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In another thread I said:

The person you were responding to was me, btw.

Hillarycare certainly would have been bad. It still will if the Democrats keep control of Congress and capture the White House. I think I'll be splitting my vote this time.

Drastically cutting government spending is a good long-term plan. I believe it needs to be done gradually though.

The problem with our current view of cutting welfare is that we need to rethink how we allocate it. Back in my college days I bought a floor scrubber and buffer and got a contract to clean a local grocery store. One of the guys there had a severe form of degenerative arthritis. He had to be careful not to work too many hours or he would lose Medicare-and his medicine was nearly $1000 a month. Because he couldn't work full-time, he also needed Food Stamps and housing assistance, draining the economy even more. Whenever welfare was cut, they'd lower the amount you could make and still draw benefits, so he'd have to work even less. Meanwhile, fatass meth-heads sit on there butts all day and do better than he did. It seems that you get punished for trying to get off welfare. If we had a system that would allow people to work full time until they were eligible for health insurance people like my friend could get off of it.

Bryan responded with:

Even the GOP might roll on that one if they think voting against it will hurt their chances of re-election.

The rhetoric from the left and from the mainstream media has people believing that single-payer healthcare is an overwhelmingly good thing.

Yes, it will make health-care available for all, but the quality of care will diminish.  And when the entitlement crunch happens (social security and all the rest), health care will inevitably be affected.  People will not have basic care because the government won't be able to justify it.  They'll probably take it away from certain classes of people, first, like smokers (already going on in the UK).

An economic adviser to Barack Obama on the drawbacks of the single-payer system:

http://www.slate.com/id/2169454/

(for those who don't realize the drawbacks already)

So I decided to make a new thread.

Healthcare is a subject in the news lately. Between the release of Sicko and the upcoming election, it is likely to be there for some time to come. There are both pros and cons to consider. Aside from those above, I'd like to present another.

One thing often overlooked is that the poor already often receive care which is never paid for by going to the emergency room for services and then simply never paying for the care received. What effect do you think this has on the system?

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One more thing to add-what impact, if any, do you think Michael Moore's movie Sicko will have on the debate? He's a very polarizing figure-people who don't question the left accept everything he says, while people who don't question the right reject everything he says. I think it will move us a bit away from socialized healthcare. People on the left already want it, but this may make healthcare reform a "far-left issue," which will bolster the right's flagging opposition.

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One thing often overlooked is that the poor already often receive care which is never paid for by going to the emergency room for services and then simply never paying for the care received. What effect do you think this has on the system?

It's pretty much the same effect as shoplifting. The thief gets the five-finger discount, and everybody else pays a little bit more to cover the loss.

Emergency room care is mandated by law.

Here's a rundown on the emergency-room care law, and a universal health plan advanced by the AMA (it's a Powerpoint file, so if you don't have PPT or a PPT viewer don't get your hopes up).

**URL removed**

KOTW Note: The URL link was removed because KOTW could not confirm its content.

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I would like to know who will pay for this health care for all. I'm not against it but that is a large nut to crack. Also, I understand that in Europe the health system is not all it's cracked up to be. People waiting months for treatments and operations. I think we should really call the insurance companies to task for our inflated problem. I'm not sure that socialized medicine is the way to go. But I'm open for ideas on the issue.

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I would like to know who will pay for this health care for all. I'm not against it but that is a large nut to crack. Also, I understand that in Europe the health system is not all it's cracked up to be. People waiting months for treatments and operations. I think we should really call the insurance companies to task for our inflated problem. I'm not sure that socialized medicine is the way to go. But I'm open for ideas on the issue.

Third-party payment offers a strong incentive for abuse of the system--that's not the fault of the insurance companies per se. Those companies simply have to deal with the reality that people will use their insurance irresponsibly (increasing the risk for all).

The best national plans incorporate market incentives to make the system more efficient (see the recently revamped model in Sweden).

Oops--according to this essay Sweden's reforms weren't deep enough.

http://www.nationalcenter.org/NPA555_Sweden_Health_Care.html

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Guest Keith-Marshall,Mo.
I would like to know who will pay for this health care for all. I'm not against it but that is a large nut to crack. Also, I understand that in Europe the health system is not all it's cracked up to be. People waiting months for treatments and operations. I think we should really call the insurance companies to task for our inflated problem. I'm not sure that socialized medicine is the way to go. But I'm open for ideas on the issue.

