Author Topic: Universal Health Care Practicalities  (Read 8011 times)

Chris22

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #150 on: February 07, 2019, 01:51:50 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent? 

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #151 on: February 07, 2019, 01:57:42 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Chris22

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #152 on: February 07, 2019, 02:02:08 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #153 on: February 07, 2019, 02:04:50 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Chris22

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #154 on: February 07, 2019, 02:07:54 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

What?  I wasn't quibbling.  I was agreeing with you. 

Quote
The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Perhaps, but I wish they'd meddle less.  I am not interested in them meddling more.  I don't see how them taking over healthcare results in them meddling less. 

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #155 on: February 07, 2019, 02:27:49 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

What?  I wasn't quibbling.  I was agreeing with you. 

Quote
The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Perhaps, but I wish they'd meddle less.  I am not interested in them meddling more.  I don't see how them taking over healthcare results in them meddling less.

I would enjoy them meddling for people's good, for a change. Since they're going to be meddling anyway.

Chris22

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #156 on: February 07, 2019, 02:32:12 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

What?  I wasn't quibbling.  I was agreeing with you. 

Quote
The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Perhaps, but I wish they'd meddle less.  I am not interested in them meddling more.  I don't see how them taking over healthcare results in them meddling less.

I would enjoy them meddling for people's good, for a change. Since they're going to be meddling anyway.

I would object to that.  I would prefer to decrease meddling rather than just redirect. 

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #157 on: February 07, 2019, 02:36:41 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

What?  I wasn't quibbling.  I was agreeing with you. 

Quote
The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Perhaps, but I wish they'd meddle less.  I am not interested in them meddling more.  I don't see how them taking over healthcare results in them meddling less.

I would enjoy them meddling for people's good, for a change. Since they're going to be meddling anyway.

I would object to that.  I would prefer to decrease meddling rather than just redirect.

Yes. Well. I would say that there is a role for government to actually do some good in people's lives. I imagine that you and I are probably on different sides of that argument.

Chris22

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #158 on: February 07, 2019, 02:53:51 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

What?  I wasn't quibbling.  I was agreeing with you. 

Quote
The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Perhaps, but I wish they'd meddle less.  I am not interested in them meddling more.  I don't see how them taking over healthcare results in them meddling less.

I would enjoy them meddling for people's good, for a change. Since they're going to be meddling anyway.

I would object to that.  I would prefer to decrease meddling rather than just redirect.

Yes. Well. I would say that there is a role for government to actually do some good in people's lives. I imagine that you and I are probably on different sides of that argument.

There's some good, and there's regulating (for instance) how much soda someone can buy at a meal.  That's way too paternalistic for me.

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #159 on: February 07, 2019, 03:01:11 PM »
I guess I should have expected a non-reply.


A non reply?  You just spouted a bunch of numbers and then threw math at them.  Are those numbers the right ones? 

And again, you're quibbling with an example.  We had NYC ban "oversized" drinks and Chicago tax soda/energy drinks.  If you give healthcare over to the government does this become more or less prevalent?

And on the other hand, we have the federal government heavily subsidizing corn syrup. Which is what goes into those sodas/energy drinks (not to mention tons and tons of other foods and drinks that are incredibly bad for you).

If you give healthcare over to the government, does that become more or less prevalent?

Corn subsidies won't go away until we move the first primaries out of Iowa. 

I wish we would, because I hate the E10/E15 requirement in gasoline.

You just accused FIPurpose of quibbling over an example. And now you are quibbling over an example.

What?  I wasn't quibbling.  I was agreeing with you. 

Quote
The point is, you implied that giving healthcare over to the government will automatically make the government meddle more in people's food choices. My point is they already meddle so much that it's basically not worth arguing about.

Perhaps, but I wish they'd meddle less.  I am not interested in them meddling more.  I don't see how them taking over healthcare results in them meddling less.

I would enjoy them meddling for people's good, for a change. Since they're going to be meddling anyway.

I would object to that.  I would prefer to decrease meddling rather than just redirect.

Yes. Well. I would say that there is a role for government to actually do some good in people's lives. I imagine that you and I are probably on different sides of that argument.

There's some good, and there's regulating (for instance) how much soda someone can buy at a meal.  That's way too paternalistic for me.

For me, too.

That doesnít mean I donít think we should have universal health care.

And again, you are comparing a city regulation to the federal government. Itís not a particulary convincing argument.

anisotropy

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #160 on: February 07, 2019, 04:59:08 PM »
I think universal health care is an essential public service, not necessarily a right but essential nonetheless. I largely agree with BeanCounter's view so I don't have much to add on that front. However, a "universal health care" will be a lot more problematic than what most people here envision. Having seen variations of it in three different countries (lived and worked) I learned they mostly transformed problems from affordability to other types of issues.

Here are some common problems:
Wait time (ER, procedures queue, specialist appointments queue) can be exceedingly long; service "qualities" (in terms of crowded beds and time with care providers) tend to be less than satisfactory; and drug "varieties". It is true most of the time generic drugs will be enough but there are exceptions.

Also, keep in mind, prescription drugs are not "free" per se in both NHS and Canada. Australia PBS is indeed an exception but it acts more like a subsidy instead of "free" drugs.

