Crazy 9/12 Lunatics

These videos are doing the rounds so maybe you’ve already seen them, but even though they’re lengthy they’re worth watching in full. The thing that really strikes me is not the strawman argument of “racism” (I don’t think most of these people are problematically racist), but the really incredibly levels of ignorance. It blows me away that people can have such bizarrely false ideas about the way America works, and it’s perhaps even more bizarre to me how contradictory everything is… contradictory from the views they held when Bush was in power, and even self-contradictory in a single statement, where for example all things “unamerican” are somehow equated as the same thing (Stalin, Hitler, Communist, Fascist, etc.), or aspects of socialism are OK (schools, medicare, the military) but others (caring for the sick as a basic right of citizenship) are not, without any apparent reasoning behind it. To say nothing of the incredible fear and even hatred of immigrants — I understand you don’t want to have people taking advantage of the system, but at the same time, civilized people don’t deny help, especially medical help, to others on the basis of where they were born. It’s all really upsetting and stunning fear-driven ignorance — it’s very sad, because these people, the majority of them not in the top economic bracket, are being lead down a path that’s really self-destructive and not in their best interest. I don’t like the idea of saving people from themselves, but if there are any people that need to be saved from themselves, it’s these misled and folks.

I really wonder about characters like Glenn Beck and Limbaugh and the other folks who drive this whole process. I think many of them are quite bright, and I am sure that they know they are telling outrageous lies and manipulating these fools… So I wonder what drives them, and how they feel about it. I have no idea if it’s as simple as they’re mercenaries, and they just don’t care because they make money off the process, or if they believe in the “direction” that they’re trying to push America in is correct or “good” (some sort of highly unequal wealth-based corporatocracy maybe), and they’re taking a “by any means necessary” stance on the whole thing, knowing they’re tricking stupid and fear-filled people, but believing that the end justifies the means. I don’t know… I certainly couldn’t do it.

If that’s not enough for you, there’s some “extras” at this URL. I really hope all of this madness ends soon, because if it escalates, it could easily take America into a very dark direction. The US media should be ashamed of itself for its utter failure in educating the public, and its advertising driven “journalism” that devotes a majority of its airtime to these lies that deserve to be dispelled with a quick history and civics lesson and then never spoken of again.

In lighter news, woo woo, I am very much looking forward to the new UFC Ultimate Fighter Heavyweights series that starts tonight. That will get my mind off all this tea bagger 9/12 kook madness. [Edit: Without giving you any spoilers, it did not disappoint, with one of the bloodiest fights they've aired... and you know I love blood!]

46 Comments

  1. Barb wrote:

    We’re being overrun by the angry, violent right. I, for one, am scared shitless.

    Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 6:19 pm | Permalink
  2. Elizabeth wrote:

    I think Limbaugh and the like learned a few good tricks from evangelistic preachers. I have often wondered how many of the big money ministers believed in the “word” and long felt that they rather enjoyed the trappings. Sadly, the people you speak of flock to both. *shrug* As far as politics go, the fans of both “sides” unnerve me to no end. Cant wait to see the new Micheal Moore movie. It’s a glimmer of hope that he too has droves and hey, I dont mind those droves so much. :)

    Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 7:23 pm | Permalink
  3. Brandon wrote:

    I don’t understand why people believe healthcare is a right. Basic care like physicals and vaccinations are offered at low costs or for free. Treatments that require surgery cost a great deal more. What right do people have to more expensive treatments besides need. ‘Need’ is not something of value that can be traded for something of value, healthcare in this case. I feel the same way about schools, medicare, and the military. America is spending money on things that could be managed more efficiently by the private sector.

    On a lighter note. Have you heard of fightlinker.com? It’s run by a couple of Canadians and covers MMA in a very irreverent way. The same guys run another site, the goodathiest.

    Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 8:07 pm | Permalink
  4. starbadger wrote:

    Do you do we do I have any idea how much damage we can do with kindness.

    The older I get the kinder I get. It’s a failure of nerve and imagination I suppose.

    Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 8:49 pm | Permalink
  5. Em wrote:

    this post and the previous (re: zombies) just really reminds me of the gut level fear I had when I was reading Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower series. sci-fi, even the more realistic stuff doesn’t normally freak me out but her combo of zombified drug addicts and ignorant militant Christians had me swearing the Bush administration was going to destroy us all.

    Uhm, and regarding Limbaugh and whatnot, I remain constantly surprised at how people justify their lunacy.

    Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 10:27 pm | Permalink
  6. Victoria wrote:

    Wow… what an incredible display of ignorance.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 2:08 am | Permalink
  7. Shannon wrote:

    Brandon, the reason is because people believe that a society has the responsibility to provide a certain minimum standard of quality of life for people. In order to do so, certain basic services are provided for everyone — education, healthcare, national security, police, welfate, and so on.

    If you don’t provide these things, not only is the society of dubious universal value (serving only some of its members), but the reality is that when basic services are unevenly applied, it causes other problems in society (not just outrageous healthcare costs like in America) that are bad for everyone.

    ***

    To argue against healthcare, you really have to argue against education (private education was the norm in America until about a hundred years ago, and actually did a decent job, so you can make a much better case there), as well as the elimination of the military. That’s fine, and I appreciate the extremist libertarian or even anarchist view, and I believe I would do OK in a “might is right” world where the power you have is the power you can take, and we’re all pirates, but it’s a very different world than the one most people want to live in.

    Or argue against police. After all, police are just another armed gang running a protection racket. Why not leave it to the Mafia, or the Crips, or whoever is the strongest in your area?

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 4:09 am | Permalink
  8. Allahkat wrote:

    Brandon you make it seem like any surgery someone may NEED would be frivolous like a nose job.
    As a Canadian living in the US all I can say is that I hope they do work out some sort of plan because I think treating healthcare as a luxury is disgusting.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 4:15 am | Permalink
  9. Brandon wrote:

    Anarchy and libertarianism don’t automatically mean that might is right. The use removal or uses of force is not something of value. I don’t believe that cancer treatment is basic healthcare. If I am to pay (through taxes) for someones cancer treatment I expect them to be someone like Steve Ballmer or Rex Tillerson who actually add value to society. But, since they add value, they have plenty of value to pay for their healthcare. If the government took its hands off of the medical industry think of all the advancements that could be made to reduce costs. Stem cell research and perinatology are two that I can think of off the top of my head. The market for cheaper healthcare options is obviously there, otherwise people would be happy with the current costs of healthcare. But what incentive do medical corporations have to bring it to market if their profits won’t be increased. If the government subsidizes a treatment and makes it available to everyone, they don’t have to find ways to cut costs because they have an artificially high demand.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 4:51 am | Permalink
  10. Shannon wrote:

    It’s interesting that you say that you’re most willing to pay out of your taxes for the very richest of people, who need it least, but least willing to pay for the poorest people who you seem to be characterizing as worthless. I don’t get the impression that you’re trolling, but it’s a little surprising. But I guess that’s the American way — trick the poor into paying for the rich to get richer.

    The problem with US healthcare isn’t restrictions, it’s that it’s a profit-driven system, which means that the system is driven to deny healthcare to those who need it most, and to move as much money into the hands of the insurance companies, rather than into the doctors and hospitals and research groups.

    I have to wonder, again, whether your reasoning extends to education… Why not stop educating stupid people, and let them just go into the workforce when they turn ten?

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 7:30 am | Permalink
  11. MissJanet wrote:

    Brandon, I don’t get your pov at all. Over here in germany, we have a basic health system that enables even the poorest people to get medical help. I pay for that with a very high tax rate – and guess what – that is actually fine with me, because I might need medical help some day, too. It helps that I don’t associate poor with worthless.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 8:10 am | Permalink
  12. Brandon wrote:

    Now that I have reread my post I don’t think I was very clear. I believe that the only law man should follow is that nothing of value should be taken by force. If you look at Rex Tillerson, he produces oil which is of value to me. Every time I fill up my car I am paying for his healthcare, and I will continue to do so as long as oil is of value to me. Now, what does a homeless person have of value? Nothing. So the government has to FORCE me to give him something i have of value, money in this case, because he ‘needs’ something. That might sound really harsh, but I promise I’m not trolling. A little while ago I was driving to school and picked up a hitchhiker. He had plenty of entertaining stories and it was nice to have a companion for the drive; I had transportation. In my eyes, that was an equal exchange of value, no one was forced to give up something. One of my favorite analogies to the healthcare debate is the green revolution. People were starving because they couldn’t grow enough food. This opened up a market which Norman Borlaug filled with his wheat seed. His seed, along with other advances in fertilizer and industrial tool use revolutionized the agriculture business. How do you know that someone like Mr. Borlaug won’t come along and revolutionize healthcare? Education shouldn’t be only for the intelligent. It is something of value that should only be for those who have something of value to exchange for it. Maybe companies will start offering scholarships for k-12 education. Or, if we remove government regulations on education, corporations will open their own schools to recruit the best and the brightest. Advanced math, science, and literature isn’t required to be a skilled laborer. But, minimum wage and other costs of production added by the government force companies to move these jobs overseas. Imagine if every product produced in the world had the same labor cost. It would be cheaper to produce them in America because transportation costs would be much lower. In turn, there would be more American jobs and prices on goods would fall and people would be able to live off of lower wages. I’m probably way farther to the right than anyone should be, but to me this makes sense.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 9:36 am | Permalink
  13. MissJanet wrote:

