OT: Frontline / Sick Around the World / Online & 3/31 on PBS

Page 1 of 2  
"Sick around the World" can be seen at this website. It was shown last year on PBS. You can see it online. The program is described in the message below from Frontline will be on Tuesday, March 31.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/sickaroundtheworld /
"You might be surprised," a health policy expert says near the start of this week's FRONTLINE, before listing some of the reasons people are routinely denied health insurance. "People are turned down because they have hay fever, because they have acne. People are turned down if they're 20 pounds overweight. Bedwetting, ear infections in kids..."
Unfortunately, after watching "Sick Around America" this Tuesday night (check local listings), you might come away thinking those denied coverage for frivolous reasons are actually the lucky ones.
In this film, producer Jon Palfreman travels the country talking to some of the millions of Americans who are uninsured, underinsured, or at risk of bankruptcy from unpaid medical bills. He meets a woman who's dropped by her insurer not long after she receives a cancer diagnosis. He finds a 23 year-old engineering student who had planned to head off to grad school, but, instead, works a low-wage job for the affordable health coverage he needs to cover a chronic condition.
And then there's the tragic story of a young woman who dies of Lupus after being dropped by her state's Medicaid program. "I'm not afraid to say it," her doctor tells FRONTLINE in an emotional interview. "Nikki didn't die from Lupus. "Nikki died... secondary to the complications of a failing health care system."
"I think everyone now understands it's not sustainable, right?" says Jeffrey Kang, a doctor and insurance executive. "From an insurance perspective it's not sustainable. From a business perspective it's not sustainable. Obviously from the consumers' perspective it's not sustainable. And I actually think the doctors and the hospitals understand that it's not sustainable..."
The question that powerfully emerges from this film--and which now confronts the nation--is whether the vested interests vying for trillions in health care dollars can come together to make the kind of fundamental change that everyone now seems to agree we need.
We hope you'll join us Tuesday night for the full report--broadcast or streamed online. In the meantime, visit our Web site for a preview http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/sickaroundamerica/ . Starting Tuesday night our site offers interviews with key players, some critical background and links, and the opportunity to join the discussion.
Ken Dornstein Senior Editor
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
KIMOSABE wrote:

And drivers are turned down for having too many wrecks or moving violations. Drivers in these conditions can, however, get insurance at elevated rates under various state "pool" provisions. The same idea is available for health insurance. There's no absence of health insurance; for some, there's an absence of CHEAP health insurance.

I have it on good authority (Greg House) that nobody gets Lupus. There's obviously something wrong here.
[snip]
The biggest error in these sorts of scare-mongering (or consciousness raising, depending on your point of view) programs is that lack of insurance is not equal to lack of health care. The logical conclusion these mongers would hope you reach is that only a government-sponsored program can "fix" the situation.
The statistic they bandy about is 40 million uninsured in this country. 15 million of these are illegal aliens, 10 million are eligible for Medicaid for which they'll apply when they get sick, 6 million are between jobs that provide insurance, a bunch are young and healthy and choose not to have insurnace, some object to insurance on religious grounds, and a few other categories.
Doing the arithmetic, you end up with exactly eleven people in the entire country who are disadvantaged by the existing health insurance system. Evidently, the producers of the program you endorse found all eleven for the documentary.
Even IF the 40 million are imperiled, a government-run health insurance system to fix the "problem," stands an excellent chance of screwing up the health care delivery system for 260 million. Just to say "everybody's covered."
Meh.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
HeyBub wrote:

Because of their actions. Do you think anyone chooses to get cancer?

For "CHEAP" substitute the more accurate "affordable."
I can see people who choose to smoke, for example, having to pay higher rates. But cutting off health insurance for innocent people on the grounds that covering them will reduce the profits of the insurance company is barbaric. That case in California last year where the woman who got breast cancer resulting in her insurance company cutting her off in the middle of her chemo treatment was instructive. It came out in the arbitration hearings that the insurance company has a quota for canceling coverage of customers who might need expensive treatment and employees are rewarded with bonuses for meeting the quota--to hell with the customers who are left with no health care. The arbitration judge awarded the woman nine million dollars which hopefully stung enough to make the rat-bastards at the insurance companies take notice.

Clearly a govt.-run system will have problems, witness the decline in care in Canada since the monthly insurance fee is so low it can't begin to fund the system and thus massive taxpayer support is needed. Their supreme court ruled a few years ago that life-threatening delays in diagnosis and treatment are widespread and thus refusing to let citizens go outside the govt. system is unconstitutional. However other nations seem to do well with a mixed govt.-private system, those who can afford private insurance are free to pay for it, those who can't afford it can join the govt.-run system.