That's a good question. Do you think 12 Billion dollars a month would cover it?

If not, it sure would go along way, besides that's what we are spending in Iraq right now. Absurd medical costs are the number one reasons for bankruptcy in America.

It sure would be nice to know that when you paid your tax bill you knew that you were fully covered for any illness.

HMO's deny claims to make money and then give bonuses to those who deny the claims. They care about money. They most assuredly don't care about your health.

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I would like to know who will pay for this health care for all. I'm not against it but that is a large nut to crack. Also, I understand that in Europe the health system is not all it's cracked up to be. People waiting months for treatments and operations. I think we should really call the insurance companies to task for our inflated problem. I'm not sure that socialized medicine is the way to go. But I'm open for ideas on the issue.

I don't support national healthcare, but right now our government spends more per capita on healthcare than Canada-which has it. I do believe we need to change the way we distribute aid to the poor so that people can afford to get back on their feet.

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Guest 2smart4u
I would like to know who will pay for this health care for all. I'm not against it but that is a large nut to crack. Also, I understand that in Europe the health system is not all it's cracked up to be. People waiting months for treatments and operations. I think we should really call the insurance companies to task for our inflated problem. I'm not sure that socialized medicine is the way to go. But I'm open for ideas on the issue.

Well, I'm sure Paul will be responding with all the answers you want on the subject in addition to all the philosophical implications of the question. He'll probably also throw in his take on what your God would want to happen, as well as the financial impact on our society in terms of quality health care.

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I don't support national healthcare, but right now our government spends more per capita on healthcare than Canada-which has it. I do believe we need to change the way we distribute aid to the poor so that people can afford to get back on their feet.

On your 2nd point, a former boss proposed something that I thought was pretty interesting. He wasn't advocating it, but just threw it out as food for thought.

Picture a progressive income tax based on a mathematical formula such that it changes smoothly rather than in discrete steps. Further, imagine that this curve crosses zero and becomes progressively more negative below a certain income level. Those with incomes in the negative tax bracket would receive money from the IRS rather than paying in. The curve would be close to linear at the low end, but taper off towards the high end so that it can never equal or exceed someones entire income. This tax curve would be more complex than a flat tax, but still much simpler than the current complex rules.

Here are some possible advantages to this:

1) It removes the disincentive that often happens with the current system, in which a person can be worse off by getting a job because of loss of benefits. In this system, loss of benefits (or increase in liability) would always be smaller than any gain in income. Conversely, to quit working and live on the public dole would always result in a loss of income.

2) It would be managed by a single entity, the IRS, and would not even be an additional job for them, but just an alteration of the tax rules. This removes the need for additional governmental entities, so should cost less to manage than current welfare programs.

3) Welfare cheating would become tax fraud. The IRS has existing methods to detect this, and formidable teeth to enforce it.

This is, of course, overly simplistic. Any realistic system would necessarily be much more complex.

Advantage #1, for example, has a fairly obvious flaw. That being that potential loss of welfare benefits isn't the only factor that gets people stuck on welfare. For example, a single parent can easily end up with little or even negative benefit from getting a job because of daycare expenses. And this can be a loss for both parent and child in non-monetary ways as well. This is also true for families living on a single, inadequate or barely adequate income. The one parent doesn't make enough to ensure a decent standard of living, and little or nothing would be gained by the other parent going to work. Some adjustment would be needed for such things if advantage #1 is to have any real impact.

Also, it would still be good to make some distinction between those who can't support themselves and those who merely choose not to. The negative tax should provide a painful enough existence to discourage able-bodied people from slacking, just enough that they have a starting point for pulling themselves up. But for those who have genuine mental or physical disabilities and simply can't support themselves, it should be basic, but not punishing.

It probably has more issues than I've thought of, but it is an interesting idea.

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That's a good question. Do you think 12 Billion dollars a month would cover it?

Not remotely. Medicare and Medicaid spending alone nearly equal the entire defense budget (about $700 billion annually).

