Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Soapbox #1

I've been saying it for years...

We DESPERATELY, DESPERATELY need a system of universal health care in this country.

I said it because I lived it when Husband was consulting and I'm living it now that Husband has lost his job.

When Husband was an independant contractor, we were responsible for our own healthcare needs. The cost to insure our family of four was in excess of $900 each month.

Just let that figure sink in a for a few minutes.

Nine. Hundred. Dollars.

Since we had small children and only one income, we came to the realization that we really had no choice but for him to stop consulting and take a salaried position with good benefits.

That was ten years ago. For ten years we have watched our premiums and copays rise, while the number of covered services and providers became smaller and smaller. Still, I felt fortunate that we had insurance at all.

I don't mind telling you that there was some pretty serious panic in those first grim hours after we got the news. But we've crunched the numbers, done the math, and gone over the budget with a fine toothed comb.

It's going to be very, very tight, but we can sustain for a while, assuming no disasters strike. The kids will not go hungry, the mortgage will not go unpaid, we will not have to cook our meals on a hot plate by candlelight.

So my focus has shifted from feeding my kids, to insuring them.

Well what about COBRA?

That's what you're thinking right? COBRA is the answer, that's what it's there for!

Well guess what. The RIGHT to insurance doesn't do a damned bit of good if we can't pay the premiums. Would you like to take a wild guess as to the dollar amount of our COBRA premiums?

$1,067.00.

With no money coming in, we are supposed to magically produce $1,067.00 each month to insure our children. That's an impossible number. BUT...if we don't pay it? One debilitating illness, one serious injury, one little disaster could absolutely devastate us. Ruin us. Bankrupt us and leave us fighting the rest of our lives to regain our financial footing and restore our credit. We have planned well, laid a little aside, carefully tended our modest nest egg. But it could all disappear in a puff of smoke if one of us gets sick.

It has happened and is happening to people all over America. People are losing their homes and filing bankruptcy because of unexpected and insurmountable medical expenses.

It's a very complicated problem with many causes.

First, the cost of procedures and medications have risen beyond what most people can afford to pay out of pocket if they need to. Second, lifetime caps on insurance are met relatively quickly when a calamitous and prolonged illness such as cancer strikes. Third, affording insurance as an individual is almost impossible, unless one has a substantial amount of disposable income, in which case, they probably can do without it anyway. Fourth, insurance companies, not doctors, are in control of what procedures are considered "necessary" and therefore, a covered service.

There's a lot more to it than that, of course. As I said, it's an extremely complicated problem that is going to take some time to fix.

What I know is this: If we had a system of Universal health care in place in this country...I would not be facing this problem right now, and neither would the countless other Americans in the same boat.

Now, the ARRA is helping us a little bit. That brings our premium down to around $400. But assuming that someone is completely without resources, even that amount is completely out of reach.

The maximum payout for unemployment benefits is $330/week, which is laughable, really. That's $1320 a month. That happens to be almost the exact dollar amount of our mortgage payment, and we live in a very modest home. So let's assume we have no other resources. How exactly are we supposed to pay for water, electricity, groceries, car payment (we have only one, most people have two), car insurance, gas, orthodontist...and still pay out $400 a month for health insurance? It just doesn't add up.

As I said, we do have some resources, but regardless it's going to be very, very difficult to pay on our limited and finite means. For us, that means I will have to streamline our food budget and cut out some small luxuries.

Perhaps I will have to buy store brand orange juice instead of Tropicana, or the 10 for $10 Ravioli instead of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese. Maybe we will have to stop renting movies for a month or two. Maybe unlimited texting will have to be limited. Maybe I will have to start going to the library more often, insteading of patronizing Barnes&Noble and indulging in a $4 dollar coffee while I browse. The lawn service is already gone as is pest control (That one really hurts. Have you seen the size of cockroaches in Georgia?)

But for some people, it could very well be a choice between one necessity and another. For some people, it really is a matter of either/or. Either buy food...or take a sick child to the doctor.

