Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

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Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Dave Roberts » Sat May 06, 2017 8:35 am

The more I listen to the rhetoric in the healthcare debate, the more one issue seems to rise to the top. That issue is: "Is healthcare a right or is it a privilege for those who can afford it?" This has been an American debate, never rising strongly to the surface since the enacting of the Hill-Burton Act. The website JDSupra summarizes it this way: "In 1946, Congress passed a law that gave hospitals, nursing homes and other health facilities grants and loans for construction and modernization. In return, they agreed to provide a reasonable volume of services to persons unable to pay and to make their services available to all persons residing in the facility’s area. The program stopped providing funds in 1997, but about 200 health care facilities nationwide are still obligated to provide free or reduced-cost care." That financing law following World War II and in the face of record numbers of births and also hospital usage required (for the first time) certain levels of care for all Americans.

A second place where the debate was carried was with the creation of Medicare in the mid-1960's that insured some level of care for senior adults who would pay into the system throughout their working lives in order to insure that healthcare would be available to them after age 65 when the prices of medical insurance skyrocketed for most people because they were subject to age-degenerative conditions.

The third place where this debate hit center stage was with the Affordable Care Act in 2009. The ACA was another set of compromises in the effort to move toward more universal insurance and the recognition of a right to healthcare. The mandate for insurance was upheld by the courts because of the accepted principle of many states requiring car insurance and liability insurance for businesses. It moved a step closer to recognizing a universal right to healthcare. The effort to repeal is basically one that wants to eliminate the mandate because it makes healthcare a right and not a privilege of what one can afford or what charity care can be received. All the partisan politicking going on seems to do its best to evade the basic question that the USA must debate and face: "When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to healthcare?"

By the way, did you ever notice how many times that Jesus or the apostles got into trouble for providing healing? Were they getting in the way of that day's healthcare system? What is the Christian principle for the decisions regarding healthcare?
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby William Thornton » Sat May 06, 2017 9:33 am

Jesus didn't heal everyone and folks died as a result, so I don't think there's much of a point there.

At least with Medicare gummit has extracted some payment from folks for future health expenses. If health care is a right then where is the connection between forcing individuals and institutions to provide services and forcing recipients to pay?

Health care as a right will eventually be the principle we try and follow, unworkable and complex as that might be and with clearly intended along with unintended consequences.

Health care is already a right, given that anyone can show up at an ER and receive some level of health care.

"When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to healthcare?" One might ask, "When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to demand the services of others, at no cost?" "When a person eats sugar nonstop and weighs 600 pounds and has all kinds of diabetic problems or when a person smokes constantly and has COPD or lung cancer or other related sicknesses or when some boy decides he is a girl and has some authority to diagnose a disease or syndrome and demands a sex change operation does government have the right to put a gun to my head and force me to pay for it?" Yes to the latter.

I have no idea where health care is going other than it will be a mess.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Dave Roberts » Sat May 06, 2017 10:01 am

William Thornton wrote:Jesus didn't heal everyone and folks died as a result, so I don't think there's much of a point there.

At least with Medicare gummit has extracted some payment from folks for future health expenses. If health care is a right then where is the connection between forcing individuals and institutions to provide services and forcing recipients to pay?

Health care as a right will eventually be the principle we try and follow, unworkable and complex as that might be and with clearly intended along with unintended consequences.

Health care is already a right, given that anyone can show up at an ER and receive some level of health care.

"When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to healthcare?" One might ask, "When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to demand the services of others, at no cost?" "When a person eats sugar nonstop and weighs 600 pounds and has all kinds of diabetic problems or when a person smokes constantly and has COPD or lung cancer or other related sicknesses or when some boy decides he is a girl and has some authority to diagnose a disease or syndrome and demands a sex change operation does government have the right to put a gun to my head and force me to pay for it?" Yes to the latter.

I have no idea where health care is going other than it will be a mess.


William, I love the straw men that were not in my post. I am grateful that you do recognize the importance of making healthcare a right. Nowhere do I advocate a system in which no one pays, I would strongly support a national healthcare system in which everyone pays something to be part of the system in a Medicare style tax.

Nowhere did I advocate that Jesus healed everyone, but if you remember, Paul and Silas landed in jail for taking the profit motive out of disease. That is a big part of our problem.

