SOCIALIZED MEDICINE: Let's Try a Dose. We're Bound to Feel Better

"Socialized medicine" is the bogeyman that just won't die. The epithet has been hurled at every national health plan since the New Deal -- even Medicare, which critics warned would strip Americans of their freedom.

And now it's back. Republicans from President Bush on down have invoked the specter of socialism in denouncing Democrats' attempts to expand publicly funded health insurance for children. Erstwhile GOP presidential contenders Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney lambasted the health plans of the leading Democratic candidates for mimicking "the socialist solution they have in Europe" (Giuliani) and trying to impose "a European-style socialized medicine plan" (Romney). The presumptive Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain, hasn't used the S-word yet, but after sewing up the nomination in early March, he criticized Democrats for intending "to return to the failed, big-government mandates of the '60s and '70s to address problems such as the lack of health-care insurance for some Americans." [MORE]

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People want free health care. But I would assume, that when govt. controls health care, it will also control costs & quality of health care, with huge trickle down monies to Big Pharma. Nothing govt. does is "free" - somebody has to pay for it, often in the form of huge tax increases on citizens. And govt.also tends to overcomplicate things, and is not always very effective. Socialized medicine sounds good on paper, but I wonder if it's the way to go in this country.

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And they will also tell you what to eat and how to live-your entire life.

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"Oh, Bother!" Said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.

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'I used to have compassion, but they taxed it and legislated it out of existence.'

No one is advocating "free" health care. Universal healthcare does not mean it's "free".

last year that I would love to have discussed in a public forum. We already have emergency rooms that have to take people in without being able to pay in cases of real emergencies. We reward them by giving them a tax exempt status as they write off alot of these unpaid bills.

But, in most cities there is also a medical VA facility. My uncle talked about fleshing those resources out also to provide community medical care,

Because if we were talking about government subsidized health care. We already have a great many medical facilities...

My only thought on the whole thing is just that I have never seen our government get involved in anything and seen it get better or cheaper. So I get a worried feeling anytime we talk about government taking over health care. But at least for the veterans - it's already happened.

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

Did anyone actually read the article, or are people just responding to the title? The reason I ask, is because many points that are being suggested are directly refuted by the evidence.

It's an argument for socialized (government controlled) healthcare which took an unnecessary and oddly detached swipe at the President and John McCain. They didn't coin the phrase socialism and it's unfair to blame someone for stating the obvious.

The writer lost his credibility to me at that point. But he's a good socialist :-)

(prior to your slamming me, let's clear up a few definitions, shall we?

www.m-w.com

Main Entry: so·cial·ist
Pronunciation: \ˈsō-sh(ə-)list\
Function: noun
Date: 1827

1: one who advocates or practices socialism

Let's go ahead and review the definition of socialism:

Main Entry: so·cial·ism
Pronunciation: \ˈsō-shə-ˌli-zəm\
Function: noun
Date: 1837

1: any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods

I always like to make sure every one knows the definitions when they debate. That seems to help)

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

I didn't realize I was "slamming" you. But I'm glad you read the article. And since you read it, I'm sure you noticed that the author says "socialized medicine" with tongue-in-cheek, since he points out that true "socialized" medicine would require doctors to become gov't employees, and hospitals to become state-owned (and NO ONE is advocating this). But you already know the definition of socialism, since you very cleverly looked it up in the dictionary.

But you must NOT have read the article before posting this:

My only thought on the whole thing is just that I have never seen our government get involved in anything and seen it get better or cheaper

In fact, as the author points out that Medicare IS INDEED cheaper and better (according to satisfaction surveys) than private insurance.

When all of your drive the interstate highway system, we have the federal government and the vision of earlier leadership on display. No one had the collective resources to do such a project.

There are places in which the government must take a lead. Government in and of itself is not bad, but the people who lead it and "work" the system are the problems.

The health care system in the US is a hodge podge and ineffective for all but those who can afford it or have an employer that can afford it.

The one obvious fact is that the current system can not be sustained. And private enterprise does not seem to have the resources or will to make the changes - and even then many would be left out. I don't see providing health care as a "right" but I do think it makes good policy sense.

Preventive care instead of visits to the emergency room are less expensive and provide better quality of life. And we all know who pays for visits to the emergency room by the poor.

From private insurance to government programs, vast amounts of money are in the system. The only sure thing is that health insurance, drug and other health related companies make very healthy profits every year.

And I think the article makes a ton of sense. I am also a business man and believe that government entities should stay out of business. But there are times when governmental leadership is critical to addressing the problem. We lack leadership - and as the article says, single payer insurance provided by the government is not socialized medicine. My question, can it really get any worse? Yes, if we continue down the same path!

Now I am one of the fortunate because my wife and I have always been employed and had good health insurance.

Herein lies the double edged sword - what should government do and where should they leave us alone?

Now any of you have an idea that would be successful without our elected leaders taking ownership of the problem and showing real leadership? Or without collective action that comes from "we the people"?

Kate - have you ever read the reports on how substandard (most) VA hospitals are? Scary stuff. There were some well publicized incidents within the past year or so regarding Walter Reed VA hospital in Maryland.

As for my own personal story...my grandfather was a WWII vet. He went to the VA hospital in Ann Arbor once or twice a year for some checkups with his physicians regarding a service-related condition.

He was sitting in the waiting room directly across from the check-in desk, and he had a heart attack. Slumped over. No one noticed for at least half an hour - even though he was in plain view of multiple staff members. (Turns out they even called his name, figured he was "taking a nap," so they left him there for a few more minutes.)

They finally revived him once someone realized he wasn't moving. Unfortunately, he experienced substantial brain damage. Was in a coma hooked up to machines for a couple of weeks (despite the fact that he had a DNR in his chart - once they hooked him up to the machines, they wouldn't pull the plug. Even though he didn't want to live like that.) He woke up again after a couple of weeks...lived 6 more months in a horribly brain damaged state where he didn't even know what was going on around him.

Sadly, that type of "care" is not unusual in VA medical centers. I wouldn't take another relative there if you *paid* me to do it.

And with the Walter Reed exposure I am glad that some of the problems are being corrected. We should treat our veterans with much, much more respect and offer as many resources as they need. That's not the case - and the country should feel ashamed for it. It's an indictment about how deep our support for our soldiers really goes. It stops when they get hurt, doesn't it.

My comment wasn't an endorsement for what or how the buildings are being used now - just that they are medical facilities that we already have paid for.

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

The govt is running out of control. Taking over every aspect of our lives. I like the idea of healthcare for everyone just not in their hands. That system won't work. and the skyrocketing costs we have not wil shut down the system eventually. There will be the haves and the have nots. Charity will only cover so many.

What we need to a good self help system. And advanced version of Web MD. With one member of every family medically trained to handle all non life threatening situations. Second tier co-op sytem for those things that he or she is unable to deal with. And then a third tier for the most sever cases. Family service for free. Co-op out of pocket. and Third tier care covered by insurnace.

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