Health care and what do we do?

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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby merk » Tue Mar 23, 2010 4:27 pm

well, i think i already answered why we aren't being great again. Just my opinion, but i think it's a combination of being lazy and also of more of the world coming up to meet us (or surpassing us). We've been told so many times how great america is that i think a lot of people sort of expect it as a birthright. as though america is great just because it's america and you don't have to do anything else. And i think these same people feel that if you suggest something is wrong, or could be made better, you are some how insulting them an the country because you are in effect saying america isn't as great as it could be. There's also the fact that compared to 100 or even 50 years ago, the standard of living in parts of the world has come up, in many cases it has come up faster/more then ours has. So by comparison to the rest of the world, we're not as great as we appeared. We're not the only country now with sky scrappers - in fact we don't even have the tallest sky scrapper in the world any more and haven't for a while (even before 9/11). It just feels like a portion of this country is living in the past and refuses to acknowledge the world has changed.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby Scenario Thinker » Tue Mar 23, 2010 8:11 pm

Besides inventing, making and doing things, we're a culture of independence. Maybe independence was once the way to becoming an economic powerhouse. Maybe now we've lost that, who knows, or there's another way (read India and China). They've got just slightly a few more people than we have, too, so as their standards of living and educational opportunities skyrocket, there's more of a chance of them doing great things (sort of like large schools having a better chance of having lots of really good sports players than small schools). I have to say too, someone's going to have to pay with whatever happens. Our taxes are definitely going up. Somewhere I saw where, yes, in Europe they have say a month's time for vacations, and a 35 hour week (France?). But, if paid by the hour, there's a lot less incentive to working harder and longer, because you are taxed so highly it doesn't really pay (sort of like the same concept as paying more for a baby sitter than one of two spouses makes at their job, so they're better of staying home). I don't think it will ever be the rich footing the bill, either. Sure, there are corrupt and greedy business people. Greed is good and all that. But, if you started a business from scratch and worked to the bone to build it up, and even if it only became moderately successful, would you want to have to pay (a lot of) extra taxes than most people making less money, just to foot the government? The thing that may help, though, is only having to generate a moderate income to buy insurance, so it will help small businesses start up. It would be nice if we became more of a nation of small business owners and craft and service people like before the industrial age, but is that realistic that it will ever happen? What's after the information age? Is our independent natural gone for good? Most of us are all so sucked in to the corporate, educational and medical behemoths that it's hard to know what's next. I'm thinking more in economic terms, not trying to pick which way is better. For example, rent control actually creates a housing shortage, it doesn't really help people get into homes. Whether that's from policy or not is one thing, but the reality, is the economics of it.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby Scenario Thinker » Wed Mar 24, 2010 5:43 am

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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby merk » Wed Mar 24, 2010 9:50 am

ST - i think the question you have to ask is not if they are motivated to not work as hard and thus not be as successful as some business become here. But overall, which population is happier? For me, my definition of success is living a life that I'm overall happy with. If I was living in a card board box but genuinely happy, I'd consider that a successful life. Fortunately (or maybe unfortunately) I want a little more then a card board box. But i think i'd be happier paying more in taxes if it meant a shorter work week and double the vacation time I normally get. Not to mention guaranteed health coverage. I think in that case i'd feel like more of my taxes were actually going towards something i want. Where as now, i feel like a lot of my taxes go towards something i dont want. So i may be paying lower taxes, but i feel like a larger percentage of my taxes go to things i dont want to fund.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby Scenario Thinker » Wed Mar 24, 2010 10:36 am

I agree with you, Merk, that one can be happy in a cardboard box (or a little more). I would be happy also with more free time and health care taken care of, but I sort of have that now with my current job, so I can't complain. My vacation is not quite what Europe gets, but it's still quite a bit (over 5 weeks vacation/sick combined, and I hardly ever get sick ... for now), plus I work from home at least one day a week usually, so I'm not always feeling like I'm commuting a large part of my life away.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby jcjm » Wed Mar 24, 2010 11:35 am

Okay now you're both making me think. If America was great once, why couldn't America become great again? (I'll have to think more on this.) I feel like Winnie the Pooh *patting his head and saying to himself 'think, think think'* Why aren't we pioneering and leading in innovation like we did once? America can be great again, but not in the same way. With the global economy, manufacturing hit the skids. We were suppose to become the information giant, but that too can be outsourced. The key is to invent as Merk said and then produce locally while the patent is active enough to prevent knock offs. I have always said, if we had good jobs we could afford healthcare and this bill would not be an issue. As far as the bill, I think the first hurdle for this thing is going to be the forced buying of insurance. So far there are 35 states planning to file suit, 16 of which already are. Without everybody being forced to buy insurance,the economics of this bill falls apart.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby merk » Wed Mar 24, 2010 11:54 am

jcjm wrote:I have always said, if we had good jobs we could afford healthcare and this bill would not be an issue.
The rate of medical insurance premium increase has FAR surpassed any reasonable job growth expectations. Having good jobs is a good start - but just replying on that isn't going to work. Also, i dont think america can be as great as it once was, simply because a part of that greatness was due to the fact that so much of the rest of the world was living so far below us. That's changed - more of the world is on or closer to an equal footing with us. For example - the rest of the world is using more and more resources as their economies grow. So we're not the sole power house on the planet any more. We have to compete more. I'm not saying we're going to be stuck on a permanent downward spiral. But I dont think we're ever going to be as great as we appeared to be in the not too distant past, simple because the rest of the world is catching up to us, which over-all is a good thing.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby Unique Journalist » Wed Mar 24, 2010 1:14 pm

Recently I had read that in the future, we're going to have to get used to a world in which several countries are dominant. America will no longer be a superpower, and China will rise in prominence over America (can't remember what the other country was). I'm not sure if America's star is fading, but it sure looks like it. Lately I've wondered if I might have to move to another country at some point. Sounds ridiculous, but I've toyed with the idea. Also saw a documentary that talked about the fall of the dollar, and about how one day, people will no longer share their stories of how they came to America. They will go to other countries, and talk about how they escaped America. Huh.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby merk » Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:16 pm

well i dont know about escaping america. But seeing the circus that our govt is, it's not that hard to imagine. The GOP is now using some obscure rule to cut all govt work off at 2pm - stalling work on bills completely unrelated to health care, apparently just to throw a tantrum and spite the democrats - and the american public. Maybe we can sell tickets to this circus and help fix the economy that way. I do think though that other countries, particularly china, are going to have an increasing sway on the world. Not saying thats good or bad, just how it looks like things are going.
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Re: Health care and what do we do?

Postby jcjm » Thu Apr 15, 2010 4:39 pm

From what I have heard, there are no provisions to keep rates from being raised.

So what good does it do to not refuse coverage, if you can't afford the premium?
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