    I think that you forget some people here. The single, stay at home mom with the 3 underage children, the guy who lost his job due to recession and cannot find another one, the guy who couldn’t cope with pressure at work anymore and had to quit, the former drug addict without any formal education, the old woman who could not forsee old age as a poor widow (or the kid that did poor aftercare and has an infection now and cannot tell the parents).

    I cannot see why this people should rather suffer, just because they have nothing of “value” to exchange. Value is something everyone defines different.

    Survival of the fittest or Darvinism – we should be bigger than that. At least imho.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 10:14 am | Permalink
  14. Shannon wrote:

    Brandon, first of all, I think you’re forgetting that people fall through the cracks all the time. I think one of the marks of a good society is that everyone in it lives a good life. It’s not so much that you are giving to people who don’t deserve it, it’s that you have the enlightened realization that a society with a universal standard of life is better for everyone.

    As far as a truly draconian model where you aspire to some sort of meritocracy, the reality is that while one can fantasize about those to satiate ones frustrations, the reality is that it would never work. At best you’d have power collecting in a small number of people (warlords who control by force, religions who control by fear, etc), with very little potential for people moving between classes, and society would stagnate and there would be little progress of any kind, and you’d have strife and revolution. If you want to see societies that live that way, look at places like Somalia or Afghanistan. They’re not places you’d want to grow up, I assure you!

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 11:19 am | Permalink
  15. Brandon wrote:

    @MissJanet
    So, because I’ve lived responsibly I’m going to be forced to pay for those that have lived irresponsibly? Why would you have 3 kids with a father who can’t be trusted to stick around, especially when birth control is freely available? Are we defending drug addicts now? He had his shot and obviously missed the mark. Maybe the unemployed guy can take the job of the guy who quit? If I plan poorly for retirement should I ask for a handout from the government? No one forced the kid to take poor care of his tattoo/piercing; every reputable shop gives out aftercare procedure sheets; not to mention the numerous resources on the internet. You can’t hold me accountable for these peoples actions; they made poor decisions and should accept the consequences.

    @Shannon
    Don’t talk to me about a fantasy world when your idea of a perfect society is that everyone lives a good life. After I pay for their healthcare, education, and children should I buy them a nice computer with the money I won’t be spending on my children’s healthcare and education? If your idea of enlightened society is that you should give what you worked hard to earn to those who haven’t earned it so that everyone can have a better standard of life, it’s just a race to the bottom. My idea of an enlightened society is one where everyone knows that people can accomplish great things if they’re left the hell alone. Somalia had a decent economy based on trade before Islam was introduced and the British launched a 20 year war and followed it by draining all their wealth. Now, even though Somalia is filled with civil unrest, it has one of the highest prospects for growth in all of Africa because it is a free market economy. Afghanistan got destroyed in 1979 by the Soviet invasion. Unfortunately, during the rebuilding the Taliban got control over the country and implemented strict Sharia was instituted stifling all chance of economic growth. Now that America has cleared some of the Taliban and put a invested a large sum of money Afghanistan is starting to recover. Both Somalia and Afghanistan were attacked by outside invaders and put under strict religious law.

