Wednesday, August 29, 2007

This Is Why We Must Have Universal Health Care

* Full Disclosure - Unlike BC, I am not in the tank for anyone. But I do, at this time, prefer Dodd and Edwards, and can't see myself supporting Kucinich, Gravel, Clinton or Biden in the primary. Obama is my second tier, but could still break into the top. Richardson is stuck in the third tier, and has lost ground with his responses to certain issues...


At 6:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Damn straight Cliff.

What it comes down to is simple human dignity. It cannot be put any better way.

And for the record, the Medical Associations representing doctors are always on the wrong side of the issue. Be prepared for that. Doctors don't always know what's best.

I'm a proud Canadian, and we've benefited greatly from being your neighbor. I can't imagine what it must be like clinging to a shitty job because you need that insurance. For all of its faults, our single payer health care system is invaluable, and most of my fellow Canadians know it. So do our politicians.

Everyone is covered. For the overwhelming majority of citizens, the peace of mind brought by health coverage alone, whether employed or not, wealthy or not, able or not, allows us to live much less stressful lives.

Thank you Tommy Douglas, my hero.

At 6:53 PM, Blogger Kirsten said...

Tommy Douglas is this Canadian's hero, too.
My youngest is hearing impaired, so we spend a lot of time at doctors and audiologists and ENTs. I have never paid for an appointment, and my daughter's hearing aids are covered, as we are a low income family ( starving artist and all- need to publish that novel!) And I live in Alberta, one of two provinces, that do charge " user fees" ( they call it premiums, Ralph Klein and Ed Stelmach can kiss my ass.)
I am glad to live here, and I know I am luckier than hell.

At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Kirsten,

I'm ON, and will admit to a bias against AB. There, I've typed it. I feel better.

For those who don't know, Ralph Klein was the type of Premier (read Governator) who'd drunkenly walk into a homeless shelter and tell'em all to get jobs. This is why I don't like RK, and am certain that Kirsten has way more reasons than I to dislike the prick.

Alberta's like the Canadian Texas. You know, where cowboys can walk into the big city and be taken seriously. In ON we treat'em like clowns with bad taste in music, but I digress (FUTK!). Ok, Ok, cowboys aren't that bad, but their music IS.

For y'all Americans there's just no good reason not to support a single payer health care system. Doctors still make muy donero, and yeah, rural areas have trouble keeping doctors, but I suspect it's the same in the good-ole US of A. They want to be closer to their families, and unless they're from BF nowhere (and even if they are) they'll probably choose to stay close to cities.

When you need it, they want to make sure you're not a visitor (or illegal, we have those too), but you won't find the insurer rejecting kidney transplants because dialysis is cheaper, like some private insurers in the US. Expensive experimental treatments aren't always immediately available, but those don't always provide the miracles you pray for either. When a doctor says you need something, you get it. He/She doesn't have to get it approved by any cubicle residing pencil pusher. We have employer benefits to cover the cost of pharmaceuticals, not actual treatment.

Our nurses and doctors work just as hard as yours, and their unions negotiate with the provinces for raises (unless you're in BC, where the DUI Premier Campbell will just pass a law telling you what your wage is).

It's not perfect, but it's so worth covering everyone. It is the jewel in our Confederation, and we'll defend it to our last breath.

Look at it this way Americans, should you adopt a single payer (i.e. remove profit motive from the equation) system, the sky will not fall. Barring sabotage from the inside (fraud is an issue for any insurer) you'll get the same efficiency as Veterans Affairs, who easily get more for the buck than private business ever does. It can be done.

You know it should be done. Now just reclaim your government. Kirsten and I will work to reclaim ours.

And Kirsten, feel free to bash ON now.


At 9:56 PM, Blogger Kerri said...

Thanks for that. My husband is often in Winnepeg and he says he hears that the Canadians are wanting our US type of healthcare. I didn't know if this was the usual stuff from 20 something tech guys who will of course never get sick or just really a general opinion. I see not everyone is willing to dump the system.

At 10:39 PM, Blogger Kirsten said...

I don't have anything bad to say about Ontario. I'm a Leafs fan. I'm a Jays fan. And all publishers are in T.O. So I refuse to acknowledge how Toronto thinks it's the center of the universe.
I have nothing bad to say about ON.
Go figure.
And yes, Klein did walk into a homeless shelter ( at Christmas, no less) and drunkenly told them all to get jobs. Stelmach is the new premier, and he has the personality of a dung beetle. Another Tory, the party has ruled the province for thirty-odd years. ( I am a card carrying member of the NDP. Best five bucks I've ever spent.)
Klein, in his decade plus as leader, decimated the health care system, education system, social assistance, infrastucture, and the beer supply. He allowed private clinics to open while somehow losing hospital beds at the same time. He closed dozens of hospitals. He did, also, balance the budget and lose the debt. He also handed out Ralph Bucks, $1600 I was glad to have, but I'd rather he's spent that on schools or health care.
I've always called Alberta the Texas of Canada. Funny, people look at me like I've lost my mind when I say that... It's the cows and oil, people. I'm waiting for the Repubs to realize we're ripe for invasion. I hope they're all allergic to canola.
The only people who want the U.S. style of health care in Canada are the Tories. I wouldn't put much stock in what they say. The majority of Canadians are adamant about keeping health care universal.

At 12:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

C'mon Kirsten,

I'm Mississauga, and I hate to admit it...but having lived only in ON I DO have a love-hate relationship with TO.

My theory is that TO attracts most of the country's assholes (and bad drivers), so you don't have to deal with them. Ergo you should be thanking us, and you are welcome.

Even the Tories (formerly the CRAP -- what a great time to be in the NDP [not a member, just like Jack]) aren't stupid enough to touch our 3rd rail.

I love minority governments!

Chretien saved us from that (obvious) Iraq mistake, and Harper and Martin would have sent our soldiers into the Imperial fire.


Our Freedom is here..not in Iraq.

AQ attacked the US from Afghanistan, and that is why NATO is there. That is why our soldiers are dying.

The correct place to fight Terrorism. No Muslim in the world could argue with that, and should they try, we'd point out that Mecca is in SA.

Afghanistan is fair game.

The sooner the unjust occupation of Iraq ends the sooner the end of US culpability begins.

Anyone who disagrees PLEASE RESPOND.

But on health care, there should be little debate -- people with consciences vs those without.

At 12:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ummm, ya that was me. Ooops for the anon-thang.

At 12:29 AM, Blogger Kirsten said...

I would like to say that no driver is worse than a cowboy with a pickup truck- or a Montrealer ( I almost was hit three times in one hour in that city).
And I still have nothing bad to say about Ontario.
It's the Leafs year! ( okay, that's probably a stretch, even for me.)
Maybe it's because I've been in this God forsaken province my whole life.
At least Klein has stopped draining the beer supply. And to bad tequilas so frickin' expensive.


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