Re: Who will be the US "Big 3" in 2016?

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Hondas employees in the US do not get as good a wage, benefits, including healthcare, or pensions as do GMs employees. Surely you do not believe that
national health coverage will be free, do you? Why do you think gas cost $6 or more in Europe and they have a VAT tax? LOL
mike

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Mike Hunter wrote:

In order to promote good transport systems and it is working
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Excessive taxation slows economic growth. Hence the poor economic growth in Europe, over the past ten years or so, and the high unemployment rates. Free medical is anything but free. Surly you do not want the US to emulate Europe? ;)
mike hunt

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Taxation on petrol has prompted new technology to go away from petrol and thus promoted smaller cars, bigger trains and better economy
US could do well emulating Europe
Europe has been improving a lot its transport system over the last decades and not the least because of controlled taxation by taxing petrol and promoting alternatives
Market economy with lots of interventions by the governments in health care and unemployment benefits has created a very good balance and a strong middle class
The high unemployment rates are mainly in former east areas and results of former centralised controled governments
The production per manhours is much higher in Europe than in the US
The norm is for 6 weeks paid vacations, many countries 35 hour work weeks, not unusual around 50 year pension schemes
The underground economy where people pay each other without letting the government know is also quite high so the overall economy is much better than the official figures show
Unemployed people, people on holidays, medical benefits or pensions are often working and paid with black money giving extra strenght to the economy
The US could learn a lot from Europe but they do not because they think they know it all
Mike Hunter wrote:

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On Thu, 3 Aug 2006 18:34:41 -0400, "Mike Hunter"

Here is a question for you, Mike. What is the second richest country in the world that doesn't have nationalized health care?

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On Thu, 3 Aug 2006 15:08:20 -0400, "Mike Hunter"

No, but it costs a lot less than health care in the US and everyone has it.
Why do you think gas cost

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wrote:

Instead of creating a nationwide healthcare system, we oughta shore up the free market healthcare system in several ways. First, we need more MD's and nurses, and this can be done by creating more medical colleges and expanding nursing education programs. Quality of care would go up, and costs would go way down. Supply and demand. There are few spots open in medical schools. The difference in credentials between those getting in and those not getting in are negligable at best. There are many qualified people who can't get into medical school, because there are so few spots open. Also nursing. A family friend is a nursing professor at a university near here. There are way more applicants to the nursing program than spots open in the program -- about 5 to 1. There aren't many spots open (even though there's a huge demand for nurses to the point that some make $50/hour), because there aren't enough nursing instructors (they'd rather make $50/hour as nurses in the hospital rather than $20/hour as nursing instructors at a college). We need to increase funding for nursing instructors so as to train more nurses. Also, we need to cap these huge medical malpractice jury awards. Many times, the awards are lopsided. A few victims get the lion's share of the malpractice dollars available, while others get nothing due to the malpractice insurance co. going bankrupt. Capping awards would lower the huge rates that doctors have to pay. All of these measures WOULD lower medical cost and increase the level of time a physician could spend with their patients, and overall improve the healthcare industry.
-
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Everyone who want to lower health care cost in the US should write to their Senators and ask them to vote to stop debate, on pending tort reform legislation so it can come up before the Senate for a vote, and you will have more Doctors and Nurses. I have a personal friend, a well known heart surgeon who no longer practices because of Mal Practice Insurance costs.
mike hunt

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On Fri, 04 Aug 2006 06:13:15 GMT, William H. Bowen

Really? The Canadian government can command a US company to sell its products in Canada and then set the price? And all the other countries can do this also? How does that work?
Don't be naive. Big Pharma makes a good profit selling to those other countries. They are making a killing in the US. Don't believe the big sob stories about their research and FDA approval costs and the great new drugs they give us. While there are constant improvements in drugs, most new drugs launched on the market are little or no better than the old ones and a new drug always carries an uncertain risk. And a lot of the research is marketing driven.

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wrote:

A lot of work needed, no doubt. Fortunately there are lots of working models to learn from.
If you want to be scared, check out the number of personal bankruptcies which are caused by medical expenses and the stories behind them.
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On Fri, 4 Aug 2006 10:22:39 -0400, "Mike Hunter"

But medicare pays less than private insurance. And private insurance pays less than you do with no insurance. How the hell can it be Medicare's fault that the price is high. The fact is that Medicare runs a very tight ship. (Except for Bush's welfare subsidy to Big Pharma masquerading as a drug plan for seniors.)

Yep, what we have now is the most expensive health care in the world. When you look at it that way, hard to imagine that the government could make it worse.