Finally, on the cost front, I think if it were to be enacted, it'd would be part of the MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) policy package. In that framework, public spending is not constrained by tax revenues so the cost issue would be bypassed.

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicaliti
« Reply #161 on: February 07, 2019, 05:01:24 PM »
I think universal health care is an essential public service, not necessarily a right but essential nonetheless. I largely agree with BeanCounter's view so I don't have much to add on that front. However, a "universal health care" will be a lot more problematic than what most people here envision. Having seen variations of it in three different countries (lived and worked) I learned they mostly transformed problems from affordability to other types of issues.

Here are some common problems:
Wait time (ER, procedures queue, specialist appointments queue) can be exceedingly long; service "qualities" (in terms of crowded beds and time with care providers) tend to be less than satisfactory; and drug "varieties". It is true most of the time generic drugs will be enough but there are exceptions.

Also, keep in mind, prescription drugs are not "free" per se in both NHS and Canada. Australia PBS is indeed an exception but it acts more like a subsidy instead of "free" drugs.

Finally, on the cost front, I think if it were to be enacted, it'd would be part of the MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) policy package. In that framework, public spending is not constrained by tax revenues so the cost issue would be bypassed.

Yes.

But donít let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

Just because there will inevitably be problems does not mean it wonít be one hell of a lot better than what we have now.

anisotropy

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicaliti
« Reply #162 on: February 07, 2019, 05:07:50 PM »
Yes.

But donít let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

Just because there will inevitably be problems does not mean it wonít be one hell of a lot better than what we have now.

For the first time in forever (Disney song), we are in agreement. 

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicaliti
« Reply #163 on: February 07, 2019, 05:11:49 PM »
Yes.

But donít let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

Just because there will inevitably be problems does not mean it wonít be one hell of a lot better than what we have now.

For the first time in forever (Disney song), we are in agreement.

Honestly, I never thought it would happen.

Poundwise

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #164 on: February 07, 2019, 05:16:12 PM »

Yes in theory insurance companies can do the same thing, but as long as there is some choice (I can change jobs, I can push my employer to change insurance companies, I can elect to go on my spouse's benefits instead of mine) there is more potential freedom of choice than if the only answer is the government. 

No thanks.
Eh, good luck with that. Do you know how much my husband's employer cares about how much we hate UnitedHealthcare for gaming thousands of dollars out of us, because a doctor I never even met was considered "Tier 2" rather than "Tier 1"?
Almost less than zero. 

We would still be able to purchase private insurance, although doubtless the selections would change.  And other opportunities would open... changing jobs or starting their own small businesses would be easier for people, if they weren't afraid of losing healthcare.

Quote
Orrrr you essentially legislate those industries out of existence.  And then no one skiis.  Supply/Demand tells us that if the price of something increases, demand goes down.  Jack up the price of lift tickets, it's not unthinkable that all of the sudden you've killed enough demand to make skiing unprofitable (at least in the US, rich people could go to Canada or Europe or wherever).
Canada or Europe, where skiing is dead because they have universal health care?  And I haven't noticed (for better or worse) that they've managed to kill even smoking or alcohol consumption in these countries.

If you're worried about your big sodas, just don't vote for Bloomberg!

Prairie Stash

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #165 on: February 07, 2019, 06:14:22 PM »
All it takes is personal experience with being poor and needing treatment. That was 1910, how would he fare in the current US system?
If he lived in an Medicaid expansion state he would do alright in the US.
That was the same in Canada; Saskatchewan got health care before the rest of the country, it was controversial at the time. It was largely opposed by Doctors; apparently they feared they would lose the ability to bill as much. Its still a small problem in Canada, doctors heading south to make big money off american patients.

I suspect a lot of the funding opposed to healthcare is by people who make a lot of money off the current system. There's a lot of parallels in the arguments that Canadians made opposing healthcare, most of this thread could have been written in the 60's.

pecunia

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #166 on: February 07, 2019, 06:46:32 PM »
So called Universal Health Care,......

It starts with the promise of "free" health care for all.

Like the threat of communism in the 1950s, it is an insidious plot to remove the freedoms of all Americans.

What comes after the "free" health care.  Well, one thing may be a tax on sugar.

Do you want to take away every American's God given right to tooth decay, obesity and diabetes?

What could it lead to after that?  What heinous things will "free" health care  advocates force on the rest of us?

RetiredAt63

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #167 on: February 07, 2019, 07:07:41 PM »
Quote
Americans come up with more "for your own good" interference ideas than I can imagine, and they are supposed to be the "land of the free".  Is it the Puritan influence still rearing its head?

Yes, and I for one do not want more, which is what I think Single-Payer health care will invite.

European countries with universal health care don't do this, the UK doesn't do this, Canada, Australia and New Zealand don't do this.  Is the US so different that it will?  So far you are the only American on here saying this, so I wonder if others think this too.

Also, your Medicaid and Medicare don't do this, why would it happen if there were universal health care for all?  You as a country would be saving a huge amount of money with it, based on per capita costs. (shown below)

https://www.beveragedaily.com/Article/2017/12/20/Sugar-taxes-The-global-picture-in-2017

Interesting but I am not sure why you posted it as a reply to my post.

