

Still, one important thing to remember is this:

  • Health care is not a human right.

  • Health care costs.

  • Your health care costs are not my responsiblity.

  • We can’t all live at the expense of everyone else. That is a myth.

Therefore, people need to take responsiblity for their own health care.
That is why I’d encourage people to save for it.
HSA’s are one way to do that.

And, for people that can’t get health insurance, they should start saving some of their income away for healthcare.

Now, for anyone who can’t afford to save for healthcare, can’t afford healthcare, and has no income, and can’t get a job, then that is a case for the welfare system. We shouldn’t overlap taxes, heatlhcare, and welfare systems.
But, even then, there are limits to how much welfare can be provided.
Welfare, like healthcare, is not a human right. It costs someone, and there are limits. We can’t all live at the expense of someone else, despite the perpetuation of that myth by pandering politicians and people that want government to take care of them from cradle to grave.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 11:03 AM
Comment #138385

Great topic Jack,

It’s all about personal responsibility. If the doctors won’t give a price, then find yet another doctor. I am not insured, due to a lack of personal responsibility when I was younger and being a self employed divorced guy, my only option is a government sponsored insurance program. The alternative I have taken is to negotiate with my one doctor. He is aware that I am a cash pay. So during checkups, we discuss cost savings by double perscription doses and cutting pills in half, the effects of excersize on my health, diet, and effecacy of tests and treatments. He ordered a very expensive test procedure for me and after a discussion he canceled because it really wasn’t needed. I am not looking for anyone to pay for me other than me. Also, you can negotiate with the local hospital after they fix you. Yes, it is and could be expensive, but it is your life and up to you to solve it, not the government or more importantly the taxpayers. There are certainly illnesses that are unforseen and unpreventable, however, the vast majority of maladies are preventable with personal responsibility. And having your neighbor subsidize your health care so you can live a devil may care lifestyle is the ultimate is selfishness. Everyone can find an area to cut in there personal life that would save money. It would be painful and goes against the affluence that we have clear down to the poorest of poor in this country.

I agree that with the more people who take care of themselves, there would be more for the people who can’t really do it. and yes I know that there are truely some people who are really down and can’t help themselves. But there is vastly more who can. So do it. and quit whining about how hard it is.

Posted by: scottp at April 6, 2006 11:15 AM
Comment #138388

HSAs are wonderful for people above that median, perhaps, depending on their number of dependents, the state of their health, and their other obligations…but for people belowe the median, after paying around $500 a month for health insurance, a deductible, a co-pay, and another 10%, on fixed income…where does that person find money to put into an HSA after food and housing are paid???

HSAs will do nothing to help pay for those without health insurance or too poor to pay for health insurance…there still needs to be a way to even out expenses and lower insurance costs…I say get rid of the insurance companies except for letting them administer a statewide or nationwide health insurance program which has a sliding scale premium…

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 11:21 AM
Comment #138392
It’s all about personal responsibility. If the doctors won’t give a price, then find yet another doctor.


scottp,

And as the letter writer reported in the New York Times, he tried THREE doctors and none of them was willing to quote a price. How many doctors do you need to go to before you give up? What if it’s a medical situation that needs to be handled right away? Why do you only talk about the patient’s responsability?

You want responsability, how about the responsability of the medical industry (doctors, clinics, hospitals, and insurance companies) to give you the honest truth about what they are going to do and what it will cost? Don’t you agree they THEY are have to be responsible too?

Posted by: steve K at April 6, 2006 11:30 AM
Comment #138395
the vast majority of maladies are preventable with personal responsibility.

Care to cite some evidence????

Posted by: steve K at April 6, 2006 11:33 AM
Comment #138398
HSAs are wonderful for people above that median, perhaps, depending on their number of dependents, the state of their health, and their other obligations…but for people belowe the median, after paying around $500 a month for health insurance, a deductible, a co-pay, and another 10%, on fixed income…where does that person find money to put into an HSA after food and housing are paid???

Well, there’s no easy answer to that Lynne.
Unfortunately, healthcare is not a human right.

However, things could be better.
One big step in the right direction would be to remove the two biggest wastes.

That would help millions get coverage, and make millions more get real jobs.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 11:44 AM
Comment #138399
Health care is not a human right.

yes it is. Health care is a human right. Care to debate?

Posted by: steve k at April 6, 2006 11:45 AM
Comment #138403

steve K,
OK. You first.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 11:53 AM
Comment #138404

steve K,
First of all, I want healthcare for everyone.
But it is not a human right.
If so, then we should be providing healthcare to all other nations.
At the moment, we only provide substantial healthcare to the people of Mexico.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 11:55 AM
Comment #138405

Doesn’t it make you angry that your tax dollars are going to illegal aliens before going to citizens of the U.S. ?

If you like adventure, try the following:

Enter Mexico illegally.
Never mind immigration quotas, visas, international law, or any of that nonsense.

Once there, demand that the local government provide free medical care for you and your entire family.

Demand bilingual nurses and doctors.

Demand free bilingual local government forms, bulletins, etc.

Keep your American identity strong. Fly Old Glory from your rooftop, or proudly display it in your front window or on your car bumper.

Speak only English at home and in public and insist that your children do likewise.

Demand classes on American culture in the Mexican school system.

Demand a local Mexican driver license. This will afford other legal rights and will go far to legitimize your unauthorized, illegal presence in Mexico.

Drive around with no liability insurance and ignore local traffic laws.

Insist that local Mexican law enforcement teach English to all its officers.

Good luck!
You’ll need it, because it will never happen. It will not happen in Mexico or any other country in the world except right here in the United States, Land of the naive and stupid, idiotic politically correct politicians. Republicans want cheap labor, Democrats want votes, and many voters keep re-electing both.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 11:56 AM
Comment #138410

Here I go again talking about a topic I know little about, certainly not as much as you learned ladies and gentlemen. But, some dirty words just went through my mind: Means testing.

Those who have the means to purchase their own insurance and contribute to an HSA, would be required to do so. That would certainly take the pressure off existing programs (Medicare and Medicaid) that would serve those without the means.

I know. Shut up and go back to sleep!

ZZZZZZZZ

Posted by: slowthinker at April 6, 2006 12:39 PM
Comment #138416
First of all, I want healthcare for everyone.

Me too

But it is not a human right.

What’s the difference? Shouldn’t every citizen of the United States be guaranteed a minimally acceptable level of health care, regardless of their ability to pay?


If so, then we should be providing healthcare to all other nations.

I’m not going down that strawman argument. I’m only advocating that the U.S. should provide health care as a right to its citizens, similar to the way the rest of the industrialized world does.

Posted by: steve K at April 6, 2006 1:00 PM
Comment #138418

d.a.n.

Well, there’s no easy answer to that Lynne. Unfortunately, healthcare is not a human right

So anyone who can’t afford the Hummer-priced medical care in the U.S. can just be sick and die? Health care is rapidly becoming a right…it is cruel and unusual punishment to just let people be sick and die…we’re not a 3rd world country…we CAN afford medical care for everyone if we stop spending like drunken sailors on weapons systems that don’t work and wars that were not necessary…

I thought this was a “Christian” nation?? Guess not.

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 1:01 PM
Comment #138425

steve K, Lynne,

Please don’t twist my words.
I want the best healthcare possible for all Americans, and I believe it can be much better.
And you won’t get any argument from me ever about the irresponsibility of our corrupt government.

And, I’m not so sure about the 3rd world argument. We’re getting there fast.

But, let me address the root issue of contention.

d.a.n wrote: Health care is not a human right.
steve K wrote: Yes it is. Health care is a human right. Care to debate?

steve K,
Here is why healthcare is not a human right.
Health care costs someone.
If you can’t afford it, who should pay for it?
Me? What if I don’t want to?
What right do you have to make me pay for your healthcare?
What if I can’t afford healthcare for me or my family because I have to pay for your healthcare?
Are you going to forcibly remove money from someone for your benefit?
If healthcare is a human right, shouldn’t the law make it available to everyone on the planet?
Who will pay for it?
The rich?
If you think that someone else must pay, you:


  • then believe that you can lay claim to someone else’s wealth ?

  • are merely trying to disguise your envy and jealousy as demands for equality.

  • you beleive the myth that we can not all live at the expense of everyone else

No. We can not all live at the expense of everyone else.
That is a myth perpetuated by pandering politicians, and those that try to disguise their envy and jealousy as claims for equality.

Government can’t and won’t take care of us from cradle to grave. Some might think that is what government is for, but they are wrong. That sort of dependency on government is just plain wrong. And it is the certain way to make something totally mismanaged and dysfunctional.
____________
Look at it this way.

Let’s say the world is you, me, steve K, and our families. That is our universe.

We all pay taxes.
You, Lynne are doctor.
I’m an engineer.
steve K is a politician.

I get laid off, lose my medical insurance, and then break my leg one day.

I come to you and demand treatment, but I can’t pay.

Are you and steve K going to chip in to pay for me. And, my family too? What if you’re child is sick and you need you money for your children. Are you going to pay your money for your child’s care, or mine? No, I don’t think so. Your children come first. And, that is the way it should be. That does not mean you don’t wish you could help me more. It simply means it is a difficult choice. And, I have no right to lay claim to your money that your child needs. Not in the form of taxes or any other form.
____________

Now, in reality, we all pay taxes for welfare.
That is what welfare is for.
But, there are limits there too.

If you really want to yell at someone about wasting your tax dollars, you need to yell at your corrupt government that forces states to accommodate illegal aliens, by forcing states to give illegal aliens free public education and free welfare. Los Angeles Emergency Rooms are packed with illegal aliens, while American citizens wait (and die). Where’s the outrage about that? Why do Americans keep voting for the corrupt politicians that force American tax payers to foot the bill for illegal aliens?

So, American tax payers go without, while illegal aliens steal from us. That just goes to show you that there are limited resources. The biggest part of the federal budget is already Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Welfare.

Yep, it is a serious issue.

But, this problem, and our many other pressing problems will never be solved until voters get their head out of their butts and start actin’ like they got some sense. Until then, American voters only have themselves to thank for their own negligence and laziness. Especailly when we still get to vote, but squander it, and continue to vote for the very same irresponsible incumbent politicians that keep using and abusing the voters. The mechanism for voters is right there under their own nose. But, the American voters had better hurry, because illegal aliens are also voting in our elections with fake IDs and fake Social Security numbers, and it may not be long before your voice is irrelavent.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 1:34 PM
Comment #138426

j2
“There should be a plan in place to make the dependancy tolerable or the overall goal will be shot down”

There once was a plan to do just that. It was called the US Constitution.

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 1:36 PM
Comment #138428

“What’s the difference? Shouldn’t every citizen of the United States be guaranteed a minimally acceptable level of health care”

Yes and everyone has the ability to access it, they just don’t have the will to do it for themselves.

“regardless of their ability to pay?”

Nope. Thats why its a priviledge and not a right.

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 1:41 PM
Comment #138430

d.a.n.

Let’s say the world is you, me, steve K, and our families. That is our universe.

We all pay taxes.
You, Lynne are doctor.
I’m an engineer.
steve K is a politician.

I get laid off, lose my medical insurance, and then break my leg one day.

I come to you and demand treatment, but I can’t pay.

I take my Hippocratic Oath seriously…I will treat you to the best of my ability…I cannot turn you away with nowhere else to go…I will help you find an alternative source of treatment…

I have a cousin who’s married to a doctor (pathologist, does post mortems)…her mother says all the doctors have have to have big houses and live high on the hog because if they didn’t people wouldn’t think they’re a good doctor…well, how many others have that attitude, including doctors???

Other countries take care of their sick and their elderly and have universal paid education…there is NO reason the US can’t do the same…but the attitude is stuck somewhere back in the 19th century…manifest destiny, world cops, world domination, we’re better than any other country (the stats on infant mortality disprove that!).

Let’s face it, the U.S. is in the middle of a teen-aged snit…we’re just a bit over 200 years old, quite an infant compared to Western Europe from whence we sprang and the Far East…we’ve got to get over our delusions of grandeur and start “playing nice” in the sandbox of life…

And we need to treat our own citizens with care…I’m definitely not saying that everyone individually has to be totally responsible for health, education, etc. … that’s why our country was formed…just like a union makes sure it’s workers are not exploited and why fraternal agencies provide life insurance and credit unions provide financial help and services…we are banded together as a nation to ensure a common defense (which has gone waaaaaay overboard) and to help each other.

I’m so tired of seeing dances and bakesales to help people pay for necessary medical expenses…people want to help others…it’s evident in how many show up at those bakesales & dances…why can’t we do it as a whole country??

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 1:48 PM
Comment #138431

If there is going to be mandatory health care instituted and run by the different levels of government, then let us do the following.

Required by all citizens:
Vitamin C daily
An apple a day
walking minimum of 5 miles per day
no tobacco
no alcoholic beverages
learning the Constitution of these United States to the point of being able to quote any portion without looking it up (this is for mental health)
likewise for ones own state constitution
caloric intake within health bounds
supplements to balance ones own system
once a year tests to determine what imbalance in chemicals and minerals are within ones own system
no food additives—eat it the way nature grows it

This list could go on and on. The point is if government is to get involved and we “have a right to health care”, then there are many responsibilities that are personal that must be done to assure less out of pocket expenses towards health care.

Posted by: tomh at April 6, 2006 1:48 PM
Comment #138438

Lynne,
Like I said, America could do much better.
No argument there.
However, I think there may be an attempt here to twist my words. I’m not arguing that things can be much better.
In fact, I’ve actually proposed a common-sense healthcare solution, but it doesn’t get much attention, because people think the government must do it.
The real argument, if any, is weather healthcare is a human right, or not.
To me, it is not a human right.
It is certainly nowhere in the Constitution.
It in no way is similar to human rights.
It may be a civil right in some nations, but it is not a human right. There is difference that may be getting confused here.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 1:58 PM
Comment #138440

Also, if you think it is a human right, then you can’t be upset if your tax dollars go to healthcare for illegal aliens (which they are).
Right? Because, they are humans too. Right?

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 2:01 PM
Comment #138443

Jack, I have no problem Health Savings accounts If it renoves the person from the pool of ever needing anything beyond their ability to save. It won’t and is impossible to predict. You would still need some sort of catastrophic insurance to be prudent.

The other problem with HSA’s is that they only help those with enough disposable income to afford to save enough to be of any real use.

Massachusetts just passed a universal healthcare bill, what do you think of it, Jack? It sounds like a good compromise so far.

Posted by: Jack Mohammedoff at April 6, 2006 2:09 PM
Comment #138446

If we had universal healthcare it would save this country buckets of money. Right now where we get screwed is all the people coming in to hospitals without healthcare of any kind. I understand the knee jerk reaction to paying for someone else’s healthcare. My response is would you like to continue to pay more for not having it?

Posted by: Max at April 6, 2006 2:14 PM
Comment #138451

At a basic, common sense, human decency level, I really cannot follow the logic d.a.n. puts forth about health care.

You don’t want to pay. I.e.: it’s about money. Too me that’s just greed and indecency towards other human beings. To me, this means that you would not stop to help a person who has collapsed on the street because it might cost you a business deal you are on the way to. I do not work that way. That’s not the behavior I was taught. I’m not a Christian, but I know enough about the religion to know that that is now how Christians are taught to act and behave — their money comes first.