    I really respect you Shannon, and I agree that most of the protesters there on 9/12 were religious nutcases who were only parroting what they hear on Fox News. But I think that you’re wrong about an enlightened society.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 4:11 pm | Permalink
  16. SteveC wrote:

    As someone who was not born or raised in the US but is now living in SF I find this health care circus odd to say he least.One thing I have noticed in my time here is that the majority of right leaning people are people who look at the mythology of america rather than the reality.That is they have learned all the myths surrounding the founding of the country,take buzz words out of the declaration of independence and constitution and proclaim that as the real america,and when it doesn’t match reality they become confuzed and are easily lead buy a few megalamanics.Now America is a great place it has a critical mass of experience and economy that few other places have, and it had a chance to be like the myths but I don’t think it has gotten over slavery yet.Everything is run through a filter of how many dollars it will cost business and if it looks like business lose some pennies this week it’s shot down.Henry Ford,for all his bad and sleazy trait work on the principal of if I pay my works well and make sure they are healthy they will be able to built and buy my products,if they buy more I’ll make more,everybody wins,US society seems to have lost that lesson.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 5:11 pm | Permalink
  17. MissJanet wrote:

    Brandon, life happens while you are busy making other plans.

    So you think that you can archive everything you want and nothing unexpected can happen to you, just because you are responsible? Good luck with that, you’ll need it.

    Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 11:45 pm | Permalink
  18. Victoria wrote:

    I think it’s very presumptuous of you (Brandon) to say that the reason why a woman would be a single mother of 3 was her poor choice of men. What if her husband died? Better yet, what if her husband was one of those killed when the planes flew into the WTC? It would be difficult then to justify leaving that family to fend for themselves. Unexpected, horrible things happen to people that don’t all have to do with their choices in life.
    I don’t think the idea here is “everyone living a good life”, but helping out those in need, and being able to be helped when you’re in need as well.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 2:00 am | Permalink
  19. dresden wrote:

    Ha. Free market is a fallacy. When you have someone with more power and guns to enforce it, the market bends to their will, and is not free, which is precisely where Somalia is right now.

    Free markets do not exist. Anywhere. They never really have. It’s like communism, sounds great on paper, but once you introduce the human factor (greed, ambition, etc.) the idea kinda gets fucked.

    People would even fuck up anarchy for christ sake.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 4:28 am | Permalink
  20. Allahkat wrote:

    I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHY SOME PEOPLE THINK LETTING EVERYONE HAVE ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE IS A BAD THING! ARGH!!!

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 4:44 am | Permalink
  21. Barb wrote:

    Brandon: I’m a middle-aged woman with an autistic teenage daughter. My husband left me for a man several years ago and is out of our lives. Although I have a master’s degree I was laid off last year due to company cutbacks. I currently can’t work full time because there is NO after school care for autistic teens in my area. I mean NONE.

    I now live in a cycle of forced poverty in order to qualify my daughter for therapies through Medicaid because my minimal health insurance pays for nothing. I take no benefits for myself though I’m going broke trying to pay COBRA with the $380 a week I get from unemployment. In a few months my COBRA will end and I’ll be unable to afford insurance.

    Am I worthless to society because I’m trying to teach my daughter to function in society as best she can? Is it MY fault that she can’t be left by herself in the afternoons? Or that I found myself alone after I discovered my husband’s double life? Or that my workplace closed our local office?
    I’m not looking for sympathy or asking ‘why me’ because shit happens and you have to roll with it. All I’m asking is that you open your mind to other possibilities. There are tens of thousands of people out there like us-working people who have no intentions of sucking off of the system who are falling through the cracks.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 7:17 am | Permalink
  22. Kyle wrote:

    Just put yourself into other peoples shoes. People get born into bad situations all the time and maybe they will work their ass off and become successful. Or maybe at 10 they get sick and because of the situation they were born into they dont have adequate insurance and never get the oppertunity to try.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 8:29 am | Permalink
  23. Brandon wrote:

    How about everyone that wants healthcare for everyone gets together and starts a non-profit organization. We’ll call it Organization for Progressive Healthcare(OPH). Anyone can join this organization and as soon as they do they are allowed to go to any hospital or doctor for any treatment and it will be paid for by the OPH. In order for the OPH to pay for this it charges its members “dues”. Of course, they can’t charge the poorest dues, so they charge only the richest members who join. If this sounds like a good idea, why haven’t people done this yet? Probably because it is insane. This organization would be in irreparable debt within the first month, and bankrupt within the first year. Poor people from every country would come to America to join; no rich person would want to touch it. Now, let’s say that OPH somehow conned a “greedy capitalist” into this organization and puts him in charge of making this a financially viable organization, because that’s the only thing they’re good at. The first measure he would try would be to raise dues. Since the poorest still can’t afford dues, only the richest would be charged extra. This might help the problem until all of the richest members get fed up and leave the organization. The next measure our intrepid businessman would try to implement would be a sort of contract with certain healthcare professionals. If he can work out a contract to where the members of OPH get discounted services OPH won’t have to pay out as much. There is no incentive for the best doctors and hospitals to work out a contract because they will always have patients who want the best care possible, and those patients are willing to pay for that privilege. So only the worst doctors and hospitals will sign these contracts, and since they have also have to stay in business they’ll cut treatment quality drastically for OPH members because they are being payed less per patient. After seeing that raising dues and making contracts still won’t make this organization feasible the businessman will look to cut costs internally. Filing claims will take longer since the office staff will be reduced. Jobs will be lost as they move their phone banks overseas. And lastly, a panel will be hired to audit peoples health records. If someone is using a disproportionate amount of healthcare, say to treat a rare disease, or to stave off old age, or for a child with disabilities, their benefits must be cut “so that everyone else can benefit.” After this organization fails everyone will look back and blame it on all the “greedy” people who don’t want to “help” their fellow man. This is what is trying to be forced on our government with no choice of whether or not to join. You will be forced to join, things of value will be forced out of your hands, and those thing will go into the hands of those “less fortunate.”

    I’m not my brother’s keeper.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 9:45 am | Permalink
  24. Shannon wrote:

    Brandon, what you’re describing exists in every wealthy nation on earth other than the USA. That’s how most civilized people WANT to live. People in Canada, in the UK, in France, etc., are in no way protesting to stop paying for universal health care. Every country that’s instituted it has recognized what a huge improvement it is. It seems so obvious to us, that we really scratch our heads when Americans fight it so vehemently.

    The immense irony is that in the US, because of the for profit system that siphons mountains of money OUT of healthcare and into insurance companies, the per capita cost of healthcare is several times higher than in nations that provide universal care (which is often of higher quality as well). Put simply, you pay far more for a lower quality product, and even people with insurance regularly lose access to healthcare — because that’s what makes money for health insurance companies: cutting and limiting access.

    The reason this is “funny” is that it means that Americans WITH healthcare are paying FAR FAR more, not to get better care, but simply to BLOCK poorer people from getting healthcare out of some sort of bizarre spite or sense of twisted justice. If they simply went for universal healthcare that was HEALTHCARE oriented, rather than INSURANCE PROFITS oriented, Americans — including currently insured ones — would actually pay less than they pay now. MUCH less in fact. And get better and more reliable care!

    It’s really sick when you think about it — how many Americans will go so far out of their way to hurt those in the most need in their society, just to avoid having to be “their brother’s keeper”. Americans seem to forget that as they have brothers, brothers have them…

    And like I said, of all the things Americans pay for universally — schools, roads, the MASSIVE military, corporate subsidies of most industries, etc — healthcare is one of the easiest to make a case for, and is one of the more inhumane and cruel to argue against.

    Brandon, I don’t know your details of course, and for all I know you are a massively wealthy person of superior health, intellect, and luck, and you come from a very old, very wealthy aristocratic family, but if you don’t, WOW would you be in a WORLD OF PAIN if the society you fantasize about actually existed.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 10:24 am | Permalink
  25. Elizabeth wrote:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090918/hl_nm/us_usa_healthcare_deaths

    Brightside, population control and less eviromental damage. :P
    *shrug* I’m ambivilent since I cant see that a bill supported by insurance and pharmecutical companies could possibly be in my best interest. I have no insurance and pay out of pocket. It will take me a year to pay off the last ER trip as I am one of the “less fortunate”. That’s ok, I’d FAR rather see steps taken to make this trip affordable rather than fining me for refusal to take part in the program or taking money from others to pay for my expenses. A friend of mine is making a trip to Mexico for dental work. They have state of the art facilities at much less expense. So Mexico can do what America cannot? *tsk, tsk*
    I’m sorry, everyone feel free to jump my ass and tell me what a horrible person I am. Whatever. I’m also not up for giving aid to impoverished countries. If they can continue giving birth after all these years of “help” then maybe we are prolonging a situation. When deer and other animals populate to the point where they cannot all eat, there is a die off and a leveling out. What if we decided to rather than let nature take it’s course, suppliment the deer with sweet feed?
    American Government, please work on reducing the costs of healthcare, prescription drugs. Quit taking money from insurance companies and pharmecutical companies to pass this bill. Thank you.