Delightful, who would have thought that the pain and anguish of millions of your fellow citizens could be transformed into such an amusing quip.

Sure, so long as you have coverage who gives a crap about the millions who don't, it's not like any of them are your friends or family, right?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DGDevin wrote:

And what about the thousands - or more - who depend on the dividends from their insurance company stock to make ends meet? Maybe even to buy insurance of their own? You would deprive them of their income by mandating a company's policy? How cruel!

I submit that making policy affecting millions based on whether it benefits my family or friends is a bad metric. Thank heavens our leaders don't make decisions based on their own personal needs but, instead, consider the good of the entire country.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
What else would you like to spend my money on? How about STD reasearch. How about field mice in Calafornia. How about private jets for princess peloci. How about the killing of babies!
Oh yeah - you are already doing that for me. If you want health insurance...GET A JOB! If you cannot work, then turn to your family or charities for help. I should be able to dictate where my money goes, what charities I give it to...not you, the feds or anyone else. Face it folks...this country aint so great any more.
Welcome to the USSA
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DejaVoodoo wrote:

Based on your spelling maybe some of that money needs to go to education.

So in your view people too poor to afford health insurance are just SOL, if they die in the streets--tough luck, not your problem.

I'll tell you what, we'll let you stop paying taxes, but you don't get to drive on public roads anymore, the cops and fire dept. won't come to your house when you need them, no more mail delivery and so on, you can take care of everything by yourself. Good luck.

Having known people who lived in the USSR and were lucky enough to get out, you don't have a clue if you think the injustices you imagine you suffer from are anything like on the same scale. Of course if it bothers you enough you're always free to leave.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DGDevin wrote: .

There are FAR more security guards (paid for privately) than there are cops. 85% of the firefighters in the country belong to volunteer fire departments. Mail is a government monopoly, but the volume of email far exceeds (by several magnitudes) that delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. Roads are, admittedly behind the times, but there are private toll roads.
I think your examples prove the points to which you were responding.

Being "better" than somewhere else is not the goal. That's like saying having only one leg is better than those who have none.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
HeyBub wrote:

What percentage of them respond to your home if you call 911? Seriously, how much trust would you put in the average mall cop? Years back I lived in a big apartment complex where after a series of robberies etc. I looked into the "security" company that was supposed to protect the place and learned they had a history of hiring ex-cons as guards. No wonder people were getting mugged, cars stolen and so on, they had foxes guarding the chickens--so much for private security.

And who pays for their equipment etc., and what percentage of the population do they protect?

What do you figure UPS or FedEx would charge to deliver a letter to a farm house in a rural area? Do you suppose they would do it for less than half a buck? Do you think they would continue to service such routes without raising prices to far more than the USPS charges?
I think there are things private enterprise does better than governement, provided you're willing to see them abandon unprofitable areas or charge rates that some people can't afford. I think public libraries, for example, are a valuable public service. I have no doubt what would happen if they were turned over to private companies, for one thing borrowing that router book I currently have sure wouldn't be free and that means some people wouldn't be able to participate. If the response to that is, "Tough shit, not my problem," well that's a sad way to organize everything in society IMO.

Yup, a tiny fraction of total mileage.

Hogwash.
Sure, but the other side of that coin is trusting that private enterprise will always deliver a superior product at a lower cost than government has been proven a risky proposition too many times. Maybe I'm crazy, but I really don't want the equivalent of Enron or AIG running everything if you know what I mean.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DGDevin wrote:

Interesting point you raise. In my specific neighborhood we augment the regular police by the use of community-paid officers. They are paid for by us, but are certified peace officers. Sort of quasi-private.
I can see uses for the average mall cop - he can draw the goblin's fire while I sneak around the back and pop him (the goblin, not the cop).

Things have changed. Today, ex-cons can't own a gun.