Realistically, it could come down to that for us if this goes on long enough.

People, we are the wealthiest developed nation in the Western Hemisphere. This is not an issue our populace should be facing. Nor should sick people be denied the latest and most effective treatments because they are too costly. Did you know that some cancer drugs cost in excess of $1,000 PER DOSE?

That's what happens when you combine Capitalism and health care. That's what happens when we let the insurance companies and the drug companies take control and use our misfortunes to line their pockets.

Some of you might argue that letting the government take control is just trading one set of problems for another.

That may be true. But at least, with a universal system of health care in place, everyone will have access to basic medical care and medications that they need. Mothers won't have to debate about taking a feverish child to the doctor, or sacrifice their own health for that of their family.

We Americans like to point fingers when crisis looms. Politicians did it. Big Business did it. Greedy doctors did it.

But the real truth is much uglier.

Americans have done this to themselves with their sense of entitlement. We have resisted a government subsidized health care plan because we want only the best, we want to choose it for ourselves, we want it right now, and we want it at a reasonable price. We don't want to share our sparkling, tastefully decorated clinics with the poor unwashed masses. We want to think ourselves worthy of more and better options.

And now, the cost of that proletariat thinking is becoming very clear. We are paying for our short sightedness with shrinking benefits, higher premiums, and perfunctory care from health care practitioners who are working under almost intolerable conditions and who are taking their orders from actuaries and administrators.

Soon, only the very wealthy will be able to afford any health care at all. And then we'll be back to the way things were at the dawn of the Industrial Age, when disease spread rampantly and even minor illnesses resulted in death. Mortality rates will skyrocket and the number of babies who make it past their first birthday will plummet.

Does that sound melodramatic? Well, perhaps it is. But not terribly so. Things are deteriorating quickly in this country. Those of you ensconced in comfortable jobs with good benefits are too blind to see it; purposely, perhaps. It's not fun to think about. But it's there. And it's getting worse every day.

It's time to make some sacrifices. It's time to think about the many, rather than the few. It's time to think about what's best for everyone.

Establishing a system of universal Healthcare does not mean we are allowing Socialism to gain a foothold in our country. It just means we are creating a system of checks and balances, prohibiting abuses and maintaining a standard of care that is available to everybody, regardless of economic status.

For the life of me, I don't understand why people oppose this ideal.

Actually, I do. One word: privilege. We have grown complacent and myopic in an era of wealth and privilege. But that era is at an end, and this problem is going to grow into a plague that infects us all.

You could be next. Your family could be next. Is it going to take a crisis like that to open your eyes?

I really hope not. It's a really crappy place to be, because I know it could be and can be, much, much worse. Living with that fear is incredibly wearing, and I've only been doing it for a week. I can't imagine doing it my whole life. Nobody should have to live with that hanging over their head every day; especially when there is a solution.

Support healthcare reform. Stop opposing universal health care. Vote. We have a voice and we can change things for everyone.

Stepping down now. Tommorrow: Soapbox #2 (completely unrelated).

33 Comments:

  • At 6:31 PM, Blogger Grabielle said…

    I have been following your blog 'silently' for a while now. Love your writing, and appreciate your points of view.

    Reading this post sure makes me appreciate what we have here in Quebec/Canada. Our income taxes are high (30 to 40% - more for the wealthiest), but we never have such worries about health care. Of course our system is far from being perfect (shortage of family doctors, difficulty getting an appointment even for a yearly pap smear), but job or no job, privileged or not, I know that should anything happen to my family and friends, they will be cared for and NOT go bankrupt.

    I truly believe that health, education and the environment are better served by shared, collective responsibility.

    Hang in there....

