Third Party & Independents Archives

How to Get Universal Health Care

Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama say they believe in giving Americans universal health care. I don’t believe them. Anyone who takes the time to understand universal health care should conclude that only a simple single payer system will reform the current outrageous system that benefits the insurance and pharmaceutical industries.

The contorted plans from Clinton and Obama are not sufficient reforms. And what John McCain has proposed is sheer nonsense and by itself should cause any conscious American to avoid voting for him.

Fights for health care system reform are centered in Congress, as if legislators will do what they have never done before: achieve true, major and systemic reforms that only serve the public interest, not lobbyists and campaign contributors from business sectors.

Both Clinton and Obama believe that Americans have a moral right to universal health care. If this is correct and if this is what you believe, then achieving universal health care that covers absolutely everyone by making health care affordable to absolutely everyone, as it is in many other nations, requires a different kind of government action. What exactly?

We must expand the Bill of Rights as embodied in the US Constitution to include the right to affordable universal health care. The time has come for the public to conclude that the right to universal health care is as important and necessary as the right to free speech and all the other beloved constitutional rights. Common sense says that health care is a right, not a privilege.

After all, what good are our current constitutional rights if you are ill or dying prematurely because of a lack of good health insurance? Certainly the pursuit of happiness cannot be successful when individuals are suffering from poor health because of inadequate health care.

Why would sensible, caring Americans be against a constitutional right to universal health care? Are there people who would stand up and publicly condemn the right of all Americans to have first rate health care? The only ones I can imagine doing this are those now benefitting financially from the current unjust system, those blocking necessary congressional actions.

What Obama and Clinton should explicitly and loudly advocate is a constitutional amendment that makes universal health care a nonnegotiable right of all Americans.

Why has no member of Congress submitted legislation to get Congress to propose such an amendment for ratification by the states? Clearly, the only rational answer are the many business interests that have corrupted Congress and that benefit from the current system. The Constitution provides an alternative.

Article V provides an option never used in the entire history of the US, because Congress has refused to obey the Constitution and respect state requests. The Article V convention option was put in the Constitution because the Founders and Framers believed that one day Americans would lose trust and confidence in the federal government. With 81 percent of Americans believing the nation is on the wrong track and with so many millions of Americans lacking good health insurance and care, that day has surely arrived. And with abysmally low levels of confidence in Congress and the president, an Article V convention – a temporary fourth branch of the federal government – is clearly the right path to obtaining a universal health care amendment. A convention of state delegates could debate such an amendment and if they agreed to propose it, then the standard ratification by three-quarters of the states would still be necessary.

Yes, this would probably take a few years. But it would be worth it. The prospect of Congress, even with Clinton or Obama as president, achieving universal health care without business-friendly loopholes faster than the amendment approach is not good. The process of pursuing such an amendment, moreover, would help keep pressure on Congress to do the right thing.

If this sounds reasonable and necessary, then learn the truth about the Article V option at Friends of the Article V Convention and start talking up a universal health care amendment that Hillary and Obama should support.

Posted by Joel S. Hirschhorn at May 6, 2008 8:09 PM
Comments
Comment #252308

I am an 18 year old American in good health. My pursuit of happiness would be rather inhibited if I was forced to pay large amounts of taxes to pay for a 90-year olds 13 prescription medicines.

What will you tax to pay for this? It sounds like income redistribution from the healthy (younger workers) to the less/unhealthy. (very young/old) I already see lots of my paycheck go to social security, and I have little hope of ever seeing it again.

Also, what is covered under universal health care? Everything? Am I going to have to pay for liposuction and botox treatment for the rich? What about operations some people find morally objectionable? (abortions, sex changes) Will the program account for stupid lifestyle choices,(smoking, excessive drinking, poor eating habits)
or will I be punished for them?

I like the idea of universal health care, I’m just not sure single-payer is the way to go, and I’d like to have the above questions answered before I sign on to any proposal.

I’m a fan of mandating that all businesses provide health insurance, and creating some mechanism allowing small businesses to pool their resources. And more regulations requiring more humane treatment of Americans are definitely needed.

Posted by: Silima at May 6, 2008 11:36 PM
Comment #252309

Will the program account for stupid lifestyle choices,(smoking, excessive drinking, poor eating habits)
or will I be punished for them?

This should refer to other people’s stupid choices, these are not mine.

Posted by: Silima at May 6, 2008 11:38 PM
Comment #252320

“Why has no member of Congress submitted legislation to get Congress to propose such an amendment for ratification by the states?”

Because it tramples individual rights while the other amendments protect them.

Posted by: kctim at May 7, 2008 9:08 AM
Comment #252324

What terrible, illogical thinking exists among the public. Universal health care is so important because without health care ALL other constitutionally protected rights are not especially relevant or meaningful. Other advanced nations with better democracies clearly have recognized this fundamental human right. It is utterly disgraceful that in the US so many millions of people cannot access the high quality medical delivery system because of a lack of health insurance. This also makes no economic sense; which is why the US spends more per capita on health care, despite very bad health performance. There is nothing to fear from a single payer system as long as the health care delivery part of the system remains in the private sector. CNN just reported that a new study found that one third of younger Americans lack health insurance. The current system has handicapped private industry with high costs; so logically they have continued to reduce health insurance benefits.

Posted by: Joel S. Hirschhorn at May 7, 2008 10:50 AM
Comment #252325

Joel S. Hirschhorn,

No thanks. I don’t want to throw my money into a pool and allow others to decide how it gets spent after taking their cut. I’ll take my chances with the free market thank you.

Posted by: BOHICA at May 7, 2008 11:05 AM
Comment #252327
Universal health care is so important because without health care ALL other constitutionally protected rights are not especially relevant or meaningful

What a rediculous statement…

Now, let’s clarify something. Are you saying Access to Healthcare is a right or Provision of Healthcare is a right?

Other advanced nations with better democracies clearly have recognized this fundamental human right

Better democracies?

Which ones have ‘recognized tihs fundamental human right’? Remember, the other countries that try to provide healthcare are cutting services and their court systems have maintained that single-payer systems are illegal.

So, taking the emotion out of the equation…

It is utterly disgraceful that in the US so many millions of people cannot access the high quality medical delivery system because of a lack of health insurance.

Except that is not accurate. No one in this country is blocked from healthcare. Many of the ‘millions’ of people without healthcare have it available and refuse it, that is their choice, last time I checked. Well, in most states at least. And anyone who seeks medical attention, whether rich or poor, cannot be turned away, BY LAW.

So the emotive statement that ‘millions of people cannot access the high quality medical delivery system because of a lack of health insurance’ is patently false.

CNN just reported that a new study found that one third of younger Americans lack health insurance.

Of course! Why would they? Younger Americans 1) feel that they are invincible and don’t need healthcare and 2) health insurance is GAMBLING. Because of this, those with lower medical care needs, younger Americans, are better off paying for their healthcare out of pocket than contributing to the pyramid scheme known as ‘medical insurance’.

In fact, it makes MORE sense to purchase catastrophic health insurance and utilize the Healthcare Savings Accounts that now roll-over, much as a 401k does, so that I can take care of my immediate AND long term, post working, medical needs and not have to rely on the government to determine what medical procedures I can and can’t have.

There is nothing to fear from a single payer system as long as the health care delivery part of the system remains in the private sector.