Another part of our problem is that our healthcare system does not provide help to remain healthy. There is no money to be made in the present system by helping people stay healthy. My primary care doctor in 2009 gave me a prescription to walk a minimum of six miles every week. I have done that. A side benefit of my Medicare supplement plan is a "Silver Sneakers" membership in the local YMCA. Seldom do we get those things because they do not sell drugs or medical services. Despite my best efforts to stay healthy, I am in the midst of treatments for coronary artery disease which is far beyond anything I could afford on my own. I suspect that my caths plus stints will cost in the neighborhood of $35,000 by the time I finish cardiac rehab. By the way, my problems come from heredity, not from bad decisions alone. The greater problem is that there is no value in our system to help people stay healthy.

Until both parties get out of bed with the drug companies and medical insurers, we will be left with a hodgepodge of care that may or may not meet the needs of patients but is highly profitable to the companies involved. It will also remain a system that forces up to 600,000 or more medical bankruptcies per year in our country. It is also a system where those of us who pay our bills or have insurance and use the system are forced to subsidize the care of those who can't or don't pay rather than that cost being spread across the whole of society. Is that right to force those who get sick to pay for others who are sick rather than charging it across society?
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Rvaughn » Sat May 06, 2017 10:54 am

Dave Roberts wrote:By the way, did you ever notice how many times that Jesus or the apostles got into trouble for providing healing? Were they getting in the way of that day's healthcare system? What is the Christian principle for the decisions regarding healthcare?
I think we all know the general Christian principles for healthcare -- take care of your family, take care of others (widows, orphans, and folks you find beaten on the side of the road, for example), etc.. But what is not clear is the application of Christian principles to the secular government's role in healthcare. Jesus and the apostles didn't tax anyone to provide what they provided, and the Good Samaritan dug deep into his own pocket and not that of the innkeeper.

Just yesterday afternoon I posted a reference to a (possibly apocryphal) story where Davy Crockett challenged the House members to dig into their own pockets to do what he felt they did not have the legal authority to do. I do know that Ron Paul did that on occasion.
http://baptistsearch.blogspot.com/2017/05/crockett-on-charitable-donations.html

All that said, I suppose a universal healthcare system in which we all taxed equally for us all to receive equally poor service would be better than the hugely conglomerated mess that we have now.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Haruo » Sat May 06, 2017 11:00 am

The United States (compared with the rest of the industrialized world and some of the semi-industrialized world) has been stuck on stupid on this issue since before I was born. I hope Krauthammer is right on this, and that seven years from now we will have a single-payer system like the one in Canada, or the one in Australia that Trump recently praised. But the various Obamacare replacements the GOP has been trying out in Congress will make things (temporarily, but for how long I know not) worse. I'm proud of Washington State. Although we have four GOP congressmembers (out of nine total), we only gave ONE vote to the thing that just passed the House.

I agree with Robert that one thing (among several, I think) that is not always clear in this matter is how Christian principles relate to secular government. But tons of other countries, religious to greater or lesser degrees, Christian in their religiosity to greater or lesser degrees, have single-payer health insurance systems that have functioned pretty darn well for decades with far less cost either to the poor or to the average citizen. And their drugmakers, by and large, haven't gone broke either.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Jim » Sat May 06, 2017 11:18 am

Dave Roberts wrote:The more I listen to the rhetoric in the healthcare debate, the more one issue seems to rise to the top. That issue is: "Is healthcare a right or is it a privilege for those who can afford it?" This has been an American debate, never rising strongly to the surface since the enacting of the Hill-Burton Act. The website JDSupra summarizes it this way: "In 1946, Congress passed a law that gave hospitals, nursing homes and other health facilities grants and loans for construction and modernization. In return, they agreed to provide a reasonable volume of services to persons unable to pay and to make their services available to all persons residing in the facility’s area. The program stopped providing funds in 1997, but about 200 health care facilities nationwide are still obligated to provide free or reduced-cost care." That financing law following World War II and in the face of record numbers of births and also hospital usage required (for the first time) certain levels of care for all Americans.

A second place where the debate was carried was with the creation of Medicare in the mid-1960's that insured some level of care for senior adults who would pay into the system throughout their working lives in order to insure that healthcare would be available to them after age 65 when the prices of medical insurance skyrocketed for most people because they were subject to age-degenerative conditions.