You then try to put forward the strawman argument about how if we’re going to be decent, well then, you have got to help everyone, including citizens of other nations. We know that is bull. The U.S. military — the most powerful in the world by far — isn’t even powerful enough to enforce basic human rights in one Arab nation. So don’t try to argue that we have to take on the whole world. We’re not that powerful and never will be. We can and should take care of our own citizens the way we would want to be treated if we were destitute.

And then there are the arguments about cost. Cost, cost, cost. More bull. The U.S. spends more on health care per capita than any other industrialized nation. But you don’t see people turned away from necessary health care in other countries. everybody gets treated.

You go on being greedy about keeping your money in your pocket, d.a.n., and we’ll see which one of us gets greeted warmly in Valhalla.

Posted by: steve k at April 6, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #138454

Jack, What an utterly false premise the title of this article is.

The national debt will double at least by the time Bush leaves office. And that does not include the interest on that debt that will continue to have to be collected from tax payers for decades to come.

What we have is cut taxes now, pay double later on. Save taxpayers a dollar today but, collect $2.25 for the debt created by the one dollar cut, tomorrow. That, my friend is scam, a fraud, and should be a criminal act of theft from the American people, but, only if the American people choose to define it that way.

I know, you are discussing medical coverage and premiums. But, you are ignoring the big picture. Ma. is going to maintain a balanced budget WHILE providing health care to all. Your President and Congress which you support with your vote are running in the opposite direction. May I suggest that you appear to be critiquing solutions and supporting failure.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 6, 2006 2:21 PM
Comment #138460

d.a.n.

If we have the right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness, why does healthcare not fit under “life”?? And just because a human right isn’t enumerate in our Constitution doesn’t mean it’s not a human right…I believe the U.S. hasn’t yet signed the UN’s Declaration of Human Rights and healthcare is definitely enumerated there…why doesn’t the U.S. believe enough in human rights to sign that Declaration?

Then, there’s just plain good economic sense…if we don’t provide preventive healthcare, then the emergency room provides it at a much higher cost…it’s pay now or pay a whole lot later…..

How do you split hairs between a civil right and a human right…you can’t have the former without having the latter first…

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 2:43 PM
Comment #138463

D.A.N.,

Kudos to you; you’re one of the few people that seems to understand the proper role of government. The sole purpose of government is to ensure your rights as an individual, nothing else. The problem with many who argue on this blog is that they do not understand or simply don’t agree with this simple concept. They think the government exists to take care of its people. I would say that the US Constitution lies in direct opposition to that point of view.

I will not say anything regarding the arguement that healthcare is a “right” other than to say “ditto” to what you said. I couldn’t have said it any better.

Jack,
Good post. I like your ideas.

KCTim,
Right on.

Posted by: Tyler at April 6, 2006 2:47 PM
Comment #138465

>>Posted by: Tyler at April 6, 2006 02:47 PM

Tyler…are you Cheney/Bush in disguise?

Posted by: Marysdude at April 6, 2006 2:51 PM
Comment #138470

“Too me that’s just greed and indecency towards other human beings. To me, this means that you would not stop to help a person who has collapsed on the street because it might cost you a business deal you are on the way to. I do not work that way”

Thats right Steve, TOO YOU, those are all wrong, those are YOUR beliefs.
So please tell me why I should be forced to support what YOU believe is the right thing to do?
I thought it was wrong to do that?

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 3:16 PM
Comment #138472
steve K wrote: At a basic, common sense, human decency level, I really cannot follow the logic d.a.n. puts forth about health care.
steve K wrote: You don’t want to pay. I.e.: it’s about money. Too me that’s just greed and indecency towards other human beings.
Not true. I pay taxes and want to help as many as possible, but there are limits. I am not rich. Also, for you to imply that I am greedy or indecent only reveals you own ignorance.
steve K wrote: To me, this means that you would not stop to help a person who has collapsed on the street because it might cost you a business deal you are on the way to.

steve K, you don’t even know me, but you have the gall to say “would not stop to help a person who has collapsed on the street…”. steve K, not only do I pay tens thousands per year in taxes (which go to welfare), I donate every year to children’s hospitals, and other children’s charities. Once again, your statements are very revealing. You are showin’ your own ass for all to see.

steve K wrote: I do not work that way. That’s not the behavior I was taught. I’m not a Christian, but I know enough about the religion to know that that is now how Christians are taught to act and behave — their money comes first.
Well, I beg to differ. Your behavior and statemens here are in direct contrast, and show your hypocrisy.
steve K wrote: You then try to put forward the strawman argument about how if we’re going to be decent, well then, you have got to help everyone, including citizens of other nations.
On the contrary. You called it a human right did you not?
steve K wrote: We know that is bull.
Not at all. You just don’t like it when someone reveals the obvious flaw in your logic.
steve K wrote: And then there are the arguments about cost. Cost, cost, cost. More bull. The U.S. spends more on health care per capita than any other industrialized nation. But you don’t see people turned away from necessary health care in other countries. everybody gets treated.
steve K, I already said many times above that we can do much better, and that I would like healthcare for everyone. But, you glossed right over it, ignored it, and invented in your mind that I am evil and against healthcare. In fact, I presented a plan to provide healthcare to all Americans, which is more constructive and useful than any of your emotional and misguided rhetoric.
steve K wrote: You go on being greedy about keeping your money in your pocket, d.a.n., and we’ll see which one of us gets greeted warmly in Valhalla.
steve K, How did you arrive at that conclusion? Can you provide anything I’ve said to prove it? No, I don’t think so. Your statements simply reveal your own ignorance, childishness, and hypocrisy. ________________
Lynne wrote: d.a.n. If we have the right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness, why does healthcare not fit under ‘life’ ?

Because the constitution says the “pursuit of happiness”.
It does not guarantee it.
Sorry, Lynne, but we’ll simply have to agree to disagree.
Lots of people are not happy. Is that the duty of the government.

Please don’t misconstrue my goals.
I, unlike many, have actually presented a logical solution so that many more Americans can have healthcare. That is my goal. I just simply do not believe healthcare is a human right. It could be a civil right, but never a human right. It may seem like splitting hairs, but there is a very basic, fundamental philosophy behind that conclusion. I prefer less government, and rather government not even be in the loop (see the plan). Asking government to do these things is a very big mistake. The complete mismanagement and plunder of the Social Security, Medicare, and PBGC and pensions is the most obvious evidence that government is not capable of administrering such things.

And, thank you for discussing this in a civil manner and not sinking to the level of steve K.
_________________
Tyler, kctim, Thanks!

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 3:20 PM
Comment #138473

Tyler:

Because the constitution says the “pursuit of happiness”. It does not guarantee it. Sorry, Lynne, but we’ll simply have to agree to disagree. Lots of people are not happy. Is that the duty of the government.

YOu missed the first part; it’s “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”… We can pursue happiness (which implies it is not guaranteed), but we ARE guaranteed “life” and “liberty”…


Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 3:25 PM
Comment #138474

Sorry, reply was to d.a.n. … you last message was very confusing at the end…

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 3:26 PM
Comment #138480

Lynne, preamble says:


We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.

No where does it “guarantee”.
It can’t (not yet anyway).
But, it is a worthy goal.
Actually, I think it should say, “all people are created equal”, instead of “all men are created equal”.
And, inalienable rights: “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” does not mention heatlhcare.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 3:36 PM
Comment #138485

How is it that the libs only solution to healthcare in the US is a govt run universal program? HSA’s sound like a great idea as a transition away from private health insurance-dependent care.

I lived in Germany for 3 years, and have been living in the UK for the past 6 months. All this “glorification” of Europe’s healthcare is really based on ignorance. Germany’s system is still insurance plan based- whether you go the route of “public” or “private” plan. My husband and I (by virtue of his employer) were on the public plan. We still paid about 500 euros a month for this. (plus quarterly co-pays and co-pays for prescriptions) My experience was that my care wasn’t signifigantly better than I had with my HMO in the US.

The NHS in the UK just plain sucks. The only redeeming quality I can see is that you can go into any clinic anywhere in the UK and be treated. I’m 26 weeks pregnant (luckily with my 2nd) and have only had 1 doctors appt, with a midwife! I have had exactly 2 ultrasounds done, and won’t have anymore. I won’t know my doctor when I go to give birth, have no choice in hospital, and won’t know until the day if I can PAY additional for a private room. (as opposed to a room shared by 8 other women) My daughter doesn’t see a pediatrician here, and she gets her check-ups and shots from a “health visitor”, whatever that is….In summary, the NHS is exactly what I would expect a universal, govt run healthcare system to be: good enough to keep you alive but that’s about it.

Posted by: Buffie at April 6, 2006 3:53 PM
Comment #138487

Save us from the sociopaths kctim and d.a.n.

They have unequivically stated they would not help a dying man in the street because they don’t have to, and besides it doesn’t say it in the constitution explicitly.

So much for their christian values, and lawyerly interpretations devoid of any humanity.

Government that can’t, in modern times, provide healthcare for it’s citizens doesn’t deseverve MY vote. We are closing in on dead last in this area with regards to industrialized nations. Stick with these guys logic and we’ll soon be a third world nation.

Posted by: Jack Mohammedoff at April 6, 2006 3:58 PM
Comment #138491

Jack M

Not all Americans and not all Republicans are Christians. I am glad if you are and practice Christian charity, but it is not a governing philosophy. Recall, render onto Caesar.

Read the post just above you. I too have experience European health care. It is okay, but it is about the level that the poor would get at a county hospital in the U.S. International comparisions usually measure equality of access. You can create equality also by lowering the standard of the top.

Finally, I think Kctim and Dan are talking about government responsibilty versus personal morality. I would help a dying man, but I would not mandate that the government help every dying man in all circumstances. Just like I would pay the tuition for my kids, but not mandate the government do it.

Health care is very fungible. How much is “basic”. Think of fertility treatements. They can cost thousands of dollars. Do you have the right to fertility treatments? You won’t die without them.

Posted by: Jack at April 6, 2006 4:10 PM
Comment #138492
Jack Mohammendoff wrote: They have unequivically stated they would not help a dying man in the street because they don’t have to, and besides it doesn’t say it in the constitution explicitly.

That is a lie.
I never said that.
steve K said that about me.
I have stopped lots of times to help people in the street (e.g. auto accidents, remove debri, etc.). That’s simply a false statement.

Jack Mohammendoff wrote: Government that can’t, in modern times, provide healthcare for it’s citizens doesn’t deseverve MY vote.
Jack Mohammendoff, the fact is, few politicians deserve your vote.

So you think government should provide you healthcare? Interesting. Do you want it to wipe your ass too?

We are closing in on dead last in this area with regards to industrialized nations. Stick with these guys logic and we’ll soon be a third world nation.
Well, that’s an exaggeration. Healthcare here is better than most countries. Access to healthcare is the problem. Government run healthcare will be a step backwards. Have you examined this plan. It would be cheaper and better. Or, can you offer a better plan, or are you the type that just likes to stir it up and make it stink ?
Save us from the sociopaths: kctim and d.a.n.
That’s very revealing coming from one who is obviously affected with some sort of personality disorder marked by antisocial behavior, and running around calling others sociopaths, evil, greedy, etc. Please, continue. I haven’t been this entertained in quite some time. Fascinating, don’t you think? Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 4:11 PM
Comment #138497

I am confident that someone has already mentioned this but just in case no one has:

If the person contributing to the plan puts more in then he/she gets out, then it is obviously not beneficial to the plan for said individual to withdraw.

I just wanted to get that out of the way so that we’re clear that there isn’t some miraculous solution that we’ve somehow been stupid enough to miss.

Posted by: Zeek at April 6, 2006 4:39 PM
Comment #138499

d.a.n.,

Number one: I read your “plan.” It’s extremely vague (about 10 bullet points).

Nowhere does it say how 45 million Americans who currently do not have health insurance will get a minimally acceptable level of care. So it’s no plan that I can endorse.

You’re basing everything you say on the abstraction of free market economics. Guess what: we have a free market of health care in this country and it has FAILED!

To say, as you do, that “I pay taxes and want to help as many as possible, but there are limits” begs the question: where do you define where the limits are?

Are you saying there not enough money in the United States to provide EVERYONE a level of health care similar to that provided in other industrial nations? Are you saying that you don’t want to pay any more in taxes than you do now, even if it means that people would be denied needed medical care? There’s no point in getting into specifics if you cannot answer those questions.

Posted by: Steve K at April 6, 2006 4:40 PM
Comment #138503

d.a.n.

And, inalienable rights: “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” does not mention heatlhcare.

If you have an inalienable right to life how does that NOT include healthcare???

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 4:47 PM
Comment #138505

We have seen what a “universal” health care plan would come to resemble, See- Persciption Drug Benefit. The fact is that neither Congress, The President, nor the insurance companies are to be trusted to address this. Perhaps if we get them to put down the PORK PIPE, we can free up funds to allow them to attempt a reform.

Posted by: Ted at April 6, 2006 4:56 PM
Comment #138507
The NHS in the UK just plain sucks. The only redeeming quality I can see is that you can go into any clinic anywhere in the UK and be treated.

That’s a pretty good redeeming quality. You can’t do that in the United States. Do they turn you away if your indigent? So I don’t see how it qualifies as “sucks.”

I’m 26 weeks pregnant (luckily with my 2nd) and have only had 1 doctors appt, with a midwife! I have had exactly 2 ultrasounds done, and won’t have anymore.

2 ultrasounds in the same appointment? or perhaps you’ve actually more than one appointment?

I won’t know my doctor when I go to give birth, have no choice in hospital

Sounds like a lot of health plans in the United States.

and won’t know until the day if I can PAY additional for a private room. (as opposed to a room shared by 8 other women)

Since when is having a private room the definition of “health care?” Sure it’s nice, but it doesn’t mean the quality of care is any better or worse.

My daughter doesn’t see a pediatrician here, and she gets her check-ups and shots from a “health visitor”, whatever that is.

Is your assumption that every medical situation has to be treated by a physician?

What the above description describes very well is the American attitude towards health care ranging from the overly-cautious (a physician has to do everything) to the frivilious (gotta have a private room). Sure, in a market system like the US, if you have money, you can get all that. But guess what: a lot of people don’t have the money. And many of them need better health care services more than the wealthy.

It’s worth pointing out 2 things: the UK system is only ONE approach available to universal health care (I personally favor medicare for everyone), and second, for all the griping you might hear, the British aren’t advocating privatizing their system.

Posted by: Steve K at April 6, 2006 4:58 PM
Comment #138508
We have seen what a ‘universal’ health care plan would come to resemble, See- Presciption Drug Benefit.

MEDICARE WORKS AND IT IS UNIVERSAL

Posted by: steve k at April 6, 2006 5:00 PM
Comment #138510

The government should allow us to save our own money?

Perhaps they should require the companies with pension plans (many of which are mandatory with employment) to do the right thing?

Instead, they are apparently making it worse, at least according to this opinion piece

Will they ever quit making things worse than they have to be?

Posted by: womanmarine at April 6, 2006 5:02 PM
Comment #138511
steve K, How did you arrive at that conclusion? Can you provide anything I’ve said to prove it? No, I don’t think so. Your statements simply reveal your own ignorance, childishness, and hypocrisy.

because, d.a.n., you haven’t said a THING about how 45 million people without health insurance will be covered by any form of health care.