John Edwards' plan isn't even a single-payer plan (he would require individuals to purchase health insurance--kind of like requiring auto insurance), and its costs were estimated at over $100 billion per year (.pdf file--you're warned).

http://www.factcheck.org/UploadedFiles/A_P...rm_Proposal.pdf

If not, it sure would go along way, besides that's what we are spending in Iraq right now.

Well, not surprisingly you've skipped out on cost/benefit analysis. Opportunity cost is fundamental to economics. Either Iran gaining a firmer grip on ME oil reserves or a bump in terrorism (a reasonable prediction if terrorists acquire safe haven in Iraq along with the boost to morale they get from getting the Americans to turn tail) could have far-reaching consequences for US health care.

Analysis such as you performed is worthless. It's a pity that so many Americans are so ignorant about economics that they give arguments like that the time of day.

Absurd medical costs are the number one reasons for bankruptcy in America.

Usually if somebody has "absurd" medical costs they're getting something along the lines of a life they wouldn't otherwise have.

That should be worth quite a lot.

It sure would be nice to know that when you paid your tax bill you knew that you were fully covered for any illness.

It would sure be economic suicide for a government to make that promise, but at the individual level I'm sure it sounds like a great deal.

Most of it comes from the attraction of having somebody else pay for your health care, of course. Too bad Santa doesn't stuff health care vouchers in our stockings.

HMO's deny claims to make money and then give bonuses to those who deny the claims. They care about money. They most assuredly don't care about your health.

HMOs care about money and your health. If they don't provide a valuable service, then they go out of business. That's bad for business, needless to say. If they don't turn a profit, then they are vulnerable to going out of business with one bad year of claims.

Insurance companies are in the tough position of balancing third-party payment with fiscal responsibility. A big part of the problem is actually produced by the government, since governments tend to mandate minimum schedules of coverage, which causes insurance costs to increase (mandating the spread of additional risk).

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Guest Keith-Marshall,Mo
Not remotely.  Medicare and Medicaid spending alone nearly equal the entire defense budget (about $700 billion annually).

John Edwards' plan isn't even a single-payer plan (he would require individuals to purchase health insurance--kind of like requiring auto insurance), and its costs were estimated at over $100 billion per year (.pdf file--you're warned).

http://www.factcheck.org/UploadedFiles/A_P...rm_Proposal.pdf

Well, not surprisingly you've skipped out on cost/benefit analysis.  Opportunity cost is fundamental to economics.  Either Iran gaining a firmer grip on ME oil reserves or a bump in terrorism (a reasonable prediction if terrorists acquire safe haven in Iraq along with the boost to morale they get from getting the Americans to turn tail) could have far-reaching consequences for US health care.

Analysis such as you performed is worthless.  It's a pity that so many Americans are so ignorant about economics that they give arguments like that the time of day.

Usually if somebody has "absurd" medical costs they're getting something along the lines of a life they wouldn't otherwise have.

That should be worth quite a lot.

It would sure be economic suicide for a government to make that promise, but at the individual level I'm sure it sounds like a great deal.

Most of it comes from the attraction of having somebody else pay for your health care, of course.  Too bad Santa doesn't stuff health care vouchers in our stockings.

HMOs care about money and your health.  If they don't provide a valuable service, then they go out of business.  That's bad for business, needless to say.  If they don't turn a profit, then they are vulnerable to going out of business with one bad year of claims.

Insurance companies are in the tough position of balancing third-party payment with fiscal responsibility.  A big part of the problem is actually produced by the government, since governments tend to mandate minimum schedules of coverage, which causes insurance costs to increase (mandating the spread of additional risk).

Let me know how you feel if your ever uninsured and need simple gall bladder surgery. Next thing you know you $40 grand in the hole. Your wages are garnished. Your credit is ruined and bill collectors call 24/7. You pay what you can but it's never enough. Like most folks maybe you live paycheck to paycheck. After your wages are garnished you can't make the mortgage payment. If your lucky maybe you can sell your house . If not you lose it. But the bill collectors never stop. You find yourself going deeper and deeper until you hit bottom. The fact is the surgery could be done for well under $10 grand if they wanted to but they don't. On a personal note, why are you such a dick?

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Guest 2smart4u
On your 2nd point, a former boss proposed something that I thought was pretty interesting. He wasn't advocating it, but just threw it out as food for thought.