BULL. I, for one, do not want what is and is not covered for me to have anything to do with politics. That should be between me, my doctor, and, *if I choose*, my insurance provider.

I can’t WAIT for this to get implemented and then the majority determine that abortions are not covered… (which of course means I dread the fact that a new religious civil war will start because of idiots trying to provide things to people through political means that should be left to individuals to provide for themselves…)

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 7, 2008 11:18 AM
Comment #252328

BTW, if we for a second play with the notion that PROVIDING something for someone is potentially a right, are you suggesting that the right to self-determination, one of the core founding principles of our country, is no longer valid?

Do you accept this as reality or no? And how do you justify this in your own head?

Ooops, we don’t have enough doctors, we’ll have to make YOU be a doctor now, regardless of whether you wanted to be a journalist or singer or janitor instead. Get to it!

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 7, 2008 11:20 AM
Comment #252330

What terrible, illogical thinking exists among the public.

And from another thread in the right column by muirgeo:

The stupid ignorant idea that our economy should be left to the free market profiteers rather then using our evolved brains to plan for the future is the disaster of lazy simple-minded thinking topped off with a good helping of greed.

Elitist, liberal thinking is in full swing here at Watchblog. Forgive me if I don’t accept the free ride to Granville Sharp’s utopia. I’d rather be an ignorant, illogical sheep living “happily” in the good ol South.

Posted by: George in SC at May 7, 2008 11:30 AM
Comment #252331

Arguments for and against both go from the rediculous to the sublime.

Isn’t America great?

Posted by: womanmarine at May 7, 2008 11:34 AM
Comment #252336

What is so terrible and illogical about cherishing ones individual rights? Without them, we are no different than any other country. It is “utterly disgraceful” that Americans are wanting to throw away those rights in order for govt to take care of them.

Having a govt to redistribute wealth and provide everything for its people may be a “fundamental human right” in those “better democracies” you speak of, but we are a Constitutional Republic founded on different principles, especially concerning individual rights.
Taking away choice and lowering the standard of life for one, in order to enhance the quality of life for another, is what is unfair and wrong.

There is plenty to fear from a compulsory single payer system and the way you are so willing to foresake the individual rights of your fellow Americans for such feel-good legislation is right on par with how this country is being changed into just another socialist nation. No longer different, no longer special.

Posted by: kctim at May 7, 2008 11:59 AM
Comment #252340

Rhinehold, all the dentists will be medical doctors. Those are the ones that couldn’t get into medical school.

Posted by: ohrealy at May 7, 2008 12:38 PM
Comment #252347

The comments section of this site seems to be taken over by the most ignorant, mean spirited conservative, right wing and libertarian nuts imaginable. Take this statement by blabbering Rhinehold: “anyone who seeks medical attention, whether rich or poor, cannot be turned away, BY LAW.” This is totally and completely false. At best, in most places people can get limited attention at emergency rooms in hospitals, but no regular medical care; and this is one of many reasons why national US health care costs have skyrocketed, why enormous numbers of children and adults are suffering and dying unnecessarily, and why there is a shortage of ER physicians. I can only hope that, if there is a God, the kinds of people attacking single payer universal health care and the human right to get health care find themselves one day soon dying and suffering from preventable medical problems, or maybe their insipid comments posted here are proof of serious untreated mental diseases.

Posted by: Joel S. Hirschhorn at May 7, 2008 1:31 PM
Comment #252354

Joel S. Hirschhorn, does that comment come with a voodoo doll? Many people, including those involved in the delivery of health care, feel that more health care actually creates more problems to justify increasing costs, and increasing payments from the insurers. Would single payer provide better health care, or just simplify accounting procedures for the medical profession that only wants to provide services to people with the most money, even services that are unneccesary?

Posted by: ohrealy at May 7, 2008 1:49 PM
Comment #252357

I’m guessing this guy is a professor somewhere. Univ. of Chicago maybe?

Blabber on Rhinehold.

Posted by: George in SC at May 7, 2008 2:22 PM
Comment #252359

RE: A single payer healthcare system:
A single payer system healthcare makes sense: One-Simple-Idea.com/HealthCareSolutions.htm
Getting rid of the unnecessary middlemen, and greed is a good idea.
But not forced participation.

Illegal immigration has to be addressed too (something none of the presidential candidates will do, because they prefer to despicably pit American citizens and illegal aliens agianst each other for cheap labor and votes: One-Simple-Idea.com/VoteDemocrat.gif

Here is roughly where most of medical expenditures go (in descending order):

  • (01) Hospitals and doctors (52% of medical expenditures in year 2006);

  • (02) Pharmaceutical corporations (10% of medical expenditures in year 2006);

  • (03) Insurance companies (12% of insurance premiums (not expenditures); health insurance, malpractice insurance for doctors, etc.);

  • (04) Illegal Immigration (costying U.S. tax payers tens of billions in some states; 32% of illegal aliens receive welfare and/or Medicaid, and/or Medi-Cal; total net losses due to illegal immigration are $70-to-$338 Billion per year; hundreds of hospitals are closing (60-to-84 in California alone) shifting more burdens to other hospitals; 70% of women giving birth at Parkland Memorial hospital in Dallas,TX in only the first 3 months of year 2006 were illegal aliens (www.snopes.com/politics/immigration/parkland.asp); 29% of all incarcerated in federal prisons are illegal aliens, which also use medical services aside from the daily cost of incarceration; the costs of illegal immigration go far beyond medical expenditures alone; statistics from the Los Angeles Dept. of Public Social Services reveal that illegal aliens and their families in Los Angeles County received over $36 million in welfare and food stamp allocations in January 2008, 25% percent of all welfare and food stamps benefits are going directly to the children of illegal aliens. Illegal aliens received over $19 million in welfare assistance for January 2008, and over $16 million in monthly food stamp allocations, for a projected annual cost of $420 million; with the additional cost of $220 million for public safety, $400 million for healthcare, and $420 million in welfare allocations, the total cost for illegal immigrants to Los Angeles County taxpayers far exceeds $1 Billion per year, which does not include the million$ (or billion$) for public education);

  • (05) Politicians, government (Medicare fraud of about $30 Billion per year, bureaucracy, inefficiencies, waste, bloat, and see list of lobbying spending above; Congressman Bill Frist (R-TN), who owned a large portion of the HCA hospitals, bilked $1 Billion from Medicare, and $631 Million was returned, and the investigation was discontinued);

  • (06) Lawyers (2% of medical expenditures in year 2004; malpractice, 195,000 people die annually due to preventable medical mistakes; etc.);

  • (07) Patients (bad habits, smoking, addictions, obesity, lack of exercise, etc.);
There are many things that can be done to reduce health care costs, but if the problems above and these other 10 abuses continue to go ignored, a new vast government-run system will most likely fail. If the abuses continued to be ignored (e.g. greed, illegal immigration, fraud, excessive government bureaucracy), a new universal health care system will not be run any better (and perhaps worse) than the other vast Social Security and Medicare systems. Especially with a federal debt of $9.4 Trillion (not even including the $12.8 Trillion(www.socialsecurity.org/reformandyou/faqs.html#2) borrowed and spent from Social Security, leaving it pay-as-you-go, with a 77 million baby-boomer bubble approaching), $53.2 Trillion in nation-wide debt, inflation, and a U.S. Dollar (One-Simple-Idea.com/USD_Falling.htm) that has been falling drastically since year 1999.

