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Old 09-24-2010, 10:56 AM
 
Location: New England
12,247 posts, read 8,376,960 times
Reputation: 8740

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
Its easy for some who have a comfortable life financially and great medical coverage to turn up their nose at the thought of their taxes going to pay for the unwashed masses that are beneath their station in life, but with a few bad turns of life guess who is now also among the masses.
I'd be very careful about dumping government social programs that are paid for through taxes as no matter how comfortable some may think they are now life can slap you back to the bottom real fast, and i'll guarantee you'll look at all those social programs with a whole new attitude.
And here is the heart of the debate. Everyone has an opinion based on their own real life experience. Those who are well off and have great medical coverage are so afraid that their hard-earned wealth is going to be diverted to the undeserving masses. Step back a little, everyone. The hard earned wealth is dependent, in a capitalist/Democratic society,* on the existence of a middle class who are the ones who are suffering perhaps the most. The lower classes (proper term: lower-income people) have social safety net programs. The middle-income people do not. If someone from a wealthier status falls from grace due to a high-paying job loss or other catastrophe, he could well fall straight down past the "middle class" level into the level of the "lower-class" mass. There are more than a few to whom this has happened.

There will always have to be social programs in place to help people, paid for by wealthier folks' taxes, otherwise that comfortable American way of life at the top is not going to be sustainable (who will do all the support jobs to keep our fabulous life going? where will the small business go?).

* Unless, of course, it is seen as ideal to be a two-class society, similar to current and earlier eras in other countries, and then we cease to have a democracy b/c when it's only rich and poor, guess who gets to vote.
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Old 09-24-2010, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Stuck in NE GA right now
4,552 posts, read 6,176,094 times
Reputation: 6363
I have no health insurance at this time, I'd like to get some, but my health insurance was tied to my job that I lost 2+ years ago, I will be 60 in a few weeks and couldn't afford the COBRA. Even when I had a job and insurance, my monthly premiums were very high, my co-pays again very high along with skyrocketing perscription costs. So in the end I only saw the doc when I had to, doled out my Rx's to every other day sometimes.

I've now gone through my meager savings, I had no credit card debt and a very modest mortgage. I'm still not elegible for Medicad (no children).

Health insurance is tied to our jobs in this country, if we are unemployed most of us can't afford the COBRA and like me most have pre-existing so even IF we wanted a different healthcare option there isn't one.

From reading through this thread I see 2 types posting, one is those who make great money and are healthy and can afford their premiums and have never "tested" their health insurance and if they have, they've had enough bucks to pay off whatever happened. Unlike group 2, working class folks who struggle to pay their bills and skyrocketing medical premiums and many of these folks have now lost their jobs and their health care.

I fall into group 2 along with millions of people in this country we work very hard trying to find work, we are loosing everything because of this economy and healthcare is one of the big ones.

I have always been for universal health care, I consider health insurance companies inheriantly evil. I worked in the healthcare field for 20 years and watched them do everything to avoid paying legitimate claims, deny coverage and other offensive events.
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Old 09-24-2010, 11:49 AM
 
5,073 posts, read 3,520,899 times
Reputation: 2129
Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
I would just add at this point, that a person who is 62 cannot get medical insurance because they will most likely have some kind of pre existing condition. The only way my DH and I can get it is through an employer plan in which they must accept you.
We are uninsured right now for this reason.
I'll add my wife and I have no insurance. We are in our early 50s. She is ill and lost her job because of the illness, I lost my job because the company went chapter 7 and because of the chapter 7 this wonderful nation does not have COBRA coverage for those companies that go 7 or companies who have less than 22 employees, so beware everyone. My new employer's insurance coverage is $1600 per-month but will not cover my wife because of the lapse in coverage. I have no insurance because I've paid out of pocket for my wife's treatments this past 1.5 years leaving very little left over. The new pre-existing condition coverage is $14000 per year for my wife but again out of range because the State I live in does not provide this coverage the Fed does, jacking the rate too high for us. The State next door is half the cost because the State runs the program not the Fed. My wife has been battling Social Security for her SSDI coverage and has been a nightmare. What a wonderful life here in the States.
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Old 09-24-2010, 01:54 PM
 
19,976 posts, read 16,085,506 times
Reputation: 14039
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
I think Jambo answered this, in his post (above).