Posted by: Steve K at April 6, 2006 5:02 PM
Comment #138514

Everyone, here is d.a.n.’s plan:


SOLUTION: Direct pay MEDICAL FUND PLAN(s):
(01) that is administered by the healthcare providers themselves;
(02) that eliminates all reliance on either the government or insurance companies (middlemen) between health providers and patients;
(03) that eliminates insurance company bean-counters from making medical decisions;
(04) that will help control costs, since government and insurance companies are not the guarantors of final payment;
(05) that will simplify billing;
(06) that will reduce fraud because there will no longer be an ignorant and indifferent middleman that doesn’t care about fraud, and merely raise insurance premiums or raise taxes;
(07) that is audited and monitored by an independent organization;
(08) Medical Liability Reform is needed also; many lawyers are getting unjustly enriched by other peoples’ misery, and driving doctors out of the profession;

I’m just curious how this is going to pay the bills of a poor person on dialysis …

Posted by: Steve K at April 6, 2006 5:08 PM
Comment #138516

Steve, Medicare functions I grant that. Not ALL that should qualify do, and it is rife with abuse and fraud. I have noticed that you can scacely go a week without a news story about someone getting caught in a scam. These are only the ones who get caught, and are bad enough to warrant coverage. The whole issue needs to be addressed, but not by the groups I mentioned before.

Posted by: Ted at April 6, 2006 5:12 PM
Comment #138517
The government should allow us to save our own money?

Did anyone stop to think that without a government to print and back the money with gold (or whatever) you wouldn’t even have money???

You could lose your hardearned money if banks and S&Ls weren’t forced to provide FDIC insurance??

I would still like to hear some comments on how

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 5:13 PM
Comment #138519

The annual premium that a health insurer charges an employer for a health plan covering a family of four averaged $10,800 in 2005. Workers contributed $2,713, or 10 percent more than they did in 2004 (3).

The annual premiums for family coverage eclipsed the gross earnings for a full-time, minimum-wage worker ($10,712).

Guess those HSAs won’t work much for the people who probably need them the most…

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 5:17 PM
Comment #138520

Ted,

Medicare’s administrative costs are about 3%. Private insurances’ administrative costs hover around 20%. If we doubled medicare’ administrative costs and spent the entire additional amount on audits and oversight, you could make a big dent in any fraud problems, and still pay significantly less than private insurance.

Similarly, in my many years I’ve known many doctors to check boxes on forms just to get a little more out of private plans, too!

Posted by: Steve K at April 6, 2006 5:19 PM
Comment #138521
d.a.n., Number one: I read your “plan”. It’s extremely vague (about 10 bullet points).
Really? You can read? Then you need to work on your comprehension.

The plan is not that vague. The plan is voluntary. The premiums would be based on income. Rich people may not participate, but that’s their choice. Unless we woke up today in North Korea, I don’t see where anyone has the right to force someone to participate in something they don’t want to.

Nowhere does it say how 45 million Americans who currently do not have health insurance will get a minimally acceptable level of care. So it’s no plan that I can endorse. You’re basing everything you say on the abstraction of free market economics. Guess what: we have a free market of health care in this country and it has FAILED!

The plan would greatly reduce costs by removing two huge middlemen (the government and the insurance companies). For people that can’t afford it, they should apply for welfare. What’s wrong with that? The current system has two huge middlemen: the government and insurance companies (both taking or wasting a huge cut). But, you can’t see that because you can’t see beyond your narrow-minded blinders. You’ve already made up your mind. Logic doesn’t work with some people. You prefer to wallow in you dependency on government and resort to petty childish name calling of anyone that does not agree with you.

To say, as you do, that “I pay taxes and want to help as many as possible, but there are limits” begs the question: where do you define where the limits are?
Steve K, You are not really as stupid as you pretend are you? If you have no more money, and can’t even provide for yourself, or your own family, that would be an obvious limitation. You are extrapolating to ridiculous extremes just to shore up a weak argument.
Are you saying there not enough money in the United States to provide EVERYONE a level of health care similar to that provided in other industrial nations?
I never said there wasn’t enough money. I simply don’t think government should be involved in it. And, just because other people have money does not mean I can lay claim to it. You do though. What you are doing is trying to conceal your own envy and jealousy as demands for equality.

BTW, I’ve been to dozens of foreign nations on several continents, and the healthcare in those countries is not better, by a long ways. Only a very few have better access, but for those few, quality is an entirely different issue. Why do you think many come to the U.S. for healthcare, despite the cost? Some in Canada come to the U.S. for healthcare, because they get tired of waiting in line.

Are you saying that you don’t want to pay any more in taxes than you do now, even if it means that people would be denied needed medical care?
Absolutely. I already pay plenty in taxes. That’s not to say the tax system OK. It needs a huge overhaul.
There’s no point in getting into specifics if you cannot answer those questions.
Steve K, I am confident I can competently answer any question you have. But, I am less confident that you can comprehend the logic and refrain from more name calling.
Steve K, MEDICARE WORKS AND IT IS UNIVERSAL
Steve K, if only you knew how troubled Medicare is. And the additional prescription drug benefits exacerbated it. It is in serious trouble. Research it if you don’t believe it.

Sorry Steve, but we can’t all live at the expense of everyone else. It won’t ever work.

Lynne wrote: d.a.n. If you have an inalienable right to life how does that NOT include healthcare???
Lynne, Inalienable right does not mean anyone has to provide things to you that cost money, such as health care, food, a car to get to work, a house to live in, etc. The government has a duty to protect rights, but not fullfill every persons needs. “right to life” does not mean government should provide you with everything required to sustain life. You have to get a job. You must earn money to buy food. Those are obvious examples. But, you want to make an exception for heatlhcare?

If you believe government owes you health care, fine.
We will simply have to agree to disagree.
I want much less government.
Some people want more. They ask government for too much; for everything.
We are suffering the end stage of step (4) and (5), and pushing toward step (1).

Steve K,
You are entitled to you simple minded opinions, but just because they are simple minded is no reason to get mad at everyone else who does not agree with you. Obviously , you do not understand the most basic, fundamental idea of free speech, tolerance, and rights of others. If you were in charge, I suppose we would all do as you say. Eh? Please continue. The petty bickering is fascinating.

Zeek,
The plan would be based on a percentage of income.
No one is forced to participate.
Unfortunately, rich people are unlikely to participate, but I’m not of the mindset to force people to do thing such as that. The system is completely voluntary.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 5:24 PM
Comment #138522

d.a.n.

Well, that’s an exaggeration. Healthcare here is better than most countries. Access to healthcare is the problem.

Infant Mortality

I guess that’s why 40 countries have a lower infant mortality rate than the U.S.??? Why, with all the healthcare facilities and most money spent on healthcare does the U.S. rank so low???

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 5:26 PM
Comment #138525

Lynne,
Like I said, access is the problem.
I’m not defending the current high cost of healthcare.
I’m trying to find solutions.
It’s highly unlikely that government-run healthcare will make those statistics better.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 5:31 PM
Comment #138526

(updated for clarity…)
SOLUTION: Direct pay MEDICAL FUND PLAN(s):
(01) participation is voluntary;
(02) the Direct pay Medical Fund is administered by the healthcare providers themselves;
(03) that eliminates all reliance on either the government or insurance companies (middlemen) between health providers and patients;
(04) that eliminates insurance company bean-counters from making medical decisions;
(05) that will help control costs, since government and insurance companies are not the guarantors of final payment;
(06) that will simplify billing;
(07) that will reduce fraud because there will no longer be an ignorant and indifferent middleman that doesn’t care about fraud, and merely raise insurance premiums or raise taxes;
(08) that is audited and monitored by an independent organization;
(09) Medical Liability Reform is needed also; many lawyers are getting unjustly enriched by other peoples’ misery, and driving doctors out of the profession;
(10) Monthly premiums are based on a percentage of income; an upper-cap on premiums will increase participation by the very wealthy that otherwise would not find the cost worth it to participate;

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 5:36 PM
Comment #138527

Steve, I to have known doctors to gouge both systems. I have been dealing with a handicapped wife and child for 15 years. I wish that I could accept that applying a medicare styled solution would work. If you look at expanding the system to cover everyone, ESSPECIALLY NOW, you will have the private insurers and lawyers handning the policy to Congress, followed by rote regurgitation by that same body. In the end we lose, and they get campaign $.

Posted by: Ted at April 6, 2006 5:36 PM
Comment #138529

“They have unequivically stated they would not help a dying man in the street because they don’t have to, and besides it doesn’t say it in the constitution explicitly.”

Actually, I said it was YOUR belief to help, maybe not mine. Then I asked why you think it is ok to impose YOUR beliefs onto me.
And if I don’t wish to help somebody, what business is it of yours?
Attacking the kind of person you think myself or dan is instead of answering the question is quite telling.

“So much for their christian values, and lawyerly interpretations devoid of any humanity”

So much for your stereotypes too. I am an atheist and the interpretations devoid of any humanity that you talk of, is based on YOUR beliefs of what humanity is.

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 5:43 PM
Comment #138530

kctim,
Thanks. Geeez. What a hornets’ nest this stirred up. Yeah, I’m agnostic, so I find it amusing when people want to bring religion into things. Not that there is anything wrong with religion. It’s just that some ignorantly assume you believe exactly like them, and try to use religion to shame you. Those sort of people are what give religions a bad name.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 5:48 PM
Comment #138531

Many companies provide self-insurance; many states provide self-insurance for people who fall between the cracks (can’t afford private health insurance and earn a wee bit too much for Medicaid)…why can’t the U.S. do this? Why can’t all citizens band together to provide a basic healthcare insurance…contributions based on a sliding scale???

Well, the answer to why the U.S. doesn’t do that is the healthcare lobby…

But really, our government is supposed to be (!) all citizens banded together for mutual aid…and that’s what self-insurance would be…I’m sure we could hire a few professionals who used to work for health insurance companies to help us run it…afterall, they’d be out of work otherwise.

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 5:49 PM
Comment #138532

For all those who propose government intervention into insurance (and anything else)

Remember that whatever government can give you that same government can take from you.

So take the individual responsibility to take care of your own body, mind and soul. Learn how to be prosperous with your resources. This has the possibility of putting the government out of the insurance and dole business.

Posted by: tomh at April 6, 2006 5:51 PM
Comment #138533

“Nowhere does it say how 45 million Americans who currently do not have health insurance will get a minimally acceptable level of care”

Here’s a plan for that.
Take the people who “say” they believe in healthcare for all and tax them whatever it takes to support the 45 million who don’t have health insurance.
The lefties get their “feel good” high and the rest of us don’t get their rights trampled.
Fair all the way around.

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 5:52 PM
Comment #138535

Perhaps one of the biggest problems in expecting our government to help provide healthcare is that far too many have accepted that the U.S. (and by extension, its government) is a Christian country, guided by Christian principles…(I know, you agnostics and atheists out there don’t accept this, but, hey, you know people who do!)…

But, we have found since the religious “right” reared its righteous head around the Reagan regime era (isn’t alliteration fun?) and since that what is called “Christian” has not compared favorably with the New Testament nor the Golden Rule…

How about doing things, like universal medical care of some type, just because we know in our hearts and minds (yep…the economics does prove right in this case!) that it’s the correct way to behave???

Too much has been made of the “individual” responsibility at the risk of losing community…no individual has ever, EVER, done something wholely on their own…insisting solely on individual “responsibility” divides the community…

Is this an idealist position? Probably…but if we can’t dream and think of how we can ALL be better, then we might as well give up now and “drink the Kool-Aid”, so to speak.

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 5:56 PM
Comment #138536

D.a.n.
I know.
I find it amusing when people will try and use religion against me like that just to deviate from the message.

“Many companies provide self-insurance; many states provide self-insurance”

How many people provide “self-insurance” for themselves?
I have my own health account, retirement account etc…
How do I do it on my meager salary? I don’t go McD’s 3 times a week or have to buy the latest and greatest to impress others.
But most importantly, I don’t sit back and expect other people to do it for me.

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 6:07 PM
Comment #138537

“How about doing things, like universal medical care of some type, just because we know in our hearts and minds (yep…the economics does prove right in this case!) that it’s the correct way to behave???”

What those who know in their hearts and minds that homosexuality is wrong?
Do we succumb to doing what others think is right in their hearts and minds, with that? Or do we just do it when others believe as you?

Posted by: kctim at April 6, 2006 6:11 PM
Comment #138539

kctim

What those who know in their hearts and minds that homosexuality is wrong?

Don’t you think someone’s lifestyle is a little different from their very life??? And aren’t you sure in your heart that it’s wrong to approve and participate in letting poor people die just because they’re poor???

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 6:19 PM
Comment #138541

Here’s why health of our citizens is worsening:

36% of members of households served by Second Harvest’s national network are children under 18 years of age.

9% of those are children under the age of 5.

11% are elderly.

36% of households have incomes below the official poverty level.

73% are “food insecure” according to an official government scale.

41% of clients report having to choose between paying for food and paying for fuel or utilities (boy, they’ll surely be able to afford an HSA!).

35% had to choose between paying for food and paying rent or mortgage (another great group to recruit for HSAs!).

32% had to choose between paying for food and paying for medicine or medical care (yup….).

HSAs are only the answer for those who have disposable income after paying for basic needs…

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 6:27 PM
Comment #138543

Lynne,

You seem like a fair person.
Believe me, I want the best healthcare for all Americans. But, I also must not violate the rights of others in that quest.

I agree. Things are getting worse.

The Health Care System I presented is one of voluntary participation.
I think it would be a win-win for health-care providers and patients.
Why? Because it eliminates the middlemen. Without those two huge anchors around our neck, as we struggle to swim upstream, we will be able to provide health care at a much lower cost.
Also, we need some law changes.
Some states are forcing doctors out of business by requiring them to carry liability insurance that they can not afford. That is why doctors are leaving Texas and setting up their practices in other states. Florida got smart, and eliminated that requirement. Doctors in Florida merely have to tell their patients they don’t carry liability. Most patients seem OK with that.

I know a lot of people think government should provide this, and that, but it doesn’t work.

The function of government (despite the numerous things that our bloated government shouldn’t, but meddles in) should only be to provide for the national defenese, make and enforce the laws to protect peoples civil and human rights, and attend to foreign relationships to build constructive relationships that can serve to promote the protection of human rights throughout the world, and build alliances to help protect us and our allies.

BTW, I pay $410 a month for health insurance.
That is more than my electricity and utilities each month. I too would like less expensive insurance, but not at the expense of someone else. I’m not looking to the government to provide it for me, because I don’t want that much government in my life. Also, government is terribly inefficient and inept at doing such things. Anyone who says Medicare is functioning well has not researched it. That system is currently in huge trouble. It may even, not long from now, be more costly than Social Security, which is 12 trillion in the hole already. What many don’t realize, this nation is bankrupt (morally and fiscally), but it just doesn’t realize it yet. There will be consequen ces, and they will likely be painful, and we will only have ourselves to thank for it. Look at the cycle above. We are in the end stages of Step (4) and (5). Things will get worse before they get better, and this healthcare issue will be soon forgotten when people start losing more than just their health insurance and jobs.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 6:41 PM
Comment #138544

That is, I pay $410 a month for health insurance for me and my wife. It used to only be $100 only 5 years ago.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 6:45 PM
Comment #138547

d.a.n.

That is, I pay $410 a month for health insurance for me and my wife. It used to only be $100 only 5 years ago.

You’re getting off cheap…husband’s on medicare so insurance is only secondary and we pay $493 a month…with co-pays, deductibles, etc.

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 6:53 PM
Comment #138548

d.a.n.,

For all your “clarifying” your plan, posting colorful charts, being so proud of eliminating the “middleman,” and calling me “simple-minded,” I still haven’t figured out how a poor person gets dialysis under your plan, or how any of the other myriad flaws in the free market health system are going to help the 45 million Americans who don’t have any health insurance.