However, health care a right?
Human rights usually restrict abuses; not provide entitlbements at others’ expense.
That appears to be a fundamental flaw in many’s logic with regard to rights.
For example:

  • people have a right to be left alone, without being harmed by others, as long as they aren’t violating others’ rights.

  • people have a right to bear arms,

  • people have a right to habeas corpus,

  • people have the freedom of religion,

  • people have a right to vote,

  • people have a right to lots of things, spelled out in the Constitution.
But few (if any) of those things require someone else to pay for it.
However, a compassionate society should try to provide for the truly needy.
And that is what welfare is supposed to be for.
If we do it, we should do it voluntarily because it is the smart thing to do.
Not because we are forced to do it.
And I am especially not keen on it when we are already being forced to finance free health care and welfare for tens of millions of illegal aliens.

RE: An Article V Convention:
Yes, the Constitution should be obeyed.
A very strong case can be made Congress should have called a convetion a long time ago (e.g. BALANCED BUDGET amendment).
There have been 34 (or more) states that have submitted hundreds of amendment applications within a 7 year period (the same limit Congress can set for ratification).
There have been 34 (or more) states that have submitted same-subject/general amendment applications.
The states have submitted 567 amenmdent applications since 1787.
More …

At any rate, the voters have the government they elect, and deserve.

It will probably only get worse if too many voters continue to reward do-nothing Congress with 93%-to-99% re-election rates.

Posted by: d.a.n at May 7, 2008 2:28 PM
Comment #252371
That appears to be a fundamental flaw in many’s logic with regard to rights. For example:

people have a right to be left alone, without being harmed by others, as long as they aren’t violating others’ rights.

people have a right to bear arms,

people have a right to habeas corpus,

people have the freedom of religion,

people have a right to vote,

people have a right to lots of things, spelled out in the Constitution.
But few (if any) of those things require someone else to pay for it.
However, a compassionate society should try to provide for the truly needy.
And that is what welfare is supposed to be for.
If we do it, we should do it voluntarily because it is the smart thing to do.
Not because we are forced to do it.
And I am especially not keen on it when we are already being forced to finance free health care and welfare for tens of millions of illegal aliens.

hear hear… Well stated d.a.n., a point I’ve tried to make in the past myself, but ended up being told I’m ‘blabbering’ or just plain selfish…

Oh wait, that was today!

btw, the other things that those rights include is that they do not infringe on other rights. a right to own a handgun infringes upon no one else’s rights. a right to speak my mnind infringes upon no one else’s rights.

A ‘right to be provided x’ does. It uses compulsion from our government to force the violation of other’s rights in order to fulfill it. Which is why it cannot be a right at all…

Joel,

you’ve not answered my question, well any of them, but this one in specific.

Is this ‘right’ in your mind free access to healthcare or free provision of healthcare?

Please answer so we can know how to debate in the future, I would hate to point out the lunacy of your argument when I agree with it and I don’t want to make that assumption…

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 7, 2008 3:12 PM
Comment #252372

D.a.n makes many good points; however, something fundamental about rights always seems to be missing from most comments: the government spends enormous sums to secure and protect constitutional rights; more people should actually read the Bill of Rights: it is all about what GOVERNMENT does or does not do. So, there is no free ride — certainly not for citizen rights. And, more people should be seriously examining per capita medical care spending for various nations; what immediately jumps out is how completely obscene is the US spending; then also examine data on health care performance internationally; then you learn that our national performance is totally abysmal. The bottome line is that the US health care system is highly bi-modal; a prosperous fraction is able to afford first rate medical care, but a losing and large fraction gets terrible health care, largely because of no or suboptimal health insurance. Our health care inequality, of course, is totally consistent with our outrageous level of economic inequality. Data the other day showed that 39 percent of Americans were not experiencing any hardship whatsoever from today’s very high gasoline prices. No surprise here; we have a pretty large affluent segment of the population, many with lots of time to write comments on websites.

Posted by: Joel S. Hirschhorn at May 7, 2008 3:22 PM
Comment #252374

Here is a link to a new, terrific article on health care system reforms:

http://www.prospect.org/cs/articles?article=the_elusive_politics_of_reform

Posted by: Joel S. Hirschhorn at May 7, 2008 3:38 PM
Comment #252386
it is all about what GOVERNMENT does or does not do.

No, it is about what the government can and can’t do. Therefore, it requires no money whatsoever, except to use the legal system to fight the government when they overstep their bounds.

Big difference, one that you seem to have missed…

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 7, 2008 4:45 PM
Comment #252389

Joel, You are advocating healthcare systems such as Obama’s and Hillary’s.
Hillary’s is mandatory.
Obama’s is not.
I support a single payer (non-profit) heatlh care system that is voluntary, such as Obama’s.

Redarding costs to secure and protect constitutional rights, that is differnt.
We all agree to the wisdom of contributing to certain things that are a necessity.
Laws and enforcement are a necessity.
We pay for certain things, via taxes, such as the police, and law enforcment, fire stations, and national defense, because it is a necessity.
Yes, there is a price for upholding and enforcing laws that protect our rights.
These are smart things to do, because without them, we have anarchy, chaos, or worse.

However, everything can be taken to an extreme.

Next thing you know, some people will say they have a right to equal food, oil, square feet for their home, braces for their childrens’ teeth, a college eduction, access to a gym to stay fit, etc.
After all, many of those things can make us healthier and happier.
Sure, we all want lots of things, but we have to be careful when those things start costing others, because we can’t all live at the expense of everyone else.
That is a myth perpetuated by pandering politicians.
Many of our rights are protect by laws, but cost nothing else other than the enforcement of the law.

The question is, which things should tax payers have to pay for, and which things should be a matter of choice?
Well, obviously, we all want to be as free as possible from crime, from invasion from foreign naitons, etc.
So paying for law enforcement is a no-brainer, and few will argue that.
Obviously, we need a national defense, and few would argue with that.

But where does it end?
Would you not agree that there are limits?
Would you not agree that some things do not pass the test?
Not everything is a civil or human right.
Seeking equality in all things is most likely impossible.
Personally, and especially based on the terrible mismanagement, Social Security and Medicare should have never been forced onto tax payers.
However, we have them, and we can simply abandon them overnight.
But they will self implode if we stay on the current course.
There’s a difference between paying taxes for law enforcement and healthcare, because one is a cost most mutally agree upon, and the other is not.

Are you willing ot force someone to buy insurance they do not want, when our government forces us to fund health care and welfare for tens of millions of illegal aliens?
As a result, hundreds of hospitals are closing in border states (60-to-84 in California alone).

Here’s a voluntary single payer system that the government could organize, and provide oversight for.
It eliminates the middlemen (e.g. insurance companies), and the greed. Most people, if smart, will participate.
But it is voluntary.

I think the problem with mandatory participation is that it blurs the boundaries between welfare ahd healthcare.
Most of us are willing to provide for the truly needy.

Still, a voluntary single-payer system makes a lot of sense, and that is where we should first begin, along with stopping some other abuses (see below).
If it is adequately managed, most people will participate, and it will have sufficient funds to operate.
Those that can’t afford it may be eligible for welfare.

However, no health care system has much of a chance as long as we refuse to stop these 10 abuses, which are causing some of the worst economic conditions since the 1930s and 1940s.

