Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Are We Further Away or Getting Closer to Figuring Out Health Care in America?

It appears that after many decades debating health care, insurance, and all the costs involved with medicine and doctoring and all the legislation to subsidize drug-making and drug-dispensing, we are inching closer and closer to the basics behind all these issues. Or are we?

Getting medical care when needed and paying for insurance, in America, can be a mammoth undertaking.

And it's pretty sad and utterly short-sighted to hear Tennessee's new governor, Bill Haslam, offer this comment regarding the current health care law approved by Congress:

Our goal should be advocating for an approach that embraces healthy choices and personal responsibility and accountability for a healthy lifestyle."

So ... if he is right, then why do we even allow doctors and hospitals to operate?

We're all on our own, and if we make a decision or take an action, or by inaction allow for some illness or sickness to take hold of us, then each of us should just find some way to cope with it. After all, being in a human and an inherently decaying and injury-prone body, we must expect it to fall apart eventually. So, don't expect me to help you out since I'm planning on being self-sufficient.

If you seek zero government involvement in health care, then eliminate medical licenses and prescriptions and drug-testing, and we'll each just do our best, on our own to figure out why we are ill and how we can get better.

That's certainly an option and a direction our society could take.

Or maybe, using the idea of group involvement through insurance to help cover the costs, one could find a group to be a part of which will provide medical insurance at a lower cost. How about a group made of people who are your age, weight, height and eye color who also work at the same type of job? Or why not make the group really, really large - say, everyone who has a birth certificate in America?

Regardless of age or job or any "lifestyle choice", everyone would be in one group - would that make insurance premiums available at a low cost? Or will insurance companies and health care providers raise their prices so they don't have to alter their income levels?

It appears there are some mighty complex basic issues left to resolve. And we, in America, still have a long way to go before such resolution is to be found.

A discussion of Governor Haslam's ideas at KnoxViews.

Some ideas from Dr. Paul Hochfield

Sunday, January 30, 2011

What Was Not Spoken In the 2011 State of the Union Speech But Probably Should Have Been Said

The real fight over tax breaks debated last fall in Congress was centered on folks who make $250,000 or above. So that's really who they are developing policy for. The rest of us are pretty much on our own it seems ... and here are a few other ideas which were not expressed by anyone in defining the state of our Union in 2011.

Millions of people face severe financial hardship, if not ruin, due to the obscene and irresponsible greed of a very small number of folks. Because the Congress is captive to anybody with large sums of money to spend, nothing particularly effective will be done to prevent things like this from happening again.

There are about 25 professional registered lobbyists for every member of Congress."


"The country goes deeper and deeper into debt on a daily basis. The greatest financial threat the nation faces is the cost of health care, and nobody in a position to actually make or enforce policy has any freaking clue how to manage or control that."


"We have very low inflation, unless you include food and energy. So if you don't eat, heat your home, or drive, the dollar you make today will we be worth about what it is today for quite a while."


"Over the last 30 years, the American middle class has been gutted by the loss of jobs to offshoring and automation. We continue to have a strongly entrepreneurial and innovative economy, but when it's time for bright new ideas to scale up to an industrial level of production, much if not most of that happens overseas. So, wealth, but jobs, not so much.

Also - America's Current Queen of Comedy Sarah Palin says that President Obama's call for a Sputnik moment to promote innovation should have been a call for a "Spudnut moment" ... and no I am not making that up ... no one can invent stupid crap like Palin can all on her own:

You know what we need is 'a spudnut moment.' And here's where I'm going with this, Greta.... Well, the spudnut shop in Richland, Washington -- it's a bakery, it's a little coffee shop that's so successful, 60-some years, generation to generation, a family-owned business not looking for government to bail them out and to make their decisions for them. It's just hard-working, patriotic Americans in this shop.

"We need more spudnut moments in America. And I wish that President Obama would understand, in that heartland of America, what it is that really results in the solutions that we need to get this economy back on the right track. It's a shop like that.

Ah, America, 2011 will be tougher than you know.

Except for comedy and self-parody. We're pretty much overflowing there.