Posted by: Steve K at April 6, 2006 6:55 PM
Comment #138549

d.a.n.

You seem like a fair person. Believe me, I want the best healthcare for all Americans. But, I also must not violate the rights of others in that quest.

How does providing healthcare coverage “violate” the right of others…does it violate the rights of the CEO who makes megamillions playing golf everyday while poorly paid workers are getting injured in his factory???

Do we have a “right” to as much money as we can possibly get and to hell with everyone else???

Do we have a “right” to get the best healthcare because we “earn” a lot of money?

Do we have the “right” to ignore everyone who isn’t rich enough to afford healthcare???

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 6:56 PM
Comment #138563

Concerning rights and freedom.

There is an old saying that goes like this.
Your freedom ends where my nose begins. That to me means you are not entitled to my wallet, my skills, my talents, my thoughts, my likes and dislikes. It also means that I am responsible for my own welfare and wellbeing. When I pay my taxes, there is a certain amount that goes into the welfare bracket. That is supposed to maintain the basic needs of people who cannot care for themselves. The Christian way is not to force me to pay for somebody else’s care. The Christian way is to volunteer to do what I feel is the proper care for someone. BTW, when it comes to welfare, I think we should turn all welfare administration to the Salvation Army. They have a track record second to nobody.

Posted by: tomh at April 6, 2006 8:23 PM
Comment #138568

TomH

As a child, I would have gone to school in rags and would have had some pretty meager pickings at the dinner table if not for the Salvation Army. That and neighbors helping neighbors.

That was the idea behind Bush’s Faith-Based Initiative: Give the money to people and organizations who know how to get the maximum use from it, instead of throwing it into that big, dark hole called welfare.

I think even old Tom Jefferson would approve of that; maybe even put a gate in that famous wall liberals are always throwing in our faces.

Posted by: slowthinker at April 6, 2006 9:04 PM
Comment #138569

Jack,
Saving money in pensions and HSA’s may sound nice, but the fact that “I the Corporation” has raided these accounts before does not lend for a stable environment to secure your family future. If the Democrats and Republicans were really serious about allowing The Poor and Low-Income having the ability to self-finance their own medical insurance than a Federal Program should allow “We the People” to invest in Federal Reserve Special Treaury Notes which will serve as colateral(sp) for a loan to pay one’s medical bills while increasing the amount of money saved by the U.S. Citizens. Maybe someday a third party candidate will demostrate how investing in Our Nation is not a “Bad Thing” unlike the Democrats and Republicans of the 60’s who believe that Our Government needs to be made to weak to enforce the Intent of the Law of the Land.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at April 6, 2006 9:10 PM
Comment #138573

d.a.n
I’m jumping into the middle of this and don’t really have time to read all the comments so forgive if I’m asking something you’ve been asked before.
Is that $410 a year or a month? If it’s a year, What company is it through?
Is the HSA through your work or is it something your doing on your own?
Like most employers this days I’m trying to get cheaper health insurance for my employees. However I keep running into the same problem. In order to get insurance a any kind of reasonable price I have to go with a very high deductible. And dental is even worse.
I’m thinking about offering HSAs if I can do it through the business. I haven’t checked on them yet and don’t really know that much about them. But from what I’ve been hearing they’re a good idea. It sounds like you have a good deal there.

Posted by: Ron Brown at April 6, 2006 9:21 PM
Comment #138574

MEDICARE WORKS AND IT IS UNIVERSAL

Posted by: steve k at April 6, 2006 05:00 PM

Oh really? Then why is it that they keep raising the co-pay and cutting what it covers?
Why is it Medicare won’t let my neighbor get cataract surgery?
And have you noticed the tax bite out of you check for it?

Posted by: Ron Brown at April 6, 2006 9:40 PM
Comment #138578
Steve wrote: d.a.n., … I still haven’t figured out how a poor person gets dialysis under your plan, or how any of the other myriad flaws in the free market health system are going to help the 45 million Americans who don’t have any health insurance.
Steve K, Like I said, it’s a comprehension problem. Participants pay into the plan. It is a percentage of income, with a high-end cap, to encourage everyone, including weatly people to participate. The main point is that the cost is much lower without all the middlemen (government and insurance companies and their millions of employee). Participants receive treatment for covered medical problems. People that can’t afford to participate, can apply for welfare, which would pay their premiums for them.

What’s so difficult to understand ?
What is it you want from me ?
You keep asking me that question, and I keep answering it.

Sorry if it is not what you want to hear.
Did you want me to say 45 million people should receive healthcare free? If so, perhaps you and those that believe similarly (i.e. that healthcare should be provided to everyone, by the federal government) wouldn’t mind picking up the bill?

d.a.n. How does providing healthcare coverage “violate” the right of others?
Well, that’s a loaded question. Technically speaking “providing healthcare coverage violates no one’s rights”. But, since some one has to pay for it, it depends on who is paying for it. If you believe healthcare is a human right, do you believe illegal aliens should receive free healthcare? Because they are. Free public education too. If you believe healthcare is as civil right, then that requires a federal and/or state law. Laws can vary by state. If you believe healthcare should be provided because that is simply the right thing to do, than that depends on who pays, and who doesn’t, and how extensive are those benefits. But it also means that some can legally lay claim to other peoples’ money (namely the wealthy).
…does it violate the rights of the CEO who makes megamillions playing golf everyday while poorly paid workers are getting injured in his factory???
Lynne, what a wealthy person does with his money is his business. His money is not my money. I have no envy or jealousy, and will not try to take his money from him and pretend it is in the name of equality.
Do we have a “right” to as much money as we can possibly get and to hell with everyone else???
You have the right to earn as much money as you can, legally. Hopefully, ethically too. What does that have to do with anything? Are you saying if people have too much money, you should get part of it?
Do we have a “right” to get the best healthcare because we “earn” a lot of money?
Lynne, why stop at healthcare. Perhaps you should have a nicer house too, just because someone else does ?
Do we have the “right” to ignore everyone who isn’t rich enough to afford healthcare???
Yes, you have the right. But that does not mean it is the ethical thing to do. We all should to work together to make healthcare affordable. Should does not mean “by force”. But, taking from one group (by force) and giving to another (above and beyond what taxes we all pay for welfare for the truly needy) is theft by legal plunder.

If you think you have a right to other people’s money because they are richer than you, then fine.

That’s your choice. It’s not my philosophy. I don’t believe the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else. And, I don’t harbor envy or jealousy of those that have more money than me. It’s there money, and I have no right to take it away from them to provide for other peoples’ healthcare. As for the truly needy, that is what welfare is for. And the government already spends the majority of all revenues for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, welfare, Social Service, etc.

Lynne, here is one thing that would cut the high cost of healthcare for Americans considerably. This is where you should focus your outrage. Call and/or write you Senators and Representatives, and insist that they stop giving free public education and healthcare to illegal aliens. 32% of illegal aliens are on welfare. 29% of all prisoners in our state and federal prisons are illegal aliens. That’s were a huge chunk of our tax dollars are going. That is, call your congress persons if you are opposed to that. If you believe that it is a human right, than do you logically also believe our healthcare should be available to non U.S. citizens?

tomh, You get it. But, some want to portray you as greedy and stingy if you don’t want to give more to provide for the things others want. It is an amazing mindset. I just find it sad to hear Americans saying such things. They have become so pathetically dependent on government, and so envious and jealous of others that have more than they do, that they can not see how illogical and offensive their belief is. It is offensive because they demand something from others they are not willing to give themselves. They try to disguise their envy as demands for equality. Sad.

Hey Ron,
That is $410 per month (for me and my wife), just for the health insurance. It has a $10K deductible, but pays 100% thereafter.
The HSA and insurance we found on our own.

Yes, dental and vision are a joke.
The only good thing about dentists is they can usually tell you in advance what something costs.

But the HSA lets me spend (tax deductible) via HSA checks or HSA VISA card for dental and vision. Any money I put in it earns 6.15%. It’s really a good deal. It is the difference between owning and renting insurance. I’m going to max the HSA out immediately ($5400 per year), and pay for office visits, prescriptions, etc. out of that account, which is all tax deductible.

I’m completely sold on the HSA.
Go to 1hsa.org for more details.
As the money in the HSA grows, the more interest you earn, and if you ever want to take the money out for some non-medical purpose, you can, but it is simply not tax deductible. Also, get this….the premiums for separate insurance premiums are tax deductible. Nice eh?

Re: Medicare - that system is a disaster. You’re going to be hearing more and more about that disaster in the next 4 years.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 9:45 PM
Comment #138579

Ron Brown,
Sorry, I meant: http://www.1hsa.com/

Posted by: d.a.n at April 6, 2006 9:46 PM
Comment #138589

Universal health care, how much?

Do we pay for fertility treatments for a forty year old woman who just waited too long to have a baby? Do we keep an 80 year old man alive for one more year so he can smoke his last packs of cigarettes? Do we pay for liver transplants for alcoholics? More than one? Plastic surgery? It could boost self esteem? Brest implants? Erectile dysfunction? Nature doesn’t really want old guys to be so active, but chemicals can restore their vigor. Abortion? More than one or two?

What about ordinary old age? Experimental therapies could add energy?

Basic care expands to include whatever anyone wants to try.

I experienced socialized medicine in Scandinavia. I kind of like it because I don’t believe in going to the doctor for little problems and I think a little discomfort and pain is character building. But many of my fellow Americans would not like the rationing aspects.

Posted by: Jack at April 6, 2006 10:17 PM
Comment #138593

Steve K.

First, I do not think that it is a responsibility of the doctor to run their practice like a business if they chose not to. Three phone calls, wow the guy must be exhausted from trying to find a price. Sounds like calling a tree trimmer to come and trim trees. In new york, there must be doctors in the thousands, some of whom I am sure would quote a general cost of care. Some would see the savings in a cash customer over insurance and government pay.

Second, How about smoking and its side affects, obesity and the side affects from it, alcoholism, drug use just to name a few. If I am going to be tapped for healthcare(lifestyle maintenance) then there needs to be some changes. No sports, no extreme activities, mandatory excersize, banning of alcohol, smoking, chewing tabacco, limited tv so as to get people off of there duff for there own health etc. limits on fast and prepared foods. In essence, one will have to live a very healthy life before I will be talked into paying for their and your healthcare.

Posted by: scottp at April 6, 2006 10:41 PM
Comment #138614

d.a.n.

32% of illegal aliens are on welfare

I’ve worked many years with illegal aliens…they’re scared to go to the doctor, scared to have anything to do with anything “government” because they’d get caught…so don’t give me this 32% on welfare crap…

Jack:

You want to work out all the infinitesimal details of a non-existent healthcare program?? Let’s get real…these are more fear tactics (gosh, we’ve already had enough of those since January 2001!) to keep people voting against their own best interest (Kansas!) again…

Posted by: Lynne at April 6, 2006 11:43 PM
Comment #138623

Jack, the below tables are for you. Please read, and re-consider your position regarding why so many people may have not saved enough money

This table is used by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). HHS publishes these statistics annually in the Federal Register. MEDIAN INCOME FOR 4-PERSON FAMILIES, BY STATE —————————————————————————————————————————————————————- Calendar year 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998 FiscalYr:2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001

SC: 56,433 56,110 59,212 56,294 55,978 52,417

This is how my County stacked up in 1999
(2000 census)
People QuickFacts South Carolina USA
Median household income, 1999 $31,087 $37,082

You will notice that SC’s median income is significantly less “$The median family income in this country is around $65K” you indicate.

If you go by the 2000 census of my county you will find it is also significantly lower.

I also want you to realize that our gasoline is $2.58 a gallon. Our heating and cooling bills are much higher than they were a year ago, our food prices are about the same as much of the country (My hobby may seem strange, but I always check grocery prices when I am in a new place.) Since I just finished traveling and visiting grocery stores in small town Fl, a small town in Mississippi, a small town Alabama, New Orleans, La, both Houston and Dallas TX,a small town and OK City,OK, Fort Smith,Ark, a very small town Tn, Augusta, Ga and back to SC)gasoline appeared to much the same, etc in Texas, where it was several cents higher.

So we spend about the same but make much less than the median.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 6, 2006 11:59 PM
Comment #138631

DAN,
Are you aware that $410.00/mth for 50 years equals almost a quarter of a million dollars? That might not sound like much money to some, but that total is witout any interest being added to it. Not a bad nest egg if a person attempts to stay healthy by leaving the doctors alone, huh? And as an American Citizen if you were to invested it into U.S. Federal Reserve Special Treaury Notes, Our Nation’s Wealth would grow and your money would be as safe as Humanly Possible so that given time any medical bill could be paid off in full.

No, Hannity’s showed tonight on his show just why the Children of the 70’s need to teach the Democrats and Republicans how to take the Political Correctness that they have been learning for the last 25-30 years and come Debate this Independent Pundit about the Spirit of America stating for a Fact that America is going to build a PUC World. Even if it means VOIDing the Establishment held by the Youth of the 60’s.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at April 7, 2006 12:55 AM
Comment #138640
d.a.n. wrote: 32% of illegal aliens are on welfare
Lynne wrote: I’ve worked many years with illegal aliens…they’re scared to go to the doctor, scared to have anything to do with anything “government” because they’d get caught…so don’t give me this 32% on welfare crap.

Lynne,
So you’ve worked with a few illegal aliens and now you are an expert?

You want to complain about the high cost of healthcare and health insurance, but make excuses for illegal aliens stealing your tax payer benefits?

Sorry, but the facts are the facts.
If you don’t believe it, then prove it.

_________________________
Illegal aliens are NOT necessarily coming here to work. Lou Dobbs recently reported that 33% of our prison population is now comprised of non-citizens. Plus, 36% to 42% percent of illegal aliens are on welfare. So, for a good proportion of these people, the American dream is crime and welfare, not coming here to work.
_______________

Half of all welfare usage in the state (CA) is from immigrant households, and 32% of all illegal-immigrant households receive benefits from at least one welfare program. The average welfare payment — just counting the four major welfare programs — to illegal-immigrant households is $1,400 a year.
_______________

While most Americans haven’t a clue and our pathetic government remains aloof and immobile, Mexico enforces laws that are the exact opposite of ours. Outrageously, our government continues to leave our country wide-open to the Mexican invasion plan. A repeatedly declared plan to overrun America, in a human ‘tsunami-like’ wave after wave of its poorest citizens, who arrive here and suck our schools, jails, health, and welfare systems dry! Mexico is maliciously manipulating our, give-away ‘free’ society, while Bush ‘fiddles.’ Wake up America, before it’s too late!
__________________________
Not to mention the other numerous serious issues:

  • education systems

  • healthcare systems

  • hospital systems

  • welfare systems

  • Social Security system

  • Medicaid system

  • border patrol systems

  • insurance systems

  • law enforcement systems

  • prison systems

  • voting systems


Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 1:38 AM
Comment #138641

Not only is health insurance expensive, but most will not take you if you have a pre-existing condition. My husband wants to change jobs in the near future and while there is group insurance available, the company wants him to pay for his own insurance for a year because he has stage 1 diabetes, and they don’t want to cover him. He will have to pay $1,500 dollars a month!!!!!, his diabetes will not be covered in any fashion, even after the company decides to pick it up. We thought that it might be better to check into a family plan just for the both of us - NO ONE WILL Cover him.

href=”http://journal.diabetes.org/diabetesspectrum/99v12n2/pg70.htm”>http://journal.diabetes.org/diabetesspectrum/99v12n2/pg70.htm

This is what I would like for you to know, but feel read to check the site:

The recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau clearly show that older Americans are becoming an increasingly larger segment of the population.1 In 1994, one of eight Americans was over the age of 65, and it is estimated that by 2020, one in every six Americans will be over the age of 65.1
Increasing age is a major risk factor for the development of type 2 diabetes. The Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) indicated that 18.5% of people aged 65­74 years have diabetes.2 One-half of this group had not been previously diagnosed as having diabetes by their health care providers.2 When subjects with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) are also included, approximately 40% of the older population has some degree of carbohydrate intolerance.2

Not only is the cost of health insurance way too high, what about the other people who are diagnosed with die bates ready year, those who have cancer, a stroke, etc.Anyone have any suggestions?