Picture a progressive income tax based on a mathematical formula such that it changes smoothly rather than in discrete steps. Further, imagine that this curve crosses zero and becomes progressively more negative below a certain income level. Those with incomes in the negative tax bracket would receive money from the IRS rather than paying in. The curve would be close to linear at the low end, but taper off towards the high end so that it can never equal or exceed someones entire income. This tax curve would be more complex than a flat tax, but still much simpler than the current complex rules.

Here are some possible advantages to this:

1) It removes the disincentive that often happens with the current system, in which a person can be worse off by getting a job because of loss of benefits. In this system, loss of benefits (or increase in liability) would always be smaller than any gain in income. Conversely, to quit working and live on the public dole would always result in a loss of income.

2) It would be managed by a single entity, the IRS, and would not even be an additional job for them, but just an alteration of the tax rules. This removes the need for additional governmental entities, so should cost less to manage than current welfare programs.

3) Welfare cheating would become tax fraud. The IRS has existing methods to detect this, and formidable teeth to enforce it.

This is, of course, overly simplistic. Any realistic system would necessarily be much more complex.

Advantage #1, for example, has a fairly obvious flaw. That being that potential loss of welfare benefits isn't the only factor that gets people stuck on welfare. For example, a single parent can easily end up with little or even negative benefit from getting a job because of daycare expenses. And this can be a loss for both parent and child in non-monetary ways as well. This is also true for families living on a single, inadequate or barely adequate income. The one parent doesn't make enough to ensure a decent standard of living, and little or nothing would be gained by the other parent going to work. Some adjustment would be needed for such things if advantage #1 is to have any real impact.

Also, it would still be good to make some distinction between those who can't support themselves and those who merely choose not to. The negative tax should provide a painful enough existence to discourage able-bodied people from slacking, just enough that they have a starting point for pulling themselves up. But for those who have genuine mental or physical disabilities and simply can't support themselves, it should be basic, but not punishing.

It probably has more issues than I've thought of, but it is an interesting idea.

I think you need to lay off the Kool-Aid.

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Let me know how you feel if your ever uninsured and need simple gall bladder surgery. Next thing you know you $40 grand in the hole. Your wages are garnished. Your credit is ruined and bill collectors call 24/7. You pay what you can but it's never enough.

Why isn't it ever enough?

I have an uninsured acquaintance who had a compound fracture. His care was partially paid for by a state insurance program, and he's expected to pay the rest. He pays under $100 per month--and that seems to be enough (nobody comes after him as long as he makes the payment to which he agreed).

Where did you get your cost estimate from, anyway?

In USA the gall bladder surgery cost comes in the range of $500 to $1200 depending on the complexity of the operation, the clinic in which the operation is done and the doctor who does it.

http://www.surgery-guide.com/gall-bladder-surgery-cost.html

Like most folks maybe you live paycheck to paycheck. After your wages are garnished you can't make the mortgage payment. If your lucky maybe you can sell your house . If not you lose it. But the bill collectors never stop. You find yourself going deeper and deeper until you hit bottom. The fact is the surgery could be done for well under $10 grand if they wanted to but they don't.

Why didn't I shop around for a better deal? Or did I just have complications with the "simple" surgery?

On a personal note, why are you such a dick?

Difficult to say, but the psychological phenomenon of projection seems like a good possibility.

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On your 2nd point, a former boss proposed something that I thought was pretty interesting. He wasn't advocating it, but just threw it out as food for thought.

Picture a progressive income tax based on a mathematical formula such that it changes smoothly rather than in discrete steps. Further, imagine that this curve crosses zero and becomes progressively more negative below a certain income level. Those with incomes in the negative tax bracket would receive money from the IRS rather than paying in. The curve would be close to linear at the low end, but taper off towards the high end so that it can never equal or exceed someones entire income. This tax curve would be more complex than a flat tax, but still much simpler than the current complex rules.

Here are some possible advantages to this:

1) It removes the disincentive that often happens with the current system, in which a person can be worse off by getting a job because of loss of benefits. In this system, loss of benefits (or increase in liability) would always be smaller than any gain in income. Conversely, to quit working and live on the public dole would always result in a loss of income.

2) It would be managed by a single entity, the IRS, and would not even be an additional job for them, but just an alteration of the tax rules. This removes the need for additional governmental entities, so should cost less to manage than current welfare programs.

