Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A Question to Americans

The other day a few friends and I sat around. I had said something about inflated cost of health care. Semantics aside about the word "inflated" (in general terms inflate refers to increasing something whereas in economic terms it's something quite specific)...

If you're concerned about your health in... India or Malaysia (probably most places in Asia) you can go to a doctor and you can even ask for a particular test to be performed if you have the money to back it up.

And the cost? It's soooo much lower than New Zealand or America.

While we were talking semantics about the word "inflated" an American friend of ours showed us the attached video. The video's great BUT it talks about complexity and then presents a very simple argument: they charge what they think they can.

And then I read this on one of Chuck Lorre's vanity cards:


Well... so am I. What is so wrong with universal health care? Admittedly my sources of information aren't the best. I keep watching The Daily Show and The Colbert Report which often has me wondering if the crack smoking mayor of Toronto is the only politician on crack. Those words - which can be summed up with WTF - never seem to be that far from my mind while watching the clips shown on these shows.

So it's fire and brimstone. Someone pointed out that it was the tax increase that people were worried about. And then there's been this very strange "We're in debt!" panic that seems to be going on (which seems to ignore the fact that America has had a National debt for a VERY long time)... I found an explanation of what's going on there here.
Grabbed from wikipedia

I don't see the tax increase as a biggie. Why? As the video above points out, American's already spend more in health care through taxes than a lot of other countries. To put this into perspective, according to this graph, the U.S. already spends MORE on health care than Defense (and given the ridiculous amounts spent on defense, this is surprising). And what do they get from it?

As little as humanly possible. Such is the way of capitalism. Which makes Obama's position all the more important.

If insurance companies have to adhere to certain standards and offer those at a reasonable price then that whole douchy capitalist "give as little value for as much  money as possible" is kept in check.

That's my perspective... I'm wondering though... is there a reasonable argument the other way? How could universal health care lead to fire and brimstone? Why is seeing it work elsewhere (just about everywhere else) not reassurance that it doesn't have to be fire and brimstone?

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