Most of this is so recent that the effects will not be known for a few years.  Plus corn subsidies make high fructose corn syrup incredibly cheap.  Food prices are affected by what gets subsidized and what does not, it is definitely not a level playing field now.

gentmach

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #168 on: February 08, 2019, 01:37:28 AM »
I was looking for solutions for the "personal responsibility" issue. I would like any system that is created to have "safety relief valves" so self destructive people don't bring the whole system to a halt.

Ever heard of Banking crisis? Climate change? People driving drunken or too fast? People going skiing that have never done it before (Highest risk for broken leg or hip surgery in under 30s)? People getting into debt for luxuries? People getting booed for "not getting a job"?People...

You get it?

Self-caused medical problems are normally at the end of a row of self-caused or others-caused problems.

An generally the small amount of self destructive people is cheaper than the amount of money and work put into trying to prevent them (on what moral basis btw?) from services. Some is true for social transfers.
Just today I witnessed 4 people (or more) with at least 2 meetings involved in deciding about a payout of effectivly less than 240Ä (travel costs for getting a job/work test).

The way I figured it, we came to the agreement to help heal the sick. We would all put money into a pool. That pool, while incomprehensibly huge, is still finite. The system would also have to make a "profit" in order to compensate for other factors. (Rising energy costs, national emergency, etc.)

Therefore it would be necessary for each of us to take what we need and not any more. I would have a moral responsibility to you to be healthy. You would have a moral responsibility to me to be healthy. We would have a moral responsibility to a third person to be healthy.

If a person persists in making bad decisions, they become drag on the system. Which causes problems.

Essentially everyone will have to lower their risk profile in order to make the system work.

I can see that perspective.

And I'd like to add to it.

We would have a moral responsibility to one another, as a society, to make sure that everyone had the potential to be healthy.

Meaning, we'd have a moral responsibility as a society to address problems such as food deserts, and things like the water in Flint, MI. Making sure people had reasonable access to healthy food. And reasonable access to ways to be physically active. And reasonable access to doctors. Things like that.

I agree. Those are all things that a comprehensive health Care system would have to help address. I have my doubts about those being addressed for a "top down" manner but that is the experiment.

gentmach

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #169 on: February 08, 2019, 05:26:40 AM »
I was looking for solutions for the "personal responsibility" issue. I would like any system that is created to have "safety relief valves" so self destructive people don't bring the whole system to a halt.

Ever heard of Banking crisis? Climate change? People driving drunken or too fast? People going skiing that have never done it before (Highest risk for broken leg or hip surgery in under 30s)? People getting into debt for luxuries? People getting booed for "not getting a job"?People...

You get it?

Self-caused medical problems are normally at the end of a row of self-caused or others-caused problems.

An generally the small amount of self destructive people is cheaper than the amount of money and work put into trying to prevent them (on what moral basis btw?) from services. Some is true for social transfers.
Just today I witnessed 4 people (or more) with at least 2 meetings involved in deciding about a payout of effectivly less than 240Ä (travel costs for getting a job/work test).

The way I figured it, we came to the agreement to help heal the sick. We would all put money into a pool. That pool, while incomprehensibly huge, is still finite. The system would also have to make a "profit" in order to compensate for other factors. (Rising energy costs, national emergency, etc.)

Therefore it would be necessary for each of us to take what we need and not any more. I would have a moral responsibility to you to be healthy. You would have a moral responsibility to me to be healthy. We would have a moral responsibility to a third person to be healthy.

If a person persists in making bad decisions, they become drag on the system. Which causes problems.

Essentially everyone will have to lower their risk profile in order to make the system work.

Incorrect. See: many posts from Canadians (myself included) and folks from other countries. It works without worrying about any of that.

That is because the system is working. No one worries when a system is working properly. They only worry when a system no longer works.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #170 on: February 08, 2019, 06:51:53 AM »
That is because the system is working. No one worries when a system is working properly. They only worry when a system no longer works.

You seem to be assuming that for Americans it would not work.  For no obvious reason.  We have smokers, drinkers, druggies, couch potatoes, etc., and it still works.  Not perfectly, I really wish dental were covered, and waits for non-emergencies can be longer than desired.   But it works.

Jouer

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #171 on: February 08, 2019, 11:12:28 AM »
I was looking for solutions for the "personal responsibility" issue. I would like any system that is created to have "safety relief valves" so self destructive people don't bring the whole system to a halt.

Ever heard of Banking crisis? Climate change? People driving drunken or too fast? People going skiing that have never done it before (Highest risk for broken leg or hip surgery in under 30s)? People getting into debt for luxuries? People getting booed for "not getting a job"?People...

You get it?

Self-caused medical problems are normally at the end of a row of self-caused or others-caused problems.

An generally the small amount of self destructive people is cheaper than the amount of money and work put into trying to prevent them (on what moral basis btw?) from services. Some is true for social transfers.
Just today I witnessed 4 people (or more) with at least 2 meetings involved in deciding about a payout of effectivly less than 240Ä (travel costs for getting a job/work test).

The way I figured it, we came to the agreement to help heal the sick. We would all put money into a pool. That pool, while incomprehensibly huge, is still finite. The system would also have to make a "profit" in order to compensate for other factors. (Rising energy costs, national emergency, etc.)

Therefore it would be necessary for each of us to take what we need and not any more. I would have a moral responsibility to you to be healthy. You would have a moral responsibility to me to be healthy. We would have a moral responsibility to a third person to be healthy.

If a person persists in making bad decisions, they become drag on the system. Which causes problems.

