Bracing against the wind  

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

State Healthcare : A Nail in the Coffin of Democracy

I really like the idea that if someone is, say, hit and run by a car, they don't have to go bankrupt paying for hospital bills. That's the kind of state-run healthcare anyone can get behind.... federally funded emergency care for accidental injury.

But that's not what we're going to get. Big pharma is the key lobbying group behind the new healthcare plan. With 80% of health expenditures being paid down in the last 90 days of life, what we have is hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funding for keeping dying people alive and on drugs, from atropine to Vicodin for an extra few months.

I don't think people realize what's happening.

Talk to any emergency room physician and they'll tell you that huge percentage of their time spent treating people they are legally required to - but that any reasonable person would see was a waste of time. From saying no to drug addicts and hypochondriacs to keeping people in pain alive that want to die, the problem with healthcare today is that legal requirements and liability issues prevent doctors from moving beyond the treadmill of time-wasting and working on care for patients who need it.

With all that money going to the wrong places ... it's no wonder that healthcare is expensive. The problem is, and always has been, that poor government regulation has driven up costs and prevented real care. Do we think that's going to get better under the new plan? No way. As coverage expands, so will "patient rights" - a codeword for doctor's liability.

Once a person starts taking drugs, they tend to stay on them for life. Schools are currently refusing to educate students that don't take medication after being diagnosed with ADHD. With government support, these drugs will be free. Some kids really have a problem, sure, but it is highly subjective diagnosis. A student who is smart enough to realize that our eduction system is broken could be easily diagnosed. A student who just needs a little more outdoor time could be diagnosed with ADHD. Unfortunately some of the brightest and most creative children in the country are being diagnosed with a disorder because classroom settings are too boring and curriculum is too slow and repetitive.

America is crumbling under the influence of corporate interest and, sadly, this bipartisan health care plan is more of the same.

But we don't have to worry about the population taking to the streets in protest... they'll be too drugged up to notice.


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