The third place where this debate hit center stage was with the Affordable Care Act in 2009. The ACA was another set of compromises in the effort to move toward more universal insurance and the recognition of a right to healthcare. The mandate for insurance was upheld by the courts because of the accepted principle of many states requiring car insurance and liability insurance for businesses. It moved a step closer to recognizing a universal right to healthcare. The effort to repeal is basically one that wants to eliminate the mandate because it makes healthcare a right and not a privilege of what one can afford or what charity care can be received. All the partisan politicking going on seems to do its best to evade the basic question that the USA must debate and face: "When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to healthcare?"

By the way, did you ever notice how many times that Jesus or the apostles got into trouble for providing healing? Were they getting in the way of that day's healthcare system? What is the Christian principle for the decisions regarding healthcare?


There’s no such thing as a “basic human right to anything,” not least because there’s no consensus as to the definition of such “right.” Some think it’s the right to satisfy one’s desires, work for it. Some think it’s the right to the same but that someone else pay for it. Some think it’s the right to use any effort or institution to guarantee the same. The only “basic” thing that can be consensually defined is “basic human need” like eating or breathing regardless of how satisfied. In the horn of Africa, people are starving to death today, especially children, because of the famine. Who in this forum is concerned about that and trying to do anything about it, or what church or denomination? Maybe Samaritan’s Purse? Institutions like government or a political party can attempt to create a “basic human right,” but Nature has that call. The government can through its officials as financed by its citizens establish a vehicle for satisfying a “basic human need,” but not accruing to a “right,” only as a service. U.S. Universal Healthcare is a service that about half the population finances, either directly or mandated through insurance companies but not as a “right.” Ask the Somalis.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Haruo » Sat May 06, 2017 11:40 am

Jim, what about (among others: "among them are") "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness"??
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Haruo » Sat May 06, 2017 11:55 am

A guy on a FB group I belong to recently wrote:Donald Trump and the GOP just did something that will benefit me greatly, and it pisses me off.

The repeal of the ACA and passage of the AHCA will benefit Americans like me, who fall into a very rare category of middle-income and no employer provided health insurance. (My household income is higher than the median household income of our state, but neither of us work for entities required to provide insurance under the law, nor are offered it otherwise).

That means we go to the exchanges, sans subsidies or employer contributions. The result is a very expensive policy that provides very poor coverage. My deductible is so high (it's nearly what I paid for my brand new car a couple of years ago) that I am, essentially, uninsured. A few free visits now and then would've easily been paid out of pocket, for less in fact than the premiums.

So I will probably be able to go back to what I used to have, pre ACA. An inexpensive, major medical policy that only covered major issues, like a hospitalization or a major diagnosis. Also a maternity rider to cover that (under our current policy, we have laughable 'maternity coverage'. When we get the ACA mandated explanation of coverage, it says something like "If you had a baby: Without insurance, average $6,700 out of pocket. Under your policy: Average $6,700 out of pocket. The deductibles are so high, unless I get cancer, I will have to pay cash for any treatment I receive)

I'm a healthy, fit 26 year old with no pre-existing conditions who was last treated for an illness at age 12. I rarely even catch a cold. I honestly can't remember the last time I was sick for more than a day or two. I have actually never missed work due to illness in my life (At worst, I've gone home early). By all accounts, I should save a LOT of money. (DISCLAIMER: In all likelihood, the insurance companies will have no impetus to reduce my premiums because they no longer have to keep prices of young people in line with older people; but I may be able to purchase a cheaper policy with less coverage, but more coverage where I actually need it).

I was a begrudging supporter of the ACA. By that I mean, it absolutely SUCKED for me. It required me to pay for a ton of coverage I didn't need, and gave me very little coverage I actually did need. Doctors visits don't count for the deductible. Neat! My primary care physician charges $75 a visit. I would MUCH rather pay him $75 a couple times a year, than have a $16,000 billif I ever wind up in the hospital.

BUT... and here's the big big big but. The poor people in my community, in my church, in my family, had insurance for the first time. A person in my community got much needed open heart surgery that he knew he needed for years, the surgeon said "I can't believe this hasn't killed you yet". Because in a state that limits medicaid, despite his very low income, although all of his children were covered by medicaid as was his wife; he was denied.