Essentially everyone will have to lower their risk profile in order to make the system work.

Incorrect. See: many posts from Canadians (myself included) and folks from other countries. It works without worrying about any of that.

That is because the system is working. No one worries when a system is working properly. They only worry when a system no longer works.

"the system works everywhere else but I'm worried it won't work here"

What specifically will stop it from working in USA?

gentmach

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #172 on: February 08, 2019, 11:19:38 AM »
That is because the system is working. No one worries when a system is working properly. They only worry when a system no longer works.

You seem to be assuming that for Americans it would not work.  For no obvious reason.  We have smokers, drinkers, druggies, couch potatoes, etc., and it still works.  Not perfectly, I really wish dental were covered, and waits for non-emergencies can be longer than desired.   But it works.

Canada has 1/10th our population. We would have to see if any in existence currently can scale like that. What works in one country may not work in another.

TrMama

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #173 on: February 08, 2019, 11:22:46 AM »

Quote
Orrrr you essentially legislate those industries out of existence.  And then no one skiis.  Supply/Demand tells us that if the price of something increases, demand goes down.  Jack up the price of lift tickets, it's not unthinkable that all of the sudden you've killed enough demand to make skiing unprofitable (at least in the US, rich people could go to Canada or Europe or wherever).
Canada or Europe, where skiing is dead because they have universal health care?  And I haven't noticed (for better or worse) that they've managed to kill even smoking or alcohol consumption in these countries.


This skiing example is hilarious. You know where we see our family doctors most often? At the ski hill. Much more often than we see them for actual appointments in the office.

If skiing is so dangerous, why do so many Canadian doctors ski with their families? Why are they so thrilled when I tell them we also ski as a family. My GP seems to think skiing keeps me fit and healthy and that it's a good activity for my kids to be doing.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #174 on: February 08, 2019, 11:32:26 AM »
That is because the system is working. No one worries when a system is working properly. They only worry when a system no longer works.

You seem to be assuming that for Americans it would not work.  For no obvious reason.  We have smokers, drinkers, druggies, couch potatoes, etc., and it still works.  Not perfectly, I really wish dental were covered, and waits for non-emergencies can be longer than desired.   But it works.

Canada has 1/10th our population. We would have to see if any in existence currently can scale like that. What works in one country may not work in another.

The UK has a lot more people and it works there.  That is an excuse.

You have a perfectly adequate ratio of doctors and hospitals to population.  You can decide to administer it federally or by state (Canada does it by province).  There are lots of other countries with universal health care,  you can cherry pick best practices from them.

What I am seeing from this discussion is a lack of will, a sense of "why should I have to pay for other people" and a sense of "why should I have to pay for people who have stupid/dangerous/unhealthy lifestyles".  The old "pull myself up by my bootstraps and let the devil take the hindmost" and "I'm fine, screw you Jack" attitudes.  Not all Americans, of course, but enough.

gaja

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #175 on: February 08, 2019, 12:28:59 PM »

Quote
Orrrr you essentially legislate those industries out of existence.  And then no one skiis.  Supply/Demand tells us that if the price of something increases, demand goes down.  Jack up the price of lift tickets, it's not unthinkable that all of the sudden you've killed enough demand to make skiing unprofitable (at least in the US, rich people could go to Canada or Europe or wherever).
Canada or Europe, where skiing is dead because they have universal health care?  And I haven't noticed (for better or worse) that they've managed to kill even smoking or alcohol consumption in these countries.


This skiing example is hilarious. You know where we see our family doctors most often? At the ski hill. Much more often than we see them for actual appointments in the office.

If skiing is so dangerous, why do so many Canadian doctors ski with their families? Why are they so thrilled when I tell them we also ski as a family. My GP seems to think skiing keeps me fit and healthy and that it's a good activity for my kids to be doing.
The weirdest part of the skiing example, is that it totally misses how the brains of the social economists works. In Norway, we have no fear of taxing stuff that is bad for your health, even when it might bankrupt businesses. The sugar tax of 2018, for instance, was a disaster for small breweries. But instead of taxing sports, we spend millions on subsidising them. One municipality on the west coast went as far as building their own ski lift, ending up with the largest municipal debt per inhabitant in the country. Why? Sure, for skiing there is also the issue of winning the olympics. But for other types of sports it is because we have calculations showing that the health benefits of acitivity greatly outnumbers the health costs of injuries. We were considering mandating helmets for bicyclists, but even that was vetoed by the economists. 10 people without diabetes saves us more than one brain injury costs us.

anisotropy

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #176 on: February 08, 2019, 01:47:01 PM »
We would have to see if any in existence currently can scale like that. What works in one country may not work in another.

That's true, countries have their own circumstances. Most Universal Health Care is not truly universal in terms of services provided. Dental, prescription drugs, physiotherapies, etc are not always covered in various systems. So it would be up to each country to decide what should be covered and what's not. The US is unique in terms of obesity and oxy addiction, so those are valid concerns that would need to be addressed.

I would like to bring up a nation that is more comparable to the US in terms of population and perhaps insurance: Japan.

Japan's insurance system bears some similarities with the US system, it is mandatory in name only, and it is not a single insurance system with over 3500 private health insurers. They fall into two categories (broadly speaking), Employee's health insurance and National Health Insurance.