Jack, If you’ll look at and read the following web site, you might see why you get jumped on when you insist that everyone can afford to save and retire. Most Americans don’t have the foggiest idea what they’ll need for retirement.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12151755/from/RSS/

From MSNBC:
Updated: 3:17 p.m. ET April 5, 2006

NEW YORK - The majority of American workers think they’ll be able to retire comfortably, but most aren’t saving nearly enough to meet that goal, according to a new study.

The Employee Benefit Research Institute’s annual retirement confidence survey, released Tuesday, found that about 68 percent of workers are confident about having adequate funds for a comfortable retirement, up slightly from 65 percent in 2005.

At the same time, more than half of all workers say they’ve saved less than $25,000 toward retirement, according to the Washington, D.C., based research group. Even among workers 55 and older, more than four in 10 have retirement savings under $25,000.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 7, 2006 1:38 AM
Comment #138642
Lynne wrote: I’ve worked many years with illegal aliens…they’re scared to go to the doctor, scared to have anything to do with anything “government” because they’d get caught…so don’t give me this 32% on welfare crap…
So they are scared, eh? Is that why the commit enough crimes to account for 29% of all prisoners in all state and federal prisons? Many of those are violent crimes. Just last 13-Nov-2005, an illegal alien murdered a Dallas policmen 30 miles from where I live.

That is from several sources, including reports from the GAO report and DOJ. Want to challenge that too?

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 1:48 AM
Comment #138644
Henry Schlatman wrote: d.a.n, Are you aware that $410.00/mth for 50 years equals almost a quarter of a million dollars? That might not sound like much money to some, but that total is witout any interest being added to it.

That’s a good point about the other investment accounts.
Yes, $410 per month for medical insurance (for wife and I) is expensive.

However, the plan is this.
After we build up the HSA account (limited to $5400 per year) to about $40K and save another $60K somewhere else, we can drop the health insurance entirely, or get a very high deductible with very low rates.

Not a bad nest egg if a person attempts to stay healthy by leaving the doctors alone, huh? And as an American Citizen if you were to invested it into U.S. Federal Reserve Special Treaury Notes, Our Nation’s Wealth would grow and your money would be as safe as Humanly Possible so that given time any medical bill could be paid off in full.
Yes, the good part is, you own your health insurance rather than renting it. Get a supplement policy (if you can) with a very high deductible. Therefore, if you never get sick, you still have the money.
No, Hannity’s showed tonight on his show just why the Children of the 70’s need to teach the Democrats and Republicans how to take the Political Correctness that they have been learning for the last 25-30 years and come Debate this Independent Pundit about the Spirit of America stating for a Fact that America is going to build a PUC World. Even if it means VOIDing the Establishment held by the Youth of the 60’s.

Yeah, D.C. needs a good flush, or two, or three, or more (and when ever necessary). Voter Education is the vital. Depends on how fond incumbents are of the staus quo.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 2:03 AM
Comment #138658

d.a.n.,

By saying noone has the right to healthcare, you are in essence saying it is morally right to let someone die in the street untreated. That’s pretty uneqivocal to me. Maybe on your planet it’s different.

Like the one where illegal aliens are voting in droves as opposed to legitimate voters being denied the right to vote by Republican political operatives in say Florida or Ohio.

I do not believe the US has an obligation to care for the world. It simply isn’t realistic to expect that. The rest of the world should look to their governments.

Healthcare does not mean every arcane treatment should be paid for by government. I’m talking basic healthcare. The states confer licenses upon Nurses and Doctors, they can also confer obligaions. I don’t advocate that healthcare should be “free” but to apply “free market” theory to healthcare is to ignore it as a primal need. Perhaps we should privatize air. I mean why should one be allowed to breathe “free” air? I think possibly you are stealing air. After all the constitution doesn’t mention air as a right. Absurdist arguments are just that, absurd.

You haven’t responded to the State of Massachusetts Unversal Healthcare plan. It isn’t a gov’t handout. Get on the bus boys the Republicans are about to get left behind. Americans aren’t going to wait on the greedy lobbyist to reform Healthcare. People are on to the free market, corporatization, privatization perversions being sold to them. Why has energy, water, and healthcare risen well above the CPI when it is in a “free” market? Anyone heard of Enron?

Inherently nothing is wrong with free market theory. It’s just when you allow this to become a fig leaf for monopolistic, greedy behavior, that people get screwed.

Posted by: Jack Mohammedoff at April 7, 2006 6:53 AM
Comment #138659

Jack, I’ve never been to europe. I have read from many who thought that European healthcare (in France and England, specifically) was great. Tom Friedman has made positive comments about it.

Yes, it will mean more rationed care. Don’t want to wait? Fly to India or Phuket and get it done in a private clinic. I hear they are great. No one is impeding your right to do that.

Universal healthcare is going to happen here, people are tired of the rich carving out there little niches and screwing everyone else. The healthcare industry is a little fiefdom that has a captive pool of victims to prey upon. Not all clinics are run that way but far too many are.

I think healthcare reform should also include lawsuit reform and medical license reform that includes a means for joe blow to evaluate his physician.

Massachussetts has a model to look at as far as how to provide universal insurance, it isn’t a gov’t handout, it’s got many different modalities of payment.

Posted by: Jack Mohammedoff at April 7, 2006 7:15 AM
Comment #138660

Jack Mohammedoff,
Since breathing Air is an unlienable Right, the 9th Amendment should cover Dan’s right to consume it properly. However, maybe the Republicans think that it should be bottled and sold on the Free Market.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at April 7, 2006 7:42 AM
Comment #138665
Universal health care, how much?

Do we pay for fertility treatments for a forty year old woman who just waited too long to have a baby?…

I experienced socialized medicine in Scandinavia. I kind of like it because I don’t believe in going to the doctor for little problems and I think a little discomfort and pain is character building. But many of my fellow Americans would not like the rationing aspects.

Any sustainable healthcare system is going to contain a type of rationing. The system of rationing we use now is your doctor calls up the insurance company and tries to convince an English major that you are really, REALLY sick and he is not just conning them. If there isn’t a limit written right in the policy.

That is a funny thing about our current healthcare debate. Someone says, “I don’t want some government bureaucrat telling my doctor what to do!”, as if that isn’t exactly what is happening already. Just without the government part (unless you are on Medicaid or Medicare).

Posted by: Woody Mena at April 7, 2006 8:17 AM
Comment #138668
The NHS in the UK just plain sucks… In summary, the NHS is exactly what I would expect a universal, govt run healthcare system to be: good enough to keep you alive but that�s about it.

Buffie,

Here’s the thing — the Brits spend much, much less on their healthcare system than we do. See this link:

http://www.economist.com/world/displaystory.cfm?story_id=5436968

If you pay Walmart prices, you are obviously going to get Walmart service. A fair comparison would be to take a country with socialized medicine that spends as much as we do. Alas, our system is so expensive that there is no other country (I am aware of) to compare us to.

Posted by: Woody Mena at April 7, 2006 8:41 AM
Comment #138669

I have read this lively thread with much interest. It’s obviously a hot topic with most commentors. My “two-cents” is that the conservatives are essentially right on this issue. Healthcare, no matter how you read the preamble to the Constitution, is not a “right” guaranteed by the venerable document. I believe that liberals like Lynn ought to go live in the Soviet Union - I hear they have guaranteed healthcare, housing, education…. Oh sorry, just got a news flash!! The Soviet Union ceased to exist in 1989. It apparently went bust trying to provide universal benefits. The reason it did was that those supporting the system saw that those not supporting it received the same benefits without doing a thing, so they in turn decided to stop working and start collecting. Therein lies the rub! You can’t force some to pay for the benefits of all - the “some” eventually become angry, disenfranchised and unmotivated enough to stop caring and eventually stop paying.

Posted by: bobc at April 7, 2006 9:07 AM
Comment #138671
Jack Mohammedoff wrote: d.a.n., By saying no one has the right to healthcare, you are in essence saying it is morally right to let someone die in the street untreated. That’s pretty uneqivocal to me. Maybe on your planet it’s different.

Jack Mehammedoff,
I never said no one has the right to healthcare.
Where do you come up with this total nonsense.
What planet are you on?

But, such nonsensical non-sequiturs, such as yours, reveal how weak your argument is. Your are really graspin’ at straws.

But, more importantly, your statement is quite simply a lie. I’ve never said or heard anyone say “… it is morally right to let someone die in the street untreated”. Surely, you can see how ridiculous that statement is, can’t you?

I said health care is not a human right. It may be a civil right in some nations, but it is not a human right. To argue otherwise reveals your ignorance of the difference.

And, if you believe it is a human right, then it must be available to non-U.S. citizens too. But, you then draw the line there, and you say “I do not believe the US has an obligation to care for the world”.

Sorry Jack, but you can’t have it both ways. That’s simply hypocritical. You contradict yourself.

Your statements are simply childish and ridiculous. It speaks for itself, and reveals the desperation and recklessness due to the weakness of your argument. Is that the best you can do?

Lastly, people are entitled to believe what ever they like.

But, if one believes healthcare is a human right, then fine.

But, why stop there?

Let us build upon that childish, flawed logic.

Perhaps food and medicine should be a human right too.
Why get a job to buy food if you have a human right to food?
Why get a job to buy a house or rent an apartment if shelter is a human right?
Why not have the government wipe you butt for you too, if butt-wipin’ is a human right?

What your statements reveal is a lazy, pathetic, and irresponsible dependency on government. You want it to take care of you from cradle to grave. You try to disguise your envy and jealousy of anyone with more as a “claim of equality” or a “human right”. You believe and perpetuate the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else. If you can’t afford something, you believe it is someone else’s duty to provide it to you. Sad.

I think most Americans, and rightly so, find that entire type of attitude disgusting, and contrary to their beliefs and philosophy. If you believe otherwise, you are living on anohter planet.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 9:18 AM
Comment #138672

bobc,
You hit that nail on the head, perfectly. Thanks!

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 9:20 AM
Comment #138676

Lynne
“Don’t you think someone’s lifestyle is a little different from their very life???”

Only if that person cares about their “very life.

“And aren’t you sure in your heart that it’s wrong to approve and participate in letting poor people die just because they’re poor???”

What you and I believe is right, should not come into play though. When we allow that, we get the hypocrisy we see today. Like govt can’t tell me to do what you think is best but it can tell you to do what I think is best. That is wrong.

I have no problem with people helping others in their own way and I would never try to force them to quit helping others if that is what they believe is right.
So why is it ok for you to force me to go against what I believe is the right and fair way to help others?

“How does providing healthcare coverage “violate” the right of others…”

Because you have to pay for that healthcare and in order to pay for it you must force other people to accept your ideas of what is right and force them to financially support your idea with the money they earned.

“does it violate the rights of the CEO who makes megamillions playing golf everyday while poorly paid workers are getting injured in his factory???”

Yes. It is being jealous about that CEO’s megamillions that is wrong. It is doing nothing for yourself that is wrong. It is expecting other people to do it for you that is wrong.

“Do we have a “right” to as much money as we can possibly get and to hell with everyone else???”

Yes.

“Do we have a “right” to get the best healthcare because we “earn” a lot of money?”

Yes. Just like how they drive a Rolls and I could be driving a Yugo. Do they have a right to drive a safer car because they can afford it? Yes.

“Do we have the “right” to ignore everyone who isn’t rich enough to afford healthcare???”

Yes. What others choose to ignore should be of no concern to you. If you “really” believe in healthcare for all, then you should give me of yourself to support your cause.

Posted by: kctim at April 7, 2006 9:35 AM
Comment #138682

bobc,

You’ve got it backwards. The Soviet Union was not an anomaly in regard to health care. The US is an anomaly because we don’t have a universal health care system.

It is like you are saying “The dinosaurs died out because they couldn’t talk…”

Posted by: Woody Mena at April 7, 2006 9:42 AM
Comment #138686

bobc,
Actually the General Welfare of the Preamble may hold the key to that answer; however, general doctors are no longer available to take care of the general welfare of America’s Citizens. Call it crazy, but it seems that the AMA is more interested in pushing specialties of doctors instead of allowing our young Doctors serve their communities as General Doctors for 3-5 years so that they can learn their trade.

Instead, our societal thinking is forced to believe that a two year internship in a hospital can sub as a replacement for a close relationship that is formed in Community Clinics between the Patient and the Doctor. All so that the specialist can race to earn the miilions that they where promised after 8 years of school.

Maybe the quickest and easiest way to lower Health Care is to start allowing the RN’s to provide General Health Care to the America Public. Just think about, 50 years ago most Americans used folklure remendies and didn’t worry about seeing the doctor. Today, somehow it seems that everybody has to see a doctor for something and spend millions on drugs. Why? Could it be that America has to many Doctors or is it that our Corporations have polluted our environment? Surely it could not be that Our Elected Officals have lost oversight of this proud profession as prices soar out of control?

However, IMHO I do believe that offering the American Citizens a plan where their Medical Trust Fund is safe from the Bears of the Markets and under the protection of the Federal Reserve will have a very chilling effect on the Medical Profession unwillingness to compromise over climbing prices.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at April 7, 2006 9:56 AM
Comment #138731

kctim:

So no one owes you anything and you owe nothing to anyone…you do realize that you can do nothing completely on your own? You live in zoned housing, you travel on tax-paid roads, you listen over public-regulated airwaves…no one does anything completely on their own…

You’re so het up on “rights” that you have forgotten that basic responsibilities go with the possession of “rights”…

Unfortunately this seems to be the way of the U.S. right now…no one wants to take responsibility for anything, including our political leaders (who won’t even testify under oath on national security issues!).

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 12:04 PM
Comment #138734

Jack:

Since the middle of the 1980s, the Federal government has helped its employees with the Thrift Savings Plan allows employees to save up to $15,000 a year tax deferred and matches 5% of the employee salary. More recently, they have a health savings plan where participants can contribute up to $5000 per family tax free to pay for medical bills and insurance payments with pre-tax dollars.

How many of us can afford, after paying for food lodging and other basic necessities can afford to sock away over $1,000 a month to reach anything near that $15,000…and when you’re already paying $500 a month for health insurance, where do you get the $5000 a year to sock away to pay for such insurance???? Extremely few people under the median-stated income of $69,000!!!

Being “allowed” to sock away this money doesn’t mean anyone can actually aford to do this…and since it’s given tax advantage, it means pre-tax savings…so, those who earn less will once again get rather screwed because 1) they can’t afford to put away these monies and 2) since they can’t afford it they will again not receive any tax incentives…

It’s another plan for “them that has”…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 12:09 PM
Comment #138736

bobc

Healthcare, no matter how you read the preamble to the Constitution, is not a “right” guaranteed by the venerable document.