A former classmate with Cystic Fibrosis was able to change jobs, move to another state, and do other things without worrying that she'd never be able to get insurance that she desperately needs. She will never in her life earn what she spends on healthcare every year. She's a net loss to any insurance company. But a moral and just society should in fact balance the money from healthy people like me, to keep people like her alive.

The stories are numerous and you've heard them all.

So, thanks GOP. I'm about to save a bunch of money. And poor people are going to die because of it.

I feel this sick about the prospect of a lower premium (because of what it actually means), so how in God's name can those who voted for it be so smug?
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Rvaughn » Sat May 06, 2017 12:05 pm

Jim wrote:There’s no such thing as a “basic human right to anything,” not least because there’s no consensus as to the definition of such “right.”
In a previous thread that discussed health care, a member wrote, "...Healthcare is a human right..." I hoped he would you tease out that statement -- just what it means and the implications. But I suppose my question was overlooked. Perhaps someone in this thread, if you use the phrase, would explain what you mean by it? Thanks.

Haruo wrote:The stories are numerous and you've heard them all.

So, thanks GOP. I'm about to save a bunch of money. And poor people are going to die because of it.

I feel this sick about the prospect of a lower premium (because of what it actually means), so how in God's name can those who voted for it be so smug?
The problem with this guy's approach is that there were stories (good and bad) before Obamacare and there will be stories (good and bad) after Obamacare. We have to find workable principles, not just stories, because someone can always find a stories that support their viewpoints. I have a story, too. We all do.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Haruo » Sat May 06, 2017 12:09 pm

Haruo wrote:Jim, what about (among others: "among them are") "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness"??

Or are you saying those rights are Divine (like monarchical rule) or Inalienable (as in our national Scripture) but NOT "Human"?
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Jim » Sat May 06, 2017 5:04 pm

Haruo wrote:Jim, what about (among others: "among them are") "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness"??

Let's just say Jefferson and I disagree if he meant those things as rights, divine or otherwise. What rights did his slaves have, for instance? They had life because their needs were satisfied but neither liberty nor the pursuit of happiness, at least as I conceive them.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby KeithE » Sun May 07, 2017 9:01 am

Dave Roberts wrote:The more I listen to the rhetoric in the healthcare debate, the more one issue seems to rise to the top. That issue is: "Is healthcare a right or is it a privilege for those who can afford it?" This has been an American debate, never rising strongly to the surface since the enacting of the Hill-Burton Act. The website JDSupra summarizes it this way: "In 1946, Congress passed a law that gave hospitals, nursing homes and other health facilities grants and loans for construction and modernization. In return, they agreed to provide a reasonable volume of services to persons unable to pay and to make their services available to all persons residing in the facility’s area. The program stopped providing funds in 1997, but about 200 health care facilities nationwide are still obligated to provide free or reduced-cost care." That financing law following World War II and in the face of record numbers of births and also hospital usage required (for the first time) certain levels of care for all Americans.

A second place where the debate was carried was with the creation of Medicare in the mid-1960's that insured some level of care for senior adults who would pay into the system throughout their working lives in order to insure that healthcare would be available to them after age 65 when the prices of medical insurance skyrocketed for most people because they were subject to age-degenerative conditions.

The third place where this debate hit center stage was with the Affordable Care Act in 2009. The ACA was another set of compromises in the effort to move toward more universal insurance and the recognition of a right to healthcare. The mandate for insurance was upheld by the courts because of the accepted principle of many states requiring car insurance and liability insurance for businesses. It moved a step closer to recognizing a universal right to healthcare. The effort to repeal is basically one that wants to eliminate the mandate because it makes healthcare a right and not a privilege of what one can afford or what charity care can be received. All the partisan politicking going on seems to do its best to evade the basic question that the USA must debate and face: "When a person gets sick, does he or she have a right to healthcare?"

By the way, did you ever notice how many times that Jesus or the apostles got into trouble for providing healing? Were they getting in the way of that day's healthcare system? What is the Christian principle for the decisions regarding healthcare?

Thanks for the historical discussion.

Jesus’s decision to offer care certainly did not have financial considerations in mind.

One question that rises to top (from a progressive’s perspective) is as you say "Is healthcare a right or is it a privilege for those who can afford it?”. I'd hope all people would see it as at least a “desirement” in forming a "more perfect union" if not an absolute “right”. Either way that desirement or right should know no financial consideration. (The word “desirement” is from my engineering background meaning a stated capability that is a desire in the product being developed, though not an absolute requirement).

