Monday, March 29, 2010

for real now...

A few individual frum Jews are trying to argue that the new law (Obamacare) should be seen as a good thing by us. Why?

Well they say that since Jews are charitable people (and that, we are) we should view this as a step towards the greater good... blah blah.

well, here goes...

1- I *chose* to be frum. and choose to abide by the rules everyday (why, I'm not always sure).
2- How much I give to charity, is my business... and my husbands business (afterall, we are a team)
3- no one actually knows how much maaser I give, or dont give... or who I give to, or what my principles are behind who I choose to give etc... UNLESS I TELL THEM.
4- THere is *no* way anyone will ever know how much i give, because
a) my income is confidential
b) even if for whatever reason my income became public knowledge (worked for the govt), who I gave charity to, and how much, would remain confidential, and therefore, *no* one would know who i give too, or how much I give etc...

5-
*IF* a Rabbi were to suggest a charity, i would *not* have to give to it if I chose not to.
*IF* I chose *not* to give to the suggested charity, the Rabbi wouldn't hunt me down, and Gd wouldn't strike me with lightening and kill me as a form of punishment. Contrary to psycho frummy popular belief "midda kneged midda" is not so simple... So if I weren't giving maaser, the likelihood of a major tragedy occurring that otherwise wouldnt occur is slim.

Now-
Health care passes, and the government decides to "help" people ( I'm not even getting into the fact that all gold the government touches turns to sand).

- I *have* to give charity
- I have *no* choice who to give to, because the government chooses for me
-The government also chooses the amount, because it *knows* my income. I cannot hide it, unless I cheat (work off the books).
- If I cheat, I get fined, and then probably imprisonment if I cheated a lot.
- If I dont give at all get prison.

So umm... democraps (yes, thats what you are), while the healthcare system may be failing. I (and the VAST majority of the public) dont particular care for this bill... even if some of us happen to be part of a charitable nation.

Get it?

If not, well then... lets talk money...
WE HAVE NO FRIKKIN MONEY! THE COUNTRY IS BANKRUPT!
this healthcare bill is as effective in saving people, as it is attempting to save a drowning person by pouring more water on their head.

65 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, I think that in extreme cases, we must help the handicapped, even at the point of force.

Retarded, blind, paralyzed, brain damaged, people who just had their leg chopped off in a terrible car crash, those kinds of things, well, I feel it is not morally problematic to say that if we have a large oil well in the nearby desert and Bob claims it and gets fabulously wealthy without any significant effort or investment (his grandfather murdered the prior inhabitants of the land) ... when there is fabulous wealth, I think it is good and proper for a society to steal a small part of that wealth and take care of those who can not take care of themselves.

Where you draw the line, how you decide who gives how much, and who qualifies for free aid and who does not, well, I absolutely admit and assert that those things are subject to debate, good men of good will can have reasonable disagreements about where to draw the lines.

I don't agree, however, that if an orphaned blind retarded baby loses it's leg in a freak accident, well, we just let it bleed to death.

It's proper to steal the needed resources and save the baby. We're not Spartans, we don't throw deformed babies off the cliff.

Where to draw the line?

That's a great question.

As for President Obama's tactics?

I don't like them either, he's a deceptive leader who polarizes the debate by excluding men of good will who disagree with him.

- Poster

rtfgvb7822 said...

IS VERY GOOD..............................

mlevin said...

Poster - we already have a system, it's called a Medicaid, that takes care of an orphaned blind retarded baby when it loses it's leg in a freak accident.

What Obamacare is doing is lying to the public by claiming that this orphaned blind retarded baby has no insurance and unless we have his healthcare that baby will bleed to death.

marry said...

Blogs are so informative where we get lots of information on any topic. Nice job keep it up!!
_____________________________

MSC Dissertation

Anonymous said...

Melvin, I don't disagree with anything you wrote.

But, in reply to the original post, I don't agree that all medical help provided by a society must always be voluntary to be moral.

Where do you draw the lines?

Should we change our system?

Is Obama Care headed in the right - or wrong - direction?

I don't know.

- Poster

AztecQueen2000 said...

Mlevin--Unless that orphaned, blind, retarded baby makes less than $1,201 a month (or $14,412 a year) then, no, that baby does not qualify for Medicaid.
Please do a little research first. Your arguments will be far more effective.

mlevin said...

AztecQueen- No, because an orphaned blined retarded baby cannot possibly be making an income, unless he was left by a very nice trust fund...

Vox Populi said...

I'm understanding the author of the post.

I *have* to give charity
- I have *no* choice who to give to, because the government chooses for me
-The government also chooses the amount, because it *knows* my income. I cannot hide it, unless I cheat (work off the books).
- If I cheat, I get fined, and then probably imprisonment if I cheated a lot.
- If I dont give at all get prison.


First, don't these problems exist with any taxes you pay? For any spending program? I mean, I don't get to choose which tanks the military buys, but the IRS forces me to pay taxes just the same. I don't get to choose which wars to fight, which crimes to enforce, which roads to build, which senators to elect, or what the size of veterans' pensions and other benefits will be. I have to pay for it, though.

You elect representatives to Congress and they decide. If those representatives mustered a majority that voted in favor of their plan in Congress, why is this "forced charity" more than anything else the government uses tax-dollars for?

Second, I'm not sure you understand how the health care bill works. Under the new law, you will be required to purchase health insurance for yourself. If you cannot afford health insurance, the government will give you a tax credit so that you can. Since everyone will have health insurance, the theory goes, the government can then force health insurance providers not to discriminate on the basis of pre-existing conditions, because there will be a large enough pool of paying customers to cover their losses. According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, this will actually lower expenditures on health care. I'm not seeing how this is forced charity more than any other government plan.

Third, no one is going to kill you or send you to jail if you don't buy health insurance. You would, however, have to pay a fine, which could rise as high as 2.5% of your income. Curiously, if you don't pay the fine, the IRS cannot garnish your wages or anything.

>democraps

The bill is remarkably similar to the one passed by former Republican governor and presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Massachusetts. It is also follows the same lines as the plan proposed by former Republican Senate Majority Leader and presidential candidate Bob Dole.

Vox Populi said...

I'm sorry, that first line should say "I'm not understanding the author of the post."

mlevin said...

"First, don't these problems exist with any taxes you pay? For any spending program? I mean, I don't get to choose which tanks the military buys, but the IRS forces me to pay taxes just the same. I don't get to choose which wars to fight, which crimes to enforce, which roads to build, which senators to elect, or what the size of veterans' pensions and other benefits will be. I have to pay for it, though. "
1. Eh, no. According to the constitution it is the job of the federal government to spend money on military to defend us against all enemies foreign and domestic. Crime enforcement and road building fall in the category of defense. One can even stretch it to say that veterans' pensions are part of the military budget.
2. You do get to choose which senators to elect. That is why we have elections.
3. No where in the constitution does it say that all people must be provided with medical care or fast food or nice housing or... As a matter of fact founding fathers were dead set against helping people who suffered from the natural disasters. They claimed that it's not part of the federal government's responsibilities to alleviate the suffering of the masses. The most that they advocated is for the local governments to handle these types of jobs.

"You elect representatives to Congress and they decide. If those representatives mustered a majority that voted in favor of their plan in Congress, why is this "forced charity" more than anything else the government uses tax-dollars for?"
It is forced because it is unconstitutional. If majority of elected officials decides to expel Jews from the country would you be okay with it? After all they are the elected officials.

"Second, I'm not sure you understand how the health care bill works. Under the new law, you will be required to purchase health insurance for yourself."
This is the first time in history of the United States that government forces people to purchase something.
"If you cannot afford health insurance, the government will give you a tax credit so that you can. Since everyone will have health insurance, the theory goes, the government can then force health insurance providers not to discriminate on the basis of pre-existing conditions, because there will be a large enough pool of paying customers to cover their losses. According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, this will actually lower expenditures on health care."
Both Medicaid and Medicare are failing, what makes you think that adding more responsibilities to the already failing system will change it?
"I'm not seeing how this is forced charity more than any other government plan."

Any government plan that has nothing to do with defense or establishing a law or tax collection is forced charity.

"Third, no one is going to kill you or send you to jail if you don't buy health insurance. You would, however, have to pay a fine, which could rise as high as 2.5% of your income. Curiously, if you don't pay the fine, the IRS cannot garnish your wages or anything."
IRS has the right to confiscate your property and send you to prison for not paying your taxes. It happens all the time. This so called fine is a forced tax and it could land you in prison.

"The bill is remarkably similar to the one passed by former Republican governor and presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Massachusetts. It is also follows the same lines as the plan proposed by former Republican Senate Majority Leader and presidential candidate Bob Dole."
Just because there are socialist republicans doesn't negate the argument

Vox Populi said...

>According to the constitution it is the job of the federal government to spend money on military to defend us against all enemies foreign and domestic.

And a whole bunch of other things too! Like providing for the general welfare of the United States! Regulating interstate commerce! And running a census! It's a big job, being the federal government. I don't know why you think the only thing the government is supposed to do is spend money on defense.

>Crime enforcement and road building fall in the category of defense.

No, they don't. I mean, maybe that's how your conceptualization of it works. I suppose every government program you like is part of the common defense or something. But to most people, the FBI exists to detect and prosecute crimes against the United States, and has nothing to do with the Defense Department. Likewise, while the Interstate Highway System has its roots partially in defense, the Federal Highway Administration (part of the DOT, not the DOE) say that, though it was supported by the military, the motive was primarily civil in nature. But, obviously, if you want, you can pretend that every legitimate thing the government does is defense-oriented.

>You do get to choose which senators to elect. That is why we have elections.

But I don't get to choose which Senators to elect from states in which I don't live. (The vast majority, by the way.) And yet, my tax dollars pay for their post-it notes! Why, it's enough to make a man think of revolution.

>No where in the constitution does it say that all people must be provided with medical care or fast food or nice housing or...

...or Interstate Highways? I don't think anyone's arguing that the constitution orders people to buy insurance.

>As a matter of fact founding fathers were dead set against helping people who suffered from the natural disasters.

Equally true, is that the Founding Fathers were against political parties and large standing armies. Oops!

>It is forced because it is unconstitutional.

I'm not even sure what kind of logical fallacy this is. Why is it constitutional? Because it is forced. Why is it forced? Because it is unconstitutional. Oh wait, I know! This is circular reasoning!

> If majority of elected officials decides to expel Jews from the country would you be okay with it? After all they are the elected officials.

I guess I would be, because that's what I said. Or maybe, an alternative reading would be that I was saying that representative democracy works on the theory that each individual member of society, like the author of the blog post, does not get to decide where exactly the federal government spends its money. It can exert indirect pressure on the people who do, though. Obviously, this sentiment doesn't imply that those elected representatives have the authority to pass unconstitutional laws, as one can only assume an order expelling Jews would be.