There’s a good possibility, if those many other abuses were adequately addressed, health care may become more affordable, reliable, and safer.

There are somethings we should all share in the cost.
There are some things in which we should have a choice.
Otherwise, some lessons will never be properly learned.

At any rate, the voters have the government they elect, and deserve.

Posted by: d.a.n at May 7, 2008 5:02 PM
Comment #252390

CORRECTION: Personally, and especially based on the terrible mismanagement, Social Security and Medicare should have never been forced onto tax payers.
However, we have them, and we can can not simply abandon them overnight.

Posted by: d.a.n at May 7, 2008 5:05 PM
Comment #252393

It isn’t working in England and Canada. What make you think a government run health care system, GAD GOVERNMENT RUN, will work here?

Posted by: KAP at May 7, 2008 5:11 PM
Comment #252394

BTW, you mentioned books…

Crisis of Abundance: Rethinking How We Pay for Health Care

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 7, 2008 5:17 PM
Comment #252397

A constitutional amendment saying everyone can get health care. Hmmmm.

This argument reminds me of Hillary’s Bosnia sniper deal. Anyone with any sense listening to here would think “What are the odds of our military putting a first lady in sniper fire, even if they do think she rides a broom?”

If Americans could not get health coverage, they would be dying at home for routine illnesses. Can you imagine CNN at the bedside of a person needed a minor operation to save their lives?

What about all of the women having babies at home because they couldn’t get health coverage? Again CNN would be all over the story with millions of home births.

This argument for a constitutional amendment sounds like hog wash.

I think the writer is thinking of univeral health insurance coverage.

What I agree with is that we have a broken system. It is terribly innefficient. But a constitutional amendment? Show me the list of people dying because the hospitals would not take them in when they came to their doors. Do some undercover work. Take a teenager with no heath insurance who is having her baby, to ER and see what happens. If they turn her away sign me up. If they deliver her baby, let’s find another way to fix the system.

Posted by: Craig Holmes at May 7, 2008 6:32 PM
Comment #252402

The more money or medical insurance that people have, the more pills they get to take. More health care will mostly just mean more pills pushed by pharmaceutical companies. Many of these are just designer aspirins and antacids, advertised on television as the new, the improved, the best thing, the big cure for all your problems.

Posted by: ohrealy at May 7, 2008 7:13 PM
Comment #252403

“The more money or medical insurance that people have, the more pills they get to take. More health care will mostly just mean more pills pushed by pharmaceutical companies. Many of these are just designer aspirins and antacids, advertised on television as the new, the improved, the best thing, the big cure for all your problems.”

Posted by: ohrealy at May 7, 2008 07:13 PM

Sounds like free choice to me. Tell me again how this is a bad thing.

Posted by: BOHICA at May 7, 2008 7:25 PM
Comment #252425

“Sen. Barack Obama’s plan will leave 50 million Americans without medical health.”

How many do you think are without health care today? Roughly 50 million. Since his plan isnt so different from Hillary’s how many do you think her plan will leave out LT Col? And pray tell how many do you think McCain will leave out with his plan?

KAP “It isn’t working in England and Canada. What make you think a government run health care system, GAD GOVERNMENT RUN, will work here?”

Its working for a lot less $$ in those 2 places than we spend here for no better a system. I see you left the French and Swiss systems out Why was that?

Joel excellent post and link. The free market system isnt working yet those libertarians /conservatives that back the corporate interests at the expense of all others insist that it is the only way we can have choices. What a line of crap.

Insurance companies according to the free market types deserve to reap the rewards of their interference in the health care of the people of this country because they have taken a risk by insuring us. What is leftout of this con is the insurers pass the risk along to the doctors and back to the insured. They deserve something for nothing according to the libertarian/ conservative mindset because they give us choice. Some choice. This is nothing but a transfer of wealth from the insured to the insurer and from the doctors to the insurer yet it is OK because it is done under the guise of the free market.

Joel I do have to take exception to one of your comments “The comments section of this site seems to be taken over by the most ignorant, mean spirited conservative, right wing and libertarian nuts imaginable.”
They are not ignorant by any stretch. They purposely mis-state the facts but not due to ignorance. They are the true elitist of this country hiding behind the avarage joe personna but make no mistake they are not ignorant, its all an act.

Posted by: j2t2 at May 8, 2008 1:25 AM
Comment #252431

There is a very simple fix to the health care system, although I dont understand why it hasnt been given thought. Raise the Federal poverty income level from 12000 annually to a level that reflects actual poverty income levels, and allow states to modify the level based on economic conditions in their states. For example it is much more expensive to live in San Francisco than it is to live in St. Louis. Maybe this is too simple a solution but it seems like a great first step that wouldn’t involve expanding our already huge government.

Posted by: napajohn at May 8, 2008 9:40 AM
Comment #252432

Doing so would make state and federal low income folks to get the insurance they can not afford in todays crazy health insurance market. I realize this would increase the need for more folks running the system and increase the debit on state and federal resources, but in my little perfect world we wouldnt be at war and spending valuable resources and lives on greed and oil.

Posted by: napajohn at May 8, 2008 9:43 AM
Comment #252434

napajohn,

That would defeat the desires of the parties to centralize as much power in Washington as they can. They should be doing this with the minimum wage laws too, but instead they want to set a national price that puts people in lower cost of living areas out of work as local businesses are forced to pay above rates to hire borderline jobs while allowing other areas to hire people below what they need to just survive in their area…

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 8, 2008 9:58 AM
Comment #252441

So Joel wishes me an early, painful death because I disagree with him. What a novel approach to debating an issue. No, wait…it is not novel at all. Stalin killed millions for disagreeing, and Mao killed millions more for disagreeing.
I thought this site had a moderator for limiting hate speech like Joel’s. I, for one, have little interest in discussing a topic with a person who can only see me as deserving of death for my thoughts.

Posted by: Steve at May 8, 2008 10:52 AM
Comment #252444

Government agencies already control 45-50% of health care spending. As the biggest player in the market, they have the largest potential to create problems in it. I don’t understand why people don’t question the government’s role…

How does increasing the government’s share of health care spending to 80+% via single payer system move us towards solving these problems if government intervention created them to begin with? It does nothing to address the root causes of our current circumstance. If illegal immigration and Medicare/Medicare fraud were minimized, the current system would improve. I don’t see how a new system covering more people with the same dysfunctions as now gives us a better system.

Posted by: Mr. Haney at May 8, 2008 11:42 AM
Comment #252467
Except that is not accurate. No one in this country is blocked from healthcare.

FALSE: People with most chronic diseases are declined from most insurance companies. Being offered coverage for $1000 month does not qualify as access to healthcare.


Many of the ‘millions’ of people without healthcare have it available and refuse it, that is their choice, last time I checked.

FALSE: See above. I assume like your statement above, it is based on nothing. Millions of people have zero access to healthcare.

Well, in most states at least. And anyone who seeks medical attention, whether rich or poor, cannot be turned away, BY LAW.

FALSE: They are required to save your life in emergency situations, not treat you for on going health problems or chronic diseases. Maybe an example will help you to understand. You walk into an ER after an accident with a metal pipe through your head… they will treat you. You walk in because you have cancer, they will likely turn you away.

So the emotive statement that ‘millions of people cannot access the high quality medical delivery system because of a lack of health insurance’ is patently false.