Another question that rises to the top (from a conservative's perspective) is “Does the healthy have to pay for the ill who frequently bring their bad health on themselves”. Leave it to my congressmen Mo Brooks to bring this up. Republican Blurts Out That Sick People Don’t Deserve Affordable Care (an article title that exaggerates what Brooks actually said).

In a CNN interview, Representative Mo Brooks, an Alabama Republican, makes the case for Trumpcare in much starker terms: It will free healthy people from having to pay the cost of the sick. “It will allow insurance companies to require people who have higher health care costs to contribute more to the insurance pool that helps offset all these costs, thereby reducing the cost to those people who lead good lives, they’re healthy, they’ve done the things to keep their bodies healthy,” explained Brooks. “And right now, those are the people who have done things the right way that are seeing their costs skyrocketing.”

Brooks is exaggerating by using the term “skyrocketing”. Under ObamaCare the heath cost growth rate has somewhat subsided.

Image

2016 had a 6.5% increase in total health care costs and this need to be addressed but isn’t.

Yes I know there are certain premiums that have exploded that the RW has cherry picked where states have not shored up the ObamaCare markets in fact has sabotaged their markets.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Jim » Sun May 07, 2017 11:29 am

My wife and I are on Medicare, for which I paid for many years but must carry both supplemental insurance in addition to costly Medicare B as well as costly RX insurance. The cost amounts to about the entire amount of my wife’s pension. Just my supplemental insurance premium (not including drug coverage) has increased by 13% since June 2016. All of my wife’s coverage has increased as well (haven’t bothered to calculate for this post since it doesn’t actually matter, holding us automatically hostage no matter what happens). This is simply an example of what Obamacare has done for very old people, not to mention that it has driven insurance companies out of the market. In Iowa, there is now no insurer, for instance, and buying coverage across state lines is not allowed. If the employer mandate had been enforced in 2014 by Obama, as required by ACA law, the whole enterprise would have already flamed out, thus leaving nothing today. The tax-word is anathema to legislators but it needs to be understood that there’s no free lunch. The national healthcare program should be a version of Medicare for all if insurance (with the right to make choices) is to remain the main player. This is the same as individual accounts but with the law guaranteeing it (raising Medicare wage-deductions) though regulating it, as well. No one need get rich on anyone’s health-problem. The alternative is too awful to imagine. Just check out the VA mess.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Dave Roberts » Sun May 07, 2017 12:28 pm

I have learned across the years that there are many different kinds of healthcare in this country. There are clinics that do not seek to make a profit as well as hospitals that are non-profit in status, often those started by churches or other public service groups. Most have preserved a certain level of charity care as part of their founders' hopes for them.

A second type of hospital or clinic is that related to the public good by a chartering agency or government group. These are often non-profit while others support medical research and may be attached to a medical school. Again, they do a certain amount of charity care, and some of them receive indigent patients from the area of the governing body or sponsoring agency.

The third type of hospital is the for-profit model, often with groups that buy up other hospitals that they believe can be operated for the benefit of the corporate shareholders. Most doctors' offices and pharmacies also operate on this model. The market charges what the trade will bear knowing that reimbursements from insurance and government programs will often be at lower rates, but they are allowed then to write this off as a loss to grant even greater profit margins to the companies. Insurance companies all operate to make money themselves, not just to provide for the public good. These are often a problem determining how care is given. I have been told that my insurance, in past treatments, would not pay for me to be an inpatient following a procedure, but that it would allow for me to be held for observation for 23 hours. It is not my doctor who is treating me determining what is proper or needed but an insurance clerk or medical officer who has never once looked at me. The system deprives doctors of the right to determine proper patient treatment.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby KeithE » Sun May 07, 2017 2:52 pm

Jim wrote: The national healthcare program should be a version of Medicare for all if insurance (with the right to make choices) is to remain the main player. This is the same as individual accounts but with the law guaranteeing it (raising Medicare wage-deductions) though regulating it, as well. No one need get rich on anyone’s health-problem.


Agreed. Call your Congressmen and ask them to join the 108 other Congressmen (all Democrats) who are sponsors for HR 676, Expanded & Improved Medicare For All Act, but the congressional leadership (in both chambers) are not putting this on the docket and our media is barely mentioning it. It will be cheaper, simpler, includes pharmaceutics with large buys, and by definition have 100% coverage.

