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"A joke": A progressive's view of US health reform

If you've somehow managed to avoid hearing the news about what's been going on lately with the US effort to reform the country's health-insurance and healthcare systems, an impassioned article by Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi provides a good look at the progressive perspective on recent events.

We might look back on this summer someday and think of it as the moment when our government lost us for good. It was that bad. [...]

All that's left of health care reform is a collection of piece-of-shit, weakling proposals that are preposterously expensive and contain almost nothing meaningful — and that set of proposals, meanwhile, is being negotiated down even further by the endlessly negating Group of Six. It is a fight to the finish now between Really Bad and Even Worse. And it's virtually guaranteed to sour the public on reform efforts for years to come. [...]

It's a joke, the whole thing, a parody of Solomonic governance. By the time all the various bills are combined, health care will be a baby not split in half but in fourths and eighths and fractions of eighths.
It's really worth taking the time to read the whole thing. And keep in mind that Mr Taibbi's article came out a few weeks ago, before Senator Max Baucus's Group of Six decided to altogether eliminate the public option from its proposed legislation (PDF).

Illustration: Rolling Stone

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  1. Purley Quirt (aka Sharon )September 22, 2009 at 10:04 AM

    Second-guessing and logical arguments are poor substitutes for real thinking.

    The pharmaceutical industry is the one to look at.

    Once it was discovered that( key point) 'the health care delivery system could become it's totally free sales staff'....that introduced an "exponential" growth in revenues in the tech economy ( millions go to billions overnight )...... it's future was secured.......


    ....then the " straddlers" replicated the process.... and duplicated the product and broadcast the suppliers all over the globe (an equally exponential growth in "substitutions")

    Very rapidly the" susbstitutions" market for medical services, products, and procedures has even seduced the high-expectancy American to travel the globe for surgery.

    This unravelling can only be stopped by putting on the brakes of both the travelling "dollar".....and the substitutions market..... isn"t It????

    Yes....... you make think this is about health care.
    You may even think this is about protecting an industry.
    You may become indignant and obstinate and "make up your mind" that it is about profit.
    You may become equally opposite and pliable where you "can't stand up for you fall for everything"

    But then might stop to consider ...that a quest for "power" is that everpresent parallel road to everything

    ....that might switch your focus to...

    -Money redefined
    -Global ownership and control over money and substitute currencies redefined
    -Substitute currencies redefining marketplace position
    -"Value" itself redefined
    -Marketplace members competing to provide " proofs of said value"
    -Value determining status and position
    -Status and position as currency
    -Currency as power

    And as you consider the dominant industry sucking up the most "revenue in the pie" at present... does health care come to mind?

    And if you follow the rapid bifurcation of that pie as it represents a more "global" revenue reporting

    And as you evaluate the control over said value in setting standards and " offsetting" loss ( of valued "life itself")

    And as you see trading power through these " offsets"

    The power of your segment will have the largest percentage...... if it is the LARGEST one in the pie......


    Yes, this is an opposite goal to the one presently described. How can that make sense?

    Well, the pie segment you look at now represents "loss of control" BUT the pie segment you see in a more global society represents "gain of control"

    Start thinking " service futures" and " service offsets" ......and watch the " carbon offsets" trading pattern to assist you.....

    oh yes...... and buy gold :)

  2. Purley Quirt (aka Sharon )September 22, 2009 at 10:16 AM


    .....and when you realise that Obama is simply bringing all the little chicks under his wings so the American segment of the global pie can be the largest

    ...and when you consider that undergirding power in the age to come is "ethos" as value

    ..and when you consider that " value" is preservation and prolonging life

    what could represent best practice and highest standard more..... than health care provision models?

  3. life insurance brokerSeptember 24, 2009 at 11:28 AM

    Hello, thank you for your article. I read that Mr. Obama said he doesn't want the Americans to end up as the Canadians having single-pay insurance system. However, he probably doesn't know that the US spend over 15% of their GDP on it while in Canada, it's only 10%. Besides that there is still more than 15% of Americans without any isurance coverage at all!

    All the best,


  4. Sam SolomonSeptember 24, 2009 at 12:19 PM

    Actually, Lorne, I think the President surely knows the economics of it, as do all the Congressmen and Senators. And that only serves to make their reluctance to consider a single-payer plan seem as cynical as it does.

  5. AnonymousSeptember 29, 2009 at 7:14 PM

    If 15% don't have insurance here in USA, then 85% do and the vast majority of them are happy and don't want the government to wreck it, which they will. Canadians stream over to USA when they actually need care or tests beyond just seeing a physician for "free" (you know you are paying for him, don't you?). And your own politicians all campaign to fix your system; if it is so perfect, why do they all want you to vote for them to fix it? And your system rations care and is going broke, which is why you ration equipment/tests etc. Where will medical innovation, medicines, and equipment come from if USA government takes it over? Bad for whole world.

  6. sharonOctober 30, 2009 at 12:00 AM

    ......somebody..... read " the tipping point"...(even though Gladwell is the master of stating the obvious )