3) Welfare cheating would become tax fraud. The IRS has existing methods to detect this, and formidable teeth to enforce it.

This is, of course, overly simplistic. Any realistic system would necessarily be much more complex.

Advantage #1, for example, has a fairly obvious flaw. That being that potential loss of welfare benefits isn't the only factor that gets people stuck on welfare. For example, a single parent can easily end up with little or even negative benefit from getting a job because of daycare expenses. And this can be a loss for both parent and child in non-monetary ways as well. This is also true for families living on a single, inadequate or barely adequate income. The one parent doesn't make enough to ensure a decent standard of living, and little or nothing would be gained by the other parent going to work. Some adjustment would be needed for such things if advantage #1 is to have any real impact.

Also, it would still be good to make some distinction between those who can't support themselves and those who merely choose not to. The negative tax should provide a painful enough existence to discourage able-bodied people from slacking, just enough that they have a starting point for pulling themselves up. But for those who have genuine mental or physical disabilities and simply can't support themselves, it should be basic, but not punishing.

It probably has more issues than I've thought of, but it is an interesting idea.

The IRS already has something called the Earned Income Credit. Basically, people who don't make very much get not only whatever they paid in back, but an additional sum on top of that.

The hard part of welfare reform is the kids of people who choose not to work. We can't starve them, and I'm not really anxious to start taking them away.

We have a real problem with irresponsibility in this country. The poor often get great tax returns, then blow it all in a week. Every month when the government refills the food stamp cards, you see people loading up shopping carts with crap, but by the end of the month they're eating ramen noodles. Yet we can't just starve them. Argh!

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Guest Melanie
One more thing to add-what impact, if any, do you think Michael Moore's movie Sicko will have on the debate? He's a very polarizing figure-people who don't question the left accept everything he says, while people who don't question the right reject everything he says. I think it will move us a bit away from socialized healthcare. People on the left already want it, but this may make healthcare reform a "far-left issue,"  which will bolster the right's flagging opposition.

The experience of the rest of the world with universal health care is excellent. Managed care hasn't worked for anyone except the insurance companies. Moore has gained credibility with the disaster in Iraq gong mainly as he said it would in Farenheit 911. Sicko is being well received and reviewed. It might be time for the USA to turn to universal care. I think it's overdue and I don't see this as a far-left issue with the rest of the world already have gone there.

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Guest 2smart4u
The experience of the rest of the world with universal health care is excellent. Managed care hasn't worked for anyone except the insurance companies. Moore has gained credibility with the disaster in Iraq gong mainly as he said it would in Farenheit 911. Sicko is being well received and reviewed. It might be time for the USA to turn to universal care. I think it's overdue and I don't see this as a far-left issue with the rest of the world already have gone there.

What a stupid, nonsensical post. Moore is a radical left nut case that hates the U.S. His movie "Sicko" has bombed and he's finished as a "movie producer".

Ask any Canadian what they think about universal health care and they'll tell you they hate it. Elective surgeries take months to schedule and emergency surgeries are often squeezed into a busy surgery schedule. Given a choice, they would all come to the U.S. for their medical care and many do just that.

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Guest Keith-Marshall,Mo
Why isn't it ever enough?

I have an uninsured acquaintance who had a compound fracture.  His care was partially paid for by a state insurance program, and he's expected to pay the rest.  He pays under $100 per month--and that seems to be enough (nobody comes after him as long as he makes the payment to which he agreed).

Where did you get your cost estimate from, anyway?

In USA the gall bladder surgery cost comes in the range of $500 to $1200 depending on the complexity of the operation, the clinic in which the operation is done and the doctor who does it.

http://www.surgery-guide.com/gall-bladder-surgery-cost.html

Why didn't I shop around for a better deal? Or did I just have complications with the "simple" surgery?

Difficult to say, but the psychological phenomenon of projection seems like a good possibility.

This was a surgery of a friends mother. There was no time to "shop" around. As you said it can make a difference what hospital, doctor , etc. I didn't see the bill but I trust my friend that he was being truthful, from anestheisa to just using a bed after surgery to come out of the anesthesia, the charges were abosutely outrageous. BTW this was outpatient surgery. She went home the same day.

