Agree with everyone above (that wee Canadian/American lass who has been struggling with my feelings about this bill - and who has actually read the darn thingtwice). Larry, Doug has no medical insurance. Neither do I - mainly because it's so confusing, I'm self-employed, and even without any history or pre- I'm looking at a $5000 deductible in order to have a $400.00 a month premium. That's outrageous.
It's a shaky (a very shaky start). 45 million people is a critical and important number of human beings who need better options. I have never begrudged my tax money going for universal health care in Canada (and much of it is sin tax anyway) and I will not begrudge paying more tax here too (yes - I pay taxes in two countries) if it is to help my fellow American. If I have a choice between choosing to have the Government (which I vote for and who's health care I contribute to) and the damn insurance gangsters who at present have a stranglehold on health care costs, I'll take the government any day.
I foresee a better balance eventually, because 1GL is correct, there are many imbalances and quite a few confusions in the present bill - but nothing so daunting that we are still not a free country. Paying into one's own health care along with some government assistance is hardly a novel idea. Those who can afford it will top up their coverage, and at least there will hopefully be easier access for basic care without the fear that one will lose all one's worldly possessions. A situation that I call truly demonic!
People like our Pru can perhaps breath a tad easier, and people already one paycheck away from disaster may also breath easier, and I will be able to sort this insurance mess hopefully a tad easier, and my darling - well - it's high time he has an annual check up without fear.
I am gobsmacked about Iraq and Afghanistan. We provide these two countries with universal health coverage and our own people are dying in the aisle in emergency wards!!! 45 + million people without health care coverage, an economy in SHATTERS and our taxes are paying for our enemy's health care?!!! WTF!!!!?
Well now...The entire population of Iraq are not our enemies. We are ("Were"? Always will be? Never mind...) at war with the guy who "started" the war, and now we're fighting against the bad people who weren't even there in the first place, but saw an opportunity to take the place of the old bad guy that we'd gotten rid of. We are not intentionally providing for their health care. We are ostensibly providing for the health of the civilians caught in the war zone.
But I understand your outrage. If supplying universal health coverage is a part of the carrot that we're dangling before the Iraqi people, in order to make democracy more palatable to them, then it does seem strange to take that same carrot away from people who are actually entirely in favor of democracy. It feels like a bait and switch, and Americans have a particular hatred for that tactic. It's because we Americans allow our own corporations to treat us in that fashion that we look stupid to the rest of the world when we try to tell them how to run their lives...
Before the war Iraq had developed a centralized free health care system using a hospital based, capital-intensive model of curative care...dependent on large-scale imports of medicines, medical equipment and even nurses, paid for with oil export income, according to a "Watching Brief" report issued jointly by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization (WHO) in July 2003.
It was modeled on a Westernized system of sophisticated hospitals with advanced medical procedures, provided by specialist physicians. A UNICEF/WHO report noted that prior to 1990, 97 percent of the urban dwellers and 71 percent of the rural population had access to free primary health care. Currently there is a medical crisis in Iraq because of the lack of doctors, nurses and the violence that creates a steady flow of seriously injured victims.
As far as Afghanistan, the game plan there appears to be passive genocide - over the past quarter century Russia and the US have succeeded in killing off ~ 10 percent of the population.
" ...there is a medical crisis in Iraq because of the lack of doctors, nurses and the violence that creates a steady flow of seriously injured victims..."
The lack of medical staff and the violence are not causes, they are symptoms. Such symptoms are found everywhere there are large numbers of the willingly enslaved. Those who do not die on their feet must live on their knees.
1GL, I'm somewhat confused by your comment. The situation seems to be; Our Government leaders have the authority to fund health care in Iraq and Afghanistan, but we the people of the US have not given them the authority to provide it to our citizenry. If you look at the voting of the people on the internet you will see that 60 some per cent oppose the Health bill. So, does that not say that the people of the US do not want government health care? We prefer to have the large health companies charge outragious sums to provide health coverage to those who can afford it and the hell with the rest of the citizens. Isn't that the American way? Only the strong and the lucky survive. And they feel that is the way it should be? Except; the lucky hate the strong, and the strong feel that the lucky are undeserving blood suckers?
In the interest of full disclosure: I voted in the "not sure" category. Even though I understand it is required in order to make the system work, I am having great difficulty accepting the idea of manditory enrolement.
I will probably change my vote to "Happy".