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
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
The US could learn a lot from Europe but they do not because they think
they know it all
Mike Hunter 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
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.
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.
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
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.
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
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?
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.
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.
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
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.
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
You must have your head pretty far up something if you haven't heard
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
3. The overall quality of US health care is mediocre.
4. All the above are getting worse.
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.
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