Im getting a bit worked up over all the US media reporting on the Obama administration plans to propose some univeral health care in the US and the amount of rhetoric thats getting bandied around. The fearmongering and misinformation thats being poured on the population is incredible (but predictable). Living in a country where universal health care has been a part of the health care landscape for forty years or so I just cannot imagine life without such a fundamentally civilised approach to population health. Well that might be the problem, the 'population' bit. The US has such a fiercely individulaistic approach to life that collective insurance hits a nerve. The old red herring of the red peril, 'the Socialist road' predictably gets given a work out. Like its a BAD thing. "Oh no, lets not look after each other in times of great stress and need, thats too SOCIALIST." Coming from the land of the religious zealots, i find that a bit rich! Surely universal health care beautifully embodies the Christian tenets? The US stands alone in the industrialised world as not offering its citizens access to good quality health care as a fundamental right. Doenst that ever give them pause for thought? Why is everyone else doing it and were not?
Doesnt the fact that they have one of the most expensive health systems and yet 40 million remain outside that system, ever make them think that theyre not doing this health thing very well, very effectively? That their life expectancy and infant mortality rates really suck compared to other 'comparable' nations? (heck, even uncomparable ones like costa rica). The whole 'its too expensive, we cant afoord it' argument gets wheeled out along with the substndard medical care argument. All the research shows the US spends way more per capita for poorer outcomes.How is that a measure of 'better'? I look with interest to see if the people start to march in the streets demanding what Australia, England, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Sweden, Singapore all enjoy. Last time I looked, all pretty capitalist societies - no Reds hiding anywhere near power there. I can dream cant I? Sadly, I think I know where this attempt will end, triumph once again for the rich and powerful industry lobbyits keeping the stockholders happy. Ahh Capitalism, humane isnt it?