Maybe she can get some state or federal help with the cost, but how long will it take and how many hoops should she have to jump through? We can't pay doctors with a pig or a couple of chickens anymore.

We have a very good family friend who is a nurse and even she has absolutely crappy health insurance.

I just feel that is very sad that in the US if we always have money for war, then why can't we figure out a way for everyone to get quality healthcare regardless of thier financial situation? Maybe the first thing that should be done is to figure out why the cost are so astrinomical.

As far as your theory of "psychological phenomenon of projection" goes I'd have to say no. Turns out you're just a dick. Not because of what you say, but because of the way you say it.

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This was a surgery of a friends mother. There was no time to "shop" around.

There was no time to shop around for outpatient surgery?

Are you serious?

As you said it can make a difference what hospital, doctor , etc. I didn't see the bill but I trust my friend that he was being truthful, from anestheisa to just using a bed after surgery to come out of the anesthesia, the charges were abosutely outrageous.

They'll charge you from everything from a paper cup to a Q-tip.

Insurance usually pays those outrageous charges. Bring your own paper cups if you don't have insurance.

BTW this was outpatient surgery. She went home the same day.

I don't understand how she could have outpatient surgery but lack the time to shop around.

Maybe she can get some state or federal help with the cost, but how long will it take and how many hoops should she have to jump through?

It's a $40,000 bill, you said. It should take her no more than a few hours to take care of $40,000.

Seriously, was it worth $40,000 to have the gall bladder operation, or wasn't it?

We can't pay doctors with a pig or a couple of chickens anymore.

We have a very good family friend who is a nurse and even she has absolutely crappy health insurance.

Through her job, no doubt? Why doesn't she take her contribution toward her health insurance plan and find one she likes better?

I just feel that is very sad that in the US if we always have money for war, then why can't we figure out a way for everyone to get quality healthcare regardless of thier financial situation?

Because it's economic suicide, that's why. Apparently you weren't listening.

Put the government in charge of healthcare, and either the government rations care or the people will bankrupt the government by taking full advantage of the artificially low price.

Go to your local library and get out a book on economics. Look up third-party payment.

Maybe the first thing that should be done is to figure out why the cost are so astr[o]nomical.

It's because of the government regulation we've got, as much as anything.

The rest of it is because the United States has great health care available.

As far as your theory of "psychological phenomenon of projection" goes I'd have to say no.

Why? Because of the psychological phenomenon of denial?

Turns out you're just a dick. Not because of what you say, but because of the way you say it.

I suppose I could call people abusive names, like you do. Would that help?

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Moore is a radical left nut case that hates the U.S.  His movie "Sicko" has bombed

That's not what the critics are saying. Over 90% of the 150 (as of this writing) reviews aggregated on Rotten Tomatoes have been on the positive side: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/sicko/

But you never let something like reality get in the way, huh? ^_^

and he's finished as a "movie producer".

  Ask any Canadian what they think about universal health care and they'll tell you they hate it.

Any Canadian? Well, let's see what 10 seconds of Googling can find:

"I've lived in France and Canada, and I definitely prefer socialized medicine." --http://www.revolutionhealth.com/forums/topics/view/93735?page=2

Elective surgeries take months to schedule and emergency surgeries are often squeezed into a busy surgery schedule.

Even assuming this, any is better than none, and if you can't afford the surgery you need at ALL, you are definitely more screwed on average than someone who has to wait.

Given a choice, they would all come to the U.S. for their medical care

Outright lie.

and many do just that.

"Many" die by choking on ballpoint pens. You don't suppose you could cite anything that stated that any significant number of Canadians were moving to the USA for the explicit purpose of health care, do you?

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There was no time to shop around for outpatient surgery?

Are you serious?

They'll charge you from everything from a paper cup to a Q-tip.

Insurance usually pays those outrageous charges.  Bring your own paper cups if you don't have insurance.

I don't understand how she could have outpatient surgery but lack the time to shop around.

It's a $40,000 bill, you said.  It should take her no more than a few hours to take care of $40,000.

Seriously, was it worth $40,000 to have the gall bladder operation, or wasn't it?

Through her job, no doubt?  Why doesn't she take her contribution toward her health insurance plan and find one she likes better?

Because it's economic suicide, that's why.  Apparently you weren't listening.

