Socialized Medicine Red Sucker Redux – Part III Obamanation Rebuttal

I find it nauseating to have to keep discussing this topic, I need a red sucker laced with PeptoBismol. But I am not a sucker and they are not going to get away with a power grab of 17% of our economy, putting power brokers in control of the essence of life itself. Like I opined in recent posts, I truly believe the topic to be the single most dangerous power grab that the Left is instituting at this moment. Have you taken part in the poll in my site? I voted for socialized medicine, (universal healthcare). Case in point, I literally have 6 separate stories on the desk here that are needed in discussion.

First up, the Obamanation gave a speech, (text here), today to the American Medical Association in Chicago. As I have said, the group is lukewarm on current proposals and a potential opponent.

I’m putting up a few of his points with my counterpoints –

Obamanation today – “Today, we are spending over $2 trillion a year on health care – almost 50 percent more per person than the next most costly nation. And yet, for all this spending, more of our citizens are uninsured; the quality of our care is often lower; and we aren’t any healthier.”

This is simply not true folks. We have the best health-care system in the world. Why do folks from Canada come here to receive treatments and tests? Their socialized system mandates waiting lines and lack of availability for many procedures. It puts lives at risk and bureaucrats in charge of life and death initiatives for individuals, anathema to America’s founding. How can we even have a debate when honesty is thrown out the window?

Obamanation again -“Make no mistake: the cost of our health care is a threat to our economy. It is an escalating burden on our families and businesses. It is a ticking time-bomb for the federal budget”

Really? And the runaway cost gives Him the license to socialize as much as possible of the system? Instead of reform, we are opting for federal entanglement and control that will exacerbate the problems of today? The true ticking time-bombs for the federal budget are our two giant entitlement programs already on the books – Social Security and Medicare. Those two alone will bankrupt our nation, is not suicide to create yet another entitlement program? Do you see what the collectivist Left is trying to do here? We are facing the abolition of our freedoms and future fiscal viability in this country and I will tell you that it has nothing to do with the health-care system, it has everything to do with power-brokers in Washington.

Obamanation“Five of the costliest illnesses and conditions – cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, lung disease, and strokes – can be prevented. And yet only a fraction of every health care dollar goes to prevention or public health.”

And remember folks that I outlined in my previous post here that the Kennedy-Dodd plan implicitly makes no assumptions on disease prevention and health maintenance? Remember that you will implicitly be ‘bailing out’ the health of your fellow citizen? He is telling bald-faced lies here in that the feds will change this, this should be done as reform to our current system in the Safeway model here.

Obamanation in reference to citizen journalists that have a clear mind and voice such as the LCR -“They’ll give dire warnings about socialized medicine and government takeovers; long lines and rationed care; decisions made by bureaucrats and not doctors. We’ve heard it all before — and because these fear tactics have worked, things have kept getting worse.”

And these are the precise things that occur under any such socialized system. Cause and Effect. 1 + 1 = 2. Absolute nonsense here, I have health insurance – it’s expensive but I choose by my own volition to have it. My neighbor has no right to expect me to pay for his. Things have not kept getting worse Sir, you have made our country worse for bringing us down the road of collectivism using unprecedented fear tactics to tear down the free market. Health care needs reform and less government intervention. The precise opposite of that being proposed.

Upate I : The WSJ has an article here on the ‘public plan.’ The jist? That such a ‘public plan’ would eventually be the only plan. The government plan would simply eventually crowd out private companies and lead to 100% socialized medicine. Then again that is what they want isn’t it? Remember, public plan = backdoor socialized system.
Update II : Eric Dondero over at Libertarian Republican here has a piece up showing that some Democrats are showing lack of support for a government takeover. Case in point is Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut. According to Bloomberg News he was quoted as saying that he doesn’t support the ‘public option.’ Eric also points to Kent Conrad as having said that the votes may not be present for socialized medicine. Is there hope? I think so…..


Nick said…

To be fair, the medical system is a ticking time-bomb for the economy; however, that's because of the massive underfunded projected obligations of the current socialized medicine program called Medicare, not because of some perceived phantom economic drag from private insurance programs. It's pretty amazing that the typical supporter of the Obamanation could be so gullible that Obama could point to a huge core problem, note how big the problem is, and then propose that we need more of the same problem to make things better!

