Clinton Health Care, v. 2

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Health Care

Ezra Klein evaluates Hillary Clinton’s new health care proposals.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. moonbat  •  Sep 17, 2007 @10:42 pm

    A couple of articles on CommonDreams provide some counterpoint:

    Dear Democrats by Russell Mokhiber. Excerpt:

    Today, your likely standard bearer for President, the woman who would vanquish those corporate Republicans from the White House, one corporate Democratic Senator from New York, Hillary Clinton, will announce her health care plan.

    It will not be single payer…

    ‘Giving’ and Taking by Chris Hedges. Excerpt:

    [Bill Clinton’s new book] is filled with a lot of vapid, feel-good stories about ordinary and wealthy Americans setting out to make the world a better place. It smacks of the philanthropy-as-publicity that characterized the largesse of the robber barons — the Mellons and the Rockefellers — and has become a pastime for our own oligarchic elite. Clinton’s call for charity is the equivalent of well-scrubbed prep school students spending a day in a soup kitchen, doling out food to the people whose jobs were outsourced by their mommies and daddies. It does little to alleviate suffering. But it is a balm to the conscience of the oligarchic class that profits handsomely from the impoverishment of the working class, globalization and our anti-democratic corporate state. The rich love to dine out on their own goodness.

  2. A Canadian Reader  •  Sep 18, 2007 @8:06 am

    I’m starting to get the impression that the whole debate over universal, socialist (whatever) health care in the States is somewhat akin to the debate over slavery lo these many years. You’re either for it or against it. If the private health care system/slave owning has worked well for you, you’ll defend it with all your strength. Any other solution is insanity–doesn’t matter that the rest of the first world changed its mind decades ago. They’re just stupid.

  3. maha  •  Sep 18, 2007 @9:59 am

    Canadian — yeah, pretty much.

  4. Tom Taylor  •  Sep 18, 2007 @11:25 am

    Why do the people who “belong” to a “national health care” system in other countries come to the United States in order to receive appropriate health care when they get “in trouble”? The biggest industry in the United Kingdom (England) is the evolution of a voluntary health care system outside of the national system – why?
    Government regulation (micromanagement) of the health care industry in the United States is a major reason for the markedly increased costs of the system (about 25%, according to the latest statistics) – the providers of care are subject to a major punitive action when they “step out of line” with the regulations, and they can not keep up with the changes – computerization of patients records will increase the “cost of doing business” to over $100 MILLION (multiply $30000 for installation/conversion for each provider – over 600,000 physicians alone – in the USA). Costs of handling “free medical/health care) to illegal aliens already costs 1 BILLION for each 1 million illegal aliens (1Million times $1000 per illegal alien per year)

  5. maha  •  Sep 18, 2007 @12:23 pm

    Why do the people who “belong” to a “national health care” system in other countries come to the United States in order to receive appropriate health care when they get “in trouble”? The biggest industry in the United Kingdom (England) is the evolution of a voluntary health care system outside of the national system – why?

    The British NHS is way underfunded. The Brits spend less per capita on health care than just about every other European country, and only about a third of what we spend here, as I recall. If the Brits spent as much on health care as we do now they could probably furnish every citizen with a personal physician.

    Government regulation (micromanagement) of the health care industry in the United States is a major reason for the markedly increased costs of the system (about 25%, according to the latest statistics) – the providers of care are subject to a major punitive action when they “step out of line” with the regulations, and they can not keep up with the changes – computerization of patients records will increase the “cost of doing business” to over $100 MILLION (multiply $30000 for installation/conversion for each provider – over 600,000 physicians alone – in the USA).

    I thought the computerization thing was supposed to save money over time? Well, in any case, most of those awful regulations are the ones that don’t allow insurance companies to refuse patients with pre-existing conditions or to raise the rates of people who get sick. The only reason I am able to purchase health insurance at all is that I live in New York, one of those nasty liberal states with regulations. If I lived in, say, Texas, I probably couldn’t buy insurance at any price. And this is a big reason why so many Americans are uninsured.

    Seems to me there is something inherently screwy about a system that’s allowed to deny service to those who need it most, and will only accept customers who don’t appear likely to actually use their services much. But that’s what we’ve got.

    Costs of handling “free medical/health care) to illegal aliens already costs 1 BILLION for each 1 million illegal aliens (1Million times $1000 per illegal alien per year)

    Most of those illegal aliens are here working “off the books” for slave wages so that their employers can profit. It’s those employers who are the real parasites, IMO. I’m all for shutting off the job spigot to discourage people from coming here illegally. But I’m also damn tired of morons like you who want to deny vital services to American citizens because illegal aliens might benefit also.

  6. A Canadian Reader  •  Sep 18, 2007 @1:16 pm

    Thank you, Maha, for trying to explain certain obvious things to poor Tom (“best system in the world”).

    I’d just like to add one more point:

    Tom, believe it or not, there are Americans who go outside of the US to receive health care too. Just one example: Many Americans still go to Dr. de Smet in Belgium for hip resurfacing, a procedure that until recently was not done in the States, although it was an accepted procedure in Europe.

    The States has many excellent physicians, but stop talking as if there’s no state-of-the-art health care elsewhere. Your attitude smacks of the small-mindedness that characterizes the stereotype of the ugly American.

  7. maha  •  Sep 18, 2007 @1:21 pm

    Canadian — American righties think that doctors in other countries work out of grass huts and have bones through their noses.

  8. Ian  •  Sep 18, 2007 @1:47 pm

    Tom, the idea that government regulation is what drives cost, that “keeping up with” micromanagement is what drives cost, is just wrong.

    I work for an auto/property insurance company, as a programmer on the software that agents use to sell insurance with, and I’ll tell you right now that we are JUST as “micromanaged” as the medical insurance biz, if not MORE so, AND we “keep up” with the changes just fine. And make a profit at it too.

    IF government regulations play any role at all in driving costs, it is the ones that prevent the medical insurance companies from utterly screwing us that is doing it.

    In other words, get rid of all government regulations, and the only real cost benefit that would result would be that medical insurance companies would start covering fewer people, less comprehensively, and denying more claims. That would mean bigger profits for those specific companies, but I doubt the actual cost of medicine in the US would lower at all. It would probably rise, in fact.

    -me

  9. A Canadian Reader  •  Sep 18, 2007 @3:04 pm

    Maha,

    You took the words out of my mouth, but I guess I was suffering from a slight case of political correctness and felt I might be insulting someone somewhere so I didn’t frame it in those terms.

    I have yet something else to add, while we’re on the topic of wingnuts (and aren’t we always?). On one of my medical self-help group sites, someone seriously suggested that new medical procedures be tried out on death-row inmates…

    Sigh.



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