FALSE…

In fact, it makes MORE sense to purchase catastrophic health insurance and utilize the Healthcare Savings Accounts that now roll-over, much as a 401k does, so that I can take care of my immediate AND long term, post working, medical needs and not have to rely on the government to determine what medical procedures I can and can’t have.

Just shows your selfishness. Just like you, I have the luxury of having a comprehensive health insurance policy through my company. So we have the luxury to talk about medical options. What about the people who don’t have insurance?

There is nothing to fear from a single payer system as long as the health care delivery part of the system remains in the private sector. BULL. I, for one, do not want what is and is not covered for me to have anything to do with politics. That should be between me, my doctor, and, *if I choose*, my insurance provider.

Once again, this shows how selfish you are. All these points are based on the assumption that you have an insurance provider.

Posted by: Matt at May 8, 2008 4:29 PM
Comment #252473
Except that is not accurate. No one in this country is blocked from healthcare.

FALSE: People with most chronic diseases are declined from most insurance companies. Being offered coverage for $1000 month does not qualify as access to healthcare.

Health Insurance is not Healthcare. Healthcare is not denied anyone in this country, that is the law. It’s inconvenient to your argument, and I’m sorry for you for that, but it is the truth.

Many of the ‘millions’ of people without healthcare have it available and refuse it, that is their choice, last time I checked.

FALSE: See above. I assume like your statement above, it is based on nothing. Millions of people have zero access to healthcare.

Again, I’ll keep repeating it… Health Insurance is not the same as Healthcare. And there are millions of people who CHOOSE not to have health insurance.

I have already stated that I have no problem with regulating insurance companies to say everyone must be offered insurance at a minimum rate based on their income *and* personal activities (smoking, eating too much, etc). No one should be barred because of chronic health problems.

That is not the same as calling for a massive ‘healthcare’.

Well, in most states at least. And anyone who seeks medical attention, whether rich or poor, cannot be turned away, BY LAW. FALSE: They are required to save your life in emergency situations, not treat you for on going health problems or chronic diseases. Maybe an example will help you to understand. You walk into an ER after an accident with a metal pipe through your head… they will treat you. You walk in because you have cancer, they will likely turn you away.

Sorry, no. They will treat you. They will not provide long term care from the cancer but they will treat you that day as best as they can, prescribe drugs, etc.

I know, I’ve been in several hospital rooms over the past few months for reasons I don’t care to share. You are completely rediculous.

In fact, it makes MORE sense to purchase catastrophic health insurance and utilize the Healthcare Savings Accounts that now roll-over, much as a 401k does, so that I can take care of my immediate AND long term, post working, medical needs and not have to rely on the government to determine what medical procedures I can and can’t have.

Just shows your selfishness. Just like you, I have the luxury of having a comprehensive health insurance policy through my company. So we have the luxury to talk about medical options. What about the people who don’t have insurance?

Oh dear, is it time for the ‘you’re a selfish bastard’ idiotic emotive argument again? I thought we had a few more replies before that occurred…

1) I am involved in personally helping people who are down on their luck get back, more successfully than the government I might add.

2) I mentor people who are looking to advance their careers

3) I have provided shelter, my own house, to homeless people who are trying to get themselves out of their situation. I make only the requirement to them that they do what they need to do to become self reliant.

4) I have started and run several non-profit organizations dedicated to helping people.

5) I have been a long time supporter of WHY, United Way, Red Cross, etc.

6) I attempted to physically go and help out in New Orleans, but was turned back by the government

7) I gave up full use of my knees for the defense of this country

8) I believe it is the personal, individual responsibility of each citizen to help anyone that needs help in any way that they can. And it is up to them to determine the best way they can help, not someone else’s.

BUT, even after all of that, because I do not think it is moral to force others to do what they should be doing, and because I think that most progressives are the REAL selfish people who won’t help unless they can be assured that ‘the other people’ are helping as well and who make sure it is done through their taxes so that they don’t have to get their hands dirty messing about with those who need help, well, that means that I’m selfish.

Well, I think that you can infer from the above what I think about the garbage you’ve just uttered…

There is nothing to fear from a single payer system as long as the health care delivery part of the system remains in the private sector. BULL. I, for one, do not want what is and is not covered for me to have anything to do with politics. That should be between me, my doctor, and, *if I choose*, my insurance provider. Once again, this shows how selfish you are. All these points are based on the assumption that you have an insurance provider.

Read above.

BTW, I think we can end our discussion now that you just couldn’t help going down the ‘you’re selfish’ hole.

It is apparent that some people just can’t comprehend that not wanting to force people to help others is not the same as being selfish, in fact it is the opposite. So there’s really no reason to continue.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 8, 2008 5:33 PM
Comment #252477

One more thing, since I got distracted…

In fact, it makes MORE sense to purchase catastrophic health insurance and utilize the Healthcare Savings Accounts that now roll-over, much as a 401k does, so that I can take care of my immediate AND long term, post working, medical needs and not have to rely on the government to determine what medical procedures I can and can’t have. Just shows your selfishness. Just like you, I have the luxury of having a comprehensive health insurance policy through my company. So we have the luxury to talk about medical options. What about the people who don’t have insurance?

The HSA’s are not tied to a job OR are insurance. They are SAVINGS ACCOUNTS that are tax free money you put into an account (it is nice that if you have a job they will put money in as well) and you then pay for your healthcare needs out of that tax-free money. It rolls over (you don’t have to spend it all at the end of the year) up to a max and can use it in your old age when you need it. Just like a 401k.

That’s for those who were reading and might have missed that what I was talking about was not insurance, but about an alternative that makes much more sense. The Catastrophic insurance is much easier (and very much cheaper) to get, like life insurance really.

The point is there are alternatives, that can solve the issues without violating our individual rights of choice in the matter, if we want to do the extra work and think about the issue more…

Apparently the selfish Progressives would rather just make everyone do what they think is best, irregardless of their personal situation. Hey, why not raise taxes on the single mother of four who is working two jobs to try to save money to put her children through college, there are people who need money to see a doctor and would rather not work at McDonald’s to get the company provided insurance because that is ‘beneath’ them…

The forgotten man is forgotten by the Progressive in a desire to push their own agendas onto everyone else through the use of governmental force…

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 8, 2008 5:54 PM
Comment #252484

“Ooops, we don’t have enough doctors, we’ll have to make YOU be a doctor now, regardless of whether you wanted to be a journalist or singer or janitor instead. Get to it!”

Ooops, Someone must of forgot about drafts. I expect better.

Posted by: Kujo at May 8, 2008 6:34 PM
Comment #252488

Steve,
Then you would be just as bad as the people named. Preventing someone to use their right. Remember although you don’t have a right Not to listen or read, you amazingly can choose not to. Although it kind of defeats the perpose of forum, just like your comment did, and what you were trying to point out.

Posted by: kujo at May 8, 2008 6:54 PM
Comment #252494
Ooops, Someone must of forgot about drafts. I expect better.

Ooops, someone thinks that I support the draft, which I don’t…

I don’t expect better.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 8, 2008 8:26 PM
Comment #252498


Rhinehold boldly and incorrectly states “Health Insurance is not Healthcare. Healthcare is not denied anyone in this country, that is the law. It’s inconvenient to your argument, and I’m sorry for you for that, but it is the truth.”

http://www.healthcareersjournal.com/9-examples-of-how-health-care-in-america-can-be-improved/


Rhinehold the fact is all the emergency room has to do is stabilize you they are not required to treat you beyond that.