    - The working class.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 10:25 am | Permalink
  26. Elizabeth wrote:

    “The immense irony is that in the US, because of the for profit system that siphons mountains of money OUT of healthcare and into insurance companies, the per capita cost of healthcare is several times higher than in nations that provide universal care (which is often of higher quality as well). Put simply, you pay far more for a lower quality product, and even people with insurance regularly lose access to healthcare — because that’s what makes money for health insurance companies: cutting and limiting access.”

    Good point. I’d love universal healthcare that focused on quality healthcare for all with FAR less expense.
    No excuse for a single tylenol to cost $8.00. B.S.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 10:29 am | Permalink
  27. Eric wrote:

    It’s a strange sort of mixture between rational libertarian politics and irrational cultural preservation movements.

    And Shannon, the reason the police are better than gangs is that the Crips or the Bloods weren’t founded on and don’t intend be associated with the principle of protection of rights. Nor could a gang come up with the vast amounts of money needed to do most investigations.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 12:02 pm | Permalink
  28. Shannon wrote:

    Don’t worry Eric, even if I could come up with better examples of gangs who have a social mandate and more money (I might be able to), I’m not about to hand them police-level rights!

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 12:09 pm | Permalink
  29. Dresden wrote:

    Libertarian is the greed party. Liberty for those who can afford it, and fuck everyone else.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 12:16 pm | Permalink
  30. Shannon wrote:

    Libertarianism, like most extreme or black and white views, can offer valuable opinions/voices in the political dialog, but I can’t imagine a world in which they could actually govern.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 12:42 pm | Permalink
  31. Brandon wrote:

    If you look at the debt per capita of every “wealthy” nation in the world you’ll find that the only country that is close to America is Italy, and the only country below America is Japan. The same is true for % of gdp. In Italy there are long waiting lines, there is a shortage of medical technologies, and “physicians are payed via capitation”*. In Japan “the average Japanese household spends $2300 per year on out-of-pocket health care expenses.”* Although their levels of medical technology is equal to the US there are long waiting lines for the top hospitals because they can’t price according to demand. In Japan, “two-thirds of patients spend less than 10 minutes with their doctor; 18 percent spend less than 3 minutes.”* Those both sound like great systems if you aren’t chronically or seriously ill.
    *http://healthcare-economist.com/category/health-care-around-the-world/

    @Elizabeth
    What if the government took all the money it’s planning to spend on universal healthcare and gave it to medical research facilities. With all that money they would be able to drop the cost of Tylenol through the floor or come up with a cheaper alternative. Tylenol also has artificially low competition. Because the government decided it’s in our best interest to not use opium, Tylenol can charge more for their inferior product.

    @Dresden
    Please back up your assertion with some sort of thoughtful commentary.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 4:00 pm | Permalink
  32. Shannon wrote:

    Not sure what debt per capita has to do anything… in the USA it’s about $41k as of 2007, and it’s gone up since. In Canada the number is $22k. There’s nothing particularly unique or unusual about the US in that department. But none of that has anything to do with what we’re talking about, and I’m not sure that your quote is that relevant either.

    BTW, donating money to research does NOT reduce the cost of tylenol, nor does “tylenol have artificially low competition”, seeing as it’s available as a generic.

    I don’t mean to be rude, but the further this progresses, the less informed and the more nutty you’re seeming.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 4:22 pm | Permalink
  33. Elizabeth wrote:

    When you are in the hospital, they do not offer generic. I wasnt speaking of how much it costs *me* to go buy tylenol because obviously this is dramatically less than $8.00 per pill. Clearly if an individual can purchase Tylenol from the drug store for around $3.00 a bottle, charging $8.00 per capsule when you are a large institution, presumably able to buy in bulk is more than a tad ridiculous and goes FAR towards explaining why healthcare is not affordable to the masses.
    But no, I do not really see how donating money to research is the answer at all. Unless it is to research ways to lower healthcare costs. There is no way that my husband’s ER visit that consisted of a few simple lab tests and maybe a ten minute consultation should have cost $850. Ridiculous and I dont see where continuing to pay THAT MUCH is a solution.
    To the people whining about the impoverished being denied healthcare, those in poverty, for instance, those already living in government housing already DO receive free healthcare, as do hispanics. ALl this bill does is force working class Joe’s like me to pay for insurance at the same rate as someone with far higher health risk, far less healthy lifestyle. Forced or fined way more than I have spent in healthcare in years. No.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 4:32 pm | Permalink
  34. Shannon wrote:

    Here in Canada you would be offered a generic — because the goal of the system is not to charge the most amount of money in the easiest way, but, because it’s a public system, its goal is to provide the best service at the best cost.