If all those within the U.S. have an inalienable right to life, how then can healthcare not be considered a right…it doesn’t state that it’s a “pursuit” of life, it’s an “inalienable right” to life…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 12:13 PM
Comment #138738

George:

Tax reform is the prerequisite to health care reform. That’s why I only advocate one first step: make all health care premium payments tax deductible.

This would be a great boon to the middle class…currently we pay $6000 a year in health insurance premiums (plus one of us pays Medicare, too)…we can deduct about $400…

This still doesn’t solve the problem of those who can’t even afford health insurance!!

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 12:15 PM
Comment #138739

Jack,
You stated:

The median family income in this country is around $65K

I’m disappointed in you. I found facts that dispute your claim that at least half of the American citizens can afford both insurance and retirement - and you didn’t respond.

You are quite right about the failure to save. Or perhaps I should say about how to save.

Try this article on for size:

http://money.cnn.com/2006/04/06/pf/teenagers_money/index.htm

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.Com) - Teenagers are notorious for being bad at managing money, and they’re not getting any better at it.

High school seniors, on average, answered only 52.4 percent of the answers correctly on a financial survey. That was up from 52.3 percent when the survey was last conducted two years ago but down from 57.3 percent in 1997, the first year for the survey, according to the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.

We obviously can’t depend on their knowledge of finances to help the baby-boomers out of financial trouble.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 7, 2006 12:18 PM
Comment #138742
Lynne, preamble says:

We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.


No where does it “guarantee”.
It can’t (not yet anyway).

“Inalienable right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness”

Inalienable = cannot be transferred to another…

It means this right cannot be given up or taken away…

Sounds like guarantee to me!!

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 12:21 PM
Comment #138770

Lynne,
You have to admit that a guaranteed life is a problem.
Everyone dies.

Guarantee Liberty: Better talk with the Bush people regarding the lost of our rights -wiretapping, etc.

Pursuit of Happiness: That is a hard one to fullfil, since most people have differing ideas of what will make them happy.

However, I do believe that SOMETHING needs and should be done about Health Insurance. As I stated in an eatlier post - what about the people who can’t get insurance because of pre-exssiting conditions?

It may or may not be a “right” but it still needs to be dealt with, and I believe it would be best handled by the Federal government instead of individually.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 7, 2006 1:09 PM
Comment #138778
Unfortunately this seems to be the way of the U.S. right now…no one wants to take responsibility for anything, including our political leaders (who won’t even testify under oath on national security issues!).
Lynn, That I agree with completely. Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 1:18 PM
Comment #138786

Henry,

The AMA has been trying for years to push medical students to pursue careers in primary care medicine. I am a medical student. It doesn’t work like you say it does. The AMA doesn’t have much control over what fields we choose; I’m afraid that malpractice premiums, lawsuits, and other headaches have a much larger impact. Also, very few want to go into primary care medicine (i.e.- general practitioners, family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics) because those physicians are the primary care physicians for their patients and are responsible to get all the authorizations from HMO’s and other forms of insurance necessary for their patients to see specialists when they need to. It is a pain in the butt, not to mention the extra medical staff that they need just to deal with insurance companies all day; that’s just one reason and there are many more. Why go through all that, in addition to taking call, when you could choose a specialty that you find much more interesting, pays more, doesn’t require you to have tons of people on your staff to argue with insurance companies all day about authorizations, and maybe (or maybe not) have to take call all the time? Doctors are not stupid (usually).

Lynne,

D.A.N. has answered all of your questions several times as to why healthcare is not a human right. According to your reasoning regarding “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” (meaning that healthcare is implied in there somehow), then why not food? Certainly food is necessary for life and I would argue that food is much more important than medicine or healthcare for obvious reasons. You seem like a really compassionate person and I commend you for your willingness to help out those who are less fortunate. I agree that we should, but I cannot agree with socialized medicine as a means to do so at all. Frankly, “the ends do not justify the means”. Canada’s system is not going to last many more years, and I’m sure Great Britain won’t be too far behind after that. It simply is not a viable alternative requiring much more time than I have to explain it. I think others on this post have pointed out some of the pertinent arguements in this regard.

Tyler

Posted by: Tyler at April 7, 2006 1:33 PM
Comment #138803

Lynne,
I believe the right to “Life” in the preamble refers to an individuals right to “exist”. That right cannot be extended to everything that goes hand in hand with living. Just because you happen to associate “Life” with healthcare doesn’t make healthcare a right. It’s like someone who lives in a warm climate believing that noone could live in a climate like this without air conditioning. Therefore, it’s their right to have A/C. I think not, but they do have rights. They have the right to pick up and move to a cooler climate or sweat it out where they are (i.e. “pursuit of happiness”).

Posted by: bobc at April 7, 2006 2:07 PM
Comment #138804

“So no one owes you anything and you owe nothing to anyone…”

Very true. I am not envious of others and I expect nobody else to take care of myself or my family.

“you do realize that you can do nothing completely on your own?”

Uh, no. I do realize people have been trained to think like that, but I do not.

“You live in zoned housing”

It is my choice on where I live. For all you know, I live out in the woods and am self sufficent.

“you travel on tax-paid roads, you listen over public-regulated airwaves…”

Maybe, maybe not. It is my choice to do either.

“no one does anything completely on their own…”

Yeah, I learned that in public school also.
People who believe that crap are what is commonly known as sheeple and that is why we have become a dependent society. Somebody else will always do it for you.

IF you really believe in healthcare for all, then why not make its support a choice? Give or don’t give whatever you want.
That way, people who “SAY” they are really for it, can give as much as they want and those of us against it would be left alone.
Then, you could put your money where you “SAY” your heart is, quit forcing me to support your beliefs and we all would be much happier.
Its not a hard solution, it just requires those of you who “SAY” you believe in it to actually do something about it.

Posted by: kctim at April 7, 2006 2:07 PM
Comment #138821

kctim:

I’m glad you live out in the woods by yourself…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 2:42 PM
Comment #138822

bobc

It’s like someone who lives in a warm climate believing that noone could live in a climate like this without air conditioning.

People have lived in the desert for years without A/C….there was an increase in the population with A/C, but that doesn’t negate the thousands who lived here for years without it…and those who still do….

How can you “exist” when you get cancer or heart disease without healthcare??? The two are vitally linked together…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 2:44 PM
Comment #138824

d.a.n.

Lynn, That I agree with completely.

I’m so glad we agree on something…that’s a good start for a real dialogue…

We certainly don’t agree on the necessity of universal coverage for healthcare…and let’s face it, Massachusetts’ plan will work in very few states…

If we are indeed an “advanced” country why are we 41st from the top of the good numbers in the infant mortality list? Why not start out with universal coverage for everyone from birth to age 12…that’d at least cover the major immunizations!

We already have Medicare which supposedly covers people 65 and over…if you can find a physician who’ll accept their payment…plus the scams and crooks have figured out how to get too much of the Medicare money…that needs to be stopped or at least minimalized…let’s face it, even private insurance is subject to scammers…not just government programs!

Why not universally cover one physical a year per person…one colonoscopy every 5 years for everyone 50 and over…one mammogram a year for every woman…that’d at least be a start!!

We need a basis on which we can build…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 2:50 PM
Comment #138841
Try this article on for size:

http://money.cnn.com/2006/04/06/pf/teenagers_money/index.htm

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.Com) - Teenagers are notorious for being bad at managing money, and they’re not getting any better at it.
High school seniors, on average, answered only 52.4 percent of the answers correctly on a financial survey. That was up from 52.3 percent when the survey was last conducted two years ago but down from 57.3 percent in 1997, the first year for the survey, according to the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.

We obviously can’t depend on their knowledge of finances to help the baby-boomers out of financial trouble.

I checked the article our and, while I’m sure the results are appaling, I was pretty disappointed with their research methods. The link contains the following data:

Only 14.2 percent of respondents said that stocks are likely to have higher average returns than savings bonds, savings accounts and checking accounts over the next 18 years.

Excuse me, but that sounds pretty subjective to me! We are asking teens to predict economic performance over 18 years in the future? Based on what past data? Is 18 years some magic number I’m not aware of? Wasn’t there a big stock bust just 6 years ago to consider? I can think of a lot of economic scenarios where fixed-rate securities can outperform stocks for two decades! Based on this information, this survey sounds like it was put forward by brokers …

Posted by: Steve k at April 7, 2006 3:36 PM
Comment #138845

Lynne,
I guess you don’t get the idea of analogy. eh?
Let’s try this…
You wrote:
How can you “exist” when you get cancer or heart disease without healthcare??? The two are vitally linked together…
Maybe they are and maybe they aren’t. Even in my lifetime (and I’m not that old) - dying of cancer and/or heart disease was once considered “natural causes”. Something one could do nothing about. Now, with modern technology and understanding, we can save some from dying - but there is not enough technology, understanding, money, luck or whatever to save everyone with cancer or heart disease so it cannot possibly be a god-given “right”. Does the person who smokes, drinks, is morbidly obese all of his/her life have the right to life via healthcare when they end up with the predictable outcome? Is there no responsibility on the part of the indiviual for maintaining a healthy lifestyle or buying health insurance that gives one the expectation of reasonable healthcare? Or is it healthcare, an inalienable right for everyone, at any cost? If you say yes to that one you’re too far left for me to deal with - I’m only moderately conservative. Adios!

Posted by: bobc at April 7, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #138850
Is there no responsibility on the part of the indiviual for maintaining a healthy lifestyle or buying health insurance that gives one the expectation of reasonable healthcare? Or is it healthcare, an inalienable right for everyone, at any cost? If you say yes to that one you’re too far left for me to deal with - I’m only moderately conservative. Adios!

Last I heard people still had free will..while we can do everything to urge people to exercise, give up (or not start) smoking, eat healthful foods…we can’t stand over them with a stick. And, in case you haven’t noticed, the price of fresh fruits and vegetables is outrageous…

Yes, we need to at least provide basic healthcare to everyone…yearly check-ups, disease prevention and disease treatment…we’re not going to keep people from dying, but we can save people from dying needlessly in most cases.

I do not see how a right to life can possibly be separated from a right to reasonable healthcare…what we’ll most likely differ on is “reasonable”…I’ve outlined in another posting a basis on which we can build a universal healthcare system…staring with universal healthcare from birth to age 12…start there…build on that…add yearly mammograms…PSA tests…colonoscopies for those at risk and/or over age 50…build a little every couple years…

And your postings do not reveal you to be “moderately” conservative…of course, we don’t have hardly any real conservatives left, at least in high office, so it’s difficult to ascertain what makes up a “conservative” at this moment in time…conservatism “ain’t what it used to be”…

Ciao.

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 4:06 PM
Comment #138854

kctim:

I’m interested in hearing how you’ve existed your entire life without anything from anyone…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 4:21 PM
Comment #138870

Lynne
It was my choice to live where I do and no, its not in the country.

“I’m interested in hearing how you’ve existed your entire life without anything from anyone…”

Its easy.
I do not envy others and I don’t expect others to do things for me.
If I see somebody who needs my help, I help them. I do not force other people to help me to help them.
If you wish to help somebody, then use your money to support what you think is right and let me use my money to support what I think is right.
How you help or how I help should be of no concern to the other.
I don’t care how you use your money, why do you care how I use mine?

Posted by: kctim at April 7, 2006 6:06 PM
Comment #138894

Tyler,
You pointed out that

Why go through all that, in addition to taking call, when you could choose a specialty that you find much more interesting, pays more
and that is exactly my point. The AMA, HBO’s, and Insurance companies have regulated themselve to the point that taking someones temperture requires an Act of Congress. Those Rules and Regulations got there through the Special Interest Greoups of those Orgs.

In fact, our health care and public edication systems are so top heavy in “Paper Work” that IMHO is would be easier to create a new program where RN’s provided for the General Health of Our Cotizens so that Doctors can spend more time keeping up with the advances coming into play.

As a simple Layman who has had to teach a few Doctors a thing or two about their own profession, I am in favor of pushing for a higher understanding of a person’s health in High School. Yet, I still find it amazing that after thousands of years no Doctor can tell me exactly what the Human Body needs to consume in order to exist.

Therefore, IMHO America would do a better job educating citizens on how to better approach their health care because no Doctor can know Everything; Reducing the “Paper Work” by given the Doctor the final word in Health Care; and expand the role of an RV to include taking on the Responsibility of General Health of First Responders.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at April 7, 2006 7:33 PM
Comment #138896

I have to admit that d.a.n. wins the ‘human right’ argument. Healthcare is not a human right. And thanks to the fiscally shortsighted, it is neither a civil right in this country…yet.

Americans are generous people. I think we all would agree that everyone should have access to healthcare. The savings plans have some good points but, like the system we have now, it still excludes the poorest families. So what’s the point of making a huge change if the new system still won’t get rid of one of the most expensive aspects of healthcare — uninsured patients?

I’ve seen some ask, ‘why should I pay for someone elses healthcare?’ There’s a couple reasons. #1 - Because someday someone else will be paying for your healhcare. And #2 - Because we live in a SOCIETY of millions of people. I always liked a phrase used by the military regarding a group or squad: YOU’RE ONLY AS GOOD AS YOU’RE WEAKEST LINK. Until we can somehow include ALL PEOPLE with health coverage, the uninsured and the current insurance buracracy will drag us down and we will still be paying more for less.

Check around and see how satisfied other countries are with their universal healthcare systems. France, Canada, Germany, England, etc. Then compare it to the US. We have the lowest satisfaction and the highest cost. I know you fiscal Conservatives got to be interested in that. Theirs costs less AND people are happier. Sounds good to me. But I know some of you would rather save up for that BIG operation that empties your account in one day. Ooops. Than what? You’re on the dole like all the other minimum wagers. Which means me, d.a.n. and everyone else will be paying for your follow-up operation. Of course, I’m sure there are some on this blog that would just kick you back out on the street if you got no money. “Tough luck. It’s too bad you got that staff infection but that;s life.” Start saving again.

Posted by: Matthew at April 7, 2006 7:35 PM
Comment #138897

kctim…

You neglected to answer the last post…I’d find it quite interesting, I’m sure…as would most people.

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 7:36 PM
Comment #138902

d.a.n.

Lynne, So you’ve worked with a few illegal aliens and now you are an expert?

Not a “few”…a lot…and let me say they weren’t busy spending your tax money…they kept so strictly to themselves…scared to be caught up in a sweep…afraid to go to a doctor…afraid to do more than work and get groceries…

Too many people believe as you do…but, it’s simply not true…it’s yet another fear tactic…the best way to make someone fight against another is to demonize the “other”…”them”…”those people”…you don’t like it when the Islamic fundamentalists do it to all of us…recognize it’s the same tactic used repeatedly to provoke wars and hate…

Posted by: Lynne at April 7, 2006 7:41 PM
Comment #138904

Lynne,
I think you mean well, but we have an irreconcilable difference in opinion of a very basic, fundamental philosophy:


Live and Let Live

What can be derived from that is:
(1) Anyone is free to do anything they want as long as they do not violate any other persons’ rights.
(2) Force is acceptable only to protect one’s own inalienable rights, including self defense (deadly force if necessary), or protection of property, or to bring violators to justice.
(3) The Constitution and laws define our rights. Violators, depending on the seriousness of their violation, can be held accountable.

If you read the U.S. Consititution, and many State Constitutions, you’ll find that those are the basics. It is basically, a “Live and Let Live” philosophy, and it has far reaching consequences.

You believe that healthcare should be a human right. However, that belief fails the tests above for one very important reason.