Vox Populi said...

>This is the first time in history of the United States that government forces people to purchase something.

Well, even if what you're saying is true...so what? What makes that unconstitutional? There are many constitutional scholars that argue that the president can, if he chooses, randomly pick up an American citizen, declare him an enemy combatant and then lock him away in a tropical prison where he can be waterboarded indefinitely, and anyone who says boo is in league with terrorists.

But forcing me to buy health insurance? Oh, the humanity!

Second, I'm not sure that this is the first time. Again, the government forces me to buy tanks. And send money overseas for war. And buy post-it notes for the State Department. I suppose it's indirect, but I'm still paying for it. Would you rather the government tax you for health care directly and put everyone on government health care? That sounds an awful lot like Canada - and let me tell you, buddy, that place has long been overrun by commie cancer-ridden zombies with an insatiable desire for MRIs and brains.

>Both Medicaid and Medicare are failing, what makes you think that adding more responsibilities to the already failing system will change it?

What failing system? Obama isn't putting everyone on Medicaid and Medicare. He's telling them to buy insurance. Are insurance providers also failing systems now too?

>Any government plan that has nothing to do with defense or establishing a law or tax collection is forced charity.

Interesting assertion. And this is because... why, exactly? Also, how do you distinguish, exactly, between government plans that establish laws and those that don't? And, again, to be clear, you would be fine with the government doing a health care bill through increased taxation?

>IRS has the right to confiscate your property and send you to prison for not paying your taxes. It happens all the time. This so called fine is a forced tax and it could land you in prison.

First, you're not even being internally coherent. A fine is worse than a tax because a fine is in effect a forced tax? Aren't all taxes forced?

Second, you're not listening. i just said that the IRS cannot, in fact, do these things with respect to the fine. The law explicitly rules out any criminal penalties for those who don't pay the fine, and forbids the IRS from using liens and levies against delinquents.

Third, according to the Commissioner of the IRS, the IRS won't even be auditing people to see if they have bought health insurance.

>Just because there are socialist republicans doesn't negate the argument

To be fair, an argument like "democraps" is hard to negate.

mlevin said...

I see, you are one of the people who see think that USA was attacked on 9/11 because it deserved it and all those moslem terrorists are just a figment of our imagination and all we have to do is apologize for our selfish behavior and these peaceful moslems will stop killing us. Why else would you think that those animals in human clothings in the "tropical prison" were randomly picked american citizens.

"the FBI exists to detect and prosecute crimes against the United States, and has nothing to do with the Defense Department." and those who stop crimes against US are not in affect defending the USA? you need a few lessons in logical thinking or may be just a review of an English language.

Interstate highway is necessary for a quick movement for the military from point A to point B, otherwise there is no reason why a government should be involved in building highways if your average businessman could do the same job.

Purchasing post it notes for the senators with federal money is theft, pure and simple, same as 99% of our social programs.

"I don't think anyone's arguing that the constitution orders people to buy insurance." but that is what Obamacare does, it forces people to purchase healthcare.

"He's telling them to buy insurance. Are insurance providers also failing systems now too? " they will be because his care also dictates to the private insurance what and whom they can insure and by how much...

"First, you're not even being internally coherent. A fine is worse than a tax because a fine is in effect a forced tax? Aren't all taxes forced?" Exactly, his plan is forcing us to pay for someone else's care.

If IRS has no way to collect the penalty fees or audit people, then what is the point of putting it into the plan? Obviously there is a way of forcing people to part with more of their own money or else the whole plan was meaningless.

Sorry for being rushed, but it's almost Shabbos.

frumskeptic said...

Vox Populi- Go Read some writings by Thomas Jefferson.

Then do some searching on Federal Government vs. State Government.

Then you'll understand why its ok for Mitt Romney to do what he did in his STATE, and why its different for Obama to do what he's doing for the country, even though it happens to be the same thing.

That will also answer why its wrong that you're paying for another state senators post-it notes (you're not supposed to be), thats the States job.

Also, look up the history of the Tea-Party (the original one), and when you understand that this country was founded on anti-large FEDERAL government principles, then we can talk.

50 is the new 30 said...

@Vox Populi - There are reasonable, empathetic, even moderate Jews out there. You just won't find many of them posting here. Another poster and I posted until our fingers practically bled (which would have made that healthcare come in handy!) in the comments section of the last post; she and I finally gave up.

I can't speak for the other poster, but I didn't give up because I thought that I was "wrong" or because some articulate and incredibly insightful poster made me see the error of my ways; I gave up because I knew that nothing I could possibly write would be taken seriously, or heard by the vast majority of the more vocal posters here as anything more than what they would consider "bleeding liberal crap". And, quite frankly, I'm secure enough in my own beliefs, and I have enough negative energy in my life from things I *can't* control - it's just not worth my time OR my emotional well-being to continue to spit into the wind here.

But I do stop by and read from time to time, and I wanted to let you know that you're not alone out there, Vox Populi. Not everyone is more concerned about making sure they are off the Internet by Friday at sundown, more concerned that they have torn a sufficient amount of toilet paper to last them until Saturday evening, than they are about ensuring that all Americans have access to affordable quality healthcare. Go figure. And not all of us resent pitching in via taxes, "government-forced charity" (whatever) notwithstanding.

As you commented toward the end of your last post, how can you have a discussion with people who persist in thinking in terms of such broadbrush (and insulting) generalities as "Democraps" and "Stupid Liberals"?

The vocal, strident posters who call themselves "frum" and wear their observance like a badge of honor - these are the same people who repeatedly resort to these disparaging terms, who resent being "told" to pay taxes so that everyone can have healthcare and other supposed "frills" and "niceties" the government provides. And, I'd venture a guess that some of them would also claim that I'm "less" than they are because I'm both a mom *and* a professional (and - horrors - pro-choice and a supporter of stem cell research, to boot), not to mention a Reform Jew? If that's so, then what's wrong with this picture?? (Disclaimer: I don't think that all who are frum are so closed-minded and selfish, btw ... but there are certainly a handful here who fit that description.)

Vox Populi said...

>I see, you are one of the people who see think that USA was attacked on 9/11 because it deserved it and all those moslem terrorists are just a figment of our imagination and all we have to do is apologize for our selfish behavior and these peaceful moslems will stop killing us.

OMG! This is exactly what I think! This a far pithier summation of my views than I could ever hope to commit to a blog posting. Bravo, sir. You are a model of reading comprehension.

>Why else would you think that those animals in human clothings in the "tropical prison" were randomly picked american citizens.

Why else, indeed! It's not as if an American citizen was ever indefinitely detained as an unlawful combatant on the President's say so! And his name certainly wasn't Jose Padilla. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rumsfeld_v._Padilla

Now, of course, Jose Padilla was not randomly picked, and looks to be guilty as sin. But the Administration advanced the argument that the President, as Commander-in-Chief, had the authority to indefinitely detain an American citizen, deprive him of the right to an attorney, habeas corpus and all other sorts of constitutional goodies. The President had complete discretion in this regard, the theory went, and the courts, I believe, did not have judicial oversight. In this case, Padilla looks to be guilty, but do you really think the President should have this power - how about President Obama?

>and those who stop crimes against US are not in affect defending the USA?

Like the Food and Drug Administration "defends" the USA from spoiled milk. Or the FCC defends American ears from hearing naughty words. Or Obamacare defends the USA from not having medical coverage. Oh no! As it turns out, you can pretend that any law, program or resolution of the United States Congress is effectively defending the country!

mlevin said...

50 - I'm shocked at your assumptions. I am a mother and a professional too. And unlike you I came from a very poor background and I don't have to feel guilty about making a living and being in the upper middle class bracket, that is why I resent government enforcement of how I pay my charity. That is a real pro-choice person I am, I pro having people decide on their own where their hard earned money goes.

But I assume that when you say pro choice you mean to describe a political movement that sees nothing wrong with people using abortions as a form of birth control, slaughtering defenseless fetuses all in the name of choice. And with Obamacare you want the same rules that apply in Europe to apply here. Well, in many Western European countries doctors are allowed to "abort" babies after birth and in one of them (I believe it is Netherlands) parents and doctors are allowed to abort the "fetus" up to the age of 12 years old. But you of course, don't see anything wrong with it.

And what makes you think that I am against stem cell research? There is nothing wrong with it. There is something wrong with embryonic stem cell research, because it creates an abortion industry. It actually profits from killing newly developing human lives. But you don't see anything wrong with it either.

Just like you do not see anything wrong with denigrating my religious believes to tearing toilet paper and Friday internet shut down.

Vox Populi said...

>Purchasing post it notes for the senators with federal money is theft, pure and simple, same as 99% of our social programs.

Ah, I see. You just have a completely different understanding of the law. You think the entire American government is unconstitutional! Or well, most of it. Or can you justify the Commerce Department? Or the Postal Service?

As it happens, though, I think most people would agree that the existence of the United States Senate is constitutional. In fact, the Constitution even mentions it by name, several times. The Constitution also empowers Congress "To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof. " That rather sweeping language includes post-it notes, I'm afraid. Don't worry, though. I'm sure post-it notes are really necessary for defense. And, if not, I have it on good authority that the Founding Fathers vigorously opposed the Constitution.

>but that is what Obamacare does, it forces people to purchase healthcare.

Okay, I don't think you understood. You argued that Obamacare was unconstitutional because nowhere in the Constitution does it command that Congress give everyone health care. But nowhere in the Constitution does it command Congress to build interstate highways. Rather, it's generally understood that the Constitution does not contain within it all the laws and utterances of Congress that will ever be promulgated. If it did, we wouldn't need a legislature. Simply because the Constitution does not command something does not mean that it forbids that thing.

>Exactly, his plan is forcing us to pay for someone else's care.

No, he's forcing you to pay for your own care. If you can't pay for it, you will get a tax credit that will help. Are tax credits really forced taxes now?

If you say they are, then I assume you oppose all tax credits. After all, if someone is paying less taxes, that means you have to pay more! (Of course, it doesn't, but never mind.)

If you're arguing that eventually this tax credit will have to be paid for somewhere - probably with taxes - and therefore is a forced tax - that's fine. But so is everything else. Again, when my taxes pay for tanks, I am paying for someone else's defense! It's socialism!

>If IRS has no way to collect the penalty fees or audit people, then what is the point of putting it into the plan?

I know, that's why said it was curious. But there you go. Here's the text of the law. http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_bills&docid=f:h3590enr.txt.pdf

Look on page 131.

>Sorry for being rushed, but it's almost Shabbos.

Not at all. I hope you had a good shabbos

mlevin said...

Vox - people in Gitmo were not American Citizen, they were enemy combatants (that means foreigners) detained on enemy soil.

So, you don't think that stopping crime against the US is part of the defense of our country? Wow, there is nothing left for us to talk about.