     
  • At 6:40 PM, Blogger Sharon said…

    I hear what you are saying. My husband works in construction, in California, and loses his medical and dental coverage for the month every time his hours for the previous month dips below 100 hours. It costs us $800 for that month for 4 of us to make a COBRA payment. This can happen quite frequently given the slow down in commercial and residential building. We are not eligible for ARRA since I have a a part time job with the school district and am eligible for dental & medical through them. My cost for getting coverage through the school district would be about equal to what I make every month. Universal health care sounds pretty good to me. I love when you get on your soap box. Keep it up.

     
  • At 6:49 PM, Blogger the only daughter said…

    Though I am in a job with fairly decent benefits, I'm with you . . because I may not always be. Moreover, there are many, many who are not now.

    I hope more listen to the reasoned, better solutions.

     
  • At 6:58 PM, Anonymous Brigid said…

    My husband was one of those people who received a cancer diagnosis while on Cobra. At one point we had to spend $978 on a three-day dose of Interfuron. He struggled with spending that money because of all the other bills. I would have gladly spent our last penny to get him the best care. He beat the cancer and after many years we have recovered financially (at least for today) with the help of family. But no one should ever have to make those choices.

     
  • At 7:01 PM, Blogger Woman with kids said…

    I haven't researched universal healthcare enough to have an informed opinion, but I have experienced the wonderful of COBRA benefits. Seriously, if I could have afforded them, I probably wouldn't have needed a job in the first place. It's outrageous. And scary. I agree, it needs to be changed.

     
  • At 7:42 PM, Blogger Shelley said…

    You're preaching to the choir here. I don't understand why anyone would be opposed to this. If your job offers healthcare, great, take it. But there needs to be an option for people whose jobs don't offer insurance, the laid-off, the unemployed.

    I have a friend whose husband's job only offers health insurance for the employee. Private insurance for the rest of the family would be killing them. They are on a state program for the kids, and my friend? She is going without.

    Right now, we are on COBRA through the ARRA plan, so instead of $1300 a month, which we could never afford, we are paying $478 a month, which we can barely afford. My husband works for a small company, and we had benefits through my company. What his company offers is even more expensive and worse than what we're paying now.

    Unemployment is $330 a week in Georgia? Huh. I'm receiving $265 a week from Arizona. We are one of the lowest, if not the lowest, in the country. It's ridiculous.

    And this might be an unpopular opinion, but I would be willing to pay more taxes if it meant everyone was covered. Would my taxed go up more than the almost $500 I'm paying to insure my family right now? I doubt it.

    Oh, and the ARRA thing only lasts nine months, so after November, it's either pay the $1300 a month (not gonna happen) or find another alternative. That alternative will probably be me finding another job, with benefits. If I can find one.

     
  • At 8:07 PM, Blogger skipper said…

    I haven't had insurance for 6 months. I am a cancer survivor. I lost my job and almost lost my house but now am consulting. I make good money but can't afford insurance. That is sad...

     
  • At 9:41 PM, Blogger margalit said…

    You know I totally agree with you, but I want to make a few points of my own. First, we do have universal health care for the disabled and the elderly. It's called Medicare and since I've been on it I have NO complaints. I still get the best health care in the world, I have no forms to fill out, no crazy rules that change arbitrarily, and I'm honestly quite happy with it. But it is NOT free. Every one who is one Medicare has the cost deducted thru their SS check, at around 98 dollars a month.

    Additionally I have to pay for a prescription plan and for additional coverage, which costs me about another 100 dollars a month.

    My kids are covered by schipp Medicaid and that also costs about $30/month per kid. So even with universal coverage we're paying out a LOT of money for very good health coverage.

    My state requires that every citizen has health insurance. If you don't, you get fined. So most people do have coverage here, and the state does help with the choices of the plans, but even though they estimate that a family pay only xxx amount of dollars according to their income, the health ins companies do not charge anywhere near that amount, which is criminal but what can you do?

    People hate Medicare and call it a welfare program, but it's there for the weakest and most vulnerable of citizens. Before I got it, I had to register for and recieve free care from a hospital, which meant that I got free care but it all had to be under their roof (which was fine with me) and all my prescriptions had to be filled at their pharmacy which was a MAJOR pita.