Posted by: j2t2 at May 8, 2008 9:34 PM
Comment #252511

Education is not a Constitutional right but a privlege. Yet, we have a universal publicly supported educational system for all Americans. Is health care less an important need than education? I think not.

Whether defined as a right or a privelege, it is time for our government to address this need. We spend a greater percentage of GDP on health care than any other nation, yet have over 40,000,000 citizens without access to affordable health care. It is time to strip the debate of propaganda from vested interests and develop an effective system for all Americans. We are spending the money, lets spend it wisely.

Posted by: RTH at May 9, 2008 10:09 AM
Comment #252512

I am an 18 year old American in good health. My pursuit of happiness would be rather inhibited if I was forced to pay large amounts of taxes to pay for a 90-year olds 13 prescription medicines.

Posted by: Silima

That 90 year old built the roads you drive on, he constructed the hospital you were born on and he fought WWI and WWII and he paid taxes all along the way to keep this country strong so people like yourself could complain about having to pay taxes for others whom you assume you owe nothing to.

Posted by: muirgeo at May 9, 2008 10:10 AM
Comment #252513

Joel S. Hirschhorn,

No thanks. I don’t want to throw my money into a pool and allow others to decide how it gets spent after taking their cut. I’ll take my chances with the free market thank you.

Posted by: BOHICA at May 7, 2008 11:05 AM


You don’t think you’re tossing your money into a pool with private insurance. The biggest difference being they have about 20% overhead to pay CEO’s and dividends while the VA or Medicare has about a 5% overhead.

Not sure why you’re happy taking your chances with a system that first of all IS NOT free market, second of all cost you as much as 2-3 times what people in other countries pay and has arguably worse outcomes when the whole population is looked at.

Posted by: muirgeo at May 9, 2008 10:16 AM
Comment #252514

“Except that is not accurate. No one in this country is blocked from healthcare. Many of the ‘millions’ of people without healthcare have it available and refuse it, that is their choice, last time I checked. Well, in most states at least. And anyone who seeks medical attention, whether rich or poor, cannot be turned away, BY LAW.” Rhinehold


So Rhinehold if you agree with this law then you apparently believe in universal health care but you just believe in doing it as poorly and inefficiently as possible. If you don’t agree with this law then you apparently would be OK with doctors turning you away from their emergency room and letting you die in the street because they don’t take your form of insurance.

Access to health care should be a right just as we have a right to use public roads, just as we have the right to trial by a jury of peers, a right to use the treasury notes and even a right not to be killed by our neighbor.


I could argue why should I have to pay taxes to cover the cost of police and a jury system just to uphold some one else’s right not to be murdered?

Posted by: muirgeo at May 9, 2008 10:28 AM
Comment #252521

Every American has access to healthcare, and most Americans make the choice on whether they want to be able to access it or not.
The fact that they do not prepare for it is their decision and the fact that you would rather use govt to make everybody pay for what you won’t, is yours.

How to get universal health care? Throw away the Constitution and everything this country once stood for.

Posted by: kctim at May 9, 2008 12:44 PM
Comment #252527

While I like the idea, it has zero chance of success.

I also do not think it is an inalienable right, but rather a common sense necessity of wealth. By that I mean, if a nation attains a certain degree of wealth it has a social responsibility to provide basic healthcare. Tying it to GDP or average wealth makes more sense to me.

Posted by: googlumpus at May 9, 2008 2:10 PM
Comment #252528

kctim,

How to get universal health care? Throw away the Constitution and everything this country once stood for.

Thanks for nonsense statements like this. How to obtain anything kctim opposes: Throw away the Constitution and everything this country once stood for.

Why not just whine real loud?

Posted by: googlumpus at May 9, 2008 2:13 PM
Comment #252529

And anyone who seeks medical attention, whether rich or poor, cannot be turned away, BY LAW.” Rhinehold

Ummm, no.

Anyone who needs emergency medical care, yes.

Posted by: googlumpus at May 9, 2008 2:15 PM
Comment #252530

Craig,

If Americans could not get health coverage, they would be dying at home for routine illnesses. Can you imagine CNN at the bedside of a person needed a minor operation to save their lives?

What about all of the women having babies at home because they couldn’t get health coverage? Again CNN would be all over the story with millions of home births.

Apparently you have no real knowledge of the state of the poor. CNN covers it, occasionally. People don’t watch or care. If the woman and child are attractive and white, the story lasts a few days. Meanwhile, Britany Spears and Lindsey Lohan got drunk and kissed.

Posted by: googlumpus at May 9, 2008 2:18 PM
Comment #252532

“Why not just whine real loud?”

Wouldn’t do any good. You guys whining because people oppose using govt to force others to do what you won’t do yourselves, drowns me out.

“People don’t watch or care”

Of course they don’t, they are too busy sitting on their asses and complaining about how nobody cares.

Posted by: kctim at May 9, 2008 2:29 PM
Comment #252556
What about all of the women having babies at home because they couldn’t get health coverage? Again CNN would be all over the story with millions of home births.

A home birth with a properly trained midwife is perfectly safe and significantly cheaper. Using a hospital for low risk pregnancies is unnecessarily costly. People are choosing the comforts and perceived safety of a hospital. In fact, several European countries have much higher rates of midwifery and home birth, and their infant mortality rates are below ours. I don’t see how women having babies at home should raise any alarm.

Posted by: Mr. Haney at May 9, 2008 6:31 PM
Comment #252560

“several European countries have much higher rates of midwifery and home birth, and their infant mortality rates are below ours….
Mr Haney


You mean one of those European countries that ALL have universal health care? yeah! Maybe WE should do like them.

Posted by: muirgeo at May 9, 2008 6:57 PM
Comment #252562

“You don’t think you’re tossing your money into a pool with private insurance. The biggest difference being they have about 20% overhead to pay CEO’s and dividends while the VA or Medicare has about a 5% overhead.”

No, the biggest difference is it’s MY pool. I chose which pool to put MY money in. That is the biggest difference.

“Not sure why you’re happy taking your chances with a system that first of all IS NOT free market, second of all cost you as much as 2-3 times what people in other countries pay and has arguably worse outcomes when the whole population is looked at.”

Posted by: muirgeo at May 9, 2008 10:16 AM

No you probably don’t understand. Those of us who believe in freedom DO understand. Hopefully you will some day.

Posted by: BOHICA at May 9, 2008 7:34 PM
Comment #252568

Unfortunately, for true believers, Gordon Gecko was not right. Greed is not good. It is especially heinous when talking about healthcare. Who wants to go to the cheapest “doctor”, when we remove the legal stipulation and regulation of that term? Who wants the cheapest surgeon who operates in a back alley office? If you want a free medical market, make it truly free. Completely deregulate it. Surgery too time consuming? Go to Dr.Voodoo Vinnie, and he’ll heal you for a $19.99 and validate your parking. Let me hang my shingle. I read the Merck manuel. I know what I’m doing, come to me, I’ll save you money.

We currently have another shell game going on in Insurance and private hospitals. Instead of 3 card monte, it’s called cost shifting, and expanding margins.