I stand by my original wish, though: as unlikely as it is, I want Obama to stand by his statements of now or never, and if it not done this year it won't ever be done. If only we could count on one grain of truth coming out of the Obamanation, we might have a small hope that if the atrocity is defeated this time, it might never again threaten the country. However, like all of Obama's other distortions, misrepresentations, and outright lies, I'm not counting on it.

Opus #6 said…

Gosh, I hope you are right that the Dems are backing away from this travesty. From this attack on the American Dream. Gutting 17% of the economy, and reducing the available collected taxes from that very part of the economy will ruin us fiscally, and as a people. His medicine will kill us, not cure us. I love this part of your article the best:Things have not kept getting worse Sir, you have made our country worse for bringing us down the road of collectivism using unprecedented fear tactics to tear down the free market. Health care needs reform and less government intervention. BINGO.

blackandgoldfan said…

I live in Pittsburgh, a city that is unparalleled in medical care. People have come from all over the world to bring their kids to Children's Hospital, and the Salk polio vaccine was created at the University of Pittsburgh. I agree with LCR…our nation is second to none in health care.

My suggestion to Obamarx would be to get out of the health care industry and let the free market work. Repeal some of the Draconian rules that prevent competition. For example, it is approximately 17 years before the patent on a new medicine runs out and generic forms are available. Striking that down would encourage price competition. Then, the free market would determine which companies survive.

Second, we've got to weed out the class of people who have no regard for the cost…basically, your generational welfare recipients. They use the ERs of this country as a personal doctor's office, and don't even have a copay. This needs to stop.

When we have citizens of other countries telling us not to go down this road, we need to listen.

Left Coast Rebel said…

Nick – Brilliantly put, the contradiction therein in this debate is enough to drive an active mind insane. Health care inflation due to over regulation and government mismanagement is out of control. The solution then is to socialize it? Are you frigging kidding me? I only wish that your last point may be true in that we have one shot at this thing and they could go for broke, now or never and we could pick up the pieces, clean up the mess and never have to deal with this ever again.

Opus – There are tiny little rays of hope, however that doesn't mean that the socialists will give up on this idea. As you say it really is the final nail in the coffin of the American Dream. And noone seems to even realize this.

BlackandGold – I concur on all of your points, spread the word on your blog too! Use anything here that you want, just provide a link back….

blackandgoldfan said…

Thanks, LCR! I just put that comment up because I did six posts today on mine. You have been more than gracious!

Opus #6 said…

I spoke about the American Dream and how it was completely missing when I visited Sweden as a foreign exchange student in high school. I am aware that a number of liberal readers of my blog scoffed that I was discussing socialism and Obama in the same breath prior to the November election. I am sad to be proven right. 🙁

The Law said…

I ask this question all the time, and no one ever really answers it. So I'll try again. What if you do everything right and you still can't afford healthcare? I'll use myself as an example. I'm 25 years old, came from a middle class background, I don't do drugs, I have two college degrees, making way on starting my career, I don't sleep around… I'm a good guy who tries to do the right thing. I CANNOT afford healthcare. In fact, I can barely afford to keep my head above water. I work in an industry where there is a lot of money to be made, but not in the beginning. When I turned 23, I was no longer covered under my parent's healthplan. Going on two years with no insurance, and no money to spare for any premiums. Why? because I'm $100,000 in college loan debt (luckily, the big bad govenment subsidized half of it so I don't pay interest on all of it!), and with California in the shape its in, the job market for my industry collapsed, and I couldn't even get work at a Taco Bell! (Yes, spent a lot of coin on a Masters degree to apply for a job at Taco Bell…)

What about the millions of people like me? Ask many college graduates and they will tell a similar story. How about the single mother who works two jobs and still finds time to make home cooked meals and go to PTA meetings, but has to make a choice between buying her son a new pair of shoes to replace the one with holes in it or buy some food for the family?

I'm not even going t go into my ideology here… I'm talking about real stories of people I personally know. Real hardships.

I'm very lucky that an alum from my alma mater helped to make the Venice free clinic. I got really sick recently and needed medical care. Free market costs, $750 for the visit. How is that right?

And by the by, I know a bunch of Canadians and asked them about their healthcare. They show the clinic or hosptial their green healthcare card and they get in. Takes 1 to 3 weeks to make a doctor's appointment. In college I had free market private insurance. I had food poisioning and sat in the waiting room for 4 hours!!! before I even was able to fill out a form! I could barely answer the nurse's questions when she was admitting me because I was a 9.9 on the pain scale (pain second to my bursted appendix, which I also had to wait in the waiting room for 2 hours before I was admitted.)