We are not talking about taxing rich people. Everyone would pay a percentage of their pay (say 10%)--most likely, the more well to do folks' kick-ins (their 10% of their salary) would bring up the pool high enough so that everyone can be covered. If this is socialism, well so be it. At any rate, the "rich" are going to pay one way or another (ie, social programs for the masses who are failing financially), so why not be preventative and start with health insurance for everyone? Elitist protectionism will backfire.
Up here in Canada that 10% is also paid by the corporate world as well, not just individuals. Similar healthcare systems seem to work in most countries around the world and i'm not hearing any countries talking about repealing their health care systems.
Its nice to wake up every morning with the knowledge that you wont be wiped out financially today due to a major medical malfunction.
I can certainly understand Robyn55's point of view and reluctance to be comfortable with a social program as large as healthcare for all, but in a civilized country you have to take care of all your people whether it be the fortunate or the unfortunate. Here in Canada i just look at it as the price i pay to live in a great country and count my blessings that i have been financially favored in life..
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Old 09-24-2010, 02:21 PM
 
4,498 posts, read 3,615,747 times
Reputation: 12252
Quote:
It's all well and good to talk about taxing "rich" people - but there are a lot more people on Medicare than "rich" people. Like Margaret Thatcher is supposed to have said - "the problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money to spend." And if your only idea in terms of paying high health care costs for an aging population is to tax the "rich" - you're going to run out of money very fast. Robyn
I support universal health care. That being said, I think most people in the USA are not facing a number of realities. They are:

1. No matter what payment mechanism is used (public or private) health care costs are out of control.

2. We simply cannot sustain a healthcare system that increases costs at the rate of 10%+ per year ad infinitum.

3. At some point we are simply going to have to say "enough is enough" and not allow insurance to pay for some types of medical treatment. I would include in this list heroic measures to save people who are terminally ill, cancer drugs which statistically show they prolong life by only a few weeks, and organ transplants for the elderly.

4. Getting this system under control is not an option. Its a necessity. We have businesses literally going under because they can't afford the cost of health insurance for employees. Ford builds alot of cars in Canada because employee health care costs are much cheaper there than under the American medical system. Our current healthcare system is destroying our competitiveness as a nation.

5. The elderly are no more entitled than any other group in this country to get free medical care and Medicare is no more deserving of protection than any other federal program.

6. Finally, we can't just expect the free market to magically solve these problems. The free market system doesn't work well in the field of healthcare. Its a major reason every modern country in this world, but the US has adopted some form of universal healthcare.
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Old 09-24-2010, 02:39 PM
 
42,307 posts, read 46,085,939 times
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I do not agree with the civlized world comment as if to indciate that we are not civlized because we choose different approach. I would guess that the communist in Russia felt the same way tho.
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Old 09-24-2010, 02:58 PM
 
144 posts, read 189,675 times
Reputation: 153
Quote:
Originally Posted by texdav View Post
I do not agree with the civlized world comment as if to indciate that we are not civlized because we choose different approach. I would guess that the communist in Russia felt the same way tho.
I agree, let not name calling such "Communist" or "Socialist". Let talk about real solution to this real problem. How about having universal healthcare for all US citizens and legal residents.

We're the only developed country without universal healthcare and we are the only one who have to pay the most with 50 millions without coverage and rank lower than other developed countries in term of heathcare outcomes. We are also the only one who have serious healthcare problems. I hear no other countries talking about it.
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Old 09-24-2010, 03:51 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW / CO / SA TX / Thailand
11,162 posts, read 18,539,692 times
Reputation: 8023
Quote:
Originally Posted by stockproipi View Post
,,, Let talk about real solution to this real problem. ...
We're the only developed country without universal healthcare and we are the only one who have to pay the most with 50 millions without coverage and rank lower than other developed countries in term of heathcare outcomes. ... I hear no other countries talking about it.
Nor do I see USa willing to seek a proven solution from emulating one of the many countries who have done this successfully. I will bet there are many of our allies / enemies who could come in and rebuild our Healthcare from the ground up. Heaven knows we (USA politicians) can't put a band-aid on it, or even even perform minor surgery. OMG, not surgery by a USA politician!