Vox Populi said...

>Then you'll understand why its ok for Mitt Romney to do what he did in his STATE, and why its different for Obama to do what he's doing for the country, even though it happens to be the same thing.

No, then I would understand why Mitt Romney could pretend to think Obamacare is bad, even though he established the very same thing in Massachusetts.

Are you telling me the only problem you have with it is the federalism angle? Health care is the death of freedom, but it's okay as long as that rigor mortis sets in on a state by state basis?

If you would like to make the argument that health care is unconstitutional because it constitutionally erected boundaries between state and federal governments, I'd like to hear that arguments. What are those boundaries, and how have they been broken?

>That will also answer why its wrong that you're paying for another state senators post-it notes (you're not supposed to be), thats the States job.

Is this what you would like the Constitution to say? Because it doesn't. See, for example, Article I, Section 6, which says that the United States Treasury pays Congress's salaries.

>Also, look up the history of the Tea-Party (the original one), and when you understand that this country was founded on anti-large FEDERAL government principles, then we can talk.

After I agreed with you? That would be a boring conversation.

Just because you assert something, doesn't make it true. Who says the country was founded on anti-large federal government principles?

Vox Populi said...

>Vox - people in Gitmo were not American Citizen, they were enemy combatants (that means foreigners) detained on enemy soil.

First, Guantanamo Bay Naval Base is not enemy soil, unless we're currently at war with the US Navy. I don't even think we're technically at war with Cuba.

Second, Padilla is being held in a prison in Miami, which is in the tropics. Hence, a tropical prison. He was being held indefinitely, on the say-so of the President without access to a lawyer, a court, etc. Are you saying the only thing that would be wrong with that would be if he was being held in Cuba, and not Miami?

Third, people born outside of the United States are people too. It doesn't seem particularly conducive to liberty if some kid hanging out too close to the Afghan border can be handed over to a Marine barracks (in exchange for money) and then sent to Cuba forever without a trial. It definitely seems like less of a threat than health care.

>So, you don't think that stopping crime against the US is part of the defense of our country?

And you don't think that stopping spoilt milk imports from entering the US is part of the defense of our country? Etc.

Vox Populi said...

Believe it or not, they are frum liberals out there, 50 is the new 30. I'm one.

mlevin said...

"The Constitution also empowers Congress "To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof. " That rather sweeping language includes post-it notes, I'm afraid.

Yet, there is no provision that Federal government should be supplying the said senators or congressmen with their stationary or housing or anything else. That money, constitutionally should and must be coming from the state budget. This way you will not be paying for a post it notes for a senator you did not vote for. Do you see a difference between a federal and state budgets?

You don't get it, do you? Government is forcing everyone to pay for health care. Right? And those who can't pay for it are getting a tax credit. Right. Therefor, we are all being forced to pay for other people's healthcare without regard of whether we approve of it or not.

Here's an example. Let's take a man I will call Alex. He has been working off the books all of his life because he did not want to pay taxes. But he was working hard and made a good living and managed to save a great sum of money too. Then Alex had a job injury and needs hospitalization.

With Obamancare and medicaid and medicare and other socialized programs: According to government officials this man has no money, no income and he is still entitled to the healthcare donated by the honest hard working Americans.

Without socialized programs available because he never paid into them: Alex would be forced to pay for the healthcare out of his pocket using his under the mattress funds or ask local charity organizations for help. These local charity organizations will know that Alex drives an expensive car and has valuable jewelry in his possessions and expensive furniture and electronic equipment. If all of these items are sold there is enough money to pay for his hospital care and various therapies afterwards. On the other hand, these local charities would also know if Alex was truly low on funds and help him with his bills. Either way the tax payers win and those donating to the charities able to see first hand how their donations contributed to someone else well being.

frumskeptic said...

50- you wrote:

"There are reasonable, empathetic, even moderate Jews out there. You just won't find many of them posting here"

ummm... are youconfused or am I missing your point?
Are you implying that Orthodox Jews (who happen to be republicans) are not empathetic?

Did you hear about Hotzalah? RCCS? Rofei Cholim? Bikur Cholim?

none are government run you know... yet run by Orthodox Jews who somehoe have no empathy...

THese are people who somehow manage to worry about how much toilet paper they ripped on a friday afternoon, while they also worry about how their sick and poor neighbor will get food for shabbos... and so they go and deliver it to them, without the government telling them too.

The difference btwn the stereotype frummy that worries about hte toilet paper he ripped, and you, is that the frummy doesnt believe YOU should be giving charity, to his neighbor, just because he is. He doesnt shove his point of view down other peoples throats, just because he feels his actions are somehoe saving the world.

Whereas YOU, sit here, and BS that the government needto tell us how we should feel, who we shoudl feel for, and how much we should be willing to give away of our money, just because we're deemed able.

Go read up on statistics on who gives more money, the Liberal or the Conservative...and the statistics will surprise you, becuase the truth is, the Conservatives who you deem as selfish, are the ones who give a significantly higher percent of charity

frumskeptic said...

50- please do what you said you'd do, and stop reading this blog (or atleast stop commenting).

it seriously pisses me off when someone goes and associates being against ObamaCare and being anti-helping people.

I hate the government, but I dont want people dyng in the street. I dont want people hungry, and I dont want people to feel helpless.

People like you, just dont understand that. You think that just because I dont scream about the fact that my neighbor doesn't help the world at all, I'm somehow a "selfish" person.

Well guess what? While I dont like that my neighbor doesnt do anything, its not my business. and I have no right to make her do anything. Just like, I expect the same courtesy from her. I dont expect her to MAKE me stop giving charity, becuase she doesnt feel its necessary (or whatever).
This isnt about morality of sick vs. not sick. No one wants a failed healthcare system. Just because OBAMACARE has no historical precedence and has absolutely no reason for us to think it'll work. And just becuse I"m pissed off that Obama and co. passed it while majority of the country DIDNT want it passed, that doesnt make me a selfish person who doesnt give a sh*t if someone is sick or dying. That just makes me a person very concerned about the future of this country. Something you're probably worried about, but actually think ObamaCare is good for it.

NO ONE WANTS PEOPLE DEAD. OK?

No one here is selfish, ok?

I give my share of charity, and how much that is, is absolutley none of your business.

Now... Whose selfish? THe person shoving his views down someone elses throat, or the person who feels its the right of the neighbor to choose selfishness if they so choose?

Vox Populi said...

>Yet, there is no provision that Federal government should be supplying the said senators or congressmen with their stationary or housing or anything else. That money, constitutionally should and must be coming from the state budget.

You're wrong. Article I, Section 6, provides that their salaries will be paid out of the US Treasury. Article I, Section 8 authorizes them to pass any law they need to do their job. If they need post-it notes, they can use taxes for post-it notes. As far as I know, the federal government does not pay for personal expenses, including housing.

I can understand if you don't think federal governments should pay for them. But you can't seriously argue that it's unconstitutional for the federal government to pay for things the constitution explicitly commands it to pay for.

>You don't get it, do you? Government is forcing everyone to pay for health care. Right? And those who can't pay for it are getting a tax credit. Right. Therefor, we are all being forced to pay for other people's healthcare without regard of whether we approve of it or not.

This is a non sequitur. If I am being forced to pay for my own healthcare, I am not being forced to pay for other people's healthcare. If someone gets a tax credit to pay for health care, that does not necessarily mean that I am paying for their health care. They are just paying less taxes.

Of course, in 2014, Medicaid will be expanded, which will necessitate a small tax increase on the wealthiest 2%, and, in 2018, an excise tax on the "luxury health care" plans.

>Let's take a man I will call Alex. He has been working off the books all of his life because he did not want to pay taxes....

LOL. Can I play too? Here's one! Bob and Sue bring in a middle class salary of about 150% above the poverty line. They have a son, Greg, who was born with cancer. Unfortunately, the family earns too much to qualify for Medicare, and the insurance company won't insure their son Greg, as his cancer is a pre-existing condition. Bob and Sue sell all their possessions and give all their money to pay for his treatment, and in the process, bankrupt themselves. Now they can use Medicaid! Yay! Unfortunately, they are also now homeless. Not so yay.

This sort of thing happens all the time. Whenever a middle class family has a kid with a pre-existing condition they are quite often screwed. There are cases of women getting divorced so they can qualify for a lower income bracket.

How many Alex's do you think are running around? You think there are thousands? Hundreds of thousands? Millions? Of the 49 million people on Medicaid, how many do you think are really rich tax scofflaws? If you think it's anything approaching a significant number, you are deluding yourself in service to your ideology. I can understand if you personally believe everyone should take care of themselves. I don't agree, and think it's morally wrong on several levels, but okay. But imagining there are millions of people out there pretending to be poor so they can suck the blood of the American worker because it supports your moral philosophy is intellectual dishonesty of the worst kind.

There's an Internal Revenue Service that looks for scofflaws. It's really really hard to not pay any taxes, and not expect to get audited. Especially when you drive a fancy car and live in a mansion. If you think a charity would know about "Alex's' real income, I guarantee the feds will too. Whenever these people get caught - it's big news - because very few people are that stupid to actually try it.

frumskeptic said...

Vox Populi- I also feel bad for Sue and Bob. But teh country was founded on liberatarian principles, and whether or not Bob and SUe need to go into debt to keep Greg alive, should not be the concern of the governmnet.

LIke it or not, there are ALOT of people like Alex...
I know alot of them.

heck... I personally know people like that.

Go to Boro Park, and ask around how many people are married by civil law...then go to the projects. Then go to Brighton Beach, Brooklyn (all Russians, not frum).
all cash business, declare a crappy income, and they get a lexus/audi/bmw, luxury apartments, live-in babysitter, etc...

Trust me, Alex's come more often than you'd care to admit. Plenty of people I know are "Independents" but everytime a social welfare program passes, they all get peeved, because they know ofpeople who take advantage. and its quite common in Brooklyn. Trust me.

Id love it if Alex's got caught. If they did, I'd be much calmer that Obamacare passed. I wouldnt like it, because Its not hte governmnets job, but I would be waaaaaaaaaaaay less concerned.

When welfare first started out, and a receving family had any form of luxury, it would be deducted from their welfare check.

Now, NO ONE CHECKS.... NO ONE.
LIke i said, I know multiple families who live like this, and NO ONE CHECKS

mlevin said...

FS - good point but I'd like to add that these is not only a Brooklyn problem, this is a problem all over the country. Hispanics, Mormons, white supremecists are all known to do these things.

VP - the reason why these people are not getting caught is because the car and appartment or a house are all registered under someone else's name. It's not easy for the government to prove that you are driving your own car if it's registered under someone else.

frumskeptic said...