OFFICIAL SUMMARY:
This bill establishes the Medicare for All Program to provide all individuals residing in the United States and U.S. territories with free health care that includes all medically necessary care, such as primary care and prevention, dietary and nutritional therapies, prescription drugs, emergency care, long-term care, mental health services, dental services, and vision care.

Only public or nonprofit institutions may participate. Nonprofit health maintenance organizations (HMOs) that deliver care in their own facilities may participate.

Patients may choose from participating physicians and institutions.

Health insurers may not sell health insurance that duplicates the benefits provided under this bill. Insurers may sell benefits that are not medically necessary, such as cosmetic surgery benefits.

The bill sets forth methods to pay institutional providers and health professionals for services. Financial incentives between HMOs and physicians based on utilization are prohibited.

The program is funded: (1) from existing sources of government revenues for health care, (2) by increasing personal income taxes on the top 5% of income earners, (3) by instituting a progressive excise tax on payroll and self-employment income, (4) by instituting a tax on unearned income, and (5) by instituting a tax on stock and bond transactions. Amounts that would have been appropriated for federal public health care programs, including Medicare, Medicaid, and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), are transferred and appropriated to carry out this bill.

The program must give employment transition benefits and first priority in retraining and job placement to individuals whose jobs are eliminated due to reduced clerical and administrative work under this bill.

The Department of Health and Human Services must create a confidential electronic patient record system.

The bill establishes a National Board of Universal Quality and Access to provide advice on quality, access, and affordability.

The Indian Health Service must be integrated into the program after five years. Congress must evaluate the continued independence of Department of Veterans Affairs health programs.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby JE Pettibone » Mon May 08, 2017 9:25 am

Ed: Leave the Vets program alone. Just see that current rules and regs are enforced, including staffing models. .
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Sandy » Mon May 08, 2017 10:33 am

There are ideas and thoughts I see floated around in the Christian community that I find to be counter to the philosophical perspective of applied Christian living, particularly among those who claim they believe in the absolute authority, inerrancy and infallibility of scripture. I think much of that is simply a lack of information. Locked up inside the fantasy world of Christian and conservative "news" sources that are all commentary and very light on fact, the information they have is simply false. It's taken eight years of hearing from the real people who are most affected by this to get enough information out there to create the realization that if this goes away, they are back to square one, which is basically trying to scrape together the rudimentary health care they had, at exorbitant, profiteering prices, to try to treat symptoms and in some cases, stay alive.

The intricate, Biblical arguments for the pro-life position takes a philosophical stance on the sanctity of human life. Any Christian based pro-life organization most likely has a website that lays these principles out with a good assortment of Bible citations in support. If you simply accept the philosophical statements, you don't even have to insert any other language to make the same, strong argument that health care is an equally Biblical sanctity of human life issue. The part that deals with pregnancy and the unborn isn't really even half the argument if human life is valuable enough from conception to be protected. When does it lose its value, in this regard? Asking the government to protect the life of the unborn is the exact same philosophical ball park as asking the government to provide universal health care. It's antithetical to the pro-life position to legislate to protect the unborn, but not to legislate to protect a life, once born, from circumstances which either allow pain and suffering to become free market economic commodities to be exploited in a supply and demand system, or to allow quality of life to be regulated by a dollar amount.

In our "separation of church and state" culture, the government should not be expected to operate under religious principles, though the collective conscience of the nation certainly has the right to influence its actions. The government's acknowledgement that health care is a basic human right isn't establishment of religion. But the fact that a majority of conservative, Evangelical Christians are opposed to any government attempt to make health care affordable, and take it out of the realm of being nothing more than an economic commodity to be exchanged for as much money as "the market will bear" is an indication that they are exclusive and selective when it comes to applying the principles they use to insist on the rights of the unborn. Their view of health care rights also stands in contrast to those "godless, liberal" Europeans, and the secular Canadians, who long ago recognized that health care in the free market means that only the wealthy have access to it, and have developed high quality, well funded, nationalized health care systems with costs that run about half or less than what we have available in the US. Most American Christians, and virtually all of the self-proclaimed leaders, are fascinated by wealth, and are so bent on chasing after it to fund the capacious palaces and edifices they build to house congregations that use them for an hour once a week, that you can't expect them to hold a moral view in the face of an opportunity to make a buck off of someone's misfortune.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby KeithE » Mon May 08, 2017 6:55 pm

