25
   

Free, Public Healthcare

 
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:41 am
@McGentrix,
McGentrix wrote:
Instead of the government acting as a healthcare insurer, what if the government, instead, acted as a healthcare provider?


A bunch of other countries do this, I think it is a good idea. And unlike Thomas I actually think it does address the systemic problems with health care in America.

For example, here in Costa Rica there is government run public hospitals as well as private insurance and private hospitals. Even the private sector is so much cheaper than the US that it is a popular "medical tourism" destination and many of the folk I run into on the poker tables find it cheaper to fly down here and pay out of their pocket than seek health care in the US.

And in case you want to compare quality, Costa Rica has a life expectancy on par with the US. Most of the countries I've lived in that I can remember had public health care systems, and I think the systems work well. If you have money you get private insurance and care at a fraction of US costs and everyone pays taxes that support free health care for all at significantly less than it would cost to insure all Americans with the exorbitantly priced health care.

The problem Thomas mentions is also addressed because with public health care comes (or at least should if this isn't your idea) public insurance. You pay taxes that give you free access to the public health care system and there is no rejection of sick clients.

I think trying to fix just the health care or just the insurance is a poor way to approach the problem, which is rooted in expensive health care that translates into expensive insurance.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:43 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:
Actual, government-run businesses are the definition of Socialism.


Nonsense.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:48 am
@Thomas,
Thomas wrote:
The same argument would seem to apply to all goods and services.


If we are going to be so simplistic about things I guess you must also not support public roads or "all public goods and services".

Quote:
So why not introduce a universal food service, consisting of government-run farms that hand out food to everyone who asks?


America doesn't have a systemic problem with feeding herself. What problem would this address?

I assume you recognize the utility of some public services, what exactly is making you think that a public health care service is a slippery slope to total socialism?
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:49 am
@Robert Gentel,
Robert Gentel wrote:

Cycloptichorn wrote:
Actual, government-run businesses are the definition of Socialism.


Nonsense.


From Wikipedia-

Quote:
Socialism refers to any one of various economic theories of economic organization advocating state or cooperative ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods, and a society characterized by equal opportunities/means for all individuals with a more egalitarian method of compensation based on the full product of the laborer.


State ownership and administration of hospitals, paid for by taxes, open to all, squarely falls under the umbrella of socialism. I have no idea how you could claim it doesn't.

Not that I'm against it, mind you - I'm 100% for this idea.

Cycloptichorn
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:51 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:

Oh, I dunno. From Wikipedia -

Quote:
*

[edit] Food insecurity

Food insecurity has been described as "a condition in which people lack basic food intake to provide them with the energy and nutrients for fully productive lives." (Hunger Task Force) In 2005, 35.1 million Americans, which includes 22.7 million adults and 12.4 million children, lived in households that were unable to afford the food they need for the year.[22] Households that are more likely to experience food insecurity are female-headed with children, those with incomes below the poverty line, and those that reside either in principal cities or within rural areas.[23] The top three states ranking in prevalence of food insecure households between 2003-2005 were New Mexico (16.8%), Mississippi (16.5%), and Texas (16.0%).[23]


Not quite 46 million, but close.

Cycloptichorn


Ok, but did these people lack the ability to afford food before or after food stamps? Presumably these are people who are eligible for food stamps, yes?
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:52 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:
Um. Yes, it is Socialist.


No, it isn't.

Socialism is an economic system, having a public service is not socialism. You are just aping the stupid right-wing arguments against any public service they don't agree with when they try to equate any public sector with "socialism".

If that is the definition of socialism then nearly every country (with exceptions like Somalia) are socialist because all have public sectors.
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:53 am
@FreeDuck,
Yeah, presumably food stamps are covering the gap for most of these people. Didn't mean to imply that nothing was being done about it.

Cycloptichorn
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:56 am
@Robert Gentel,
Robert Gentel wrote:

Cycloptichorn wrote:
Um. Yes, it is Socialist.


No, it isn't.

Socialism is an economic system, having a public service is not socialism. You are just aping the stupid right-wing arguments against any public service they don't agree with when they try to equate any public sector with "socialism".

If that is the definition of socialism then nearly every country (with exceptions like Somalia) are socialist because all have public sectors.


