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The Rage Is Not About Health Care

Discussion in 'US Health Care Reform' started by Ellen, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. Darryl

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    Thanks to our friends in the UK for posting about the NHS. There are pro's and con's to every system of health care. It is interesting that the comments on NHS have been fairly positive except for impact on the national debt. In America, we'll patriotically add a trillion dollars to the national debt to start an unnecessary war, yet we run like scared babies fearing socialism when roughly the same amount is added to protect the welfare of tens of millions of our citizens.

    The new health rules in America do not consitute nationalized health care. We have some new rules that reduce discrimination based on pre-existing conditions and health status, and will provide additional options for high risk individuals. Doctors are likely to be paid less in some circumstances, but will be paid for every patient they treat (unlike today, when a doctor might see 10 patients in a day and get paid by 7 of them). Not much has changed in the US, other than lessening the divide between the have's and the have-not's.
     
  2. SueM

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    Being skeptical of Healthcare Reform does not equal running like scared babies fearing socialism. That's just name calling. Personally, I've said previously that I agree with you that the war has been a nightmare and has wasted Billions of dollars. If you want to go there though... shall I remind you that President Obama hasn't exactly stopped spending money on the War/Wars? Wasn't he supposed to lead us out of that mess? My only point in bringing that up is that you previously stated that it wouldn't be a big deal to change things up again (re: Healthcare) if we need to in a few years? Really? I don't think so... We're in it for the long haul... No matter how badly it stinks. Or, how wonderful it is. :D

    I look at it like this... Years ago (before we entangled ourselves in Iraq and Afghanistan), if we had a crystal ball and saw how much money would be wasted and how many years we would really be involved there... or how there was no immediate threat of WMD... I'm pretty sure that the public's opinion of going to War would have been different (for the most part). I just see skepticism about Healthcare Reform to be similar... I see the red flags everywhere... I feel myself wanting to say 'You'll be sorry....", but realistically, I know that I can't say that because alas, no crystal ball here.
     
  3. Karenwith4

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    Article from the BBC on why people vote against their own best interests.

    Some excerpts:
    But it is striking that the people who most dislike the whole idea of healthcare reform - the ones who think it is socialist, godless, a step on the road to a police state - are often the ones it seems designed to help.

    In Texas, where barely two-thirds of the population have full health insurance and over a fifth of all children have no cover at all, opposition to the legislation is currently running at 87%.

    Instead, to many of those who lose out under the existing system, reform still seems like the ultimate betrayal.

    Why are so many American voters enraged by attempts to change a horribly inefficient system that leaves them with premiums they often cannot afford?

    Why are they manning the barricades to defend insurance companies that routinely deny claims and cancel policies?

    Drew Westen argues that stories rather than facts convince voters
    If people vote against their own interests, it is not because they do not understand what is in their interest or have not yet had it properly explained to them.

    They do it because they resent having their interests decided for them by politicians who think they know best.
     
  4. SueM

    SueM Banned

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    That article is skewed though... (obviously). How come it can't be true that the people who are against Healthcare Reform are so because they know in the long run it will not be in their best interest.

    The premise of the article is just wrong.
     
  5. Karenwith4

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    The article is absolutely skewed but I don't think the premise is wrong.
    People for whom UHC is designed to help do vote against it, essentially voting against their own best interests. Why they vote against it, and whether they believe it would be in their own best interests to have UHC is a different question, imo. Plenty of people on this and other threads have said they would love to have some kind of UHC like other countries do or at least a system where everyone could be covered etc, but they don't trust the American government to provide it, and will therefore vote against it when given the chance. I don't know that anyone can say that they KNOW rejecting UHC is in their best interests, unless they are voting completely on philosophical reasons and even then, that may not be ultimately in their own best interests.

    (fwiw, the article is from January and written before this bill was completely formulated and speaks to UHC in general rather than this bill in particular.)
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2010
  6. SueM

    SueM Banned

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    I guess that my point is that nobody knows what will ultimately be in our best interests collectively as a nation or individually. So, the premise that people are essentially "voting against their own best interests" doesn't seem accurate.

    I guess it's sort of a waiting game at this point. :)
     
  7. Brensdad

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  8. Karenwith4

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    I agree and disagree. :D
    Using other "first world" countries as case studies, there is plenty of evidence that a UHC would provide better overall and individual health outcomes, and an argument can be made that it could better financial outcomes particularly in the case of fascilitating more entrepreneurial businesses, fewer bankruptcies etc. So there is evidence to say that UHC is in a citizenry's best interests from a practical standpoint.

    However the cost is an issue given your current financial state and then there is the whole discussion around the philosophy behind a government supplying services, and the ability of your particular government to do that successfully (which I personally think is as much about political will as anything else), and then the discussion about whether people will accept UHC and what will happen to your society if this problem is not solved, which leads us back to what is in the country's best interests.

    Nick I'm not denying your debt is a hinderance. I don't think though that you can have this discussion and not talk about priorities. The US alone is responisible for half the world's military spending (2004 stats) (2008 stats).

    The US can't afford healthcare for its citizens because it chooses to make military spending its top priority. At some point collectively you need to make a decision about what your priorities will be going forward and work towards them. It's sort of like when you are planning to have kids - there is never a perfect moment when everything is exactly in place and nothing couldn't be better but in the end if you wait and wait until everything is perfect, you will never end up having kids.
     
  9. Sportsrep

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    Karen, you do have to bear in mind that the BBC is not politically neutral (though it might like to pretend or even think it is :) ). It comes from a leftish perspective and is broadly in favour of bigger government ? Dr David Runciman and Thomas Frank are both left-wing commentators, I?m not familiar with the work of psychologist Drew Westen.

    The BBC?s facts and figures are usually pretty authoritative, but its interpretation of them is going to have a left-wing agenda.
     