It is one of many 'embarrassments' of living in the USA and doing international business. Citizens of other countries are amazed at the lack of PEOPLE POWER (and sense) within our country. During the financial crisis we were sitting on our hands watching the BoZo's on the tube, while other countries were in the streets demanding action. (Not that we need a 'revolution' or something .)
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Old 09-24-2010, 04:01 PM
 
19,976 posts, read 16,085,506 times
Reputation: 14039
Quote:
Originally Posted by texdav View Post
I do not agree with the civlized world comment as if to indciate that we are not civlized because we choose different approach. I would guess that the communist in Russia felt the same way tho.
So whats your solution to the 40+ Million Americans that either cant afford or dont qualify for health care?its called taking care of your own and most countries around the world seem to think its an attitude worthy of its citizens.
As for revolution? its coming.
When you create a society whereby a large enough percentage of your population has nothing you also create a large percentage of your society who also have nothing to lose.
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Old 09-24-2010, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
10,833 posts, read 8,053,617 times
Reputation: 3866
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
I think Jambo answered this, in his post (above).

We are not talking about taxing rich people. Everyone would pay a percentage of their pay (say 10%)--most likely, the more well to do folks' kick-ins (their 10% of their salary) would bring up the pool high enough so that everyone can be covered. If this is socialism, well so be it. At any rate, the "rich" are going to pay one way or another (ie, social programs for the masses who are failing financially), so why not be preventative and start with health insurance for everyone? Elitist protectionism will backfire.
Well I rule Jambo out of this discussion because of this message he wrote recently:

Born in England and moved to Florida early in life,spent next 20 years in Florida and ultimately became American citizen,spent the last 32 years in Canada and became Canadian citizen, do i now have triple citizenship?
England is easy as if you are born there you are a citizen for life.
Now after living in Canada for the last 32 years 27 of which as a Canadian citizen i was wondering how relevant my past American citizenship is.
Can i move back to the USA and retrieve my Social Security number and just start working?
Do i have to re immigrate?
Can i still vote?
Am i entitled to SS benefits when i retire?
Can i get an American passport?
And no i cant remember any of the paperwork i went through to become an American then Canadian citizen.

Seems like he touts things in Canada when it suits him for purposes of politics - but is not above seeing how he can game the system in the US if it works to his advantage.

And I'm kind of out of this discussion as well. I am reasonably well off (not hyper-rich). But I can manage retirement investment income in a way that working people cannot (nature of income - timing - etc.). Only thing I can't manage is when parents from whom money is inherited die (nor can I manage the deaths of me and my husband - although neither of us will care when we're both dead ).

So I honestly think about coming up with a system that will actually work. Not only for people who need/want medical care. But for providers as well (since my husband and I have a lot of health care providers in our family - both in our generation and the next younger generation). There simply aren't enough rich people to pay full freight for people who can't afford their health care - and we can't get substantial savings simply by squeezing health care providers.

And for those of you who think providers are paid too much - well I don't think so. Think my brother the doctor made perhaps $200k before he left clinical practice - and his wife - who's a high class PA - still makes about $100k. And my brother was in training until he was in his 30's. That is not a lot of money if you live in a fairly high cost high tax state and are trying to send *your* kids through medical school - even a state school that costs maybe $30k a year (private medical school will set you back a lot more).

Sometimes I think a lot of people sound like packs from the living dead zombies. Tax the rich. Screw the doctors. Tax the rich. Screw the doctors. Play scary music. Hmmmmmmmmmm (deep Frankenstein growl). Got news for you. Neither of these things will lead the way to a better health care system. A friend of mine who's a doctor said something interesting a while back. He said used to be that doctors here had to learn a bit of the languages patients speak. Now the patients here have to learn how to understand bad English with heavy foreign accents (because foreign trained doctors come here and work for less).

There are no easy answers IMO. But these 2 particular answers are non-starters IMO. Perhaps we will have to think more in terms of delivering health care by the people who can deliver it on the most cost-effective basis. Like using PAs instead of doctors - especially PAs in specialties - when PAs can do the job. Or just rationing or not covering certain stuff. Someone weighs 300+ pounds at age 40 - forget it. No big deal medical treatment for you. You die. I know some of you are from the PNW - and the old original "Oregon plan" made a lot of sense to me. Take the money you have to spend - rank the available medical procedure in terms of cost/benefit analysis - and cut off payments for procedures when you run out of money (whether it's at medical procedure 40 or 80). Anyway - there are a lot of things I'd do before "soak the rich" and "screw the doctors". Robyn

P.S. In the last message I wrote - I think I messed up the cost of Medicare parts A and B. A should be B and vice versa.
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