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WHO THE FUCK CARES?
Take it to email or an appropriate newsgroup.
Just go to alt.autos.toyota if you want to see what you're turning this previously fine newgroup into.
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Obviously you don't care about things that are important. So why not just overlook the off-topic threads and move on? Or killfile some folks. You pencil necked geek.
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I care.
But you don't get into heated debates about health care in the middle of my son's school Christmas play.
Everything has an appropriate time and place, and an inappropriate time and place.
I suppose you go to Wendy's and stand at people's lunch tables and start screaming your opinions about welfare, right? After all--according to you--"you care" and therefore it's appropriate, right?
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You think the government can not make things worse? You have never been in a VA hospital or seen by a VA doctor. Piss poor doctors and second rate coverage if you can even get into a Hospital or find a doctor
You are confused Medicare sets the rates charged by hospitals and doctors in a given area, and sets them high. I don't know what private coverage you have but my coverage arranges with doctors and hospital to pay far less than Medicare allows per person in the area. The reason Medicare pays five times as much as the VA for the same coverage, is Medicare payments to hospital are a round about way to reimburse hospitals and doctors for free emergency care they must provide, under the Hill Burton Act, for the indigent.. The only was a doctor can charge you less than the Medicare rate is for him not to treat Medicare patients
Paying for drugs was never a problem for me but I now spend around $250 less a month for my meds, since the drug law went into effect, and I do not buy part 'D'. The sad part is, even though I never applied for SS, because of the Medicare law I can not even buy private coverage unless I sign up and pay for part 'B.'
Because of all the old folks in Florida, they get all of their drugs free and need not pay a monthly premium.
mike hunt
wrote:

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Gordon McGrew wrote:

What you say should make a lot of sense, but in my mind, NOTHING could be worse than having the government run anything so important. Everything I've ever seen the government try to take over is always poorly run and more costly. Can you think of anything they've run better and more cheaply? Let's even make that easier. Can you think of anything they've run well?
Personally, I want the government in my life much less than it already is. Not more.
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It's a virtual monopoly, and consumers (1) are discouraged from shopping around for the best prices; (2) usually have no awareness of what their insurer is paying for medical care and how this differs from what someone with other or no insurance would pay.
Unlike auto repair shops, when was the last time anyone saw doctors' offices advertising the cost of a routine 10k mile body checkup in the local newspaper? Or what's the cheapest ER within twenty miles for getting a laceration sewed up? Given the wait times in many ERs for such an injury, may as well make the driving radius 100 miles. (Wait times can routinely be long in some ERs, because some are dedicated to certain types of injury, and these injuries fill up the ER.)
Consumers, overcome with fear uncertainty and doubt, now view health insurance as not something for peace of mind but something from which they should get their money's worth every year. Which of course just raises health insurance prices more.
It seems increasingly more "funny money" is getting around, too. E.g. in the past year for two minor procedures, once the billing source heard I was not affiliated with any insurer but was paying directly, they slashed my bills. So now the uninsured can count on the insured to pay the cost of "negotiating" lower fees? I do not want to rely on this (even though in theory I received a smaller bill these last times). It's not free market action. Consumers have no idea of the actual costs of services.
It does resemble a pyramid scheme: Insurance Company X says that, by purchasing their plan, you'll get a 20% discount from the "normal" price that doctor's office Y charges. Y does not want to give money away, so s/he raises the prices on services. X responds by raising the prices for the consumer. The consumer Z is just happy s/he's getting 20% off whatever price.

Government intervenes to prevent monopolistic practices all the time. While health care providers and insurers may not be breaking the law on trusts (= monopolies), they are violating the principles on which this law is based.

This is a trick question, since rarely have direct comparisons been possible.
We could talk about the construction of interstate highways, USPS vs. UPS (they seem pretty competitive), disaster relief (despite Katrina, it would be only conjecture to say a private firm could handle such a situation better), Medicare for the 65 and older crowd vs. private insurance today, and not get anywhere meaningful.
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On Sat, 05 Aug 2006 14:22:47 GMT, Lee Florack

The USPS makes a profit and only charges 39 cents to deliver a letter to Buttfuck Idaho.

Well, the US Army used to pay a soldier $15,000 plus rations to drive a truck in a war zone. Now they give Haliburton a cost-plus contract to hire civilians at $100,000 to drive a truck which, if blown up or abandoned, represents a profit for the Company.

I would like to have health insurance that I can't lose to the whims of fate.
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On Fri, 4 Aug 2006 09:33:25 -0400, "Mike Hunter"

You must have your head pretty far up something if you haven't heard that:
1. The US is virtually(?) the only industrialized nation that does not have universal nationalized health care
2. The US has the highest per capita health care costs in the world by far.
3. The overall quality of US health care is mediocre.
4. All the above are getting worse.
Read up:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050712140821.htm
The United States continues to spend significantly more on health care than any country in the world. In 2005, Americans spent 53 percent per capita more than the next highest country, Switzerland, and 140 percent above the median industrialized country, according to new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The study authors analyzed whether two possible reasons - supply constraints and malpractice litigation - could explain the difference in health care costs. They found that neither factor accounted for a large portion of the U.S. spending differential. The study is featured in the July/August 2005 issue of the journal Health Affairs.
The study authors reviewed health care spending data on 30 countries from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) for the year 2003. U.S. citizens spent $5,267 per capita on health care. The country with the next highest per capita expenditure, Switzerland, spent $3,446 per capita. The median OECD country spent $2,193 per capita.
http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2005/medical_errors.html
http://www.economist.com/world/displaystory.cfm?story_idT36968
http://dll.umaine.edu/ble/U.S.%20HCweb.pdf
http://www.voanews.com/english/archive/2006-02/2006-02-28-voa59.cfm?CFID#244871&CFTOKENF366533
http://www.theolympian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060502/LIVING03/60502055

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