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303828304575180243952375172.html?mod=WSJ_hp_mostpop_read

Vox Populi said...

mlevin and FS,

How many of the 49 million people on Medicaid do you think are on the rolls fraudulently? It would have to be a heck of a lot for you to think that we should deny health care coverage to people who can't afford it because some of those people who claim to can't afford it really can and are just gaming the system.

mlevin said...

VP - what makes you think that if government is involved the coverage won't be denied? Actually I hear it all the time that medicaid doesn't cover this or medicare doesn't cover that. Not that I think it is wrong. One can't have everything. But if government is involved it will just be spread out more, so fewer people will have access to the great medical care, but more people will be covered when they have sniffles.

The other thing you are omitting, I'm not sure if it is on purpose, that just because someone doesn't have a medical coverage doesn't mean that he doesn't have access to it. All he has to do is pay for it out of pocket or ask a charity organization to do it.

Now your example about Sue and Bob is misleading. First babies are not born with cancers, cancer is something that develops later. Second, majority (if not all) of insurances cover new born babies.

But before you say anything, I am aware of the fact that there are babies who are born with severe disabilities which are very costly. On the other hand in most countries where such babies are born or to be born they do not survive.

I know a family whose son wasn't breathing when he was born, he was technically dead. Doctors revived him and he is not 8 years old now. He has severe CP, unable to fend for himself and doesn't understand what is going on around him. Had he been born in any other country he would not have been revived, or there wouldn't have been machines hooked up to him for the first 3 months of his life to keep him alive. It did cost the family a lot of money, but after a certain time medicaid kicked in and this little boy is covered by medicaid, while the rest of the family has some other insurance.

I know another family with a DS baby. This baby was also born premature, with heart problems and stomach problems and ear problems... By the time she was three months old she had over 30 procedures done on her and her life was revived multiple times because she just stopped breathing. Until she was almost two years old friends and family members kept a 24/7 vigil for the baby to keep her from dying whenever she would stop breathing. Now she is a vibrant three year old who talks and walks and has a sense of humor. Yes, she continues to receive various operations and gets fed through a tube every now and then. BTW, medicaid pays for her medical expenses, while the rest of the family has a private insurance. Had this baby been born in a country with a socialized medicine, she would now have been six feet under rather than learning how to count.

Vox Populi said...

>The other thing you are omitting, I'm not sure if it is on purpose, that just because someone doesn't have a medical coverage doesn't mean that he doesn't have access to it. All he has to do is pay for it out of pocket or ask a charity organization to do it.

Yeah, that assumption was implicit to everything I've written. For example, if Bob and Sue can't get coverage (especially if it's too expensive), chances are they can't pay out of pocket. People purchase insurance, because most people can't pay for the big stuff out of pocket. Charity is really not a good solution for a few reasons, which should be sufficiently obvious to any reader that I won't enumerate them here, now.

>First babies are not born with cancers, cancer is something that develops later.

Granted, I'm not a doctor, but my understanding is that babies can be born with tumors, etc. r"l. In any case, babies can be born with a whole host of life-threatening or chronic diseases that will require lifetime treatment, r"l.

>Second, majority (if not all) of insurances cover new born babies.

A) What if, for whatever reason, the family does not have insurance?
B) What if insurers are allowed to stop providing service?
C) What if the child develops the disease later, at a time when the family is not insured?
D) Etc.

Enter Obamacare.

>On the other hand in most countries where such babies are born or to be born they do not survive.
>Had he been born in any other country...
>Had this baby been born in a country with a socialized medicine, she would now have been six feet under rather than learning how to count.

I don't know what to make of these assertions. Every other advanced industrialized democracy has some form of socialized medicine. And these countries really do fine. The infant mortality rate for the United States is 6.3 deaths for every 1000 live births; a ranking of 33rd. Every single country above the US on the list has some form of socialized medicine. The US ranks behind Cuba, Cyprus and Brunei. And, of course, Canada, the UK, France, Norway, etc. It seems highly unlikely to me that the unsocialized nature of our health care here is causing a net drop in infant mortality.

This reminds me of an editorial in Investor's Business Daily that decried Obama's efforts to reform health care by remarking that if Stephen Hawking would have been born in a country like the UK, he never would have survived the health care rationing and cold, cruel calculations of the NIH, due to his considerable from-birth disabilities. Of course, Stephen Hawking is both British and still alive.

frumskeptic said...

VP- "Charity is really not a good solution for a few reasons, which should be sufficiently obvious to any reader that I won't enumerate them here, now."

I dont see why thats sufficiently ovious. To be honest, I think charity is the best solution... the community has a tremendous amount of power to take care of their own people. Infact, thats how this country used to run... and still, the US is the most giving of nations (out of choice).


"In any case, babies can be born with a whole host of life-threatening or chronic diseases that will require lifetime treatment, r"l."

And mlevin already answered you on that... We already have a system in place for those babies. While I dont like the governmnet involved, I'm not sitting here advocating that we get rid of ALREADY existing programs. I just want these programs fixed... not expanded. They're funded by Madoffeconomics... and are expected to be bankrupt over the next few years... expanding aint gonna help anyone.

"A) What if, for whatever reason, the family does not have insurance?
B) What if insurers are allowed to stop providing service?
C) What if the child develops the disease later, at a time when the family is not insured?
D) Etc.

Enter Obamacare.'

And higher taxes for me and for you... but not for the people who don't work.

I'll let mlevin deal wtih the faulty statistics on the measurment of the infant mortality rates.

All I gotta say is, that the last time I was discussing healthinsurance, It didnt go to infants, it stayed with cancer. The person I was arguing with kept on claiming that the US has soooo many people die from cancer, and it could all be stopped if more people had access to doctors for regular check=ups.

I told her "But the US has the highest cancer surviver rate. And the top way to survive cancer is by early detection"

and she said "thats not true"
I said "look it up"

And she did.

Then she said "what about the people who dont go for the early detection?"

And I said "then they're not your problem, you're gonna FORCE them to go?"

She went on and on yelling at me that I was inhumane. Truth be told, I'm not inhumane, but the emergency room isn't allowed to reject someone coming in for a check up. So if someone is desperate, a system is already in place for them. And if the emergency room already detects something, the person can take loans out and seek help from his community... Or, make friends with a state senator who'll press a doctor/organization or someone to sponser the surgery.

That's what will end up happening anyway on a large scale. You think the economy can afford to insure EVERYONE? PLEASE.

frumskeptic said...

"How many of the 49 million people on Medicaid do you think are on the rolls fraudulently? It would have to be a heck of a lot for you to think that we should deny health care coverage to people who can't afford it because some of those people who claim to can't afford it really can and are just gaming the system."

Want me to give you stories about the multiple people I know who are scamming the system?

I can write a book on them.

- My friend was working as a babysitter in Boro Park since she was like 10 (now she's 22). She made a nice chunk of money. What would normal parents tell their kid who is raking in a few hundred dollars a week to do with it? They would tell her to open a bank account, right?

Nope, she had all that cash, "in a mattress"... you know why? Becuase they didn't want to show that she had income. THey didnt want her to have to pay for college.
Both her parents work off the books, and they declared a combined income of $18,000/yr for three kids, living in Brooklyn.

All three of them went to yeshiva for free (I dont give to tuition organizations, becuase I think they dont filter enough). All three had free college. Lived on SEC 8. food stamps, welfare. Now married (not by civil law, just by chupa). They STILL get free college. Super cheap living (in decent apartments), and the one who has a baby, received WIC and food stamps, and is considered an unwed mother... who paid for the delivery? Government. They have cash (off the books), but can you prove it?

You think she's the only one I know like that? Her other friends - one girl I was close to. Has more than one kid now. Still "unwed". went to college on the governments tab- she was "poor" Finished with a practical degree, and now doesn't work because its not worth it for her. the government pays. WHy work?

Someone else had his own business in a not-so good neighborhood. Most of his employees were from bad families (part-time). As soon as one of his employees would turn 18, they'd leave. He began to notice a pattern, and couldn't figure out why that would happen. Someone explained it to him "If you work under 18, your income doesnt count towards the family. Once you're 18, and you're declaring the $120/week extra income, the family gets $100 deducted away from their welfare. Making it completely not-worth it for someone to work for $20/week."

Someone with a normal work-ethic, and someone with the intention of actually eventually getting off of welfare, would recognize that in the long run, its better to work for the $20/week, becuase eventually they would get the experience and make more...

But people don't care. They have it good. The governmnet provides.

--
I can go on and on with examples... but I dont think I have to.

There is too much curruption, and I dont trust the government to do this stuff. the need to FIX the problems before they expand on them.
Until they fix it (which they won't, our governmnet is currupt on both ends), this bill is stupid. And its unafforable, and should be turned over. Because in the long run, we'll be worse off.

"the problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money" -Margeret Thatcher

mlevin said...

"And these countries really do fine. The infant mortality rate for the United States is 6.3 deaths for every 1000 live births; a ranking of 33rd. "
Did you ever inquired how these statistics are gathered? Well I did. Each country defines a life birth differently. So, the baby that was born dead but revived and died a few days later: In US would be considered a life birth. In many other countries: Would be considered as a still birth. There are countries (I think it's France don't feel like researching now) where it's not considered a life birth until 30 days later, some countries it's a day late. Also, in many other countries if a woman is carrying a DS baby or a baby with any other abnormality she is strongly advised to have an abortion. US is the country with the highest number of DS babies carried to term. Also, doctors in Western Europe are strongly discourage from reviving newborn babies and the policy is not to rush to save their lives.

The reason I'm using the Western Europe is because I don't think you want me to quote countries from former Soviet Block or China because they are known to not extending real effort to babies which are born less than perfect.

"Of course, Stephen Hawking is both British and still alive." considering that he was not diagnosed with the illness until he was 21 years old and married, and he is now 68 years old, but England began socialized health care 6 after his birth... well, the analogy is totally baseless.

Vox Populi said...

>Want me to give you stories about the multiple people I know who are scamming the system?

No, any more than you would want me to prove my point with anecdotes about people who do pay their taxes. I'd like an estimate, preferably with some sort of citation or empirical evidence, of how many people are on Medicaid fraudulently.

>"the problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money" -Margeret Thatcher

While Baroness Thatcher's ambivalence to the NIH might have been legendary, at the end of the day she declared "the NIH is safe in our hands". And her successor, David Cameron, is campaigning on a platform that seeks to preserve it, much like today's Republicans opposed health care reform as being a threat to Medicaid. Long story short, you can have perfectly free capitalist societies with a social safety net. I'm not even entirely sure that a plan, such as Obama's, that largely rests on getting people to buy their own damn insurance counts as a safety net, but whatever.

mlevin said...

"I'm not even entirely sure that a plan, such as Obama's, that largely rests on getting people to buy their own damn insurance counts as a safety net, but whatever."

