In America, Crazy Is a Preexisting Condition

I highly recommend this article by historian Rick Perlstein of the Washington Post. Take note of the role the media has played by reporting on the wild claims made--a sort of he said, she said reporting,

"In Pennsylvania last week, a citizen, burly, crew-cut and trembling with rage, went nose to nose with his baffled senator: "One day God's going to stand before you, and he's going to judge you and the rest of your damned cronies up on the Hill. And then you will get your just deserts." He was accusing Arlen Specter of being too kind to President Obama's proposals to make it easier for people to get health insurance.

In Michigan, meanwhile, the indelible image was of the father who wheeled his handicapped adult son up to Rep. John Dingell and bellowed that "under the Obama health-care plan, which you support, this man would be given no care whatsoever." He pressed his case further on Fox News. " (continued)

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Thanks for the post - interesting read. I was reading the other day about the negative role media plays in promulgating scientific misunderstanding (this was in reference to evolution, as an example, but really represents a core issue with media in general). The role of media is to always look for the other side, to dig up disagreement and the other side. Problem is, many times the other side they dig up gets presented wholly blown out of proportion. In the instance of issues like evolution, for example, I've learned to groan when the reporter says something like, "but not all scientists agree. For example, meet Dr....." And yes, you can find scientists who don't agree with evolutionary theory, but something like 97% do. In a 4-minute clip, giving 2.5 minutes to an alternate view grossly overestimates the level of agreement seen in the scientific community. Anyway, this isn't about evolution per se, but how media gets caged to misrepresent, either by their own attempt to enliven a story or by outside groups savvy enough to present the right image, at the right time, in the right way. Interesting to see this played out in the current health care debate...

That's a good example wombat--I think you could substitute climate change for evolution and it would also be accurate. It's a big reason why I think most media cannot be trusted. In the push for ratings, accuracy always takes a back seat to a horserace.

Pink Slip

Like all things, Mommy Gubberment has a program to pay for your indoctrination, 'er I mean rehabilitation.

You will be sent to "camps" that wil force you to watch mainstream media while getting electric shocks until you believe everything the liberal media wants you to believe. Like the ObamaCare abomination being "for the people".

Have a nice day, comrades.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

http://www.creators.com/editorialcartoons/chris-britt/9880.html

Statements made are the opinion of the writer who is exercising his first amendment right to freedom of speech. Freedom of speech in the United States is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution and are generally permitted.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

And too true to really be funny.

"One reason for mad August is that we are scared. Old values are disappearing. The jobs our parents had are gone or no longer pay a living wage. Politicians have abused our trust, getting us into wars we can't win, spending our tax dollars foolishly and leaving us with huge debt. The house we sank our life savings into is worth half of what we paid. And if we get sick or injured, we're in serious financial trouble. So-called experts say that if we aren't saving impossible, gargantuan sums, retirement will be a nightmare."
http://www.scrippsnews.com/content/watch-lynch-mob-mentality-stirs-healt...

Statements made are the opinion of the writer who is exercising his first amendment right to freedom of speech. Freedom of speech in the United States is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution and are generally permitted.

Let's try a list: The United Kingdom, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Italy, Greece, Japan, Canada...I could go on! Besides a national health care system, they all share something else in common. THEY LIVE LONGER, on average, and their health care systems COST LESS PER CAPITA than does health care in the United States! One definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again even when it fails.

The United States can, and must, do better. We rank 37th in the WORLD in our overall public health according to the World Health Organization! 37th!!! That means we're not only worse than all of the industrialized nations of the world, we rank behind some countries whose economies are considered still developing!

Furthermore, under the Obama plan, the government would not take over one privately run hospital, nor take over one private physician's practice! The most interesting arguments made by the neo-cons is that a governemnt health insurance option would drive private insurance companies out of business. At the same time, the Neo-cons rant about the federal governemnt not being able to run anything right! Which is it? Is government more efficient than private business, or an abomintaion in the business world? It CAN'T be both, neo-cons!!

Whatever you do, "Libs" et. al., don't EVER allow facts or logic to stand in the way of your preconceived notions or your ideology, or the fabrications and the rantings and ravings of Limbaugh and Beck!

BTW....Are any of the nations listed above Communist nations? NO!!! In fact, almost all are members of NATO, and were so during the entire "Cold War", standing up against Communism in Europe on the front lines of that confrontation!!

I agree with Pink. Much of the media gets misrepresented ideally for ratings.

Likewise, this state cited by Dale "THEY LIVE LONGER, on average, and their health care systems COST LESS PER CAPITA than does health care in the United States!" is also a misrepresentation.

The average lifespan takes into account multiple things. Accidents, suicides, and murders just to name a few.

Thus the average life span is not an adequate reflection of health care.

We have more automobiles on the road and more drivers then all of the countries he listed. Dieing in an automobile is a very common form of death but says nothing about our healthcare.

So the stat is actually a representation of our lifestyle and not of our healthcare.

MikeyA

I don't agree with your conclusion. Health care IN our lives becomes part of our LIFEstyle. It becomes "a factor".

At any rate, all that doesn't explain why we pay for health care per-capita at 190% of what France does, while we're about 35 nations behind France in overall quality of care. You'd THINK that Americans could figure out how to get the BEST system for such an outrageous expense. We have 5 times the population of France ... so where's that good ol' economy of scale?