  10. Karenwith4

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    I'm not denying the article has a bias, as I stated above. I just found it interesting in light of the conversation here especially wrt the portions of the discussion pertaining to why UHC won't happen in the US.
     
  11. wilf

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    .. we noticed that Canada's debt to GDP ratio is about the same as the US, but the problem is that Canada's had this system for some time now, and our debt is already horrendous.[/QUOTE]

    Not sure where you got this information from.

    Canada's debt-to-GDP ratio is around 30%. The US's is around 70%.
     
  12. Karenwith4

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    LOL That was from an old debate Nick and I had which took place in the summer of '08. :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010
  13. Darryl

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    If Canada wants to enjoy the same moral and financial status as the US, all it needs to do is start unnecessary war with a middle eastern country, so that its debt-to-GDP ratio will climb to 70%, and then it will not be able to afford health care for its citizens. What on earth is taking them so long to get on the bandwagon?
     
  14. Karenwith4

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    Hi Lisa
    Again I think we will disagree.
    I think where your argument falls apart is that there are proven factual ramifications for the US not having some version of UHC including things like lower life expectancy, and higher infant mortality (among many other indicators) than countries with UHC and financial implications like the fact that the US spends more per capita on health care than other developed nations with UHC, has higher levels of bankruptcies due to medical issues. I'd love to see comparisions against other countries with UHC that show that your current system offers better overall health outcomes for individuals and for society.

    It's not opinion that UHC addresses these issues - it's a fact. You and I can go back and forth on whether you personally think that it is a good idea to get hit in the head with a hammer, but factual analysis of the long term affects on your health and by extention your finances and life satisfaction would suggest your argument isn't rational and that it isn't well advised to say that regular blows to the noggin is the best course of action for your all your citizens. The statistics of your current system are evidence that it would be in your best interests to adopt UHC.
     
  15. Karenwith4

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    We'll put that on our list. Fortunately for us, our PM likes to prorogue parliament so he can watch hockey. :D Priorities, I'm tellin' ya.
     
  16. Darryl

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    And just to think, the rage isn't even about UHC. All we have is a few new rules.
     
  17. Brensdad

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    Seriously? For one, my GDP comment was referring to something Karen and I discussed a long time ago, and it's actually quite relevant. The argument being that Canada already has those costs built in, whereas the US does not.

    I'm still interested to know your thoughts on the throngs of Democrats that quite openly advocated war with Iraq. I provided you that link, but you seem not to have considered it.

    If your objective is to blame Republicans for opposing this law because we'd rather spend money enriching our "oil buddies," then the link I provided you sinks that argument.

    If your objective is to prove that neither Democrats or Republicans are smart enough to decide how to best spend our tax dollars, then we find ourselves in total agreement.

    Either way, constantly dragging the war out as a way to somehow convince others that this law is worthwhile simply falls flat, and to be perfectly honest it's not adding anything to the topic.

    If you would like to debate the war, please do send me a PM, I am happy to hear your thoughts.

    Here's a link from Wikipedia (which sources to The Treasury Department). Please note the rate of debt growth from 2000-2008, and compare it to how it's grown since then and how it's projected to grow.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_public_debt

    Now tell me, with a straight face, that this law is "deficit neutral," and that we can afford it.
     
  18. Karenwith4

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    It's a good thing we agreed to disagree :D because unfortunately, no I don't see your distinction. I do think your position perfectly illustrates the point of the article though.
    If a preponderance of data from places like WHO, UN, OCED, various medical journals, scads of case studies, and objective factual assessment of statistics like life expectancy and infant mortality etc won't be accepted as fact that UHC provides better health outcomes for citizens than your current system does, then you are right - we aren't going to agree on what is fact.

    I would be very interested in hearing your argument about how longer life expectancy, lower infant mortality rates, lower per capita cost, improved access and higher levels of satisfaction in the health care system are not in your best interests - either collectively or individually, measured subjectively or objectively.


    Karen
     
  19. Darryl

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    I actually answered this question in a earlier post. All policitians use saber-rattling as a form of diplomacy.
    The claims made by many politicians against Iraq were intended to convince the UN to impose sanctions
    and weapons inspections on Iraq.

    The difference between W, and all the other politicians and past presidents who rallied against Iraq, is
    that W started a war.
     
  20. Karenwith4

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    Skipping right past the part where you suggest I have no empathy because I disagree with you... and assuming that best interests in this case is a rational response to choose health over the alternative....

    As you seem to like examples, I've been trying to come up with an example that might illustrate my position on this and the best I can come up with is food. Arguing that UHC is not in your best is like saying that it is in your best interests to eat a diet solely from McDonalds, versus choosing a well balanced diet of fresh local, organic food from the farmers market. Yes McDonald's fare could be considered food :eek: :p, and yes it may be more appealing to you especially if it is all you have ever known, but continuing to choose it after knowing that there are less costly, healthier options and understanding the implication of your choices to continue eating McDs is not in your own best interests (again assuming rationality in decision making). And you absolutely have the freedom to make that choice but I don't see how you can argue that it is in your best interests.

    I can understand your point about opinions but choosing a favourite colour is purely a subjective decision without broader implications for those around you. I disagree with you that the decision around UHC is or should be based on the same level of subjectivity or that there isn't some level of rational logical assessment that should be done in coming to an opinion about what best interests are -individually or collectively. Voting against a system that has been shown to improve health outcomes and financial outcomes for individuals and society "just because" was the whole point of the article so I don't think you can argue the premise of the article is wrong when that's exactly what your posts are indicating is your position.

    I am not trying to belabour the point. I am just fascinated with the topic. We can agree to disagree, but I still would like to understand why you don't believe the documented outcomes that UHC delivers are not in your best interest.
    Have a great day.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2010

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