So please, someone explain to me how the free market helps people in these situations.

Ananda girl said…

Law– Believe me I have great sympathy and have lived what you are talking about personally as a single mom of four children. I have worked up to three jobs at one time to survive. Our social programs are terribly ineffective and flawed as I have experienced them.

I came to the conclusion that it was up to me. The sad fact is that life… in a free market or not… is not fair, never will be fair. The government cannot make it even… which is what we really mean by fair.

Work hard. Accept that you have to be creative and live as cheaply as possible. That is about all you can do. Best of luck, sir. You got an education and that is an excellent start. Do not lose heart. It gets better and then you own it, not the government.

Carl Wicklander said…


I think I can empathize with you. I'm 24, not quite finished with my M.A., with considerable education debt. The heartless advice I live by is to deal with it. Life's tough and unfair, so I'm judicious with the money I have to make ends meet. Life cannot be made perfect.

One of the briefest summaries I've heard to describe conservatism is that it accepts reality and deals with it. For that reason (among others) I prefer to deal with individuals who have a stake in the industry over bureaucrats who do not and who can simply plunder more tax revenue if their plan proves to be fallible.

Judging from your comment and recent entry on your own blog, I see that you support universal healthcare and want the government to do "what's right." Well, the government's already quite involved in the healthcare industry. It's not a free market situation right now anyway. The assumption seems to be that since healthcare is a flawed system only the government can set it straight. Yes, the free market is populated with flawed individuals who make mistakes, but so is the government. From what I read in your entry, you don't want a free market system because it's not perfect. Well, the government's not perfect either.

Although he was no Republican hack, the conservative writer Russell Kirk once wrote, "A terrestrial paradise cannot be contrived by metaphysical enthusiasts; yet an earthly hell can be arranged readily enough by ideologues of one stamp or another."

Government-run healthcare sounds good because it's packaged as the only solution that can possibly work. Listen to the Democratic partisans and talking heads: if only we get universal healthcare, all these problems will be solved!

Will government officials, who will not necessarily have any expertise in the field, always act in the patient's best interest? What if it turns out that a Democrat entrusted with an issue as important as healthcare proves to be just as corrupt as a Republican entrusted with national security? These are questions I would consider before extricating ourselves from a quasi-socialist healthcare system for a full blown socialist healthcare system.

So to answer your question about what to do if you do everything right and still can't afford healthcare, I say: try harder. There are a lot of areas in life where you can do everything right and not get what you think you deserve. But no matter how much government involves itself, it cannot create that terrestrial paradise: but it can make a tolerable, yet imperfect system worse.

There will always be inadequacies in any system run by fallible humans. We have to learn to deal with them. As Ananda Girl said, it's good that you've gotten an education. Use it wisely, work hard, and rely on yourself to succeed in the world. What it all comes down to is that you only have yourself to rely on in this world. The best of luck.

Carl Wicklander said…

LCR – good exposition of the situation. As you can tell, I'm certainly not in favor of this sort of system. It strikes me as more of a scheme. Yes, it's repetitive when you hit the same topic several times, but it needs to be heard.

I was occupied all weekend with company so I'm catching up on my blogs. Great work.

Carl Wicklander said…

I must say, however, that I'm skeptical about Lieberman's skepticism of the plan. He's supported universal healthcare in the past and has been shifty for the past 10 years. I don't quite trust him.

The Law said…

Thank you for your responses. I'm glad I finally have an answer to the unanswered question. Your answers however makes me feel even stronger about instituting a government based healthcare option.

The moral of the story is: can't afford health care? Work harder. Try harder. What if my best isn't good enough? well life isn't always fair. Require emergency medical attention but can't afford it? Buck up soldier, someone else has it harder than you.

But how about you dear readers of Left Coast Rebel? I like you guys because we can debate humanely, so let me toss one more food for thought… What if any of you who responsed, or anyone else who reads this lost their job and subsequently your healthcare. Or worse, what if you are currently uninsured for whatever reason. Let's assume you are reasonably healthy, and eat right. And then you get what I had in my freshman year of college appendicitis. If you haven't had appendicitis, the initial symptoms feel just like a old fashioned flu, until 4 days later you litterally feel like you're gonna die. When you feel death's cold breath, that means your appendix has or is about to burst. I was unlucky, and came within a half a day dying from a rookie level surgery (which was made best surgeon in my area level after gangrene was beginning to set in my stomach).

