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Politics of generosity


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 8th, 2007 05:43 pm (UTC)
Yes! Absobloodylutely Mr Ellison, and good luck to you.

Did you read the comments underneath the article? Very interesting. Some of them got me very hot under the collar indeed because although there´s so much about the US that I like - starting with the warmth and friendliness of the people - the two things that would prevent me from wanting to settle here permanently are failure to provide adequate public healthcare and adequate public education.

My Uncle and his family immigrated here from Canada in the mid-eighties. One of their arguments against Canada was socialized medicine; they had to wait in long queues for medical treatment. They now live in Scottsdale, Arizona, where I don´t imagine too many people have to queue for anything. Of course, now I have friends who are pretty much on their death beds due to respiratory ailments that never get treated because there´s no insurance to pay for it. I´m guessing these people would probably give their eye teeth for the privilege of waiting in a queue for medical treatment.

Never mind - let them eat Robitussin...

(I could rant a thesis on this, but for the sake of mercy, I´ll leave it at that. Thanks for posting that.)
Jan. 8th, 2007 06:08 pm (UTC)
I haven't read all the comments yet, but I've read some of them. As we all know, some people are real idiots. Private medical insurance doesn't save us for having to wait for treatment, it can be just as messed up. And the important fact is that some people don't have the luxury of that medical insurance at all. Medical care, like food and housing, is a neccesity, and it's in the best interest of society in general to provide it to everyone.

And then there's the people who don't like Keith Ellison being Muslim because of problems in Muslim countries that hve NOTHING to do with Ellison, or the basic tenets of Islam. Ug. /rant.
Jan. 8th, 2007 06:46 pm (UTC)
And then there's the people who don't like Keith Ellison being Muslim because of problems in Muslim countries that hve NOTHING to do with Ellison, or the basic tenets of Islam.

I didn´t dare to even go there - I was having enough trouble keeping the word count down as it was! Some of the comments about that aspect of the article were downright offensive.

(Although I don´t know why I´m surprised :/ )

I think that regardless of whichever wealthy, industrialised western democracy you find yourself in, you´re probably going to encounter some kind of inconvenience with regard to healthcare. The basic problem is that the populations in these countries are aging; and short of rounding up everyone over 50 and shooting them all, there´s not a lot that can be done about that in the short term. I think it´s abhorrent, however, to just give up on an entire chunk of the population and say "Not enough to go around....you poor, illiterate types will just have to do without."

From my point of view, the medical care I´ve received here has been quite satisfactory (we´re insured, obviously). I´m probably satisfied because my experience here is fundamentally the same as that I had in Norway, a country that spells socialized medicine with a capital S. In both cases, it would normally take me a couple of days to see a doctor for a cold - although in Norway I´d have the option of going to a hospital casualty right away if I was sick enough to be willing to deal with the queue, while here I think there´d be insurance company issues about doing that - while for an appointment for, say, a pap smear I would have to wait 3-4 weeks. Here, I pay a $10 co-pay for treatment; in Norway it´s about $14USD a visit. The stay I had at hospitals in Norway (childbirth) were without problems, while the stay I had at hospital here (appendicitis) was similarly laudable. Follow-up in both instances was just fine.

The main difference is that while that sort of treatment in Norway is considered a right, here it seems to be viewed as a privilege.

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