No one besides an idiot would call for complete deregulation of healthcare. Yet, many scream about a free market, like idiots, once removed. The for profit system does not serve us well, as a nation, when it comes to healthcare. When the idealogues and shills stop shouting long enough to wake up to reality, and those affected stop listening to their completely illogical blather, we will have a cost effective and functioning healthcare system for everyone one, instead of the 5 percenters.

Posted by: googlumpus at May 9, 2008 11:04 PM
Comment #252570

Murigeo
My apologies if I sounded ungrateful to those who have sacrificed to give me the country I have now…I would not be getting a college education without the assistance of my grandfather. There are, however, limits to gratefulness. As I recall, most liberals were all for ending Terri Shaivo’s life, which they viewed as not worth living and a burden on society. Where do you drawn the line?

Also, if I am going to support the elderly now, I have a right to be supported myself when I reach that age. (God willing I do) As I already noted, I have little hope of seeing my SS payments again. The Republicans spent the last eight years screwing my generation with borrowing for Iraq. I would prefer to be soaked to pay for health care rather than bombs, but I would still prefer not to be soaked at all.

BTW, you didn’t address any of my other nagging questions. How will you account for ailments people bring on themselves? Will unnecessary procedures be covered? And what operations exactly be deemed unnecessary? If someone tries to make me pay for botox or liposuction, I will be very bitter, and might just cling to guns. I also see it as a sad commentary on our society that we have a national health crisis from eating too much when God only knows how many people die from hunger every day.

Posted by: Silima at May 9, 2008 11:40 PM
Comment #252573

Some Good comments on here, I give credit to All who try to tackle our health care crisis, looking back to 1986 when i was paying $84 a month for my union insurance plan that covered me and my wife and Daughter today it’s $1,100 a month for me and my wife and if i understood Hillary the other night $900 dollars of it a year comes out to help pay for the less fortunate that seems more than fair to me, I welcome whoever our next president is the challenge to do the right thing and put aside the political rancor and do the right and fair thing. RE social security we must fix it and strengthen it for the next generations.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at May 10, 2008 1:08 AM
Comment #252634

I’m going to have to disagree with Joel this time. D.a.n has pointed out the real reasons we cannot afford health care. I disagree with Joel’s amemdment for Health care and D.a.n’s amendments for Balanced budget for the same reason. Amendment’s such as those would be a license for government to raise taxes to balance the budget or provide healthcare. Rest assured government would go no other way but to raise taxes. If the abuses D.a.n pointed out were addressed and solved a discussion about providing healthcare would be warranted and a balanced budget would be a fact negating the need for either amendment.

Posted by: Weary Willie at May 11, 2008 2:40 PM
Comment #252652

Money will soon have no value. We have been borrowing way too much money for a way too long time now. It does not matter who will be the next president, the US is in a right financial mess!

US DEATH LIST OF THINGS THAT ARE ATTACKING OUR ECONOMY:

Our GDP is $ 13.86 Trillion dollars!
We got a Gross National Debt of $ 9.36 Trillion dollars.

We got non-performing house loans. We can’t pay our debt. We get kicked out of our houses.
The dollar has dropped 10 % in value this year compared to other nation’s currency.

Our stock market is not performing, while Russia’s stock market is growing.

We have no oil resources, while Russia got the world’s biggest oil resources now!

We are in a ghastly costly war we cannot get out of!

We failed to get Ukraine and Georgia into NATO, because our allies do not want to support our actions and they do not have any trust in us anymore.

World’s oil resources are running empty. Oil demand is growing, oil production is not growing.

Oil prices are rising, estimated over 150 dollars a barrel this summer, might get as worse as 200 dollars barrel. If the growth continue in the same pace will see Crude oil prices at 800 dollars a barrel, 5 times higher fuel prices, more than 20 dollars a gallon within 12-24 months. I think crude oil some time will have the same price as gold. People are willing to pay for their freedom that oil gives them! A small terrorist attack now or accident at an oil refinery and the crude oil prices will go thru the roof.

We have to send dollars to other nation in the world to pay for oil!

We where the number one economy in the world! Now the European Union is nearly twice as strong economy as the US economy.

We need to adopt more socialism, more social benefits and social protection, and the methods the EU is using to let the average populations living conditions rise and grow. It seems to be a better way of running a nation than we do!

Better unemployment benefits! Raise the taxation level! We pay only 18 % taxation of our GDP, Successful nations like Sweden pay 70 % of their GDP, living standards are much higher there than in the US. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Human_Development_Index

We need to put taxation on bad things like cigarettes, alcohol fuel, large cars, things that are a waste for the economy.

The American dream is turning out be an American nightmare, and the dream is not the ideal way to go by any more.

We are dropping in value every day. No other nations want to help us while we are falling now because of our previously actions.

We are destroying diplomatic bonds.

We have lied to the whole world about Iraq,
killed thousands of people just to get cheap oil. We are not going to get any Nobel peace prize in the near future.

We have scared the world! We have generated more fear and war than peace!

We have accelerated arms races around the world.
We are polluting the earth!

We are cheating, lying; we are twisting the truth with big media cover ups that gets looked thru the fingers of other nations.

We have lost goodwill worldwide now and especially from our allied nations. We are very soon standing very alone in the world if we do not cool down our aggression, and act very humble, because we rely on foreign oil and goodwill thru this period we are going into.

We must start being great value for other nations!

Foreign companies does not want to do business with us anymore because the Iraq war!

We are threatening allied nations.

We have generated great financial loss for the European Union that have invested in us this year; we are not of value and are not generating any value for other nations.

We are consuming up the worlds resources, we are count 5 % of the world’s population and we use 50 % of the world’s oil production. This is generating big foreign policy issues for us.

Americas pride General Motors has been reduced to close to nothing, going from being a market leader to a market follower!

We have bad medical healthcare, it is not free as for other nations.

We cannot hide from international media anymore, the internet; people talk and communicate much more now across borders for free now. We cannot continue to try to fool the world.

We eat bad food and get unhealthy and slow in the head of it.

We get more and more homeless people.

Donald Trump and Warren Buffet do not have any faith in the US economy any more

Unemployment rate is growing in the US!

We need to look our self in the mirror.

We have destroyed our reputation for the next 20 years, both morally and financially.

I do not think America can continue to go on limping for much longer with all this problems without totally collapsing soon.

We should gang up on Bush; put him in the electric chair with the last 5 presidents for not doing anything to the environment, not trying to reduce fuel consumption on cars, not putting taxation on fuel, not putting taxation on cars that uses a lot of fuel. We should put our self in the same chair for being stupid! But it will do no good! It is much better to let them live and see what damage they have done to America!

Maybe we can learn of this!

It does not matter who that will be the next President of USA, he or she will just have inherit the mess and problems generated by previously presidents. The problem is that we are stuck with 250 million oversized cars that we are going to have around for the next 15-20 years that use 2-3 times more fuel than the average European car. We are stuck with it!

Now the bill for our fun, greatness and freedom is served!

Everything is hitting back at us now!

I do not want to see the next quarter results for the finance industry; I truly fear the results are twice as bad as previously period.

We need to get a grip of our self and start fixing these issues!

Posted by: dave at May 11, 2008 10:45 PM
Comment #252658

Our money will have no value if we continue to rely on the dollar to be the world’s only money.
Our dollar is needed to buy petroleum. What will happen when the Euro is the money of choice in the world oil economy. The dollar will no longer be needed. Good bye, dollar value.