My city, Houston, is ringed by maybe 100 smaller communities within 25 miles of the city limits. Most of these have volunteer fire departments. The city of Houston sells outdated equipment to these smaller communities at rock-bottom prices. (I saw a pumper that cost $100,000 in 1976 sold for $2000). The men (and women) in the volunteer service swarm over this equipment and, with a lot of elbow grease and ingenuity, often make the equipment better than new. The Houston fire department's academy accepts volunteers from these communities on a space-available basis. In each class there are usually from two to ten volunteers.
It's not all altruistic on the part of Houston. When the SHTF, the volunteer departments assist the city.
Story: I'm sitting at my computer last summer when the power goes off. Well, phooey! After putzing around for about 15 minutes, I decide to step outside. On the street in front of my house I found FORTY-TWO pieces of fire fighting apparatus! It seems the apartment house across the street caught fire. There were pumpers, ambulances, one of those aerial hose units that can squirt water into the fifteenth story window, supervisor cars, trucks with ladders that could reach the angels, a cascade unit, a GIANT bus that looks like one of those things that takes seniors to the nearby Indian reservation for a day of gambling with the legend "City of Houston Mobile Command Center" emblazoned on the side. And cop cars? I think dozens.
Anyway, amongst all this sea of red vehicles and men with raincoats and funny hats was one regular pumper from a volunteer unit about 15 miles away. Just in case.
As to the population served by volunteers, it's not great. I'd guess maybe 20-30%. Except for Phoenix. Phoenix has a private fire-fighting company.

Well, no. I'm just saying that private enterprise far exceeds the services of the government mail system. I can imagine a day not too far off when 1st class mail will be delivered by computer - possibly by a private company.

Not necessarily, service could be mandated, much like auto insurance. As for libraries, most should be burnt to the ground and the ashes scattered. Want to hear a Monty Python Cheese Shop story?
I go to my local branch library. "Do you have Encyclopedia Judaica?" I ask.
"No," said the librarian.
"Hmm, how about Marquis Whos Who?"
" 'Fraid not."
"Okay, Cumulative Books In Print, the Congressional Record, the Federal Register?"
"Uh, no."
But they did have hand puppets, DVDs, video games, art work, toys, and mass-market historical romances (with a "leave two, take two" sign) and internet access. There ARE libraries that loan out tools (scaffolding, post hole diggers, table saws, etc.). Libraries long ago abandoned their historical brief of being a "repository of knowledge."
As for your router book, you could buy a used one via the internet, get full use of it and turn around and sell it the same way. I do that a lot. I don't think, on average, I've ever lost any money.

Axiom I: Private enterprise WILL always deliver a superior product at a lower cost. Axiom II: Private enterprise creates wealth; government activity destroys wealth.
AIG is the largest insurer in the world and there was never a problem with their insurance portfolio. We already have experience with government insurance - it's called Social Security, unemployment, or VA hospitals. As for Enron, they got in trouble, mainly, by trying to play with the government-run electrical distribution system in California.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DGDevin wrote:

You have the equivalent of Enron running the federal trust fund system - that's where Enron learned it's accounting methods.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"DGDevin" wrote:

I also knew a lady who was a professional engineer, who walked across the border carrying her life's possessions in two carpet bags along with a young son.
Quite a lady.
During the uprising when Boris crawled up on the tank, she uttered one word, "DRUNK".
Lew
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Point proven...even if an uneducated slump like me can afford HI, then just about anyone could.

That is what charities are for, not government.

Now your talking. This is what the federal government should be spending tax dollars on; Infrastructure and homeland security. I don't even believe they should be managing the education system. It now cost more to send a child to public school then some private school.

This is exactly the road we are headed down. As our government grows, we get closer and closer to socialism. With the gross mismanagement of funds, our leaders have proven time and time again that they are clueless and incapable of running this country. They have bankrupted social security, the FDIC is just about bankrupt, numerous states are bankrupt and unable to pay tax refunds, even the federal reserve is close to bankrupt. They are now trying to pass a bill to take over 401K plans. It was the government's own FHA that lead to the crash of the markets. These are the people you trust to manage YOUR money. You are a fool if you do. What congress is doing should send a chill up your spine. For crying out loud, In the midst of all this economic turmoil, congress voted a pay raise for them. Their behavior is bordering on criminal and if we the people do not shout out and stop it, this country is doomed the same fate as all other socialist countries.
Remember - we are not supposed to be working for the government. THEY WORK FOR US!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DejaVoodoo wrote:

Great, devil take the hindmost, a real humane point of view.

So send your kids to private schools, what's stopping you?

Hogwash. The govt. played a part, but the unrestrained greed and recklessness of Wall St. played a bigger part. The govt. didn't force S&P to rate rotten securities tripe-A, AIG didn't implode because of something the govt. did but because they moved from insurance to gambling and they took multiple bets on every turn of a card. I believe in private enterprise, but *unregulated* private enterprise is a forumula for disaster, as we have just seen yet again.

So what else is new? Are you proud of what Congress accomplished with a Republican majority, do you figure there was less corruption and incompetence then? Govt. tends to be clumsy and inefficient, but that doesn't mean *everything* they do should be turned over to private business. I for one am glad Lehman Bros. didn't run the fire dept., if they had we'd all be fighting fires with garden hoses and buckets.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Well, he's pay taxes for the public schools, and the fees for the private school as well. Not all can afford to pay for school twice.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Thank heavens our leaders don't make

You're kidding right?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
HeyBub wrote:

Oh, really, so how many people do you know who fall into that category?