The National Health Insurance (Kokumin-Kenkō-Hoken) might be relevant to the discussion here. It is similar to Medicare, but is open to all (almost all), including self-employed and students. This ties into what BeanCounter said previously and I think it has much merit, ie, expand Medicare. When the insured person uses a medical facility that accepts NHI, they will only need to pay part of the cost (~30%). And yes, there is a premium (income levy) that people pay for this insurance.

One big difference between Japan's "culture" and the States' is that Japan has a very different view on mental health. Some might call it outdated or even inhumane the way mental health patients are treated there. But on the quality of the "physical" health care side, Japan is doing quite well.

Here's an overview: https://transferwise.com/gb/blog/healthcare-system-in-japan

gentmach

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #177 on: February 09, 2019, 06:33:42 AM »
That is because the system is working. No one worries when a system is working properly. They only worry when a system no longer works.

You seem to be assuming that for Americans it would not work.  For no obvious reason.  We have smokers, drinkers, druggies, couch potatoes, etc., and it still works.  Not perfectly, I really wish dental were covered, and waits for non-emergencies can be longer than desired.   But it works.

Canada has 1/10th our population. We would have to see if any in existence currently can scale like that. What works in one country may not work in another.

The UK has a lot more people and it works there.  That is an excuse.

You have a perfectly adequate ratio of doctors and hospitals to population.  You can decide to administer it federally or by state (Canada does it by province).  There are lots of other countries with universal health care,  you can cherry pick best practices from them.

What I am seeing from this discussion is a lack of will, a sense of "why should I have to pay for other people" and a sense of "why should I have to pay for people who have stupid/dangerous/unhealthy lifestyles".  The old "pull myself up by my bootstraps and let the devil take the hindmost" and "I'm fine, screw you Jack" attitudes.  Not all Americans, of course, but enough.

Okay let's back up a bit.

Systems are based on assumptions.

Universal Healthcare seems to assume that there will always be a "core" of healthy people producing enough excess value to treat the sick. A mathmatical ratio of healthy to sick, if you will.

A Canadian said "Canadians don't have to worry about that." Which means their ratio of healthy to sick is doing decently enough that the general population doesn't worry.

Now we have reached the theory part. Right now you have a plan on paper. How that plan translates to America is unknown. I am more than willing to give it a try at this point because as long as it is on the table for discussion, no one will consider any other options.

(With oil supplies dwindling, climate change accelerating and the health care crisis, New Urbanism seems like it would kill three birds with one stone. The public seems to believe that Universal Health Care will allow them to keep their current unsustainable lifestyles going.)

RetiredAt63

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #178 on: February 09, 2019, 07:10:58 AM »
gentmach

All the issues are there.  But the thing is, the US as a country is paying about twice the per person cost for health care than the comparison countries are paying.  Yes of course if a country's population is unhealthy (or aging, because let's face it, older people have more time to have had things go wrong) total costs may be Y instead of X.  But that just means the US will be paying 2Y instead of 2X.  Or what happens now, some people stay sick or die because they can't afford health care, or go bankrupt, or find job choices are dictated by the health insurance an employer does or does not offer. 

I really started noticing the issue of American health care when I was planning my retirement and figuring out my post-work health insurance (and yes, I have insurance for the extras).  Health care after retirement was such a big issue (and expense) for Americans, compared to my situation.               

pecunia

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #179 on: February 09, 2019, 07:22:27 AM »
It was noted that the United States has a "big" population and that could be a possible reason that universal health care wouldn't work.  Apparently, the "economy of scale" may not apply to this huge number of people.

So, I got to wondering how do they do it in the "evil empire?"  Russia has lots of people and they are spread out in a big big country.  (144.5 million)  With the fall of the Berlin wall years ago, it was an opportunity to embrace capitalistic medicine.  Surely, folks over there shook off the Socialized medicine that had held them captive for so long. 

Per Wikipedia, they kind of did for a while.  Then they bounced back to having it covered by their government.  Wikipedia says they pay 6.5 percent of their GDP for health care mainly by their government.  This compares to about 18 percent of the GDP in the US.  Maybe, you get what you pay for,.........maybe not.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Healthcare_in_Russia

Perhaps the medical costs are kept low by sending poor and sick people to Gulags in Siberia where frozen corpses may lie in uncovered ditches hacked from the frozen tundra.


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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #180 on: February 10, 2019, 02:49:06 PM »
I like @anisotropy Ďs mention of Japanís healthcare since it is the most similar to ours in size and provides similar quality. Talking with friends and colleagues in Japan, the main differences that keep costs somewhat in check is the national governmentís price control system, which sets maximum prices for all procedures and drugs. In addition, they have a lot fewer ICU beds than in the US, due to cultural aspects wherein it would be unusual for an elderly person with terminal diseases to be kept on prolonged, futile life support. Despite this, costs are starting to balloon anyway, mostly due to their population aging.

anisotropy

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #181 on: February 10, 2019, 09:10:50 PM »
Yes! The Japanese has a pretty tight price control system but the culture is definitely very different, Caveat Emptor!

Malkynn

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #182 on: February 11, 2019, 06:43:36 AM »
All Canadians reading this thread are staring at their screens with a confused-dog-head-tilt.

It's incredible, the mental gymnastics some people will do to justify continuing to spend an astronomical amount of money on a crazy system.