    You should check and see if you can get free care until you can get coverage on your own. And maybe get the kids on Medicaid thru Schipp so you only have two people to insure. Then go with catastrophic care that you can get thru einsurance.com for the time being.

    There are ways, but nobody is going to tell you how. You have to keep asking questions until you can find cheap but decent care on your own.

     
  • At 10:31 PM, OpenID wheelsonthebus said…

    i am so torn because we clearly need to do something, but i have lived under nhs and it was hideous. it basically offers nothing unless something serious is wrong. we had private insurance on top of nhs, and that was the only way we got medical help that did anything. those without the private insurance were getting medical care with very little value.

    i also wonder if canada's system would be viable without us as neighbors. i don't know how much it is a self-reliant system versus how much people use u.s. resources or research.

    that said, the u.s. system is clearly defunct. it needs to be thrown out and completely redone. am i ever glad i am not president, because i don't know what i'd do.

    are your kids eligible for s-chip?

     
  • At 11:43 PM, Blogger Blog Antagonist said…

    Margalit,

    My mother recently qualified for Medicare due to a lung ailment that has left her disabled. But...it will take TWO years for her benefits to kick in. In the meantime, she is paying $900/mo COBRA premiums. My Dad is retired, and she is getting disability. They can barely afford the premiums. TWO YEARS? She is disabled now. She could, quite literally, be dead in two years.

    I'm glad that it's there, but they could make it a little easier for the disabled. You would not believe the hoops my mother had to jump through to qualify, despite the fact that she has only about 10% lung capacity and congestive heart failure. She is on oxygen 24/7. And it's ridiculous that benefits are not available immediately.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. For now, we are okay, but it's good to know there are avenues to pursue when we are not.

     
  • At 2:21 AM, Blogger IIDLYYCKMA said…

    We paid 1256.00 per month for COBRA coverage, we didn't have AARA at the time. It was all on us. I think Universal Healthcare is going to be better than nothing. My family is from Europe where healthcare is much different. It's socialize healthcare and it has it's good points and it's bad. I have family in Canada and they say that their healthcare is good and bad. They have their share of horror stories to share, and oodles of red tape.

    To be honest I am not sure what the solution is - you can't really blame it on any one Administration. But we can begin at the insurance companies and hostpials who are billing us 7.00 for a surgical strip (bandaid), and 15.00 per Tylenol pill.

    In the old day Doctors made a nice salary -- and somewhere along the line they became elitist and began charging more and more and more. I am sure it's because #1 Their insurance premiums go up and up, and #2 they know we need a doctor so they charge the high rates because they can.

    I feel for you -- my husband and I the first week in 2008 were laid of within 7 days of one another, and it was pretty dicy last year for us.

    Hang in there I will be thinking of you.

     
  • At 5:26 AM, Blogger JChevais said…

    wheelsonthebus' comment leaves me perplexed. Canada's system is only viable because it is reliant on the US? Wôt? Because of drug research in the US? Maybe I misunderstood because surely it is known that drug research takes place all over the world? Germany? France? Etc?

    As a Canadian living in France, I have a hard time understanding why universal health care isn't implemented in the US. It just seems like madness to me. Stark raving barking madness.

     
  • At 11:10 AM, Blogger Day Dreamer said…

    I think you make excellent, spot on points.

    I had the same pediatrician for seven years when I got laid off and lost my insurance. My daughter got double ear infections and the medicine to clear it up (five tries) broke me. (Plus the urgent care charge, office visits.) I wasn't prepared...it spiraled and when I finally got a job at less pay, I couldn't recover. Hello bankruptcy! This from EAR infections!

    The pediatrician's office, at first, seemed willing to work with me...but they eventually dropped us as patients! DROPPED US! I felt lower than low.

    Having money shouldn't give you more right to LIVE.