Our problem starts at home. Most people want the U.S. Government to focus on the 50 states that make up the U.S. Ron Paul wants to bring our troops home, all of them. He want’s to use them to protect our own country’s borders, not other country’s borders. Think of how much money this country could save if we weren’t policing the world. Think about how secure we would be if our million and a half military was protecting the borders of our own country, our own cities. We’d have plenty of people to look for illegal aliens that put a crunch on our economy.

A wasted vote is a vote for someone the media insists is the candidate. Don’t let the media tell you who to vote for. There are 300 million people in this country. There is no reason the media should start off with eleven people running for President. There are over 300 people registered as candidates for U.S. President! Why did the media only show us 11 of them? It’s because the media is controlling our lives for us!
Enough is Enough! Go to http://www.one-simple-idea.com . Read the man’s work! You’ll be amazed at the waste and fraud and the dishonesty that makes up our political process.

Start over, folks. Get local. Look your politician in the eye and make him respond to YOU BEFORE you vote for him.
If you’re living off of the Government’s money, tell him that. If you aren’t, tell him that. Tell him what you pay into the system and make him compare it to what he pays into the system.
Make sure he’s not bullshitting you!

Insanity is refered to doing the same thing over and over only to achieve the same result. We’re there now! We’ve been voting the same way, expecting a change, over and over, only to get the same results. It’s really time we expect a difference! It’s time we act different.


Posted by: Weary Willie at May 11, 2008 11:33 PM
Comment #252697

Donald Trump and Warren Buffet do not have any faith in the US economy any more

This cracks me up! Donald Trump, supposedly a great capitalist, inherited tens of millions worth of New York City real estate from his father to become a genius entrepreneur. Yeah, what a genius.

“Trump’s billion-dollar empire crumbled in 1990, when he was forced into bankruptcy for over $2 billion bank loans that he couldn’t pay.”

Wonder what would have happened to the wunderkind with the newer bankruptcy laws in place.

Posted by: mental wimp at May 12, 2008 6:15 PM
Comment #252919
Not sure why you’re happy taking your chances with a system that first of all IS NOT free market, second of all cost you as much as 2-3 times what people in other countries pay and has arguably worse outcomes when the whole population is looked at.

2-3 times?…

Sadly, it’s way worse.
The actual rate is 16.

Your free-market health care system cost you 16 times what it does for a french. And for lesser result, on average. Anyone can look at life expectancy or infant mortality rate to see what I mean here.

Obviously, one could always look at it from the other way: american medical private sector ROI is 16 times better than french one. It’s clearly the way *they* see it, no doubt.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 15, 2008 4:11 PM
Comment #252924

“Not sure why you’re happy taking your chances with a system that first of all IS NOT free market, second of all cost you as much as 2-3 times what people in other countries pay and has arguably worse outcomes when the whole population is looked at.
2-3 times?…

Sadly, it’s way worse.
The actual rate is 16.

Your free-market health care system cost you 16 times what it does for a french. And for lesser result, on average. Anyone can look at life expectancy or infant mortality rate to see what I mean here.

Obviously, one could always look at it from the other way: american medical private sector ROI is 16 times better than french one. It’s clearly the way *they* see it, no doubt.”

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 15, 2008 04:11 PM


I wouldn’t expect you to understand, Phillippe. It’s called FREEDOM of CHOICE.

Posted by: BOHICA at May 15, 2008 5:43 PM
Comment #252927

Bohica,

Freedom to pay 16 times more for less. Yes.
But choice to pay 16 times more for less? Does the 10% of american who have no health insurance really chose it!?

I wouldn’t expect you to understand that *other* solutions could exists. Worse, other solutions works better than your all magical-does-all-for-free free-market one.

Better death than having to acknowledge your country or ideology is not the best in everything it does or can do.

In fact, for few of those 10%, maybe it is, actually.

But be my guest, stay in denial. You never knows, maybe the issues will goes away…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 15, 2008 6:50 PM
Comment #252939
Does the 10% of american who have no health insurance really chose it!?

Yes, for the most part. There is a percentage of that 10% that are unable to because of ‘pre-existing conditions’, which I think should be illegal. But the rest can purchase healthcare and choose not to.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 15, 2008 10:24 PM
Comment #253037

Note: nearly all proof of the claims listed below are found in the links on my blog at:
http://ex-conservative.blogspot.com/2008_04_01_archive.html

Concerning Universal Health Insurance

This is the single most shameful fact that the Conservative elite don’t want America to know: on the list of life expectancy, America - which spends more on health care per capita than any other country in the world, is forty-fifth! That’s lower than Jordan. That’s even lower than Bosnia-Herzegovina, for Pete’s sake! BTW - Jordan and Bosnia are the ONLY nations without UHC on the list of longest life-expectancies…and they place 40th and 42nd, respectively.

And you know what? The Cons say we can’t have Universal Health Care because it would ‘bankrupt America’. After all, we’re nearly spending 16% of our GDP on health care. Funny thing is, Germany - which has the world’s oldest Universal Health Care system (since 1883), spends only 10.7% of their GDP on health care. Singapore’s world-class UHC system only uses 3% of their GDP. Japan spends less than half on health care per capita than the U.S. - yet they have one of the highest life expectancies in the world.

A majority of American doctors support UHC (even though I suspect most would stand to lose money in such a system). Nursing unions support UHC. Americans as a whole support UHC by a 2-1 margin. Even a slight majority of Republicans want UHC! (again, check the links on my blog for proof)

How about this? A study published Wednesday in the policy journal Health Affairs found that approximately half of people in the US who file for bankruptcy cite medical costs as a significant reason for their financial troubles.
http://newstandardnews.net/content/?action=show_item&itemid=1439

And the old saw about how America has the very best health care in the world? That’s TRUE…but ONLY for those who can afford it. For the rest of us, if we need health care we can’t afford, we have to go out of the country. It’s called ‘medical tourism’…and I’ve done it and so have friends of mine. Think this is rare? Check out this link:
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/11/04/health/main2153345.shtml

In other words, the ONLY organizations who DON’T want Universal Health Care are HMO’s, health insurance companies…and the Republican Party.

Oh yeah - for “Rhinehold”, who said that most people who didn’t have health care insurance simply CHOSE not to buy it, here’s a little experience for him: NINE years ago, my wife’s company was offering a health care plan (with restrictions, of course) for her and her family. It ONLY cost $1000 a month. That was nine years ago. I guess ‘Rhinehold’ doesn’t think it would be a problem for most American families to cough up an extra $12,000 or so…or the TWENTY grand it would likely be now thanks to inflation.

And what does McCain promise to solve the health care crisis? More tax cuts.

Posted by: Glenn Contrarian at May 17, 2008 9:19 PM
Comment #253038

Correction: “A study published Wednesday in the policy journal Health Affairs found that approximately half of people in the US who file for bankruptcy cite medical costs as a significant reason for their financial troubles.”

I should have corrected the fourth word to read “February 2005”. My apologies for the confusion.

Posted by: Glenn Contrarian at May 17, 2008 9:23 PM
Comment #253305

we already have universal health care —- all anyone has to do is go to a hospital for free treatment (which the rest of us pay for through higher medical bills) — don’t listen to the left’s nonsensical illogic

Posted by: michael at May 21, 2008 12:26 PM
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