Our "leaders" don't make decisions based on their own personal needs? Is that why umpteen gazallion dollars are poured into their campaign funds every year by lobbyists, because they make decisions for the benefit of the entire nation rather than the companies, unions etc. that fund their re-election? Man, what color is the sky on your planet?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DGDevin wrote:

That's a separate issue. Politicians need two things to stay in office: votes and money. The money supplied by the "special interests" offset the cries of the easily manipulated unwashed masses.
It's a balancing act. Sometimes the mob prevails, sometimes those who are most affected win.
Lobbyists are good. Do you really want the electorate to decide the railway tariff for unrendered yak-fat? Or do you want the railroads and the yak wranglers to have input?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
HeyBub wrote:

"The mob," that's cute, you're really not all that impressed by the whole democracy thing, are you. That view is usually held by those who assume that in the good old days they would have been among the patrician class, it never seems to cross their minds that they might have been piling muck in a bog with their bare hands while yelling, "Help! Help! I'm being repressed!"

I don't want the final decision to rest on how much the yak-fat cartel contributs to the campaign funds of key legislators, which is often the way it is now. The banking industry spend three hundred million lobbying for deregulation in the mid-90s, they got what they wanted and then indulged in an orgy of greed and incompetence which has put all of us in trouble. Lobbyists need to be kept on a short leash, and fat chance of either party ever agreeing to that.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DGDevin wrote:

The nation's Founders weren't too enthralled with democracy either,that is why the established a Republic. The idea of a pure democracy (as we are seeing today) truly is "the mob" ruling. It is 51% of people who don't pay income taxes voting in politicians who continue to promise to punish the 49% of those who do pay taxes and obtaining more support from some of that 49% by telling *them* that they are really only going after the 5% of wage earners who are now paying 60% of all income taxes. Pure democracy can be likened to two foxes and a chicken deciding on the lunch menu. That is why the Republic outlined in the Constitution was established -- to make sure that no one swing group could control the direction and fortunes of the country. Unfortunately, too many "progressives" going back to at least Woodrow Wilson decided that was too "quaint" and "inefficient" and that the "voices of the people" should be the driving force for all policies. So now we have all these neat "innovations" to the constitution, like the Income Tax -- a direct tax on the citizens of the various states that has now managed to place the federal government pretty much in absolute control of every citizen's life due to the control of how those taxes are spent.

--
If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mark & Juanita wrote:

The message below was sent by e-mail to me recently. I believe it fits nicely into this thread. ______________________________________________________________
Catching Wild Pigs
A chemistry professor in a large college had some exchange students in the class. One day while the class was in the lab the Professor noticed one young man (exchange student) who kept rubbing his back, and stretching as if his back hurt.
The professor asked the young man what was the matter. The student told him he had a bullet lodged in his back. He had been shot while fighting communists in his native country who were trying to overthrow his country's government and install a new communist government.
In the midst of his story he looked at the professor and asked a strange question. He asked, Do you know how to catch wild pigs?
The professor thought it was a joke and asked for the punch line. The young man said this was no joke. You catch wild pigs by finding a suitable place in the woods and putting corn on the ground. The pigs find it and begin to come everyday to eat the free corn. When they are used to coming every day, you put a fence down one side of the place where they are used to coming. When they get used to the fence, they begin to eat the corn again and you put up another side of the fence. They get used to that and start to eat again. You continue until you have all four sides of the fence up with a gate in the last side. The pigs, which are used to the free corn, start to come through the gate to eat; you slam the gate on them and catch the whole herd.
Suddenly the wild pigs have lost their freedom. They run around and around inside the fence, but they are caught. Soon they go back to eating the free corn. They are so used to it that they have forgotten how to forage in the woods for themselves, so they accept their captivity.
The young man then told the professor that is exactly what he sees happening to America. The government keeps pushing us toward socialism and keeps spreading the free corn out in the form of programs such as supplemental income, tax credit for unearned income, tobacco subsidies, dairy subsidies, payments not to plant crops (CRP), welfare, medicine, drugs, etc. While we continually lose our freedoms -- just a little at a time.
Keep your eyes on the newly elected politicians who are about to slam the gate on America.
One should always remember: There is no such thing as a free lunch! Also, a politician will never provide a service for you cheaper than you can do it yourself.
"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have"
Thomas Jefferson
--
Jack Novak
Buffalo, NY - USA
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.