Category Archives: Single Payer

I Pay But I Don’t Get It

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I have a good job. I buy the health insurance my Human Resources Dept tells me to buy. (This is not, by the way, a “free market” as described by Adam Smith, David Ricardo, John Maynard Keynes, Milton Friedman, and the other neo-classical economists.) I pay enough that I could be driving a Mercedes – hell I could be driving a Hummer – and going about 2400 miles per month (at current gas prices).

But my coverage stinks. It’s rationed by insurance company beancounters. If I see their doctors – and a complete physical takes about two hours and 30 seconds – two hours waiting and 30 seconds in which the doc says “You’re breathing. That’s good. You’re blood pressure is high, if it gets higher we’ll put you on meds.”

But that’s ok. As long as I don’t get sick I’m ok. That’s why my blood pressure is high. I’m worried about getting sick. Or losing my job. In either case I’ll lose my house.

One thing I don’t worry about is that my octagenarian father has good health care. He worked hard all his life. He takes care of himself. And he’s on Medicare. It’s great. Efficient. Government run. Not sexy like the Apollo Mission to the moon, but very important. And for the health care that my kids teachers get. They go to public school. The teachers are in the unions. And the health care is good. The kids too get good health care. Even if their parents work but don’t get health care, then, thanks to Presidents Clinton and Obama, and despite the efforts and vetos of President Bush, they get health care.

But one of the things that really gets me, the thing that makes my blood boil – which is why I’ll need blood pressure meds – is that close to 50 Million Americans – one out of six – have no health insurance. And it’s people between the age of 18 and 65. People who work, or would work, if they could find jobs. This is wrong on many levels.

The other thing that is killing me – almost literally – is that people who make $Millions – insurance industry executives, and lobbyists and rich “Philosophers” Beck, Hannity, Limbaugh, and O’Reilley – wait, they’re not philosophers, they’re not Thinkers – they’re actors – and they are telling me what’s good for me. That’s un-American. They are sending people to disrupt “Town Hall meetings with Representatives from Congress.

On March 23, 1775, Patrick Henry, speaking at St. John’s church in Richmond, Virginia said “give me liberty or give me death.” Those guys have taken my liberty and are giving me death.

Dear President Obama, Senators, Reps. in the House,

We elected you and the Democratic majorities in the House and the Senate to fix the problems created and exacerbated by the neo-cons and the Republicans, and to do this by governing from the left of the center.

You have your work cut out for you.

Good luck.

I have your back.

But I can’t support you when I’m drowning.

(first published on Daily Kos)

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Filed under Health Care, Single Payer

Single Prayer Health Care

Wasilla, Alaska, July 27, 2009. The Republicans have finally released their health care plan. Sarah Palin, Michael Steele, and Rush Limbaugh, joined by Bobby Jindal and the Blue Dog Democrats, have announced their plan: “The Single Prayer Plan.”

The good news is that the health care plan is free. All you need to do is pray that you don’t get sick, and pray that you don’t need medicine. The bad news is that it is not proven to be effective.

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Filed under God, GOP, Health Care, Jesus., Single Payer

Socialized Medicine Beats Anti-Social Medicine

Medical Insurance can cost $12,000 per year for a family if everyone’s healthy. That’s a new car every two or three years. Or every year. That’s a down payment on a house. That’s a mortgage. And that’s ridiculous.

It’s why Honda and Toyota are in better shape than GM, Ford, and Chrysler. The government takes care of the health care needs of Japanese auto workers – and everyone else.

We need a single payer system, or Medicare for all Americans.

People say this is “socialized” medicine. But the alternative – “anti-social” medicine – is terrible. Medicare works very well for everyone I know over 80. Insurance works poorly at best, whether you’re employed, self-employed, or unemployed. I have friends who are out of work and who have no access to medical care, was there myself. When I was out of work I couldn’t afford health insurance. (My kids were covered, thanks to Bill Clinton and SCHIP.)

There are some things that the government must do. Nobody believes that police and fire-fighters should be private for-profit companies. Private armies and private police forces are what you see in places like Iraq and Columbia.

Think of the national security implications. If I am near someone who is sick, and who can’t go to the doctor – I’m exposed. I’m in danger. So’s my wife, so’re my kids. I have a family. As a father I don’t want my kids exposed because some poor guy lost his job.

Bush and McCain actually said “We have a national health care policy – it’s “Go to the Emergency Room.”

This is great when you break your arm or get hurt. But it costs you and me more for some un-insured guy to go to the emergency room for a check-up then to go to see a physician in an office. And Emergency Rooms are not clinics. They can’t do anything if you have high blood pressure or diabetes, unless you had a stroke or a heart attack or you’re in a coma. And then it’s too little to late.

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Filed under Medicare, Single Payer