It requires the violation of someone’s rights, because healthcare costs, and if you can’t afford it, the funds must be taken from someone else. That is an unlawful use of force to take something from one person and give it to another person.

Now, if you still believe that you have the right to lay claim to other’s money for what ever it is you, or anyone else can not afford, then that is your right. but all I can add is that philosophy is alien to me, and most Americans. It is also in direct conflict with the Constitution, because nothing in the Constitution gives you the right to legally plunder someone else’s wealth, because you feel you need it.

Perhaps you believe that those with more than you owe you something ?
Is that it ?
Perhaps you believe that healthcare should be financed for those that can’t afford it, by those that can afford it ?

Well, sadly, our nation has already moved too far in that direction, and it forcibly taxes people for things that it should not.

But, most people don’t mind reasonable taxation for the truly needy, National defense, and law enforcement. The problem arises when government taxes people and shamefully wastes it as it does, and commits legal plunder. Our government is already violating peoples rights by taxing for a myriad of things that should not be a burden to the tax payers.

Perhaps if our government was not so corrupt, we would not have this healthcare problem, and a large number of other pressing problems ?

And, perhaps if government would stop forcing states to provide welfare and education to illegal aliens, you and others could afford healthcare at a reasonable cost.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 7:54 PM
Comment #138918

kctim, I think you missed the point of Lynne’s question. She asked:
“I’m interested in hearing how you’ve existed your entire life without anything from anyone…”

You answered, “It’s easy,” and went into a thing about how you want to spend your money.

Okay, kctim, you recieved nothing from anybody? Did you go to private school your whole life? No? Who paid for your public education? Do you only drive on unpaved roads? No? Who paid for roads? You are using the internet right now. Who paid for the years of research? Not Microsoft. Do you take your trash to the dump every week or does it get picked up? Have you ever used a park to sit and read or have a family gathering? Did you have to pay for it? Of course not. We all paid for it.

You may not consider these things gifts because you pay $100 bucks a year for ALL of these things but if we were billed for these things it would be a lot more than $100 bucks a year. Do you follow? That is why a universal system would be cheaper. Instead of our $200 a month going to various ineffecient insurance companies. Everyone’s money goes to one lump sum and we will get a better value out of it. Seems simple enough.

Posted by: Matthew at April 7, 2006 8:25 PM
Comment #138922

d.a.n., what is your obsession with the illegals? You’re making a mountain out of a molehill. I’m sure you would agree that CORPORATE WELFARE cost us a 1000 times more money than immagrant welfare. Why are you demonizing the most helpless in our society? Or are you just being topical?

I agree with some of your earlier paragraphs. There is a butt-load of corruption and pork-barrel spending in govt. Nobody understands that better than the current Republicans in Congress. But before you start attacking the little guy don’t forget the gigantic moochers in our society. They use corporate tax loopholes, offshore tax shelters, sweatshops, billions of dollars in lobbying (bribbing), tax exemption and on topof all that, they don’t even pay for the pollution they create. Guess who does? We do. “Those darn illegals!!”

Posted by: Matthew at April 7, 2006 8:49 PM
Comment #138925

Matthew,
That is whu IMHO that “We the People” need to tie the HSA’s directly to the U.S. Federal Reserve Special Yreasury Notes. Therefore, providing the safest way to ensure that Healthcare cost stay in line with the demand for Equal and Fair Treatment even if the patient has to pay the bill in chickens. That would solve the Poor having to pay for affordable healthcare and give a big headache to the Rapitalists that continue to run the cost of Health beyond the reach of the average Human on Earth.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at April 7, 2006 8:53 PM
Comment #138967

Matthew,

I’m don’t hate illegal aliens that simply come here to find work, but I don’t like it.
It is not about race, color, or nationality, xenophobia, etc. as much as you’d like to make an issue of those, play the race card, or some other lame excuse.

It is about crime and theft and disrespect for our laws.

29% of all prisoners in our state and federal prisons are are illegal aliens.

36% to 42% percent of illegal aliens are on welfare.

Crime rates are increasing.

So, not all come here for work.
For some, the American dream seems to be crime and welfare.

Still, I mostly blame ignorant, bleedin’ heart idiots, like yourself, that make excuses for illegal aliens, the greedy employers that lure illegal aliens here for sub-minimum wages, and the corrupt, incompetent federal government that forces states to accommodate illegal aliens.

Los Angeles Emergency rooms are full of illegal aliens while U.S. citizens wait (and die).
___________________
[] Last 13-Nov-2005, Brian Jackson, a Dallas policemen (just a few miles from my home) was murdered by an illegal alien. One million illegal aliens now inhabit north Texas.
[] Then, there is Jorge Hernandez, a.k.a. Jorge Soto, who killed Min Soon Chang, an 18-year-old college freshman, in a terrible head-on wreck while Hernandez was driving drunk. He had been arrested 3 previous times for drunk driving in 3 other states, and he had been deported to Mexico 17 times! Why aren’t illegal aliens aren’t deported instantly after being arrested for drunk driving?
[] Debbie Thomas, who was the mother of three, was killed in a head-on collision on Christmas Eve 2003 when her car was struck by a car being driven in the wrong direction by illegal alien, Narciso Garcia-Jimenez. He later escaped from his hospital bed and is still at large. The car he drove had no inspection sticker and was registered to another person. When Debbie’s mom learned that her daughter’s killer survived and escaped after being treated at the hospital, she said she felt “angry, bitter and sad, all at once.”
[] In Atlanta, Georgia: Mexican Miguel Carrasco raped a female victim in front of her four year old child and two minors; California Mexican Zacarias Camacho committed lewd acts upon a child under 14; El Salvadoran Oswaldo Martinez raped, sodomized and murdered a 16 year old; MS-13 gang member Reinaldo Ramos convicted of 2nd degree sexual offense for brutal gang rape of 16 year old girl.
[] … more … see: immigrationshumancost.org
___________________

But, the crime is only part of the other numerous serious issues:


  • increased crime rates;

  • burden on education systems;

  • burden on healthcare systems;

  • burden on hospital systems;

  • burden on welfare systems; 32% of illegal aliens are on welfare;

  • burden on Social Security system;

  • burden on Medicaid system;

  • burden on border patrol systems; ever increasing numbers are needed;

  • burden on insurance systems; illegal aliens can/will not pay for damages they cause;

  • burden on law enforcement systems; costing California billions per year;

  • burden on prison systems; 29% of those in state and federal prisons (Sep-2004) are illegal aliens;

  • voter fraud; burden on voting systems;


____________________
So, Matthew, if none of that bothers you, then nothing else should, much less anything I say. It’s too bad if you don’t like my opinion about illegal aliens. If you don’t like it, please skip my posts, because I plan to keep on saying a lot more about it.

Matthew, if you don’t mind illegal aliens coming here uninvited, perhaps you would not mind if some come to your home and make themselves at home? Stay awhile? Perhaps invite a few friends? Should they get your permission first? What’s that you say? No? You don’t want them coming to your home uninvited? Using your welfare and Medicaid? Driving about with drivers licenses and auto insurance? Murdering U.S. citizens? Well, sorry Matthew, you can’t have it both ways. If none of that bothers you, then you are a truly generous person (or somethin’). Especially with other tax payers money and benefits.

Now, if you want to talk about priorities … yes, this nation has many other pressing problems, but no reforms are possible until one fundamental change is made first. All voters need to do is the one simple, common-sense, no-brainer, non-partisan, safe, peaceful, inexpensive, and responsible thing voters were supposed to be doing all along:


Vote out (or recall) all irresponsible incumbents, always, every election, until no more irresponsible incumbents exist, and government finally agrees to pass the many badly-needed, common-sense, responsible reforms that incumbents have refused to pass for so many decades.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 11:12 PM
Comment #138974

Matthew,
Want to talk about HSAs (which I think are a good thing), or some other pressing problems facing the nation? Great, but the many reforms we discuss here day-in and day-out won’t ever likely be resolved until voters stop repeat offenders, and stop re-electing them.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2006 11:29 PM
Comment #139057

d.a.n.

if you don’t mind illegal aliens coming here uninvited, perhaps you would not mind if some come to your home and make themselves at home? Stay awhile? Perhaps invite a few friends? Should they get your permission first? What’s that you say? No? You don’t want them coming to your home uninvited? Using your welfare and Medicaid? Driving about with drivers licenses and auto insurance? Murdering U.S. citizens?

But you see, illegal workers ARE being invited…growers around Yuma can’t pick their crop if they don’t have the illegal workers…most slaughter houses wouldn’t function without their illegal workers…U.S. companies, big and small, hire illegal workers and these illegals know that…if that isn’t an invitation, I don’t know what is!!

What I’d like to know is, since you place everything that is wrong today on the backs of the illegals, why aren’t you totally disgusted with those who are not enforcing the laws against companies hiring illegal workers…with no jobs, the flood would shrink to a trickle…and who is in charge of enforcing federal laws against hiring illegal workers you ask? Why the Executive branch of the government…why not write Bush and Cheney a letter asking why they are ignoring their Constitutional mandate to enforce the laws of this country??? That’s where your anger should be placed!

You persist in saying that illegals are using a ton of welfare (which doesn’t exist anymore…there’s only a limited amount of TANF) and Medicaid…illegals are not signing up in droves for government programs…it would put them too close to the possibility of being arrested…remember? We’ve already discussed this!


I have no problem with illegals driving around with a drivers’ license and insurance…it’s more responsibility than a goodly number of fellow citizens take…uninsured and unlicensed drivers are a problem all over the U.S.

If you need someone to blame, look at how your state and your federal governments have acted (or failed to act) toward illegal workers…

A little known fact is that of the illegals coming over the southern border 43% are NOT Mexican origin…and who knows who’s coming over the northern border with Canada?…they’re not “brown” so they are pretty much ignored…

I’m so sick and tired of our own government failing to act and perpetuating “fear” as a tactic of “ruling” over our citizenship…

Posted by: Lynne at April 8, 2006 10:16 AM
Comment #139089
Lynne wrote: What I’d like to know is, since you place everything that is wrong today on the backs of the illegals, why aren’t you totally disgusted with those who are not enforcing the laws against companies hiring illegal workers…
Wrong. Look above. Didn’t you read it. I said:
d.a.n wrote: Still, I mostly blame ignorant, bleedin’ heart idiots, like yourself, that make excuses for illegal aliens, the greedy employers that lure illegal aliens here for sub-minimum wages, and the corrupt, incompetent federal government that forces states to accommodate illegal aliens.
Lynne wrote: I have no problem with illegals driving around with a drivers’ license and insurance…it’s more responsibility than a goodly number of fellow citizens take…uninsured and unlicensed drivers are a problem all over the U.S.

No kiddin? How revealing.
In Los Angeles with over one million illegal aliens, thousands of drivers roll around the city with little signs that read, “F**K YOU, THIS IS MEXICO.” If thousands of illegal aliens without driver,s licenses rolled around Washington, DC daily with those little flashing L.E.D. signs in their back windows, the Beltway Boys would get a different perspective of the glories of “multiculturalism” and “diversity” they shove down our throats by allowing these unlawful foreigners in our country against our laws.

I guess that doesn’t bother you either?

Lynne wrote: A little known fact is that of the illegals coming over the southern border 43% are NOT Mexican origin…and who knows who’s coming over the northern border with Canada?…they’re not “brown” so they are pretty much ignored…

Once again, you are trying to play the race card, and use yet another lame tactic for your weak argument.

Lynne, it doesn’t matter where they come from. They’re illegal, and they are not a net benefit to America. If you believe that, then you are wrong, and you have not researched it. If massive, illegal immigration was a net benefit, most Americans, especially in border states would not be so upset about it.

I’m so sick and tired of our own government failing to act and perpetuating “fear” as a tactic of “ruling” over our citizenship.

Lynne, I’m sick of the government to for failing to act, and letting this problem grow out of control. I in no way am trying to defend our bloated, corrupt, inept, irresponsible government. And, the government is not the one’s using fear the most regarding illegal immigration. It is Americans the understand the cost of one person murdered every 86 hours by an illegal alien (a crime that never should have occured), the rising crime rates, the numerous problems (as also evidenced by history) associated with massive, illegal immigration, and the net loss (in lives and money) due to illegal immigration.

_______________________________
Please stop making excuses for illegal aliens? The do not all come here for work only. For many, the American dream is crime and welfare.

Illegal aliens are not a net benefit to America.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 8, 2006 2:00 PM
Comment #139095

Lynne,
Lot of people, like yourself, have tried to play the race card, use nationality, skin color, or some other lame excuse to make excuses for illegal aliens.
I’ve heard them all.
They are all nonsense.
Most Americans, and rightfully so, and morally and legally justifed, want illegal immigration stopped.
Cheap tactics, playin’ the race card, using skin color, class, nationality, or other weak, lame excuses will not deter me.

Many are scared away by those clever tactics, but not me. Go ahead and call me racist, elitist, or what ever you want. It only reveals your own ignorance.

For all the Americans (which is most of them, based on numerous polls), do not be scared away by those that use race or other such tactics. They are the ones that are truly prejudiced.

If someone wants to argue the benefits of illegal immigration, lets see the facts.

Instead of playing the race card, show me how we or any nation benefits from massive, uncontrolled, illegal immigration.

Show us how it is justified.

Show us how it is our moral duty to allow illegal aliens to come here, increase crime rates, fill our prisons (29% of all prisoners) and steal our benefits and welfare (32% of illegal aliens are on welfare), not to mention murdering one person every 86 hours.

Explain how the rights of foreigners, that illegally trespass our borders, trump the rights of a sovereign nation to secure their own border.

Explain how U.S. is for the public use of the rest of the world, but your home is not for the public use by anyone that isn’t invited.

Explain why if you don’t mind illegal aliens coming here uninvited, why you are not prepared to offer your home up to uninvited illegal aliens? Why not let them come in and make themselves at home? Perhaps stay awhile? Perhaps even invite a few friends? Why don’t they require your permission first? Or, are we about to hear (again, like heathcare) how it is someone else’s responsibility?

If you support all of that, you are a truly generous person, but you alone don’t have the right to dictate how and who uses tax payers money and benefits.

While your makin’ excuses for illegal aliens, remember all the murdered Americans, those killed by drunk illegal aliens driving without a drivers licenses or insurance, stealing welfare with fake Social Security IDs, and the abuse of our systems paid for by U.S. tax payers.

Then, try to stick to the facts.

Otherwise, your arguements are not convincing.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 8, 2006 2:28 PM
Comment #139127

d.a.n.

Methinks thou dost protest too much…

If you actually read my last post, I never said I enjoyed having illegal workers coming here…I said the fact that the corporations and companies openly hire them with the collusion of the Executive branch which is not enforcing the laws against hiring illegal workers is the root of the problem…

You are conflating and confabulating…

Posted by: Lynne at April 8, 2006 3:54 PM
Comment #139153

Lynn and Matthew
“kctim, I think you missed the point of Lynne’s question. She asked:
“I⭠interested in hearing how youⶥ existed your entire life without anything from anyone⦦#8221;”

I did not miss her point. I said that I take care of myself and my family. I do not expect others to do it for me.

“Did you go to private school your whole life? No? Who paid for your public education?”

I went to public education camps as my parents required. I was a minor.
I do not require the same from my children.

“Do you only drive on unpaved roads? No? Who paid for roads?”

Taxes. Hell, there might even be something in the Constitution about that huh.

“You are using the internet right now. Who paid for the years of research? Not Microsoft.”