     
  • At 11:54 AM, Blogger Traveling Woman said…

    "But at least, with a universal system of health care in place, everyone will have access to basic medical care and medications that they need." Dream on! Doesn't happen. The gov will decide who is eligible to use the "limited resources" avsilable. And those with money (like politicians) will get the care and resources. The rest of us can just whistle while we die.

     
  • At 12:38 PM, Blogger Blog Antagonist said…

    Travelling Woman,

    I understand that's what people are afraid of. But with all due respect...how exactly is that different than what is happening now??? Only the wealthiest people can afford top notch medical care. And again, with all due respect, how do you know? Have you lived abroad and experienced nationalized healthcare? How do any of us know that it won't work if we aren't willing to try?

    I have friends in Canada, Britain and Switzerland. Of course they have their petty complains, because no system is perfect. But they are all thankful that they don't have to deal with the health care nigthmare that we face here in the U.S.

    Despite the flaws, I can assure you, it is FAR better than what we have here. When they need to be seen, they are seen. They might not get to choose where or when, but they are seen. And any and all diagnostic procedures ordered by the doctor are performed at no cost to the patient. Do you know I've been putting off an MRI for over a year? My doctor ordered it when I began having facial ticks during migraine attacks. But my insurance company wouldn't cover it, and I couldn't even begin to afford to pay for it out of pocket. That doesn't happen in nations with universal health care.

    We are in a unique position, because rather than starting from the ground up, we can examine the strengths and weaknesses of their systems, and use them to build a stronger, more efficient system of our own.

    I'm not saying it will foolproof. But anything is better than what we are dealing with now. There are millions of Americans who are uninsured or underinsured and going bankrupt because of medical expenses. And you know...I'd go to whatever doctor they wanted me to go to if it meant I didn't have to starve to afford their services.

    People have to be willing to make some changes if this is going to work.

     
  • At 1:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I live in Canada and our Healthcare system is under attack in my Province, (Alberta). The Provincial Government would LOVE to privatize - you can practically see the dollar signs in their eyes. They are doing everything they can to run the system into the ground - and are doing that aggressively. There is a lot of money to be made in a for profit system and our local government wants a piece of it.

    The people here will fight to keep the system public - and yes, we have our complaints - and the complaints are escalating since our government has imposed some very hostile policies. If we ever privatize I will move. I will not stay in a country or region where several layers of leeches make money from a nose bleed or a broken ankle.

    Our public system is far from perfect - but if we accidently chop a finger off while dicing celery - we ALL can have it sewn back on - without touching our wallets.

     
  • At 10:58 PM, Blogger Crazed Mom said…

    As a nursing student I see docs who have elderly under their care who get worse because their docs are over-intervening. If one disease process suggests another they do high priced dx tests. It's sad and perplexing. Some pts are on 14 meds at a time!

    The consumer needs to vote and the AMA and health care need to shut up about profit and start thinking about the greater good.

     
  • At 2:53 AM, Anonymous g said…

    I am one of those friends who live in the UK, and I happen to be American too. While I do cringe at all the taxes here, we do get some GREAT stuff. The NHS, as many have said, is not perfect, but guess what? My two children get all eye exams, dental exams, dental work, medicines, medical procedures, hospitilization and even educational psycologist all through the NHS. We have been back and forth with one child over allergy medicine this year-- all the medicine was all covered by the NHS, even that which we did not use. Any that I use cost me 7GBP-- the children have no cost. I recently had minor outpatient surgery at a fantastic high-tech very nice hospital all through the NHS. Even BUPA (big private insurer here) would not equal the time it took to get that polpy removed or the care and facilities I had access too.

    My local surgery (GPs office) is clean and efficent. I can always see 'my doctor', as long as she is on duty. And my children also can see 'their doctor' as long as he is on duty. It is a great system, for us.

    I do not complain about the tax on so much here, because I see all the good it does. The roads, the buses, trains, even the TV is paid for with our tax money. And you know-- I like it. And the NHS-- I like the tories but I sure hope they do not change too much.