Public services can be socialistic in nature without the entire system being a Socialist one. And yes, nearly every country has socialistic elements, just as most modern socialist countries have some capitalistic elements to them.

Ezra Klein -

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein/2009/06/health_reform_for_beginners_th_1.html

Quote:
I've been meaning to write this post for some time. The words "socialized medicine" and"single-payer health care" get thrown around with such gleeful abandon that they've both become a bit unmoored from their actual meanings. In the American health-care debate, they tend to refer to "whatever the Democrats are proposing." But that's not what they mean.

Socialized medicine is a system in which the government owns the means of providing medicine. Britain is an example of socialized system, as, in America, is the Veterans Health Administration. In a socialized system, the government employs the doctors and nurses, builds and owns the hospitals, and bargains for and purchases the technology. I have literally never heard a proposal for converting America to a socialized system of medicine. And I know a lot of liberals.


Britain is not a Socialist country, but their medical care is. So to propose the same system here in America is clearly to propose a socialist one. The fact that our entire system will not be socialist is immaterial.

Cycloptichorn
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:56 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:

Yeah, presumably food stamps are covering the gap for most of these people. Didn't mean to imply that nothing was being done about it.

Cycloptichorn


Oh, I didn't think you did. I was just reinforcing my argument that, as of now, we don't have a great need for government to intervene in how we feed ourselves.
H2O MAN
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:57 am


No US citizen has or should ever have a right to health care.

All US citizens have the right to work, earn an income and purchase their own health care.
Cycloptichorn
 
  0  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:57 am
@FreeDuck,
FreeDuck wrote:

Cycloptichorn wrote:

Yeah, presumably food stamps are covering the gap for most of these people. Didn't mean to imply that nothing was being done about it.

Cycloptichorn


Oh, I didn't think you did. I was just reinforcing my argument that, as of now, we don't have a great need for government to intervene in how we feed ourselves.


Agreed. But it always shocks me how many go hungry, or need assistance to keep from being hungry, here in the states.

Cycloptichorn
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 09:59 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:

Agreed. But it always shocks me how many go hungry, or need assistance to keep from being hungry, here in the states.


I actually believe we do have a food problem in this country in terms of access to quality foods, but that's a whole other topic and I don't want to muddy the waters.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 10:01 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:
State ownership and administration of hospitals, paid for by taxes, open to all, squarely falls under the umbrella of socialism. I have no idea how you could claim it doesn't.


Because I understand socialism while you seem to think any public service is socialism.

Having a public health care system, or a public school is simply not state ownership of the means of production and distribution of goods. Anyone else is free to start their own hospital and school and just because the government provides a public service does not mean that the economic model is government control of production and distribution.

Just because the government owns hospitals doesn't mean they control this service industry, they merely participate in it. The definition of socialism in a sentence is "state ownership of industry and capital" and this does not mean that if the state owns a particular entity in an industry or a particular amount of capital that they are engaging in socialism that reduces the definition of "socialism" to the point that there is really no such thing as a functioning non-socialist government.

Quote:
Not that I'm against it, mind you - I'm 100% for this idea.


Of course, and you are also for stupid aspects of socialism which makes it appealing to try to portray this sane idea as socialism. However that reduces the meaning of "socialism" to "any public service" and is simply daft.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 10:05 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:
Public services can be socialistic in nature without the entire system being a Socialist one. And yes, nearly every country has socialistic elements, just as most modern socialist countries have some capitalistic elements to them.


You are moving the goal posts. You claimed this was the "definition of Socialism" not that it was "socialistic" (which can mean merely that it vaguely resembles socialism in some way).

This is not "Socialist". If you want to argue that it resembles socialism that's fine with me but to call it the definition of socialism is to not understand what socialism is.
Cycloptichorn
 
  -2  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 10:08 am
@Robert Gentel,
Robert Gentel wrote:

Cycloptichorn wrote:
Public services can be socialistic in nature without the entire system being a Socialist one. And yes, nearly every country has socialistic elements, just as most modern socialist countries have some capitalistic elements to them.


You are moving the goal posts. You claimed this was the "definition of Socialism" not that it was "socialistic" (which can mean merely that it vaguely resembles socialism in some way).

This is not "Socialist". If you want to argue that it resembles socialism that's fine with me but to call it the definition of socialism is to not understand what socialism is.