His plan is not going to provide better medical coverage to people, but it will confiscate more money from hardworking Americans, all in the name of fairness.

"I'd like an estimate, preferably with some sort of citation or empirical evidence, of how many people are on Medicaid fraudulently."

You know perfectly well that these number are impossible to obtain. But let me remind you about thousands of people being arrested a few years ago in organized insurance scam. People involved were doctors, lawyers, police officers and insurance company employees. Yes, they claimed that thousands of people were involved, but with good lawyers I'm sure only a small percentage got convicted, and a large percentage was not even arrested at all.

Vox Populi said...

>You know perfectly well that these number are impossible to obtain.

Then why heap suspicion on 49 million people if you can't even give me an estimate? I don't even know how to respond to you guys, because I don't know the nature of your argument.

Is it that Medicaid should be cancelled because

1) The majority of people are on Medicaid fraudulently, and therefore no one should get Medicaid?
2) All people are on Medicaid fraudulently, and therefore everyone on it should not get Medicaid?
3) X million people are on Medicaid fraudulently, and therefore the balance of equities dictates that the remaining Y million people who do need Medicaid should not get it?

Without knowing the values of X and Y I can't really debate this with you, because I don't know what your point is. If you can't prove it, fine. But tell me what you're arguing.

Vox Populi said...

>Did you ever inquired how these statistics are gathered? Well I did. Each country defines a life birth differently. So, the baby that was born dead but revived and died a few days later: In US would be considered a life birth. In many other countries: Would be considered as a still birth.

I'm still looking through the conflicting data on this, but I have this to say:

1) The statistics I cited were performed by compiled by the UN population division. I have so far been unable to determine their method 100%. However, UNICEF, who I think must have had a great deal to do with the report (I find it unlikely that two UN organizations have their own definition of infant mortality) has stated that statistics compiled for comparison purposes have to the greatest extent possible taken into account reporting discrepancies.

2) The countries that do have different reporting requirements, esp, in Europe, are few, e.g. Poland and the Czech Republic. There doesn't seem to be any huge discrepancy - like the "30 days" you referred to. These countries count as stillborn fetuses that are born before 22 weeks of gestation, and/or weigh less than 500 grams.

3) Intuitively, I would be very surprised to discover that the UN rankings would be as flawed as you are implying. Why would they compile that list for comparison purposes, if it was totally useless? These statistics are used by the World Bank, etc. to measure how developed a country is. I suspect you assume that the UN hates America, but to my knowledge, they've been doing this for a few years now, and I highly doubt it was part of some plot to destroy America by helping Barack Obama reform health care.

4) Acc to the CIA, the US ranks 46th. I'm not certain of their methodology either, but everything I've written so far about the UN's methodology should apply equally to the CIA, except that I assume you don't think the CIA hates America.

5) The CDC commissioned a report examining why the US lags so far behind Europe in infant mortality. Their conclusions seem to be, inter alia,

a) infant mortality rates for preterm babies (less than 37 weeks of gestation) are lower in the United States than in most European countries, while infant mortality rates born after 37 weeks are higher in the US than in Europe.

b) The main cause of high mortality rate seems to be the high birth rate of pre-term babies in the US as compared to Western Europe. They don't get around to why more babies are born pre-term in the US, exactly, but they do state that

c) "it appears unlikely that differences in reporting are the primary explanation for the United States’ relatively low international ranking. In 2005, 22 countries had infant mortality rates of 5.0 or below. One would have to assume that these countries did not report more than one-third of their infant deaths for their infant mortality rates to equal or exceed the U.S. rate. This level of underreporting appears unlikely for most developed countries."

d) When you exclude from the US's tally babies that are born before 22 weeks and die, the US's rate drops down to 5.8 (from 6.8) a significant drop, but still higher than most of Europe.

So, the US seems better than most European countries at saving the lives of premature babies, but worse at saving the lives of regular babies. And, of course, there are European countries that are better at saving the lives of premature babies, such as Sweden and Norway, which have very socialized medicine.

In any case, it seems fair to say, that socialized medicine does not contribute to the death of babies.

Vox Populi said...

>Also, doctors in Western Europe are strongly discourage from reviving newborn babies and the policy is not to rush to save their lives.

This reminds me of what you wrote about the Netherlands earlier:

>Well, in many Western European countries doctors are allowed to "abort" babies after birth and in one of them (I believe it is Netherlands) parents and doctors are allowed to abort the "fetus" up to the age of 12 years old.

Needless to say, the Netherlands does not sanction the murder of pre-pubescents. Dutch mothers can get fetus aborted up to 21 weeks in the pregnancy, or 24 weeks if urgent medical care is required. So, you're off by 13 and 1/2 years, there.

Regarding the doctors in Western Europe, do you have any proof, that their policy is to let babies die?

mlevin said...

Before doing all the research I did a few years ago, I would like to point out what you just posted:

"These countries count as stillborn fetuses that are born before 22 weeks of gestation, and/or weigh less than 500 grams."

That means if a baby in these countries is born breathing, but dies later if he was before 22 weeks or under 500 grams he would still be counted as a still born.

Let me remind you that one pound is 460 grams. We, in United States, have babies born and put in the incubators who are under one pound. We count them as life births. 500 grams is more than one pound and one ounce. And they consider it a miscarriage or a still birth. Do you see the statistical inconsistency?

mlevin said...

I can't believe I'm actually researching this again. Here are a some things I have found. I gave you a web address and a quote from that page. But it's late and I need to go to sleep.


http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17569269

"55% of all infant mortality is babies born under 32 weeks"

http://ije.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/24/3/583

"Conclusion. Differences in birth registration practices for infants weighing <1500 g are primarity responsible for the poor, deteriorating performance by the US in the International rankings of neonatal mortality rates."

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2486783/?page=3

"Latvia imposes a minimum life span of seven completed days"

"Furthermore in Netherlands, a child born alive before the minimum period should survive for 24 hours postpartnum before being declared a life birth"

"These vary largely by country ranging from 24 hours to for registration of life birth (Czechoslovakia and Hungary) to three months (former USSR)."

mlevin said...

You've asked me what I want, what I want no politician will have the balls to do.

I want there to be a difference between medicaid systems for those who never worked (or only worked for a year or two) and never paid any taxes into the system (house wives with working husbands should be treated as tax payers) and those who worked all of their lives and paid taxes but still ended up with either a small nest egg or without one. The ones who worked should be given priority over care and doctor choice and should have a larger pool of available choice. Those who did not should be treated as freeloaders and relegated to the lower importance status, with fewer choices available. For example if there was a car accident and two patients were rolled into the emergency room, the one who paid or pays taxes should be given the priority over the one who is a freeloader. Same goes for expectant mothers. Both are about to have a third baby. The first one is on government support and never had a husband, the other is a tax paying housewife. Doctors and nurses should give priority to the taxpaying one. And yes, they should discriminate and treat them as second class citizen. They should constantly remind them that they are in the hospital due to the charitable nature of the tax paying Americans. Buttom line they should make them uncomfortable and feel guilty for stealing other people's money.

By the way, I want the same discrimination to apply to those using FoodStamps/Benefit card and all other government support money.

Instead, we are getting ObamaCare where everyone will be treated equally and when there is a shortage of care there would be no discrimination between honest and hardworking people and those who are cheats and frauds. And yes, illegal immigrants fall into the cheats and frauds category and their children should not have access to our public school education or our school lunch or our library, and if hospitalized they should be send back to where they came from as soon as doctor discharges them from the hospital.

Vox Populi said...

>Do you see the statistical inconsistency?

No, because the countries referred to are Poland and the Czech Republic. Not every other country in the developed World, the vast majority of whom record live births exactly as does the United States. So, fine, I'm perfectly prepared to say that the United States compares favorably to Poland in infant mortality rates. The real point is, how does the US compare to Sweden or to Finland or to Norway or to the UK or to Canada? The data does not suggest, as per your assertion, that socialized medicine places babies, pre-term or otherwise, at any disadvantage. In fact, it seems to suggest the opposite. Though I am not willing to conclude that the reason is socialized medicine, I am willing to conclude that socialized medicine does not have a harmful effect on newborns.

>"55% of all infant mortality is babies born under 32 weeks

Look, I'm not a statistician, but I would assume, even in a 22 week reporting country, like the Czech Republic, more pre-term babies (before 32 weeks) will be born between 22 and 32 weeks than will be between 0-22 weeks. And, as the CDC has stated in their 2009 report, and as I mentioned in my last post "it appears unlikely that differences in reporting are the primary explanation for the United States’ relatively low international ranking".

This is, of course, besides the point, because the Czech Republic, Poland, Latvia and whoever are not the countries bringing up the world's average here against the United States. And we are still being beaten in term and preterm baby care by states with socialized medicine and the same reporting requirements.

>And yes, they should discriminate and treat them as second class citizen. They should constantly remind them that they are in the hospital due to the charitable nature of the tax paying Americans.

Do you also believe in eugenics? What does a person's ability to pay or how much they've worked have to do with whether we should save their lives? Are you suggesting that we should set up a system of death panels that will evaluate individuals on the value they bring to society?

"Sorry, Ms. Hernandez, but you're on welfare, so no chemotherapy for you" ?

That isn't rationing health care?

>Instead, we are getting ObamaCare where everyone will be treated equally and when there is a shortage of care there would be no discrimination between honest and hardworking people and those who are cheats and frauds.

Arghh! Equality before the law, that scourge of freedom and democracy! Boo! Hiss! Again, though, we're back to the same question: How many cheats and frauds do you really think there are? What percentage of people on social welfare programs do you think are screwing us?

frumskeptic said...

Vox Populi- the point about the government and the fraud is that it occurs, alot more than you care to beleive.

You cant get statistics on this, becuase its not actually possible. I don't know anyone on welfare who actually deserves it. Not that they're undeserving cuz of eugenics or w/e.. but cuz they're actually CHEATING to get it.

In the good-old days welfare and other social programs were hard to get. The government would do sporadic check ups (as per people I spoke to, who used to be on welfare about 30 years ago). And they would deduct a portion of the welfare check if someone had a luxury (car, TV, Cable etc).
Now the average "poor" person has cable TV, a car, Air conditioning, a cell-phone, a house etc... and guess who foots the bill? The taxpayer.

Why in the world is it fair for someone who is receiving a hand-out to waste it on luxuries the average WORKER has to work hard to afford for themselves? Its so frustrating that I work so damn hard, get taxed a ridiculous amount, to pay for other peoples luxuries...

Sorry... but if you aren't able to afford healthcare but you have Cable and a cell-phone, I dont feel bad for you. THe few people who don't have that, HAVE A SYSTEM IN PLACE ALREADY. like previously mentioned- the ER isn't allowed to reject a patient for their inability to pay.

Thats all it is.

