Archive for July 21st, 2008

TURNING CARE INTO GOLD.

July 21, 2008

IS US HEALTH CARE A MENTAL CONDITION?

As Paul Krugman points out in his blog, quoting liberally from your humble servant (“Does not compute“; 07/20/08):

“The basic facts on health care are clear: government-run insurance is more efficient than private insurance; more generally, the United States, with the most privatized health care in the advanced world, has a wildly inefficient system that costs far more than anyone else’s, yet delivers no better and arguably worse medical care than European systems… we don’t have a Medicare crisis, we have a health care crisis. Private insurance is collapsing as we speak.”

Indeed, the French health care system, a mix of private added value and public global basic net, costs 8% of French GDP, whereas the US system (which is public only for some restricted categories of indigents that use Medicare and Medicaid) costs 16% of US GDP. All European health care systems have cost below 10% of GDP.

Anybody familiar with gold plated US health care insurance and the French health care system knows that the later is vastly superior in all ways (including quality, state of the art, waiting times, 365/24/7 access, choice, etc…). It’s no coincidence that super star Angelina Jolie chose a standard hospital in Nice to give birth to twins: as UN ambassador of sorts, she has been around.

Why is this happening?

The basic principle of slavery is to use the lives of a class of people to maximize the profit of another class of people. The idea is to exchange lives against gold. For-profit health care is just a particular case of this. That is why it thrives in the USA. By allowing legal slavery inside its borders, the only developed country that did for the last millennium, the USA got ready for the health care system invented by Richard Nixon (the HMOs).

Slavery was an example of being stuck in the distant past. There are others examples of obsolescence on steroids in the US. The USA is also the only country in the world still using a system of units coming straight from the Middle Ages: the mile, the foot, the inch, the pound, the ounce, sometimes fluid ounces, sometimes solid ones, ice freezes at 32, and water boils at 212… Robots have crashed on Mars because their US programmers mixed up their units, using half of one system, half of another. 

Of course, universal health care already exists in the USA, many Americans would point out. Thanks to the Good lord, anybody can pray to God. 

It would seem that the USA is affected with a sort of mental paralysis, and, unsurprisingly, US health care is unable to treat it, since its further colossal profits depend upon that ongoing paralysis.

And it shall go on, at least for now, because Mr. Warren Buffet, the world’s richest investor, has Senator Obama’s economic ear (Mr. Obama confided on TV that Mr. Buffet has advice on taxes he intended to follow. Of course). Mr. Buffet is a specialist of turning health care insurance into multi billion dollar profit for himself. First things first. Let advice flow from serious money, it should turn into even more gold.

Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose…

***

Patrice Ayme.

http://patriceayme.com/

***

P/S: People-power (demo-cracy) could stop money-power (pluto-cracy). But not to worry. In the present US presidential campaign, it seems money will sacrifice two billion dollars of its precious self, by far the largest amount ever spent, besides providing a lot of volunteer time and advice to help see things through. There are no suggestions to imitate the public health care plans found in the 27 countries of the 500 million people European Union.


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