Tuesday, March 23, 2010

"The sky is falling!" or Silly Overreaction to the Healthcare Law

A Facebook friend of mine posted:
American's (sic) just lost more freedom. Why don't the legislators that voted for this healthcare bill move to a socialist nation? Our leaders are not upholding the Constitution like they swore they would do. Universal Healthcare doesn't work! When are people going to see that government can't care for you and shouldn't.... ...Our rights don't come from government, they come from God. I can't wait for November.
I responded:
Actually, universal healthcare DOES work. It works *much* better than the system we currently have. However, the bill that was just introduced is NOT universal healthcare. It simply overcomes some of the health insurance hurdles that many (poor) Americans couldn't overcome such as eliminating pre-existing conditions. The downside to the bill is it does nothing to keep insurance companies in check. Those are the real b******s in this little drama. That's where you should be looking if you want to get upset...
Another friend:
Dale, where do you get the statistic that the U.S. ranks dead last in quality of care? I would much rather be cared for in a U.S. hospital than in any other country.

I responded:
[Editor's note: the person I responded to in the thread has removed himself from the thread or made himself invisible to me, either way, here are his comments as I received them in my email notifications]

Michael D.:
Elizabeth, you've certainly some interesting folks chiming in here. Questionable in accuracy, but interesting. Frankly, I tend to question anyone who would attempt to quote Wikipedia as a 'legitimate source', but as to that survey, I'd be interested in seeing the survey's questions.

Simple truth about "Universal' or 'Socialized' health care is that it comes with extremely high taxes and rationed access. Need a radiological exam for a cancer? We'll get to you in 6-8 months...

Standby as the Supreme Court strikes this POC bill down.
Michael, of course you're right about citing wikipedia as a source... I put that in there for the wealth of links that the article provided so that people could follow them and draw their own conclusions about the accuracy of the ORIGINAL links. Personally, I figured everyone was able to realize this and I wouldn't have to make this disclaimer.

As for your interest in the "survey's questions"... Do you realize how ignorant that makes you appear? The survey I linked was actually a peer-reviewed scientific study that follows very specific, rigorous rules for aggregating published data from reliable multiple sources. Since the scientists didn't actually produce the original data, they had to *survey* other sources.

What I'd like from you, Michael, are facts. Produce the scientific studies, originals or surveys, that compare socialized medicine costs with the costs an American pays. Produce the scientific studies that show the waiting times that nations with socialized medicine have compared to the U.S. Produce the studies that show how coverage is denied in socialized nations versus denied coverage in America. Without facts, we're just spewing hot air and saliva all over everyone....

Finally, the Supreme Court will not likely strike the law down. The Supreme Court is firmly in the pockets of corporate interests. Also, remember Obama's Healthcare Summit? All the competing *healthcare* interests (doctor's organizations, hospitals, insurance companies, etc.) forged a negotiation so that everyone got a piece of the pie. This law will never go before the SCOTUS.
Michael D.:
Sorry Asberry. I refuse to converse with Socialists. Beneath my minimum level of interest, it rates somewhere along the lines of picking up after the dogs.
Shine the light on the cockroaches and they go scurrying.

Here are more thoughts I posted:
I actually think anger toward the government is misguided. It's actually *corporate* health care: doctors, hospitals, and insurance that we should be in a furor with. It's those greedy b******s that deserve our anger as they pillage our bank accounts. Sure, we need some frustration to focus at the government because we elected them to PROTECT us. But let us not forget, it's the doctors, hospitals and insurance companies that are committing the actual crimes against each and every one of us.

My position in this is far more subtle than "socialist"... I believe that some things, like roads (if you use roads are you a socialist??), are "in the public good." The health and well-being of my neighbors is always on my mind. I have an excellent, very well-paying job and am willing to commit some of my income to the betterment of all Americans. We need to be on the lookout for one another because no one else is. Doesn't the bible exhort us to do that? Does that make Jesus a socialist? If people were following their Christian directives for charity, would we even be having this discussion? How greedy and uncaring does someone have to be to think this law is a bad thing? Misguided maybe, but certainly not bad and definitely not evil as many portray it. As [name withheld] indicated above, Canada and the UK provide top notch health care that is not focused on the pursuit of the almighty dollar. Those two countries can hardly be considered socialist.

My point in this thread is to question opinion, discover facts, and come to rational conclusions. I've been studying this topic for nearly five years now and, scarily, the evidence says American exceptionalism isn't evident in our health care system. In fact, most research points out uncomfortable facts that some aspects of health care in third world countries such as Cuba may actually be better than what we have. Talk about scary!