This has nothign to do with class discrimination or anythign like htat. Irresponsibility and laziness is not something that should be promoted. We should *limit* government hand-outs, so they're only given out in extreme cases, not when cable watching, cell-phone using people claim poverty.

Expanding health-care only allows for more people to spend their money frivilously, and fails to teach them how to get out of the dependency mess.

mlevin said...

"No, because the countries referred to are Poland and the Czech Republic. "

You yourself said that France goes by upto 500 grams. France is not Poland or Chech. France is above US in infant mortality. You don't really expect me to go country by country and post all of their data collection methods and how they are compared with US. Do you? I supplied you with a few to back up my point. I think it is enough. Also, let me remind you that my initial argument was that upto 30 days after life birth the baby is considered a still birth, but I brought it down that some countries don't consider it a life birth for upto 3 months after birth. That skews the statistics big time especially since most infant mortality happens to babies born very early and/or very low birth weight.

Let me also remind you that the reason we went in this direction because you claimed that their socialized medicine is better than our American in preventing the infant mortality, and I brought in statistics to show that it is not true. I nullified your argument.

" What does a person's ability to pay or how much they've worked have to do with whether we should save their lives?"

Who said we shouldn't save their lives? I said that it shouldn't be placed on the same priority as those who work for their living. If there is one doctor and two patients, the one who works/worked should be a priority. That should also apply if there is a shortage of medicine or pain relieving, nursing care, bed availability and etc.

When I gave birth to my second daughter it was a slow season in newborns and hospital had many empty rooms. I was given a room all to my self as well as other hardworking americans. As I was walking through the hallways I noticed that there were two rooms packed with new mothers. Each room had 6 beds and they were all occupied. I asked the nurse why were some people given a room of their own, and there were empty rooms, while these two rooms were filled to a brim. She told me, these are the medicaid patients' rooms. I bet today doing something like that would be illegal.

" Are you suggesting that we should set up a system of death panels that will evaluate individuals on the value they bring to society?"

I said no such thing. I said priorities.

"How many cheats and frauds do you really think there are? What percentage of people on social welfare programs do you think are screwing us?"

I think there are millions of cheats and frauds. I think that at least half of teenage single mothers on government programs are cheats. I think that 25% of divorced mothers on government subsidies are cheats.

I think that we should discontinue school lunch programs because government already provides families with foodstamps. And if children do not get enough food, then it's not the fault of the poverty but the fault of the negligent parents and children should be taken away from them. It is not a proper way to raise children. Eliminating this program would save us the tax payers over $9.3 billion.

Avi Bitterman said...

Vox,

"First, don't these problems exist with any taxes you pay?"

Yes. They are all forms of extortion.

Vox Populi said...

mlevin,

Dude, seriously. You have to read what I am writing. Then consider what I am saying, and then respond. I feel like I'm pissing into the wind.

>You yourself said that France goes by upto 500 grams.

Le sigh. What else did I say? Can you only read things that you think support your opinions, or are you just pretending to be this obtuse? I also said, that even if you take away all the babies born before 22 weeks (i.e., before France considers them a live birth) from both sides, the US still has a higher infant mortality rate than France, and most of Western Europe.

I also said, that the CDC report concluded that differences in reporting requirements are not the cause of the United States' low rankings.

>You don't really expect me to go country by country and post all of their data collection methods and how they are compared with US. Do you? I supplied you with a few to back up my point. I think it is enough.

No, it's not enough, you old so-and-so! Which countries did you supply?

First, you asserted that babies born pre-term outside of the United States have less of a chance of surviving than those born in the United States.

You said you thought France counts only babies born after 30 days. Turned out to be not true.

Then you said Western European doctors don't care about letting babies die, which you have yet to prove.

Then you said you were only offering examples of Western Europe.

Then you proceeded to only offer examples from Eastern Europe, as it turns out, most of Western Europe has the same reporting definitions as the US.

You gave me Latvia, a former Soviet republic, which ranks on the UN list at 57, and on the CIA list at 64. Well below the United States. I don't know how you think that proving that a country with a higher infant mortality rate than the US also has a narrower definition of a live birth helps your case that countries with a lower mortality rate than the US have narrower definitions that make a statistical difference.

Then there was Hungary, another Eastern European country, which also ranks below the US, at 40th (UN) and 62 (CIA). Ditto.

Then there was Czechoslovakia, a country that is difficult to compare to the US, as it no longer exists. Which led me to follow your link, which was to a 1995 report. It is now 2010. The report I provided was from 2009. In any case, the former Czechoslovakia is also an Eastern European country.

You then mentioned the former USSR, which was composed of countries of which none of whom are in Western Europe. All of them now rank much lower than the US. So ditto. Russia, the most developed, clocks in at 81 and 73.

And somewhere in there you also asserted that children can be aborted in the Netherlands up to their bat mitzvah. Also false.

Do you see why the old data on Eastern European countries that have higher infant mortality rates than the US (even according to their own selective data) you provided, does not help to prove your case that the socialized welfare states of Western Europe with their lower infant mortality rates are worse at treating babies because of socialized medicine but hide it through narrow definitions of live birth?

Vox Populi said...

>Also, let me remind you that my initial argument was that upto 30 days after life birth the baby is considered a still birth, but I brought it down that some countries don't consider it a life birth for upto 3 months after birth.

What are you smoking? You asserted that you can't compare other countries' mortality rates to the US because some of them (e.g. France. which doesn't) only count live births after 30 days. You brought me down a 15 year old report documenting the state of affairs in 1991, almost 20 years ago. Many of the countries which you listed no longer exist. The only countries that had the 3 months reporting requirement were countries in the former Soviet Union. Well, a lot has changed in Eastern Europe in the last 20 years. Many of these countries have joined the EU, and nearly all of them have adopted the WHO standard. This is, again, besides the fact the CDC concludes that any discrepancy in reporting requirements wouldn't provide statistical basis for the US' high mortality rate, and that all the countries you cite from that report have higher rates than even the US. Moreover, you have yet to respond to the fact that most countries in Western Europe share the US' definition of live birth, and have lower infant mortality rates. In fact, even in your woefully out of date report, Sweden, a country with one of the lowest mortality rates, has absolutely no time delay requirement for considering a baby a live birth.

>That skews the statistics big time especially since most infant mortality happens to babies born very early and/or very low birth weight.

I've dealt with this ad nauseam.

>Let me also remind you that the reason we went in this direction because you claimed that their socialized medicine is better than our American in preventing the infant mortality, and I brought in statistics to show that it is not true. I nullified your argument.

Are you serious? There's a documented record of our dialogue here. There's not even room here for a difference of opinion. This is pure revisionism on your part. The first mention of the treatment of babies in socialized medicine was you, at 11.30 pm on April 13.

"Had this baby been born in a country with a socialized medicine, she would now have been six feet under rather than learning how to count."

Here you are, clearly asserting that the US is better than other countries with socialized medicine at treating infants.

I responded, that in fact, the US has a relatively low ranking compared to socialized welfare countries. I explictly said that I was not willing to conclude that the reason for their high rankings was due to socialized medicine. All I concluded was that socialized medicine was not responsible for making them worse, the direct opposite of your assertion.

mlevin said...

"from both sides, the US still has a higher infant mortality rate than France, and most of Western Europe."

Actually statistically speaking US is ahead of France and by a lot. US has an infant mortality rate of 6.32 and France has at 3.33. As I showed to you before, 55% of all American infant deaths are those in the severe preterm bracket. So, if you subtract 55% from 6.32 (because France doesn't include it in their data) you are left with infant mortality rate of 2.84 which is lower than France's. That would place US as number five between Japan and Hong Kong.

"You said you thought France counts only babies born after 30 days. Turned out to be not true. "

I said I wasn't sure, because I did my research a long time ago. I said I think it's France. I did not say It is France. The word think showed that I wasn't sure.

"Then you said Western European doctors don't care about letting babies die, which you have yet to prove."

True, I didn't show you that, yet. But don't you think it already shows carelessness and lack of honor of human life if they categorize babies born under 500 grams as already dead? Wouldn't just that statement alone make doctor to be less alert and less trying? Why extend extra effort for something that is doomed anyway.

" which was to a 1995 report. "

Yes, it was from 1995, but I also gave you link from the same government site from latter years which still support the original paper.

"Then you said you were only offering examples of Western Europe."

You gave me your own findings on France. I don't see why I need to go into every country to support my point. France, a Western European country with socialized medicine does not consider babies born under 500 grams to be alive. In the United States, babies born under one pound are considered alive. 500 grams is over ONE pound and one ounce.

mlevin said...

http://www.chninternational.com/chnarch1.htm#INFANTICIDE%20IN%20THE%20NETHERLANDS:

Infanticide in the Netherlands. Doctors admit to 10 cases per year.

http://www.chninternational.com/now_they_want_to_euthanize_child.htm

"In the Netherlands, Groningen University Hospital has decided its doctors will euthanize children under the age of 12, if doctors believe their suffering is intolerable or if they have an incurable illness. But what does that mean? In many cases, as occurs now with adults, it will become an excuse not to provide proper pain control for children who are dying of potentially agonizing maladies such as cancer, and doing away with them instead. As for those deemed "incurable"--this term is merely a euphemism for killing babies and children who are seriously disabled."

http://www.chninternational.com/uk_belgium_assisted_suicide.htm

"BRUSSELS – About half of the 300 deaths of infants under the age of one are the result of active life termination. This emerged from a study by Professor Veerle Provoost of the University of Ghent.Provoost examined the medical files of about 300 babies. She also interviewed the acting physicians about the exact cause of death. In about 150 cases the baby's life had been actively terminated.This involves stopping treatment or administering a fatal dose of opiates. In 9 percent of cases products were explicitly administered to end the child's life.These cases were babies with no chance of survival, or, in 30 percent of these cases, little hope of having an acceptable quality of life. In most cases (84 percent) the decision was made in consultation with the parents."

That means that in 16% of the time doctors decided and just killed the babies without even informing the parents.

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Vox Populi said...

>Actually statistically speaking US is ahead of France and by a lot. US has an infant mortality rate of 6.32 and France has at 3.33. As I showed to you before, 55% of all American infant deaths are those in the severe preterm bracket. So, if you subtract 55% from 6.32 (because France doesn't include it in their data) you are left with infant mortality rate of 2.84 which is lower than France's.

No. Just because some premature babies counted as live births by the US are not counted by France, does not mean that France does not count any premature babies as being live births, which seems to be what you are assuming. In fact, since we know that France does count babies that are born after 22 weeks or weigh more than 500 g upon birth we do know that there are premature babies born in France that are counted as live births. If you factor that information in, you will find that France's would drop further, if you excluded those babies. You are assuming that the 55% of infant mortality takes place before 22 weeks, which intuitively is not true.