Sandy wrote:

The intricate, Biblical arguments for the pro-life position takes a philosophical stance on the sanctity of human life. Any Christian based pro-life organization most likely has a website that lays these principles out with a good assortment of Bible citations in support. If you simply accept the philosophical statements, you don't even have to insert any other language to make the same, strong argument that health care is an equally Biblical sanctity of human life issue. The part that deals with pregnancy and the unborn isn't really even half the argument if human life is valuable enough from conception to be protected. When does it lose its value, in this regard? Asking the government to protect the life of the unborn is the exact same philosophical ball park as asking the government to provide universal health care. It's antithetical to the pro-life position to legislate to protect the unborn, but not to legislate to protect a life, once born, from circumstances which either allow pain and suffering to become free market economic commodities to be exploited in a supply and demand system, or to allow quality of life to be regulated by a dollar amount.

In our "separation of church and state" culture, the government should not be expected to operate under religious principles, though the collective conscience of the nation certainly has the right to influence its actions. The government's acknowledgement that health care is a basic human right isn't establishment of religion. But the fact that a majority of conservative, Evangelical Christians are opposed to any government attempt to make health care affordable, and take it out of the realm of being nothing more than an economic commodity to be exchanged for as much money as "the market will bear" is an indication that they are exclusive and selective when it comes to applying the principles they use to insist on the rights of the unborn. Their view of health care rights also stands in contrast to those "godless, liberal" Europeans, and the secular Canadians, who long ago recognized that health care in the free market means that only the wealthy have access to it, and have developed high quality, well funded, nationalized health care systems with costs that run about half or less than what we have available in the US. Most American Christians, and virtually all of the self-proclaimed leaders, are fascinated by wealth, and are so bent on chasing after it to fund the capacious palaces and edifices they build to house congregations that use them for an hour once a week, that you can't expect them to hold a moral view in the face of an opportunity to make a buck off of someone's misfortune.


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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Haruo » Tue May 09, 2017 1:26 am

Jim wrote:
Haruo wrote:Jim, what about (among others: "among them are") "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness"??

Let's just say Jefferson and I disagree if he meant those things as rights, divine or otherwise. What rights did his slaves have, for instance? They had life because their needs were satisfied but neither liberty nor the pursuit of happiness, at least as I conceive them.

Given that the wording is "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness", I see no reason to think that Jefferson did not "mean those things as rights". One may argue whether he thought "Men" included "Women", and whether "Men" included slaves, but in a legal sense, slaves were not quite human beings at the time, and the same can probably be said of women.
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Re: Real Issue in Healthcare Debate

Postby Jim » Tue May 09, 2017 2:37 pm

Haruo wrote:
Jim wrote:
Haruo wrote:Jim, what about (among others: "among them are") "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness"??

Let's just say Jefferson and I disagree if he meant those things as rights, divine or otherwise. What rights did his slaves have, for instance? They had life because their needs were satisfied but neither liberty nor the pursuit of happiness, at least as I conceive them.

Given that the wording is "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness", I see no reason to think that Jefferson did not "mean those things as rights". One may argue whether he thought "Men" included "Women", and whether "Men" included slaves, but in a legal sense, slaves were not quite human beings at the time, and the same can probably be said of women.

Jefferson spoke for Jefferson, not God, though he said “we” and was probably right in that some agreed with him. The only unalienable right given by God is existence as effected by his design—conceived by man and woman, certainly not by man and man. Not by any stretch of the imagination are all men created equal. The best-off child born in Somalia is far worse off than a baby born to a welfare (okay, mostly “single” mom) in the USA, where he/she will be nurtured by the government, if necessary, right into adulthood at the expense of the taxpayers and live a life that the Somalian, if surviving through childhood, could never imagine. The “legal sense” has no bearing on any of this, so slaves were people and simply remark the inequality just described. Folks die equally, however, entitled most of the time to about 144 cubic feet of earth or, if at sea, so many gallons. The cremated, as I will be one of these days not long away (that great gettin’-up mornin’) may not grant any extra space to any other cadaver.
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