I was an avid racquetball player back then so I was in good shape, to complete my analogy here. The surgery, fees, and multiple follow ups (I was out of commission for almost 3 months) cost $42,000.

If you are a single mom, mother of 4 children, or a college grad who has already racked up a big bill, what do you do? I mean appendicitis litterally came out of nowhere… I felt perfectly fine the day before the symptoms started?

Luckily in college I was insured, paying only $30 bucks out of pocket. Without insurance, there is no way at all I could pay for it, I was 18! And there would've been no way for my parents to pay for it. And even if you go on a payment plan, considering interest, you're looking at paying $60,000 for a $42,000 surgery. And in my case, I was pursing a career in education at the time, so I had to earn a Masters or my time in undergrad would have been a waste.

My point is, the system is flawed no matter what you do. With a government option for healthcare, you A) do not have to worry about such doomsday senario and B) don't have to use it. I bring up education as an example because you don't have to put your child in public school; there are plenty of free market alternatives. But if your situation changes for the worst, your child will still have access to education. This is no different. Obamas plan does not limit your choice of doctors(it actually probably increases your choices), it does not force you to use government healthcare, a low cost government solution will bring the prices down to human levels so private insurance can compete, the free market will create probably better health as the drive for high quality at low costs becomes stronger… there are so many positives here. Most importantly, government healthcare options is YOUR brand. you can't do much about being cheated by private insurance companies. But we can play an active role in shaping policy in ways that better work for us.

Most people on the left do not seek to elminate private healthcare at all, so calling it socialized medicine is incorrect. It is simply an *alternative* that all Americans can enjoy.

blackandgoldfan said…

Law — A friend of mine was in your exact situation. She works hard and was taking care of her terminally-ill husband when she had her appendix burst. She spent five days in the hospital and, by the grace of God, was able to return to work within a month. She had no insurance, and her husband's medical bills were through the roof.

Through her experience, I learned that many hospitals have charity funds for people who don't qualify for medical assistance but have no insurance. The hospital she was in covered her bill except for $500. A hospital worth its weight will inform people of these programs.

Also, if necessary, many people who are in the no-insurance dilemma can usually petition for medical assistance to cover the bill. I would rather have my tax money go for a case like that than for the people who bring their kids into the ER for a runny nose because mom and dad don't want to get out of bed before noon to take the kid to a doctor the next day. I personally have witnessed that exact situation.

I did a post on the upcoming healthcare legislation titled "$1 Trillion For Healthcare: What a Bargain…NOT!". Just go to my blog at therightstuffbng.blogspot.com and click on the "healthcare" label. It's food for thought!

The Law said…

Blackandgold: I'm happy to hear your friend recovered. And was able to get help with the bill. But therein lies the problem: petitioning for medical assistance is unreliable. For as many happy endings as hers, there are just as many horror stories. And if you someone like I do who filed for bankruptcy because of medical bills from an emergency operation. If you saw your friend's life completely fall apart right before your eyes, perhaps you'd feel differently about it.

I know I'm probably not going to change any minds here. But healthcare is the second most important issue to me (behind education). I think the debate should be how to implement universal healthcare, not whether or not to do it.

For the record, the government *does not* interfere with your choice of doctor or anything else. It is an insurance plan just like a private one. Nothing in your life changes except for the fact that staying in good health is easier to do as one is far more likely to get treatment for preventable diseases. Also, the reason people go to the ER for a runny nose is it is the only way to see a doctor in many cases. With universal health, this problem would decrease significantly.

Left Coast Rebel said…

Great debate here, I will add to Law's comments a few things –

1 – TL, the problems that you express with the medical system will actually be made worse by more government involvement, a 'public option', 'universal coverage' or others. The problems with healtcare are precisely because of government involvement and the lack of an efficient supply/demand equation.

2 – I understand your feeling on the need for a viable 'safety net' in regards to health care, especially for the sake of an accident in one's life, etc. Once again though, a 'uneiversal' approach is truly just a back-door approach to socialism. Once again, the system is so wrecked precisely because of govenrment tampering in the first place. I'm sure that you wont' agree but that's ok, I appreciate the discourse!

Left Coast Rebel said…

Carl – brilliant words sir, I'm going to fit them in on the next post, thanks for the help!

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