    Hispanics do not get free healthcare, unless you’re saying that all hispanics are below the poverty line?

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 5:00 pm | Permalink
  35. Elizabeth wrote:

    The hispanics that everyone’s up in arms about whether they too will receive free medical care are I assume, undocumented workers. (That is the p.c. term for 2009, right?) Undocumented workers do not have to provide any proof of income and are eligible for not only health care but even food stamps. My MIL is an occupational therapist who’s been at her wit’s end for some years over Americans being denied access to her care while undocumented workers get it.

    In your opinion, if we pass the current health bill, since it is a public system they will then seek to be cost effective? If this is the case, why then is it being pushed, payed for by pharmecutical and insurance companies? I am all for healthcare for all, it would be a great relief to know that my family had access to quality care, no matter what. Maybe we could introduce a bill that follows Canada’s healthcare policies and too have lowered administrative and pharmecutical cost. Until then, no. Not this legislation, it stinks like a Friday fish on Tuesday morning.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 5:40 pm | Permalink
  36. DaddyLL wrote:

    Wow so many of you have fell into the US Govs MSM (or now fringe media) BS. Its almost funny. The 9/12 march (which I went to) was amazing. Lefts, rights and centers all together not because of health care but because our Gov is run by criminals and is robbing our people. They aren’t trying to help people with free health care, they are trying to keep many on the plantation and put the rest of us on it! This is about personal freedom and tax abuse to the point of no end! Health care is a real issue but that is just the cover the current congress is using to hide what is really going on here, power grabs, control and a system of gov that none of us want. We are a republic, not a democracy and we are a capitalist society not a socialist one. But again that is not the point, the point is the health care, much like many other things, are a pact of lies, lies said like many other lies the Obama administration as said and he has went back on, only to attempt to gain power. KRS-One said it best when he said “All you did was put a black face on the tyranny and we all voted it was ok…many people are waking up to realize its not” (KRS-ONE is an African American) If you have a spare but of time go watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAaQNACwaLw Might explain some things. All this talk about race, hell Obama is more white then he is black! Get a fuckign grip man and look at the big picture! One lie after another

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 4:22 am | Permalink
  37. Shannon wrote:

    BTW, while I did approve “daddyll”‘s comment *think* that it’s not a comment from a zentastic reader, but a comment from someone who searches for these sorts entries around the Net to post on entries like this to give a false impression that there’s a larger set of believers.

    I was also a little wary about posting it because it’s all distration away from the main point — that anti-healthcare thinking is being promoted through misdirection and incredible levels of ignorance, rather than a real discussion on the issues. That said, his post also repeats a lot of the strange-world lies and conspiracy thinking, as well as the statement that Fox News is mainstream and anyone who disagrees is fringe. It’s really amazing stuff watching people be turned into paranoid puppets.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 5:54 am | Permalink
  38. dresden wrote:

    Brandon, every thing you write validates my point. You’re saying some people are worth less than other people since they can’t contribute as much. You deny health care should be a right for everyone, and justify it that some people are worth less than others because of what they can offer. That’s a pretty dangerous way of thinking, especially when you could be on the lower side of that through some rough circumstances that are out of your control. Who cares if your taxes are higher and that you have to pay for some people that may not be as able minded/body as you. You’ll probably still have all the shit you want/need and then some. So will I. I make good money, and I don’t care. I’ll still probably make good money, and if I have to pay another few percent a year knowing that everyone might be a little better off, I’m ok with that. Paying less, getting less, and having no plan to deal with the people that will fall through the cracks will probably lead to a lot more bad stuff in the future. That’s my real issue with everyone on the libertarian platform, they talk big about personal responsibility and shit, when honestly, half the people I know who do talk about it like that (and I’m not indicating this is you) are about as responsible as the people they talk down about, i.e. living paycheck to paycheck and one bad circumstance away from being the poor they so loathe. I’m not saying the ideals behind it aren’t good. They’re not practical and they usually outline a scenario where everyone is equally capable of being the next Richy Rich.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 8:40 am | Permalink
  39. Brandon wrote:

    What I just don’t understand is why the government has to be put in charge of all of this. Dresden, if you don’t mind paying another few percent a year why can’t you pay that percent to a non-profit organization which would provide the same welfare services the government currently provides. If the government made those donations tax deductible I would probably donate money to the organization also.