For those worrying about universal healthcare being a slippery slope to heavy handed government social intervention. Um...have you forgotten what country you live in? Any party attempting to do that would be eviscerated by their opposition, and there would probably be a government shut down.

You have mechanisms in place, very very strong mechanisms at that, to prevent your own government from doing things like that. Oh my...just think of the negative ad campaigns. Wow.

I mean, come on! Even in Canada there was severe backlash against a soda tax. Actually, the left was even aggressively against it, labeling it as an attack on the poor. Our opposition parties do a great job riling the public up about any and every social policy that could possibly piss people off. That shit is political gold. (We picked that up from you guys, btw)

Also, Canadians aren't protective of our universal health care because of some national sentiment of loving each other so sooooo much. It was a hard, ugly battle to get it, with tons of opposition. Also, we have plenty of vicious hate among ourselves, in some ways far worse than the US.

We're protective of it because we have it now.
We recognize how valuable it is, and we look down south, shudder, and kiss our healthcards.

There's a reason we voted Tommy Douglas as The Greatest Canadian. Yep, in 2004, our national television broadcaster had a multi-part, two level vote across the country, and the guy who brought us Universal Healthcare was voted The Greatest Canadian in our entire history. No one was surprised by the results.

Lastly, you know what's great about publicly funded healthcare?? It really doesn't promote weird social control policies over our food or skiing (???) or anything, but it DOES have a HUGE impact on the effectiveness of other major policies, like those regarding immigration, crime, welfare, etc.

Yep. Stuff like crime policies are always looked at through a lense of how they will affect the burden on our healthcare system. Drugs, violence, etc. That shit all costs healthcare dollars, so we are highly motivated to research and implement policies that lower the burden to the healthcare system, and y'know, actually work.

When those policies don't work, the government feels the cost of their own failure quite quickly, so they are highly motivated. There's still plenty of fuckery, but increases in healthcare spending that correlate with a new policy are hard to ignore.
Neat, huh?

Our system isn't perfect, our doctors are always angry, our nurses threaten to strike, our wait times can be prohibitive, our non-urban regions are painfully underserved, our drugs and dental aren't covered, and the debate about two-tiered-semi-privatization rages on and on and on and always will.

It's a cluster fuck for sure. But it's a hell of a lot less of a cluster fuck than the US system, and it's a hell of a lot cheaper.

Do you know how nice it is to have a medical emergency, rush to the nearest ER and not have to worry about anything other than the medical emergency you are having at that very moment. Not a single thought of some weird non-itemized bill showing up down the road.
It's nice. It's very nice.

PoutineLover

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #183 on: February 11, 2019, 07:19:50 AM »
+1 to that!
It's not perfect, but there's no way in hell I'd ever trade it for the US system.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #184 on: February 11, 2019, 08:06:16 AM »
+1 to that!
It's not perfect, but there's no way in hell I'd ever trade it for the US system.

It is definitely not perfect, but having the US for a neighbourly comparison makes it look amazing.  And I was fascinated by the pragmatic calculations of an earlier poster (from Finland?) and how they find the universal health care is financially beneficial.  I would guess that we reap the same national benefits.  I'm just happy that my friends who have had major health crises were able to get care without going bankrupt.

pecunia

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #185 on: February 11, 2019, 08:14:06 AM »
"It's incredible, the mental gymnastics some people will do to justify continuing to spend an astronomical amount of money on a crazy system."

These Canadians just don't understand that the Donald Trump tax cuts allow extra money to pay for health care.  In the future, the money saved by the corporations will allow added investment to enable the benefits to trickle down to all enabling even more to be spent on health care. 

ketchup

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #186 on: February 11, 2019, 08:23:49 AM »
Lastly, you know what's great about publicly funded healthcare?? It really doesn't promote weird social control policies over our food or skiing (???) or anything, but it DOES have a HUGE impact on the effectiveness of other major policies, like those regarding immigration, crime, welfare, etc.

Yep. Stuff like crime policies are always looked at through a lense of how they will affect the burden on our healthcare system. Drugs, violence, etc. That shit all costs healthcare dollars, so we are highly motivated to research and implement policies that lower the burden to the healthcare system, and y'know, actually work.

When those policies don't work, the government feels the cost of their own failure quite quickly, so they are highly motivated. There's still plenty of fuckery, but increases in healthcare spending that correlate with a new policy are hard to ignore.
Neat, huh?
Wow.  I was in favor of single-payer already, but wow.  That's a brilliant alignment of incentives.  I never thought about it that way.

Poundwise

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #187 on: February 11, 2019, 10:37:09 AM »
A friend of mine recently brought up a point in favor of universal health care that I hadn't even thought of (guess it should have been obvious)... savings to local government because health benefits will no longer have to be part of pension plans. Have the calculations of costs included savings on state and local taxes?

RetiredAt63

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #188 on: February 11, 2019, 10:55:46 AM »
A friend of mine recently brought up a point in favor of universal health care that I hadn't even thought of (guess it should have been obvious)... savings to local government because health benefits will no longer have to be part of pension plans. Have the calculations of costs included savings on state and local taxes?