The US military, paid for with tax money. May be something about tax money and the military in the Constitution also. You should read it sometime, very incredible document.

“Do you take your trash to the dump every week or does it get picked up?”

Hmmm. If I choose to pay, the city will pick it up. If I choose not to pay, I am responsible for it.
Seems it is MY choice, not yours, on how I use my money for that.

“You may not consider these things gifts because you pay $100 bucks a year for ALL of these things but if we were billed for these things it would be a lot more than $100 bucks a year. Do you follow?”

I am not like you sheep. Maybe I dont pay a “$100” bucks a year for ALL those things.
However, if I was and I lived in a place where I did not have a choice on how I use my money, I would move. My choice.

But, lets look at one of your little examples.
The Internet is just like this universal healthcare crap.
It is a choice on whether you have it or not. The research used to create or better it was payed for with tax money.
I’m not against some money being used to research medicine either. But I am against other people being forced to provide free healthcare and internet access to others.

“That is why a universal system would be cheaper.”

Cheaper? Lets see, money is taken out of paychecks to this universal healthcare scheme or no money is taken out.
Which is cheaper to the individuals?
Which protects an individuals right to free choice?

“Instead of our $200 a month going to various ineffecient insurance companies. Everyone’s money goes to one lump sum and we will get a better value out of it. Seems simple enough.”

How about, instead of our money being taken by the govt, everyone is free to do with THEIR money as they see fit, not YOU?

Now, you all seem to think that YOU know whats best for OTHERS and want US to support YOUR beliefs. Is it right to force others to believe as you do? No.

And now it is my turn. Maybe you all will finally answer my questions.

If I don’t care how you spend the money you make or how you help the people you “say” you care about, then why do you care how I do it?
If you REALLY believe in “universal healthcare” then why don’t you actually show you care, with your own money, instead of forcing other people with different beliefs to do it for you?
And finally, why is it ok for you to force people to support what your beliefs are, but yet you whine and cry to high heaven when they try to force you to support their beliefs?

Hypocrisy or liberalism, they are both the same.

Posted by: kctim at April 8, 2006 5:30 PM
Comment #139317

testing…

Posted by: Rhinehold at April 9, 2006 5:53 AM
Comment #139347
Lynne wrote: d.a.n. Methinks thou dost protest too much…

Me protest? Not at all. You are guilty of the very accusations you level at others. Please read the numbered items below to understand why. Many of your statements are simply wrong (such as the Gold Standard and contents of the U.S. Constitution), and your conclusions are unsupported by fact or documentation of any kind. You opinion and wishful thinking does not equate to fact.

I provided numerous facts, reports, and data (backed up by overwhelming evidence from the GAO, DOJ, CIS, and reputable independent studies and reports) that you disagree with, and therefore conclude they must be false, but you have provided nothing; not even a single shred of data, reports, GAO, DOJ, or evidence to refute any of it. Instead, you draw own inaccurate conclusions, with nothing to support any them but your own anectdotal evidence based on your having known a few illegal aliens. Your conclusions remain unconvincing without any due diligence to research the overwhelming data and facts, choose to avoid the assertions and facts presented, or deny the facts presented without anything to refute them except your mere opinion. I’ve provided facts backed up by overwhelming evidence, and you say it is untrue. Lynne, you can believe whatever you like, but you won’t build any credibility that way.

Lynne wrote: If you actually read my last post, I never said I enjoyed having illegal workers coming here
Lynne, That’s very interesting and revealing, since no one here ever said you enjoyed having illegal aliens here? So, how do you come up with these perceived persecutions that never occurred?
Lynne wrote: …I said the fact that the corporations and companies openly hire them with the collusion of the Executive branch which is not enforcing the laws against hiring illegal workers is the root of the problem…
Lynne, That’s good. So did I. What’s the beef?
You are conflating and confabulating…
No Lynne, It is you that is fabricating arguments and persecutions where none existed since no one ever accused you you of having “enjoyed having illegal workers coming here”. You confabulated that in your own mind.

And it is you Lynne that conflate by trying to obscure the facts, refute provable evidence, play the race card, and even resort to bringing religion into the debate by saying things like:
(1) “Lynne wrote: I thought this was a “Christian” nation?? Guess not.”
(2) “Lynne wrote: … but we ARE guaranteed “life” and “liberty” .

Lynne, since when did you delcare the U.S. a christian nation?
And, no where does the Preamble or Constitution guarantee “healthcare”, despite all your attempts to conflat, confuse, obscure, and cloud the facts to derail the debate, shift focus away from your losing battle, only to finally to ignore it, move on to another losing battle, and start all over with a new string of detractors and non-sequiturs.

(3) “Lynne wrote: Did anyone stop to think that without a government to print and back the money with gold (or whatever) you wouldn’t even have money???”

Lynne, you have the gall to address others here as if they are completely un-knowledgeable of monetary history, but you are obviously are unaware that the U.S. went off the Gold Standard on 15-August-1971 when President Nixon announced that the U.S. would no longer redeem currency for gold. This was the final step in abandoning the Gold Standard. How revealing.

(4) “Lynne wrote: I’ve worked many years with illegal aliens…they’re scared to go to the doctor, scared to have anything to do with anything “government” because they’d get caught…so don’t give me this 32% on welfare crap…”

Lynne, you can refuse to beleive reality if you like, but it won’t change reality. Sorry if it is not what you don’t want to hear. 32% of all illegal aliens receive welfare. Lynne, how can we all have government provided healthcare if we also have to provide it for tens if millions of illegal aliens? That is why healthcare, insurance, public education, law enforcement, and prison system costs are skyrocketing, but many like yourself refuse to see that, and choose to make excuses for illegal aliens. You probably think the safe path is to appear benevolent and giving to illegal aliens, but refuse to see how illegal aliens, their greedy employers, and corrupt, FOR-SALE incumbent politicians are using and selling-out the average American tax payer.

(5) “Lynne wrote: kctim: I’m glad you live out in the woods by yourself…”
Lynne, As kctim said, he does not live in the woods. You invented that, and then you have the gall to say others are conflating and confabulating. Careful, you do not blow a fuse using such big words. And, perhaps you should be sure you are above reproach before you start accusing others of which you are guilty of.

Lynne, It is clear where you are coming from.
You want government to take care of you. You are envious and jealous of those that have more than you (as evidenced by your many comments above).
You think the Constitution “guarantees” you the right to healthcare.
You make bleedin’ heart excuses for illegal aliens, and deny the facts.
You use religion, race, and color to hide the weakness of all your flawed arguments.
You believe it is someone else’s responsibility to provide what you can not afford.
You confuse human rights and civil right.
You try to disguise you envy and jealousy as claims of equality and human rights.
You believe the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else.

Lynne, It is that very mindset, one of pathetic dependency and refusal to accept self-responsibility, that is destroying America.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 9, 2006 12:20 PM
Comment #139368

d.a.n.

Lynne, It is clear where you are coming from. You want government to take care of you. You are envious and jealous of those that have more than you (as evidenced by your many comments above). You think the Constitution “guarantees” you the right to healthcare. You make bleedin’ heart excuses for illegal aliens, and deny the facts. You use religion, race, and color to hide the weakness of all your flawed arguments. You believe it is someone else’s responsibility to provide what you can not afford. You confuse human rights and civil right. You try to disguise you envy and jealousy as claims of equality and human rights. You believe the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else.

Lynne, It is that very mindset, one of pathetic dependency and refusal to accept self-responsibility, that is destroying America.

When in any of my posts have I said I want government to take complete care of me? I have repeatedly stated that our government is supposed to be just like a union or a credit union…a banding together of citizens for mutual defense and care for those who fall on hard times financially, mentally, or physically…That’s not quite the same as you claim. You understand what you want to understand.

I have made no excuses for illegal workers…I never said they should come to our country. There is a difference in understanding why they come to our country and condoning that they do come…you have to make that distinction, but I’m not sure you’re capable of that.

If I run a factory and pay myself all the profit and increase that profit by continually paying my workers less and less so they can’t afford decent housing and have to depend on a food bank in order to have enough to eat, then, yes, I would be responsible to see that my actions have harmed these people and it is my responsibility to change that…now apply that to corporations and CEOs…they DO bear responsibility…

Let me see…corporations, like the airlines have “depended” on government handouts for years…yet that’s not dependence??? Mall builders rely on cities extending tax incentives (real money!) to them in order to build to their own profit…that’s not dependence?

Why is it OK for a corporation and company to depend on government largess (our tax money!) to rake in profits, but yet it’s “wrong” for someone whose job has been outsourced and can’t find a job to pay a living wage to expect some care??

You come across as extremely hard-hearted…closer to kctim than I’d thought previously. Do you care about the sick? the poor? the hungry? the children?

You certainly don’t seem to…

Posted by: Lynne at April 9, 2006 2:22 PM
Comment #139385
Lynne wrote: When in any of my posts have I said I want government to take complete care of me?
But you did Lynne. You believe government should provide you healthcare. Once you start down that path, there’s no return. Before long, you’ll want the government to wipe your butt for you too. You must unprogram yourself to reject the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else. It is unsustainable. Also, be careful that your claims for equality are not merely a disguise for your envy and jealousy of anyone who has more.
Lynne wrote: I have repeatedly stated that our government is supposed to be just like a union or a credit union…a banding together of citizens for mutual defense and care for those who fall on hard times financially, mentally, or physically…That’s not quite the same as you claim.
False. You want to force tax payers to pay for what you want. A union or credit union is voluntary. There’s a difference.
Lynne wrote: You understand what you want to understand.
Wrong. You see what you want to see, and your logic is unsustainable, and you can’t admit it. But that is right to believe as you like.
Lynne wrote: I have made no excuses for illegal workers…I never said they should come to our country.
Wrong again. You refuse to believe the facts, call them lies, and offer no proof to refute the facts. You are in denial.


Lynne wrote:
There is a difference in understanding why they come to our country and condoning that they do come…you have to make that distinction, but I’m not sure you’re capable of that.

Wrong again. I understand completely, and said four times that I don’t blame or hate any illegal alien who simply comes here to work. But, you choose to ignore that, and all the other overwhelming facts and data, just like many others who stubbornly refuse reality, and run about calling the data a “lot of crap”, mean spirited, un-Christian like, etc. You’ve brought race, color, and religion into it several times. You’ve arrogantly assumed the U.S. is a Christion nation. Those are your very own words.

Lynne wrote: If I run a factory and pay myself all the profit and increase that profit by continually paying my workers less and less so they can’t afford decent housing and have to depend on a food bank in order to have enough to eat, then, yes, I would be responsible to see that my actions have harmed these people and it is my responsibility to change that…now apply that to corporations and CEOs…they DO bear responsibility…

Lynne, Once again, you jump to conclusions and imply that I support corporatism and corpocrisy. You couldn’t be more wrong. I despise corruption in all organizations (government, corporations, organizations of all sorts), and understand far better than most why it is that way, why we are all culpable, and how lack of education is crushing us, due to uneducated decisions. So, you played the race card, the religion card, the color and nationality card, the poor people card, and now you are going to play the corpocrisy card, as if I have anything to do with greedy corporations that employee illegal aliens. Classic. I could almost write this entire thread without your participation.

Lynne wrote: Let me see…corporations, like the airlines have “depended” on government handouts for years…yet that’s not dependence??? Mall builders rely on cities extending tax incentives (real money!) to them in order to build to their own profit…that’s not dependence?

Lynne,
As I said, I don’t support corporatism or corpocrisy. Free markets are good, but unbridled greed and monopolization is free-enterprise run amuck. So, we are not in disagreement on the subject of greedy, crooked CEOs. I personally do not want to work for any company where the CEOs reward themselves with million dollar bonuses, while profits are falling and arrogant CEOs are cutting jobs for those that work the hardest, while letting the vast number of cheaters continue to hide out in middle-management.

Lynne wrote: Why is it OK for a corporation and company to depend on government largess (our tax money!) to rake in profits, but yet it’s “wrong” for someone whose job has been outsourced and can’t find a job to pay a living wage to expect some care??

Lynne, One crime never justifies another. I recommend workers refuse to work for greedy CEOs and corrupt management, and/or find ways to hold them accountable. In the past, unions help make the work place much more safe, and put and end to child-labor abuses. Perhaps if unions organized to restrict the greed of management, instead of joining in the greed for more perk$ and benefit$, then we would all be better off. Like government, governments, and all organizations, all members are culpable.

Lynne wrote: You come across as extremely hard-hearted…closer to kctim than I’d thought previously.

Lynne, You come across as a whiner who believes someone else must provide to you what you can not afford. You are a socialist. You believe the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else. You are too dependent on government. Anyone who refuses the idea that it is someone elses’ responsibility to give you what you can’t provide for yourself, you regard as hard-hearted. Fine. But, you statement is more revealing than you realize. Too me, that attitude is pathetically lazy and irresponsible. Of course, you don’t see it that way. You feel entitled to the property of others. They should provide you healthcare.

Lynne, you completely ignored my statements that I believe and support taxation for the truly needy. But you seem to think everyone is truly needy and should be provided heatlhcare by the government. But, the people are the government. The government gets money from the people. The government is not some bottomless pit of resources (despite their own belief of it).

Lynne wrote: Do you care about the sick? the poor? the hungry? the children? You certainly don’t seem to…

Lynne, I do care about my fellow human beings.
Just because I don’t depend on government for everything does not equate to not caring for the poor, sick, hungry, or children.
That is yet another lame, low-life attempt to use another detractor, as you tried to play the race card, color or nationality card, and religion card.

By the way, My wife and I donate every year to childrens’ hospitals and charities. My wife also reads for the blind weekly, and I support her technical computer software, computers, sound engineering, media, communications and networking needs. We are both volunteers. I also gladly pay taxes for welfare for the truly needy. Most people are willing.

I am also a unpaid volunteer for VOIDnow.org to promote voter education.

So, for you to imply I am uncaring, is a shallow, low-life tactic, similar to your other attempts to use race, color, nationality, and religion to shore up your weak, failing, and unsustainable logic. Shame on you.

So, who is hard-hearted?

You are simply wrong on every count, and you stubbornly refuse to admit it, except here at the end where you are starting to back-peddle on a few issues.
Are you proud of what you have revealed thus far ? Congratulations.

Perhaps you should closely examine your own values and beliefs before you start attacking others, calling the true facts crap despite no proof to refute them, and calling others hard-harded because they do not agree with your desire for the rest of us to provide you with healthcare.

Lynne, we’re just going to have to agree to disagree.
I’m growing tired of this.
Please believe what ever you want.
But, please forgive us if we do not agree.

In closing, remember … no reforms are possible until one fundamental change is made first. All voters need to do is the one simple, common-sense, no-brainer, non-partisan, safe, peaceful, inexpensive, and responsible thing voters were supposed to be doing all along:


Vote out (or recall) all irresponsible incumbents, always, every election, until no more irresponsible incumbents exist, and government finally agrees to pass the many badly-needed, common-sense, responsible reforms that incumbents have refused to pass for so many decades.

Government provided healthcare is not impossible forever, but it is impossible until voters, first, do their duty to make government responsible. Otherwise, government managed healthcare will be just as mismanaged, corrupt, and doomed as the Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, PBGC, and welfare systems are. Because while you are so wrapped up in the need for a vast new healthcare entitlement system, the very foundation below you is crumbling away. Prioritize or suffer. I fear will will have to repeat history (again).

Posted by: d.a.n at April 9, 2006 3:45 PM
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