    The price of ultrasound machines has come down since they were invented. They have become smaller, of higher quality, and more accurate. These advances were made because money was invested in research. Money was invested because companies saw a potential for profit if they built the machine that more hospitals would buy. Capitalism drives innovation.

    What happened if deductibles were raised for everyday procedures like physicals, vaccinations, or simple medical conditions. Health insurance premiums would go down because they would only have to cover catastrophic illness. You don’t expect your car insurance to cover an oil change, so why should your health insurance cover a checkup. If people had to pay more for routine care they would start to shop around to find the best price for the best service, or take better care of themselves. Because insurance picks up most of the tab there is no incentive for you to switch doctors even if another doctor charges thousands less. The reason why a single pill in a hospital cost eight dollars is because insurance companies will pay that eight dollars. If a hospital sprang up and started charging one dollar per pill no one would notice except those without insurance who pay out of pocket, the same people who have much less purchasing power and influence than insurance companies.

    I agree the current system in the US is broken but not because there is too little insurance coverage.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 10:27 am | Permalink
  40. DIYer wrote:

    Dmitry Orlov has a nice essay on the subject. Yep, these people are displaying their stupidity for the whole universe to watch. Interestingly the wingnut websites claim there were a million of ‘em, while most of the sources I follow said maybe ten or twenty thousand.

    The hell of it is, the administration isn’t working on anything that will change the “monetized healthcare” paradigm, so the teabaggers have a point if they could find it. They need to tell big pharma et al to “stuff it” and I just don’t see a willingness by the O-man to step on the toes of any vested interests.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 3:36 pm | Permalink
  41. Shannon wrote:

    Brandon, I think you’re not understanding that if you have universal coverage, you have either the same care or more likely better care, and that your cost goes down significantly. The only thing you are gaining by paying double or more for your health insurance as a nation is that you get to stop so-called “undeserving” people from getting care. So, if your goal is to hurt people who are already hurting, keep your current system. If you want lower cost higher quality healthcare, go to the same system as is being used more successfully by the rest of the civilized world.

    Also, two more points:

    1. Paying insurance companies more, in a private system, does not encourage research. It discourages it if anything. Private insurance puts money into the BANKING and INSURANCE sectors. It does NOT put money into the healthcare system.

    2. A private system in SOME cases raises taxes very slightly. However, it also RADICALLY lowers the cost of health insurance per capita, so in terms of overall cost per person, it results in MUCH LOWER spending.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 3:53 pm | Permalink
  42. DIYer wrote:

    Oh and one other thing: TELL THE GUVVERMINT TO STAY OUTTA MY MEDICARE! :-> :-) ;-)

    As for America being on the wrong track: gird your grids everybody, the whole “civilized” world is on a trajectory of financial collapse that will make the depression of the ’30s look like a Sunday afternoon picnic. The likelihood of a tyrant popping up in lower Jesustan will approach 1.0 over the next few years. Any number of little blogs repeat this fact, with links to others that state it more clearly and buttress their assertions with as much proof as you can stand.

    (Twwly, you got room on your farm up there? I’m getting scared)

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 3:57 pm | Permalink
  43. Hutch wrote:

    From this Video I hear, FEAR. It has been said “Once we distill human emotions it comes down to LOVE and FEAR.” Me, I will take the side of LOVE every time.

    Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 7:27 pm | Permalink
  44. Amanda wrote:

    Canada is in the top 10 of life expectancies in the world. Where is the USA again??

    Sunday, September 20, 2009 at 4:39 am | Permalink
  45. Barb wrote:

    Brandon writes; “I’m not my brother’s keeper.”

    That really captures the essence of this debate.

    Sunday, September 20, 2009 at 8:04 am | Permalink
  46. jason wrote:

    Thanks for posting this Shannon. I wouldn’t have seen it otherwise.
    It wasn’t really covered properly in the UK, our media just wanted us to get all offended because the US used our system as an example of how bad it could get.

    You used to post more political stuff back in the day, I miss your take on the shit that goes down…

    Tuesday, September 22, 2009 at 11:52 am | Permalink

One Trackback/Pingback

  1. Shannon Larratt is Zentastic › Back from Africa on Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    [...] following up a little on my previous much-commented-on post on healthcare, I wanted to recommend this Bill Moyers video in which he discusses the hypocrisy of [...]

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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