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Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Health care reform

I haven't been keeping up with the national health care plan debate, but I did notice a post today at Think Progress with this headline .... Right-Wing Escalates Fear-Mongering Rhetoric: Warns Americans Will Die If Health Care Reform Passes. I think what the right-wing means to say is that people "such as themselves" may die - in case they haven't noticed, people have been dying under the present health care system for a long time, but of course they're mostly, you know, the poor. I've spent much of my life without private health insurance and I know what it's like to get health care at the emergency room or at a free clinic, so I do hope we end up with socialized medicine.

Here's some of the Think Progress post .....

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[...] A couple of right-wing congressman voiced similar doom-and-gloom rhetoric on the House floor yesterday:

Rep. Steve King (R-IA): “They’re going to save money by rationing care, getting you in a long line. Places like Canada, United Kingdom, and Europe. People die when they’re in line.”

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX): “One in five people have to die because they went to socialized medicine! … I would hate to think that among five women, one of ‘em is gonna die because we go to socialized care.”


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“Many Americans are under the delusion that we have ‘the best health care system in the world,’” the New York Times editorial page wrote in 2007, but “the disturbing truth is that this country lags well behind other advanced nations in delivering timely and effective care.”

Comapred with Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, the United States ranks last in all dimensions of a high performance health system: quality, access, efficiency, equity, and healthy lives. The United States currently ranks 50th out of 224 nations in life expectancy, with an average life span of 78.1 years, according to 2009 estimates from the CIA World Factbook.

Canada, Great Britain, and many of the other countries that the right-wing enjoys beating up on actually like their health systems and wouldn’t want to trade places with an American. Moreover, Americans don’t get a good bang for our buck. A Business Roundtable study found that compared to France, Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom, U.S. workers and employers receive 23 percent less value from our health care system than the citizens of these other nations ....

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Mary H. said...

Right on, Crystal. I belong to an internet group for people with a rare bone condition. It is heartbreaking to read the posts from people in the U.S. who cannot get treatment because they do not have insurance. Some of them went into business for themselves and then found they couldn't get insurance coverage because they have a preexisting condition. (Although I think that has improved in the past year or two.)
We have people in other parts of the world who suddenly realize how fortunate they are when they read the posts from the U.S.

7:32 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

Mary,

Thanks for the comment. I think health care should be seen as a right, but for many in the US, it seems to be considered a privilege.

8:21 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

Mary,

I forgot to say, I'm sorry about the bone disease.

8:41 PM  

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