Put the government in charge of healthcare, and either the government rations care or the people will bankrupt the government by taking full advantage of the artificially low price.

Go to your local library and get out a book on economics.  Look up third-party payment.

It's because of the government regulation we've got, as much as anything.

The rest of it is because the United States has great health care available.

Why?  Because of the psychological phenomenon of denial?

I suppose I could call people abusive names, like you do.  Would that help?

She went to the doctor one afternoon because she didn't feel well, first thing the next morning she was in surgery. There really wasn't time for shopping around.

And yes it was outpatient. They did surgery @ 9 am and she was released at about 2 or 3 pm. Yes the surgery was needed but 40K for a couple of hours IS outrageous no matter what spin you put on it.

My point about our friend the nurse is that even people who work in healthcare can't afford the very health care that they provide! Sometimes people aren't in financial position to upgrade thier health insurance which of course was my point all along.

Maybe you've been lucky and and never needed major surgery within a short time frame. I hope you never do. If you have please tell us your experience with your ins. company. Did the experience leave you virtually bankrupt?

I call you a dick because that's exactly the way you act. You are smug, condescending and the worst kind of psuedo-intellectual. You write alot and say nothing. The only thing that your posts seem to suggest is that you've fallen hook line and sinker for the party line while simultaneously choking on the pablum ladled out by corporate spin doctors.

Remember Bryan, you are getting screwed too. Maybe you just choose not to feel it.

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Guest 2smart4u
That's not what the critics are saying. Over 90% of the 150 (as of this writing) reviews aggregated on Rotten Tomatoes have been on the positive side: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/sicko/

But you never let something like reality get in the way, huh? :lol:

Any Canadian? Well, let's see what 10 seconds of Googling can find:

"I've lived in France and Canada, and I definitely prefer socialized medicine." --http://www.revolutionhealth.com/forums/topics/view/93735?page=2

Even assuming this, any is better than none, and if you can't afford the surgery you need at ALL, you are definitely more screwed on average than someone who has to wait.

Outright lie.

"Many" die by choking on ballpoint pens. You don't suppose you could cite anything that stated that any significant number of Canadians were moving to the USA for the explicit purpose of health care, do you?

National health care is just another Loony Left giveaway program. It fits right in with the Loony Left philosophy of "No Personal Responsibility". Social Security benefits for illegal aliens, paid college tuition for illegal aliens, turning the U.S. into a "Nanny State" is the goal of the secular progressives. America was built on hard work by people who appreciated the opportunity to work to attain a better life for their families. The Loony Left says lets tax the people who have worked hard to attain success and give it those who choose not to work. Lets give those same people free health care and we'll have the hard workers pay for it. "Income Redistribution" is one of Hilliary and Osamabama's favorite topics. For all you slugs that are averse to working for a living, there's your salvation.

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She went to the doctor one afternoon because she didn't feel well, first thing the next morning she was in surgery. There really wasn't time for shopping around.

And yes it was outpatient. They did surgery @ 9 am  and she was released at about 2 or 3 pm. Yes the surgery was needed but 40K for a couple of hours IS outrageous no matter what spin you put on it.

So, this lady's life is worth less to her than $40,000?

My point about our friend the nurse is that even people who work in healthcare can't afford the very health care that they provide!

Not everyone who works for Mercedes drives one, either. She has health insurance, so she can afford health insurance.

Sometimes people aren't in financial position to upgrade thier health insurance which of course was my point all along.

That's kind of a meaningless point, isn't it? If everyone had the finances to upgrade their health insurance to an unlimited degree then they wouldn't need health insurance in the first place.

The whole concept of health insurance is a gamble to share the risks of paying for something that you can't easily (or simply cannot) afford on your own.

Maybe you've been lucky and and never needed major surgery within a short time frame. I hope you never do. If you have please tell us your experience with your ins. company. Did the experience leave you virtually bankrupt?

I've had outpatient surgery covered by insurance. I received a few thousand dollars in bills that were not paid for by the insurance company. I set up payment plans and paid them off in about six months.

My health, thus far, is good enough that my insurance premiums pay for the care needed by others (and new investments for the insurance company, of course).

I call you a dick because that's exactly the way you act. You are smug, condescending and the worst kind of psuedo-intellectual. You write alot and say nothing. The only thing that your posts seem to suggest is that you've fallen hook line and sinker for the party line while simultaneously choking on the pablum ladled out by corporate spin doctors.