From Dale: Let's try a list: The United Kingdom, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Italy, Greece, Japan, Canada...I could go on! Besides a national health care system, they all share something else in common

In fact they share several things in common. They have no Bill Of Rights, nor do they maintain a standing army that's anywhere close to the size of the United States. If any of these countries were ever attacked, they'd scream for the US to help with their defense. Most have a tollway system instead of freeways. In parts of the UK it's actually illegal to defend yourself when attacked by a thug or when your home is invaded by a gang of thugs. The government decides how much and when you will receive health care and other government benefits. A family can exist on the dole from womb to tomb.

Not for me, thanks.

What I haven't seen is a comparison of a regulated service industry versus the same industry after deregulation. For example, prior to be deregulated the airline industry had to attract clients by offering better service and a more comfortable flight. Airline service personnel were glad to see you when you arrived. They would help you with any difficulty you had during the entire flight experience. Seats were larger, free food was better and much more plentiful. Your luggage didn't get mishandled and damaged. Then the airlines were deregulated.

Airline personnel are rude and deliberately obstructive. Half the TSA would be hard core unemployables if not for their new government job. Late arrivals are a matter of course rather than an exception. Sitting on the tarmac waiting to dock or take off can stretch into hours. Oh yeah, deregulation is a real benefit to the consumer, alright.

Regulate the airline industry again and see what happens.

Consider regulating the medical industry the same way airlines used to be regulated. See what might happen. If the government really wants to provide medical care for everyone who can't get it - and I'm not saying that this is a great idea - begin with regulation.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

I can agree with most of what you say Jack. If you note my comments I've made an effort not to talk about the house bill because I know how the gov't works and a bill that gets passed it's very likely won't look anything like that bill.

Health care costs have risen. We need to try something new. What I don't want is a gov't takeover. I don't want a gov't undercutting that leads to a takeover. However there are uninsured Americans out there. The majority are students and those with preexisting conditions.

For students. Make post-secondary education tax deductible. It's the right thing to do and it is an investment in our future. However a big part of healthcare costs is the education. If our future doctors didn't have to pay off huge student loans the cost savings would be passed to the consumer.

For preexisting conditions. Tax healthcare companies for the number of people they deny coverage. Then the companies must weigh cost/benefit ratios. The tax money should then be put into the patients Health Care Account, a gov't bond backed account that gains interest. The interest would accrue and would act as health insurance and would limit rationing. It's a system very similar to what Indiana now does with their Medicaid quite successfully.

But through all this we must remember some people don't want healthcare regardless how you slice it. They won't pay for it, don't want to be taxed for it. Instead they just want their money. I say if they aren't motivated to do the minimum then why try? Quit raising the minimum wage thinking that some day they will suddenly just up and buy health insurance. It'll never happen.

MikeyA

I'd increase scholarship money as well as making tuition tax deductible, especially for medical school. We have a shortage of health care workers in general and that can be corrected by throwing money at higher education.

From MikeyA: But through all this we must remember some people don't want healthcare regardless how you slice it. They won't pay for it, don't want to be taxed for it.

You're quite right about that. You know, this probably should be handled the same way highway and railroad construction was handled: Just do it. Yes, it's heavy handed and I don't like it, but I'm at the point where I would not let any group of people deny health care to the rest of the populace.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

nor do they maintain a standing army that's anywhere close to the size of the United States. If any of these countries were ever attacked, they'd scream for the US to help with their defense.

Yep, because they're not slaves to the military-industrial complex, they can actually afford better health care.

LOL, just who's going to 'attack' these countries mentioned? Except for Japan and Canada, they basically all share a border with another.

Our vaunted conventional 'standing army' is great for possible control over our own civilians and maybe a conflict on the Korean Peninsula. It worked great in Iraq and it's working great in Afghanistan...ha, ha,.....not.

I was wondering just who would be the first to bring that up. From McCaskey:
Yep, because they're not slaves to the military-industrial complex, they can actually afford better health care.

You got that right, McCaskey. Cut the military spending by 75% and we could all retire in five years. Case in point: The United States maintains eleven super-carriers. France is considering building one such carrier in 2013.

From McCaskey: LOL, just who's going to 'attack' these countries mentioned? Except for Japan and Canada, they basically all share a border with another.

I would suppose China, although any of the Islamic countries would cheerfully attack another country if they could find it and if they could get there. I note that AnywhereStan doesn't need much by way of motive. Just get the local cleric to yell 'Charge!'. The question is, why should we care?

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

We spend almost a trillion $$$ a year on 'defense'-related purposes. And exactly to what end?

Affordable health care for our citizens? Who really cares about that? Let's just keep feeding the beast and keeping the people profiting off the beast happy....just as Eisenhower warned about those many years ago.

Tea parties? Town hall meetings? Let's have some fucking parties and meetings to discuss that.

I note that the article made no mention of Joseph Raymond McCarthy, AKA Tail-gunner Joe, an alcoholic cheesehead whose meteoric rise to infamy was sharply curtailed by the US Congress and sclerosis of the liver, but not before he'd ruined a significant number of lives. Without the aid of commercial media, it's likely the entire communist witch hunt would have been avoided. Note that it was the US Congress who shot down Tail-gunner Joe, not the TV, newspapers or radio.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

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