No need to get so pissy about little details, yaknow. You know what I mean. Wouldn't it be more fun to move forward with the discussion, than it is to get bogged down in arguments over definitions, which really add nothing to the discussion?

Cycloptichorn
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 10:21 am
@Thomas,
Thomas wrote:

McGentrix wrote:
Anyway, my experience with the VA and medicare do not give me confidence but the general framework of your suggestion does have merit.

Why? I always thought Medicare and the VA pay for your doctors' visits, but don't, at least not in general, employ the doctors. Did I have that wrong?


VA operates its own hospitals and hires its own staff, including doctors. In certain instances, they will pick up the fee for private doctors, therapists, etc. The real quirks are in the eligibility standards. Dys and I served at roughly the same time. I am eligible; he is not. I was enrolled in the system before some particular law was passed. He wasn't. VA also comes with income and assets tests, and now includes a relatively small co-pay.

Your point on adverse selection is right on target, and is what is going to move us to some sort of national health care. Noone is going to like it, but we are going to have it.
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 10:49 am
@roger,
roger wrote:

Thomas wrote:

McGentrix DID NOT wrote:
Anyway, my experience with the VA and medicare do not give me confidence but the general framework of your suggestion does have merit.

Why? I always thought Medicare and the VA pay for your doctors' visits, but don't, at least not in general, employ the doctors. Did I have that wrong?


VA operates its own hospitals and hires its own staff, including doctors. In certain instances, they will pick up the fee for private doctors, therapists, etc. The real quirks are in the eligibility standards. Dys and I served at roughly the same time. I am eligible; he is not. I was enrolled in the system before some particular law was passed. He wasn't. VA also comes with income and assets tests, and now includes a relatively small co-pay.

Your point on adverse selection is right on target, and is what is going to move us to some sort of national health care. Noone is going to like it, but we are going to have it.


gads.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  2  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 11:19 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:
No need to get so pissy about little details, yaknow. You know what I mean.


The distinction between social services and socialism is an important one. Just about anyone who rejects the economic and political systems of socialism recognizes the advantages of social services and does not reject them. Trying to equate the two is usually a poor argument from the right to deride a social service they disagree with and I object to these arguments wherever they come from. Social services are not socialism, and the definition of socialism is important when you repeatedly assert that they are.

Quote:
Wouldn't it be more fun to move forward with the discussion, than it is to get bogged down in arguments over definitions, which really add nothing to the discussion?


If you are really so concerned with moving the discussion forward and contributing to it and you think that definitions are unimportant then why did you try to deride support for social services as "the definition of Socialism" and then argue repeatedly that this is socialism?

Is it somehow edifying when your bring it up and argue it but a worthless contribution if people disagree with what you brought up?
panzade
 
  2  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 01:27 pm
@H2O MAN,
can I just straighten up your post for a second?

"No US citizen(or legal resident) has or should ever have a right to(free) health care.

"All US citizens(or legal residents) have the right(and responsibility) to work, earn an income and purchase their own health care."

...there, that's better
Cycloptichorn
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 01:35 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Robert Gentel wrote:

Cycloptichorn wrote:
No need to get so pissy about little details, yaknow. You know what I mean.


The distinction between social services and socialism is an important one. Just about anyone who rejects the economic and political systems of socialism recognizes the advantages of social services and does not reject them. Trying to equate the two is usually a poor argument from the right to deride a social service they disagree with and I object to these arguments wherever they come from. Social services are not socialism, and the definition of socialism is important when you repeatedly assert that they are.

Quote:
Wouldn't it be more fun to move forward with the discussion, than it is to get bogged down in arguments over definitions, which really add nothing to the discussion?


If you are really so concerned with moving the discussion forward and contributing to it and you think that definitions are unimportant then why did you try to deride support for social services as "the definition of Socialism" and then argue repeatedly that this is socialism?

Is it somehow edifying when your bring it up and argue it but a worthless contribution if people disagree with what you brought up?


As I said earlier, it was very surprising for me to see this posted by McG, or anyone on the right - as they typically do not propose such things.

Your error lies in assuming that I was 'deriding' anything. I was doing no such thing; quite the opposite, in fact, as I fully support socialistic changes to our society, I dare say, to a greater extent than yourself.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
 

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