With regard to France (sigh, again), the 2009 report I mentioned specifically takes into account the differences in reporting, and concludes that even if you discounted babies born before 22 weeks from both France and the US, France would still have a lower infant mortality rate. France's would be 3.9, while the US's would be 5.8.

The report you cite (2004, btw) also does not say that 55% of infant mortality occurs before the 22nd week, but before the 32nd week, two and a half months later. As I said before, one would probably assume that more premature babies would be born between 22 and 37, than between 0 and 22, and I would assume that holds largely true as between weeks 22 and 32. However, why take my word for it? As I previously showed, the (2009) report I indicated finds that it is unlikely that the differences in reporting are the primary explanation for the difference in rates, because for that to be true, one would have to assume that countries with rates below 5.0 are all underreporting their infant deaths by more than a third, which is unlikely.

>That would place US as number five between Japan and Hong Kong.

Even assuming your analysis is correct, which I hope by now I have conclusively refuted for the last time, this would still place the US behind countries like Japan, Singapore and Sweden, all countries with considerably more government intervention than Obamacare. Remember, I never asserted that socialized medicine necessarily has a salutary effect on a country's infant mortality rate - you asserted that it had a negative effect. But even according to your crazy analysis of the numbers from outdated reports, there exist countries with socialized medicine that do better. QED.

Vox Populi said...

>Wouldn't just that statement alone make doctor to be less alert and less trying? Why extend extra effort for something that is doomed anyway.

Because they're doctors. I'm going to go out on a limb and assume that just because they don't report them as live births until they live for more than 24 hours does not mean that they consider them dead as they come out of the womb and then put them in the trash. What do you think, that if the baby lives to be 120, the state still thinks that guy is dead because it was born before 22 weeks?

>Yes, it was from 1995, but I also gave you link from the same government site from latter years which still support the original paper.

The report from 1995 is the report that gives the reporting criteria for all the specific countries you indicated. The 2004 report (how can I read the whole thing, btw, I only see the abstract?) only seems to support your general thesis that "Infants born at the lowest gestational ages and birthweights have a large impact on overall U.S. infant mortality". It says nothing about report requirements. Maybe in the actual report, but I can only see the abstract? Moreover, I would find it very odd if the 2004 report did support the 1991 data, as many of the countries you listed did not exist in 2004.

>Infanticide in the Netherlands. Doctors admit to 10 cases per year.

CHN seems to be an advocacy group (without much of a budget) devoted to stopping euthanasia and the like, so right away I'm skeptical of any of their data, especially if it's not linked to anything useful, like a report. Regarding infanticide - the linked page just gives the name of a Dutch doctor quoted by a Calgary newspaper in 1992. I guess this is better than your 1995 report using 1991 data, but this is till pretty useless. Additionally, the Dutch doctor is talking about euthanasia of infants, of which there exist 10 cases (in 1992), and I'm not sure what your point is. Is this supposed to prove that in the Netherlands they abort babies up to 12 years old? Because euthanasia is not an abortion, and infants are not twelve year olds.

>In the Netherlands, Groningen University Hospital has decided its doctors will euthanize children under the age of 12, if doctors believe their suffering is intolerable or if they have an incurable illness.

This is from a Weekly Standard op-ed, which is even worse, but from 2004, which is better. I did a little googling and I found something called the Groningen Protocol which does seem to authorize euthanasia of newborns, not 12 year olds. It is illegal in the Netherlands to euthanize someone who can give consent but doesn't affirmatively give it, so I don't know where the 12 year old bit came from. In any case, Dutch euthanasia is pretty well known - they can euthanize old people there - what is the relevance of this to socialized medicine and neonatal care?

Regarding the Belgian euthanasia thing, I can't find any source for it, other than something called expat news, which doesn't have the article, and no link to the report. If true, it would appear that Belgium has interesting and controversial euthanasia policies for babies under one years old. But this says nothing about abortions, and certainly nothing about 12 year olds. It also says nothing about your assertion that doctors in Western Europe are discouraged from reviving babies, and says nothing about your larger point that neonatal care in Western Europe is worse than neonatal care here.

mlevin said...

"Because they're doctors."

I was going to respond to you again point by point, but I just can't get over that statement. They are humans. All doctors are humans. And they have bosses and overseers and all others to answer to and to account for their time. If they dedicated too much time on a baby that was born legally stillborn, someone was going to notice. Time is money and needs to be covered by someone.

Do you understand that by the fact alone that they consider breathing and heart beating human beings dead devalues the human life. Euthanizing babies and elderly or terminally ill is another step towards devaluing the human life. But you think it's ok "Because they're doctors."

I gave a link where doctors in Brussels kill (Euthanize)babies and admit to doing it to 16% without parental consent. Doesn't that make you wonder what kind of pressure parents are put under to consent to the other 84%?

I was going to point out that Japan and Hong Kong are small homogeneous countries, I was going to point out that being in the top ten is great.

But why bother, you seem to think that simply "because they are doctors" they are somehow perfect and don't have agendas or their own sense of right and are never pressured to do anything or forced by the government to perform in a certain way.

So, go ahead rejoice in ObamaCare. Enjoy seeing us devouluing the human life to mere numbers. Enjoy seeing more and more money being sucked from the honest Americans to sustain burgeoning beauracrasy.

Vox Populi said...

Jesus Horatio Christ. You're an incredible master of debate. It is impossible for me to argue against you, because you have this innate obtuseness that forbids you from reading anything I write except that which unpredictably tickles the anger-inducing parts of your brain. When I spend time actually following your links and researching the questions you pose - it's all useless. You're not even going to read them, no matter how convincing. You will find some throwaway line I wrote and make this the focus of your repeated but unsubstantiated argument again, without ever responding to the substance of my response. Watch again, as I will respond to your statements, and you will find some turn of phrase that magically proves your point, again and again, ad infinitum. Fortunately, my reserves of time are limitless.

>I was going to respond to you again point by point, but I just can't get over that statement. They are humans. All doctors are humans.

Yes, nowadays, most doctors are humans. In fact, my response could just as easily have been "because they are humans" - with the assumption being that humans don't just watch things die so as not fill out some paperwork. Obviously, this is a point of some disagreement between you and me.

>If they dedicated too much time on a baby that was born legally stillborn, someone was going to notice. Time is money and needs to be covered by someone.

Let me get this straight. You think somewhere in Denmark, a senior doctor is calling in an ob-gyn and interrogating him for saving too many babies.

"Dr. Jennssen, we have been examining your file, and find that you have saved the lives of too many babies. As you know, we are Europeans socialists, and thus care only about using money efficiently. For some inexplicable reason (perhaps, as Aryans, we are secretly Nazis), we have decided that we like to have a nice quota of dead babies. You are not meeting your quota, doctor. Need I remind you what will happen to you if you don't correct this? Should your mother ever enter into a persistent vegetative state, we will keep your mother on life support, thereby ensuring you can never go on vacation without calling her beforehand again! (Maniacal Danish laughter.)"

Get real. Second, and perhaps most obvious, I think you misunderstand what it means to report a baby as stillborn. As I alluded to earlier, it does not mean that if a baby is born too early, despite being alive, the doctor will go,

Doctor: Oh, I'm sorry, your baby is dead, as it was born at four months and three weeks.
Baby: Waah! Waah!
Mother: Oh good, as a European, I would have aborted it anyway, when it reached pre-school age.
Father: (Talking loudly to be heard over the persistent cries of his dead child) You know, it's curious that we even went to an ob-gyn to have our baby delivered, seeing as he was already dead.

If the baby is born alive, i.e. showing any signs of life, it is alive. And the doctors treat it as such, and do everything in their power to keep it that way. However, in some countries, like the Czech Republic (not Denmark, ironically), if the baby does die that day, under some circumstances, the doctor may not report it as a live birth. This does not mean that the baby was not born alive, or that the doctor figured "hey, why bother?" You're drawing some absurd line here - since the babies can be written off after they die as "stillborn", hospital administrators will therefore coerce doctors into letting them die, I suppose, as their parents look on. Because doctors are worse than regular people, maybe, I don't know.

Vox Populi said...

>Doesn't that make you wonder what kind of pressure parents are put under to consent to the other 84%?

One can only imagine. Perhaps they threaten to kill their child! Oh, wait a second...

>I was going to point out that Japan and Hong Kong are small homogeneous countries, I was going to point out that being in the top ten is great.

I agree that being in the Top 10 is great. But, even if the USA is in the top 10 (WHICH IT IS NOT AND YOU HAVE NEVER RESPONDED TO THAT FACT), the fact remains that the other 9 countries there have socialized medicine. Which makes it EXTREMELY DIFFICULT TO ARGUE THAT SOCIALIZED MEDICINE WILL LEAD TO INCREASED INFANT MORTALITY WHICH WAS YOUR ORIGINAL ARGUMENT! Perhaps by putting the argument into CAPS will help you see it better.

>So, go ahead rejoice in ObamaCare. Enjoy seeing us devouluing the human life to mere numbers. Enjoy seeing more and more money being sucked from the honest Americans to sustain burgeoning beauracrasy.

At some point, will you actually explain to me how a state that ensures that all their citizens receive quality health care is a state that devalues human life, while a state that says "Screw you! I've got mine, you illegal wetback parasite that lives in a free Medicare cadillac!" is a paragon of humanism?

frumskeptic said...

I read this over shabbos, meant to post it, forgot, then received an email on this post, so here goes :

This is just at tip of the iceberg of the fraud i'm talking about...

http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/0510/opinions-insurance-fraud-obamacare-medicare-on-my-mind.html


"The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services acknowledge $47 billion a year in "questionable claims" (i.e., fraud) in Medicare--about 10% of the program's $480 billion budget. Attorney General Eric Holder puts fraud even higher, at maybe $60 billion. In contrast, private-sector health insurers, which spend more than $600 billion a year on claims, keep the fraud rate to 1.5% (by my colleagues' and my estimate)."

mlevin said...

VP - funny. Except you got the conversation between the doctor and the administrator wrong. The conversation would go something like that.

Dr. Jennssen, it had come to our attention that you are spending way too much time attending the babies who have no hope of survival. As you already know this hospital is underfunded and understaffed. The governor and the voting public demand to know on how we spend our money. Please tell me how I can justify $1500 you just spent on a baby that died three hours later. Here is the bill for the services that your decision had cost this hospital. You have used X amount of drugs. You have used Y machines and you have used these many nurses and other doctors. The tax paying public, Dr. Jennssen, wants to know who gave you the right to spend their hard earned money on making the already doomed baby breath for an extra hour? I understand you are young and idealistic, but if you want to continue being affiliated with this medical facility, then I don't want to hear any more complains about you wasting the hospital's resources.

mlevin said...

"At some point, will you actually explain to me how a state that ensures that all their citizens receive quality health care is a state that devalues human life, while a state that says "Screw you! I've got mine, you illegal wetback parasite that lives in a free Medicare cadillac!" is a paragon of humanism?"