No idea.  My health plan in retirement was negotiated by my (para-public) union on behalf of all its retired members.  But even if health insurance is part of a retirement package, it is a health plan that covers the extras, not the basics, so much less expensive.

gentmach

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #189 on: February 11, 2019, 11:11:44 AM »
All Canadians reading this thread are staring at their screens with a confused-dog-head-tilt.

It's incredible, the mental gymnastics some people will do to justify continuing to spend an astronomical amount of money on a crazy system.

For those worrying about universal healthcare being a slippery slope to heavy handed government social intervention. Um...have you forgotten what country you live in? Any party attempting to do that would be eviscerated by their opposition, and there would probably be a government shut down.

You have mechanisms in place, very very strong mechanisms at that, to prevent your own government from doing things like that. Oh my...just think of the negative ad campaigns. Wow.

I mean, come on! Even in Canada there was severe backlash against a soda tax. Actually, the left was even aggressively against it, labeling it as an attack on the poor. Our opposition parties do a great job riling the public up about any and every social policy that could possibly piss people off. That shit is political gold. (We picked that up from you guys, btw)

Also, Canadians aren't protective of our universal health care because of some national sentiment of loving each other so sooooo much. It was a hard, ugly battle to get it, with tons of opposition. Also, we have plenty of vicious hate among ourselves, in some ways far worse than the US.

We're protective of it because we have it now.
We recognize how valuable it is, and we look down south, shudder, and kiss our healthcards.

There's a reason we voted Tommy Douglas as The Greatest Canadian. Yep, in 2004, our national television broadcaster had a multi-part, two level vote across the country, and the guy who brought us Universal Healthcare was voted The Greatest Canadian in our entire history. No one was surprised by the results.

Lastly, you know what's great about publicly funded healthcare?? It really doesn't promote weird social control policies over our food or skiing (???) or anything, but it DOES have a HUGE impact on the effectiveness of other major policies, like those regarding immigration, crime, welfare, etc.

Yep. Stuff like crime policies are always looked at through a lense of how they will affect the burden on our healthcare system. Drugs, violence, etc. That shit all costs healthcare dollars, so we are highly motivated to research and implement policies that lower the burden to the healthcare system, and y'know, actually work.

When those policies don't work, the government feels the cost of their own failure quite quickly, so they are highly motivated. There's still plenty of fuckery, but increases in healthcare spending that correlate with a new policy are hard to ignore.
Neat, huh?

Our system isn't perfect, our doctors are always angry, our nurses threaten to strike, our wait times can be prohibitive, our non-urban regions are painfully underserved, our drugs and dental aren't covered, and the debate about two-tiered-semi-privatization rages on and on and on and always will.

It's a cluster fuck for sure. But it's a hell of a lot less of a cluster fuck than the US system, and it's a hell of a lot cheaper.

Do you know how nice it is to have a medical emergency, rush to the nearest ER and not have to worry about anything other than the medical emergency you are having at that very moment. Not a single thought of some weird non-itemized bill showing up down the road.
It's nice. It's very nice.

I think we've entered that late stage of the debate that comes down to "what is human nature?" As a jaded, cynical person who has been dealing with borderline psychopaths most of his life, the idea that my healthcare is their hands is unsettling.

And before you say "get away from them", we will be linked by the healthcare system whether I wish it or not.

So let's give healthcare a try.

Malkynn

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #190 on: February 11, 2019, 11:17:15 AM »
I think we've entered that late stage of the debate that comes down to "what is human nature?" As a jaded, cynical person who has been dealing with borderline psychopaths most of his life, the idea that my healthcare is their hands is unsettling.

And before you say "get away from them", we will be linked by the healthcare system whether I wish it or not.

So let's give healthcare a try.

I am so confused...

Dabnasty

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #191 on: February 11, 2019, 11:50:20 AM »
I think we've entered that late stage of the debate that comes down to "what is human nature?" As a jaded, cynical person who has been dealing with borderline psychopaths most of his life, the idea that my healthcare is their hands is unsettling.

And before you say "get away from them", we will be linked by the healthcare system whether I wish it or not.

So let's give healthcare a try.

I am so confused...

That is the only appropriate response here

LennStar

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #192 on: February 11, 2019, 12:40:50 PM »
"It's incredible, the mental gymnastics some people will do to justify continuing to spend an astronomical amount of money on a crazy system."

These Canadians just don't understand that the Donald Trump tax cuts allow extra money to pay for health care.  In the future, the money saved by the corporations will allow added investment to enable the benefits to trickle down to all enabling even more to be spent on health care.

Was that a bad try at irony?

Or is there still someone on the planet that didn't hear that "trickle down" is not only completely unlogical, but even also does not happen in reality?

EvenSteven

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #193 on: February 11, 2019, 01:06:11 PM »
Several people in this thread are wanting to get rid of subsidies to corn syrup. What subsidies exactly are you all talking about?

I can think of three that apply to corn.

1) Tariffs on sugar cane could be considered an indirect subsidy to corn in the US, but that would raise, not lower, the price of sugar.

2) Ethanol mandate for gasoline could also be considered an indirect subsidy to corn, but ethanol production uses the fermentable sugars.

3) Crop insurance subsidies that apply to all crops equally. These go disproportionally to corn and soy, but that is because the US grows a lot of corn and soy. This subsidy does not encourage the growing of any crop over another, because all crops can get it.

Are there any that I am missing?