    One thing here with the NHS that I could see happening in the USA: There is what they call a 'postal code lottery' with NHS care. That means if you live in a wealthier area (I do) then you have nicer coverage than someone who lives in an innercity.

     
  • At 9:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Thank you G. Those of us who live in higher tax countries tend to also have a higher standard of living. We get a pretty good bang for our buck, in many cases - see Scandinavia - extremely efficiently run healthcare, education and infrastructure systems. No person in these countries has ever gone bankrupt because of illness or injury.

    Although I have heard some Canadians complain of wait lists, (and there are certainly wait lists for elective and/or non essential surgeries - most of us get to see our doctors by simply calling in and making an appointment and more than once I've been able to get in within 24 hours.

    Our system does not provide MRI's for routine headaches - and un-necessary tests for minor things - so there are a lot of savings in heath care delivery there.

    I know that it is constantly suggested that those countries with national health care do not do research or have up to date equipment or good doctors and this is ridiculous! Those who are saying that are correctly assuming that over 90% of the American public does not, and will not ever travel outside of their own country and so they can get away with that hogwash without being called on it by the majority.

    I wish everyone luck in creating change - its going to be a very difficult battle. Those who are currently profiting have lots of stuff in their arsenol to scare you.

     
  • At 7:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If the healthcare is so great in other countries, immigrate there! Don't turn "our" healthcare into "their" healthcare. The rich in those countries come HERE for their healthcare. And I've lived in other countries and I know our healthcare is superior.

    I agree our healthcare system could use some help, but come on people, the government is not the answer. The only ones getting rich in the healthcare system are the insurance companies. Kick the insurance companies and the government out of healthcare and let the free market go. When doctors and hospitals have to compete for your business, the prices WILL fall for everyone.

    Also, if you need to see the doctor and don't have insurance, ask if you can pay in cash at time of service and I bet they give you discount. Try it!

     
  • At 11:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Um....insurance companies are part of the "free market".

    With all due respect to the previous responder - if you define "superior" as "rich people can have instant access to as many un-necessary tests and procedures as their money can buy", then - yes! Yours is "superior".

    And I'm sorry - but are you really interested in listening to various sales pitches and browsing through coupons as your appendix is rupturing? I think not, but that's just me.

    A system that provides timely, appropriate, modern and efficient health care delivery on a non-profit basis is a realistic goal. Those who claim it can't be done can stand corrected in due time.

     
  • At 12:37 PM, Blogger Blog Antagonist said…

    Anonymous #....3? The person who made the last comment...

    Thank you. That's what I was going to say, but you said it so well, I don't feel compelled to add anything.

    The free market is part of the reason we are in this mess. We HAVE to take profit out of the health care equation in order to stop these abuses and make medical care available and affordable for everyone.

     
  • At 1:01 PM, Anonymous KB said…

    Um...medical insurance companies came about because the government (FDR) froze wages and to attract good employees, companies had to offer medical insurance for incentives.

    And if rich people want to spend THEIR money on unnecessary tests and procedures, who CARES. It's THEIR money. They're not asking YOU to pay for it.

    Your statement about browsing through coupons as your appendix is rupturing is ignorant and immature. But then what do I expect from people who expect the other people (the government) to take of their every need from cradle to grave.

    Universal healthcare is being tried all over the world. How's it working out? Can't we, as Americans, try something different? Our forefathers did 233 years ago and I think it's worked pretty good, so far...

    Free people, free markets, limited government!

     
  • At 1:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If you take profit out of healthcare there won't be any healthcare. Talk about going back in time. What person in their right mind would spend all those years going to medical school and rack up all that debt for the same wage as a burger flipper?

     
  • At 1:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I agree medical care should be affordable to everyone but that's not going to happen with the government taking money from some people to pay for the healthcare of others. That's a Ponzi scheme. We need free markets or it all falls apart.

     
  • At 3:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Well - I'm not sure that BA wanted a lengthy debate on her blog - so I'll say this and get out of dodge.