That's what you are not getting, socialized medicine does not mean "quality health care for all its citizen". All it means that all citizen are able to access care for coughs and snifles, but when it's a more serious condition it's back to power. The more powerful one is, the better medical care one gets. In our, US system, power is defined by money. It's a straight forward exchange of services system. I give you money and you provide me with the service. In the socialized system, where health care is "provided for all", one must obtain that health care by bribery and illegal payments and etc. You bribe to get access to a better doctor, or you bribe to get ahead in line or you bribe to gain access to the limited supply to drugs. We already witnessed some of that corruption last year when there was a limited supply for swine flu vaccine, yet, certain people received a shot ahead of others. And to justify getting ahead of others, some people were forced to receive the shot against their wills.

Vox Populi said...

>The tax paying public, Dr. Jennssen, wants to know who gave you the right to spend their hard earned money on making the already doomed baby breath for an extra hour?

LOL, so essentially, for some reason, state run hospitals that ensure free or discounted healthcare care only about saving money, while privately funded for-profit hospitals care only about saving lives. Oh, ye noble rich people! How we have misjudged you!

So, in your Danish hellscape, not only are the doctors and hospital administrators monsters, but the taxpaying public as well. The taxpayers would apparently protest (nay, revolt! - that money should be spent on killing their parents!) if too much effort was expended on saving the lives of babies. Cause, you know, it's Denmark.

Second, even if, arguendo, we accept the notion that Danes care more about saving money than saving lives (ALSO, AT NO POINT HAVE YOU PROVEN THAT THESE COUNTRIES ACTUALLY DO EXPEND LESS EFFORT IN THESE CASES - YOU ARE ARGUING FROM YOUR INTUITION, WHICH ALL REPORTED DATA HAS INDICATED IS WRONG - so really we're assuming the truth of an argument that is based on several fallacies), why do you assume that Americans would make the same value judgment? Are we not more moral than those pre-pubescent aborters?

>All it means that all citizen are able to access care for coughs and snifles, but when it's a more serious condition it's back to power. The more powerful one is, the better medical care one gets. In our, US system, power is defined by money.

So, a system of health care rationing that apportions any and all health care (basic or advanced) based on who has more money is preferable to one where basic health care is provided to all, regardless of monetary wealth, and more advanced care is still available to one with greater wealth? That is just so ridiculous. You say you can't stand a system of health care rationing dependent on bribery, but you're fine with the out and out purchase of it by money? What's the difference? The lack of equal access to pricing information?

>You bribe to get access to a better doctor, or you bribe to get ahead in line or you bribe to gain access to the limited supply to drugs.

Whereas, access to better doctors should be bought by the rich, dammit! All this bribing is so unseemly.

Again, there are countries with socialized medicine far more comprehensive than ours - how are they doing? Is it like living in the Soviet Union?

mlevin said...

I don't believe you are getting me back into this again. Obviously you are so blind that nothing I could do to open your eyes.

"Whereas, access to better doctors should be bought by the rich, dammit! All this bribing is so unseemly."
Who said by the rich? I said by money. If you don't have it, you could raise it. There are charity organizations set up just for that purpose. The only thing preventing anyone from getting the best in America is money. In other countries it is legislature and the only way to acquire the best is by being unethical. Do you see the difference?

"So, a system of health care rationing that apportions any and all health care (basic or advanced) based on who has more money is preferable to one where basic health care is provided to all, regardless of monetary wealth, and more advanced care is still available to one with greater wealth? "
Had Obama said the truth and said now everyone can see a doctor for coughs and sniffles, but more advanced real life saving care would be rationed and accessable to fewer people, no one would have voted for it. But that is what we are getting.

"LOL, so essentially, for some reason, state run hospitals that ensure free or discounted healthcare care only about saving money, while privately funded for-profit hospitals care only about saving lives. Oh, ye noble rich people! How we have misjudged you!"
No. State run hospitals have guaranteed income regardless of what they do there. There is no incentive to be better to try harder. Private hospitals know that each patient counts. Every life they save means better advertising for the hospital. Every new patient is more income. They must always come up with new inovative ideas to attract people to their facility versus the competition's. So, yes, for profit hospitals try to do a better job.

My cousin's husband went to med school in England. He described how doctors do as little as possible during their official work hours and then treat patients off the books for real money.

You keep on asking about data, but you cannot show data that proves that people don't care, don't try as hard. The attitude is not something that cannot be seen on statistics.

"Again, there are countries with socialized medicine far more comprehensive than ours - how are they doing? Is it like living in the Soviet Union?"

I can't figure out what you are saying there. Are you saying that Soviet Union had comprehensive medicine because it was socialized or are you saying that Soviet Union was an anomaly?

Vox Populi said...

>Who said by the rich? I said by money. If you don't have it, you could raise it. There are charity organizations set up just for that purpose. The only thing preventing anyone from getting the best in America is money.

Oh, come on. In a society where how much money you can pay deems how much you are worth, who do you think is better off? Rich people or poor people who rely on the charity of rich people? Hmmm....

You would oppose a government that imposed equality by law, instead of one that lets you be ranked by how much money you have?

>In other countries it is legislature and the only way to acquire the best is by being unethical. Do you see the difference?

Again, there are other countries on this planet, many of them with high standards of living, developed economies, and market and political freedoms. I'm pretty sure that all of them have versions of socialized medicine far more socialized than Obamacare. As far as I can tell, these programs are all popular, and considered essential to the people of those countries. The Conservative Party in the UK, for instance, is running on a platform promising to preserve the NHS from spending cuts. The Republican Party here opposed the Affordable Care Act partly because they claimed it would make cuts to Medicare.

I haven't heard the peasants of these wealthy European or Asian or North American countries crying out against the rampant corruption and line jumping that is being perpetrated against them by the party elite or the politburo or whatever.

>Had Obama said the truth and said now everyone can see a doctor for coughs and sniffles, but more advanced real life saving care would be rationed and accessable to fewer people, no one would have voted for it. But that is what we are getting.

Well, the basic healthcare guarantees more than coughs and sniffles, but yeah, it's pretty basic. And this is pretty much what the Administration and the Democrats claimed. What's the problem?

Acc. to you, money should be the sole determinant, and for advanced special luxury care, it will be. You should be happy.

Vox Populi said...

>No. State run hospitals have guaranteed income regardless of what they do there. There is no incentive to be better to try harder. Private hospitals know that each patient counts. Every life they save means better advertising for the hospital. Every new patient is more income. They must always come up with new inovative ideas to attract people to their facility versus the competition's. So, yes, for profit hospitals try to do a better job.

Wait, they don't care about keeping down costs, though? How interesting...So, hospitals whose funding is guaranteed by the government care about cutting costs, even if it means letting babies die, while hospitals that only care about the moolah don't care about costs? Wouldn't it be more likely that there is some cost-benefit analysis in a profit model?

Second, I don't think you understand how socialized medicine works. There are many different models. In Canada, for instance, doctors are not government employees, but work for themselves. The more patients and procedures they do and have, the more money they bill the government. So, they have an incentive to provide quality care.

Third, I don't think you understand how Obamacare works, either. The government is not providing significantly more health care than it used to - there is only a marginal increase in the scope of Medicaid. Rather, the government is telling people they have to buy their own insurance. The Democrats did not so much reform health care in the US as they reformed health insurance in the US.

>My cousin's husband went to med school in England. He described how doctors do as little as possible during their official work hours and then treat patients off the books for real money.

And I grew up in Canada. I've never had a problem with any of my doctors, and I and my family have received excellent care.

>You keep on asking about data, but you cannot show data that proves that people don't care, don't try as hard. The attitude is not something that cannot be seen on statistics.

In other words, your argument can't be proven, it must be accepted at face value. How convenient.

An alternative tactic might be to say, sure, there are no statistics available on the level of physician enthusiasm (though I suspect there are studies surveys somewhere), but you know what we can measure? Outcomes! Let's see if countries with socialized medicine are worse or better than our organized extortion racket here in the US! We would see whether Canada or Denmark or whoever has a lower life expectancy, or a higher infant mortality rate, etc. While that may not show how enthusiastic a country's doctor is, it will show us how good that system is, which makes the enthusiasm question academic.

>I can't figure out what you are saying there. Are you saying that Soviet Union had comprehensive medicine because it was socialized or are you saying that Soviet Union was an anomaly?

The USSR had socialized medicine, and also had bribery, black market, intimidation, line-jumping by VIPs and party officials. The reason it was bad was not because all socialized medicine countries are bad - witness every other developed country in the world - but because the USSR was a communist, totalitarian state.

Your argument seems to be there will be bribery and line-jumping because that is the nature of socialized medicine. I'm saying, no, look at the bulk of countries that have socialized medicine. One will notice that they do not resemble the USSR.

frumskeptic said...

"but because the USSR was a communist, totalitarian state."

You're right. Obama is no totalitarian. What are the american people soo worried about? He only wants whats best for the public, even though *majority* of the public doesnt see eye-to-eye with him on the bill, and they dont want it. They are perfectly happy with their health insurance and are unwilling to pay higher taxes. BUt Obama knows what's best for the people, and the Public should be happy they have such a wonderful caring government that doesn't bother listening to their needs but decides what they deem is a need for them.

"The government is not providing significantly more health care than it used to - there is only a marginal increase in the scope of Medicaid. Rather, the government is telling people they have to buy their own insurance. The Democrats did not so much reform health care in the US as they reformed health insurance in the US."

And then they'll penalize people who wont buy it, and they will tax those who are insured with premium health insurance (b/c gd forbid someone wants a premium package!), and they'll tax your employer. And then they'll give the poor people free insurance.

So while I have insurance, I'm gonna get taxed.... so will grandma's wheelchair, and my tanning visit... and probably soon my soda.

YAY for freedom.

"You would oppose a government that imposed equality by law, instead of one that lets you be ranked by how much money you have?"

I'm speaking for mlevin... but HELL YEA!

How much money you have is determined by hardwork, perserverence, and sometimes a little bit of luck. If I truly felt like it, I woulda gone to grad school. But I'm not studius, nor am I willing to sacrafice 80 hrs/week working to make a certain amount of money. BUt people who do it... GOOD for them. I think they should KEEP their money. and CHOOSE if they wanna spend it or not. WE live in such a great country where SOOOOO many of our rich people already donate soooo much money. WHy are you willing to ultimately hurt the middle-class?

The Torah even tells us that there will be rich and there will be poor people. And *all* the people give 10% not more than 20%... no matter their income, they give a flat rate.

Why can government tax some people more? How does that make any sense? Afterall... this post started on the argument that frum Jews claiming that we're a charitable people say we should be happy for this bills passing, and I'm not so happy... It's not actually Torah true Judaism.