Indexer

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #194 on: February 11, 2019, 03:59:58 PM »
Several people in this thread are wanting to get rid of subsidies to corn syrup. What subsidies exactly are you all talking about?

I can think of three that apply to corn.

1) Tariffs on sugar cane could be considered an indirect subsidy to corn in the US, but that would raise, not lower, the price of sugar.

2) Ethanol mandate for gasoline could also be considered an indirect subsidy to corn, but ethanol production uses the fermentable sugars.

3) Crop insurance subsidies that apply to all crops equally. These go disproportionally to corn and soy, but that is because the US grows a lot of corn and soy. This subsidy does not encourage the growing of any crop over another, because all crops can get it.

Are there any that I am missing?

I can't speak for everyone, but I listed a few things we have subsidies on including corn.

1. Why do we need a subsidy on sugar? Short of tobacco and alcohol, which are controlled and heavily taxed, excessive amounts of sugar likely contribute the most harm to health in western society.

2. That's a great point. Why do we need a subsidy or mandate for ethanol?

3. Makes sense.

Johnez

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #195 on: February 11, 2019, 06:40:58 PM »
Frankly I'm surprised that a party so concerned with private activities of it's citizens (bedrooms, living rooms, AND bathrooms) does not jump at the chance to better guide it's citizens toward a more moral and responsible path. I'd have thought the "shared responsibility" that universal health care encourages would dovetail nicely with the principles taught in the good book.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2019, 06:42:40 PM by Johnez »

FIPurpose

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #196 on: February 11, 2019, 07:16:34 PM »
All you Canadian/ European liberals just don't understand. Our corporate masters have told us that their decisions are actually freedom! Our capitalist system never purposefully shuts down new innovations that might be cheaper or less profitable. And our brains can never be fooled into making poor decisions or drugged into unhealthy lifestyles.

In fact, we've decided that the decisions we make as a people are in actuality not decisions of our own free will. The freedom of our vote is not equal to freedom of our representatives' decisions. Actually, the vote of our dollars in purchasing decisions is our own free will. The power we hand over to corporations everyday is freedom. And when those corporations dangle medicine and my very life in front of my hands, I will gladly exchange my money for my "freedom".

Because when the government does something sinister or backhanded and I continue to vote for the same person, well that's just politics; it's the game of government that is messed up. However, when a corporation discovers that humans can be tricked into consuming more than is healthy or reasonable, when a corporation can mandate its will on its consumers, well then you're just a weak-minded consumer. It is good for corporations to learn and devise how to trick people out of more of their money. Any decisions made by the later upon the former is an exercise of free speech and an expression of American liberty. But any decision made by the former upon the later is an attack upon freedom itself.

Our forefathers gained our liberty at the expense of their own lives, should our freedom cost us our own indentured servitude, then so be it.

austin944

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #197 on: February 11, 2019, 08:02:55 PM »
Frankly I'm surprised that a party so concerned with private activities of it's citizens (bedrooms, living rooms, AND bathrooms) does not jump at the chance to better guide it's citizens toward a more moral and responsible path. I'd have thought the "shared responsibility" that universal health care encourages would dovetail nicely with the principles taught in the good book.

Jesus never had police, guns, and prisons to enforce his Commandments.  You obeyed His commandments voluntarily, and never with a gun to your head.  And He never really thought much of Earthly governments.

It is easy to spend other people's money.  His way is much harder.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2019, 08:05:00 PM by austin944 »

rocketpj

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #198 on: February 11, 2019, 08:11:19 PM »
+1 to that!
It's not perfect, but there's no way in hell I'd ever trade it for the US system.

Universal Health Care means that people are able to take risks like starting businesses or other ventures even when they have kids.

A year ago I left my adequate job with good benefits to buy a business and work on upgrading it.  It did mean losing my 'extended health insurance'.  If we were in the US there is NO WAY I could have done that with 2 kids at home (DW's job has no benefits either). 

We will still pay for dental and I hope one of the kids doesn't knock his teeth out, but I don't worry about a bankruptcy inducing health crisis that is not covered (like when my 9 year old spent a week in hospital in November with pneumonia).  I was able to take a risk, unlike a middle aged American in the same situation. 

You can pry my health card from my cold dead hands.  It is pro business, pro innovation and makes everything better.  I am continually astonished at the bizarre pretzel logic that happens in the US debates on health care.

Kris

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Re: Universal Health Care Practicalities
« Reply #199 on: February 11, 2019, 08:16:39 PM »
+1 to that!
It's not perfect, but there's no way in hell I'd ever trade it for the US system.

Universal Health Care means that people are able to take risks like starting businesses or other ventures even when they have kids.

A year ago I left my adequate job with good benefits to buy a business and work on upgrading it.  It did mean losing my 'extended health insurance'.  If we were in the US there is NO WAY I could have done that with 2 kids at home (DW's job has no benefits either). 

We will still pay for dental and I hope one of the kids doesn't knock his teeth out, but I don't worry about a bankruptcy inducing health crisis that is not covered (like when my 9 year old spent a week in hospital in November with pneumonia).  I was able to take a risk, unlike a middle aged American in the same situation. 

You can pry my health card from my cold dead hands.  It is pro business, pro innovation and makes everything better.  I am continually astonished at the bizarre pretzel logic that happens in the US debates on health care.

A lot of us are, too.

And it is freaking infuriating to be held hostage by it.