    Those of you who believe that healthcare can't be delivered by anyone except the free market have either never travelled out of your country, or kept your minds completely closed when you did. The facts are out there for those open to them and excellent health care is being delivered on a non-profit every.single.day in many places all over the world. Check it out someday!

    I personally don't care how many procedures rich people buy - my point was that this is not a factor that measures the "best health care in the world" in my head. Immature & ignorant? Well, if being unimpressed by what the wealthy can buy in a for profit system makes one "immature & ignorant", I'm good with that label :-)

    And finally to the person who mentioned that in a non profit system a doctor would receive the same wages as a McDonald's worker - you really, really, really need to know more things before you make such strong opinions. Or, you can keep on talking and remind us that education reform is another serious topic that is worthy of debate :-)

    Thanks BA for letting me share your soapbox - but I'll stop responding so that this chain of comments don't take over your blog.

     
  • At 7:43 PM, Blogger Blog Antagonist said…

    Please, by all means, continue with the debate. I love it when something I've posted spawns some thoughtful, meaningful discussion. You're doing a great job making my argument for me!

     
  • At 8:23 PM, Blogger Kim said…

    As a Canadian who has never had to worry about health-care, I cannot begin to understand the panic you must be feeling. To have to pay hundreds of dollars per month just to have standard health care is staggering.

    My Dh has $60 taken out of his pay per month to grant us extending health care, things that our universal health care doesn't cover.

    When I hear what it cost to simply go into the hospital to have a baby, I wonder how you all afford it? How can you afford to have many children? How do ppl that cannot afford Cobra or other programs cope?

    While our universal system may not be perfect, I have never had an issue getting first rate speedy care.

    I guess I don't understand why anyone would be apposed to universal health care.

     
  • At 2:26 PM, Blogger JessicaLee said…

    Amen. Couldn't have said it better. I used to sell health insurance so I am well aware of all the flaws in our current sytem. I certainly wouldn't want to be the one in charge of fixing it, because it's a mess- but something has to be done.

     
  • At 10:54 AM, Blogger Amy Y said…

    I couldn't agree with this post more...
    My very conservative, republican and Christian family believes that the only people in this country that have no health insurance are the ones who made bad choices that put them in their predicament. They would rather see those bad decision makers without adequate health insurance than give any more of their hard earned tax money to help a brother or sister out. Which is not something I think Jesus would do (another topic altogether but I thought worth mentioning).

    Anyway, hope your hubby finds some work soon so you don't have this stress in your life until our government finally gets its act together.

     
  • At 8:20 PM, Blogger Veronica Mitchell said…

    I agree with you that we have a problem, but I don't find anyone's solution very promising.

    As a side note, when Az and I married, we were very poor and Clinton was in his first term, and I seriously said to Az, "May be we should wait to have children until we have socialized medicine so we can afford the birth." Hahahahahaha.

     
  • At 8:50 PM, Anonymous OmegaMom said…

    Thought you might find this one interesting, a DailyKos article called How I Lost My Insurance At The Hairstylist's. I'm just so glad that so far no-one I know has had any devastating disease wipe out their life savings.

     
  • At 3:46 AM, Blogger JChevais said…

    This may or may not have anything to do with this argument, but I was recently listening to a podcast by Dan Carlin (chatty fellow) and he was talking about how the founding fathers of the U.S.A. DID NOT WANT to have a standing army (because having a standing army is what brought down ancient civilizations) and that the reason that people were given the right to "bear arms" was because EVERYBODY who was able bodied was to be part of an army in case of conflict (which meant that involving themselves in conflicts that didn't directly involve the U.S. would be limited if all your sons had to go).

    Imagine if the U.S. army was disbanded (since it's technically unconstitutional). Imagine what you could do with all that money...

    As a U.S. taxpayer, would you rather pay 30 cents of every tax dollar on healthcare or keep on paying into the military?...

     

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