You sound kind of smug, and you don't appear to have addressed the substance of any of my arguments.

Remember Bryan, you are getting screwed too. Maybe you just choose not to feel it.

I'm a capitalist. I don't begrudge the business owner or the worker his profit under ordinary circumstances. I know enough about the field of health to realize that many of the costs are caused by third-party payment (insurance companies and government programs) along with liability (lawyers' fault).

Are you able to comment intelligently about either one of those points? If not, you may wish to reconsider who you call a pseudo-intellectual. If you are able to intelligently address either one of those points, I'll seriously consider the possibility that I may have been smug about my knowledge of the issue.

So far as I can tell, however, I simply refer to the knowledge that I've got that seems well-founded, and I remain open to serious alternative views and/or critiques.

Being called a "dick" doesn't qualify as a serious critique, BTW.

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Guest Keith-Marshall,Mo
So, this lady's life is worth less to her than $40,000?

Not everyone who works for Mercedes drives one, either.  She has health insurance, so she can afford health insurance.

That's kind of a meaningless point, isn't it?  If everyone had the finances to upgrade their health insurance to an unlimited degree then they wouldn't need health insurance in the first place.

The whole concept of health insurance is a gamble to share the risks of paying for something that you can't easily (or simply cannot) afford on your own.

I've had outpatient surgery covered by insurance.  I received a few thousand dollars in bills that were not paid for by the insurance company.  I set up payment plans and paid them off in about six months.

My health, thus far, is good enough that my insurance premiums pay for the care needed by others (and new investments for the insurance company, of course).

You sound kind of smug, and you don't appear to have addressed the substance of any of my arguments.

I'm a capitalist.  I don't begrudge the business owner or the worker his profit under ordinary circumstances.  I know enough about the field of health to realize that many of the costs are caused by third-party payment (insurance companies and government programs) along with liability (lawyers' fault).

Are you able to comment intelligently about either one of those points?  If not, you may wish to reconsider who you call a pseudo-intellectual.  If you are able to intelligently address either one of those points, I'll seriously consider the possibility that I may have been smug about my knowledge of the issue.

So far as I can tell, however, I simply refer to the knowledge that I've got that seems well-founded, and I remain open to serious alternative views and/or critiques.

Being called a "dick" doesn't qualify as a serious critique, BTW.

First of all the lady I was talking about who had the surgery did not have health insurance. My comment on insurance was about another friend who happens to be a nurse and the health insurance that she has is seriously lacking.

Secondly is is well known that patients without health insurance are charged considerably more than those with health insurance. That's a rip off right out of the gate. Don't go off on any mile long tirade about how that's ok because insurance companies make deals with hospitals. I know the reasons and it still doesn't make it right.

You don't begrudge a profit under ordinary circumstances and that's fine, I believe my whole point was my outrage of astronomical profit for what where in fact "ordinary circumstances".

Let me wrap my head around this, as long as someone like yourself understands that these huge costs are actually caused by third party payments, insurance companies and lawyers, then simply knowing the reason makes it all ok?

I too have no problem with a fair profit for goods and services received in a capitalist society. I do have a problem with the unbridled greed that has consumed this country like a cancer. The overwhelming number of lobbyist and corporate contributions per lawmaker should be unsettling, even to you.

I glad that your surgery went ok and that you only owed an amount that you were able to payback in a timley fashion. Unfortunately thousands and thousands of people in this, the wealthiest country in the world are not so lucky. Screw'em right? People of limited means really don't deserve the same level of healthcare as those with of us who are better off, right?

Let'em eat cake so to speak.

Although I find it disturbing that you would equate the access to affordable healthcare to the luxury of owning a Mercedes, you are in fact correct. Healthcare in this country is a luxury. It is understandable in a capitalist society to deny those with inferior means an expensive luxury car so it stands to reason that we deny and end to pain and suffering of a fellow human being for the same reasons.

Where your surgery is concerned Bryan, you were lucky. Unfortunately you don't even have the balls to even admit it. Maybe you should walk a mile in someone elses shoes.

That sir, is why you are a dick. I realize that may not be a serious critique by your standards, but I feel it is more than appropriate.

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