JS-Kit/Echo comments for article at http://smallestminority.blogspot.com/2009/07/boiling-pit-of-sewage-and-death-and.html (29 comments)

  Tentative mapping of comments to original article, corrections solicited.

jsid-1246804907-608608  Unix-Jedi at Sun, 05 Jul 2009 14:41:47 +0000

A large part of the current problem is the disconnect between the payer and the consumer.

This gets far worse under a Government-run system, but that's a large part of the "problems" that Mark rails about now. (He's just not smart enough to understand why they exist.)

The best thing we could do to fix that is to eliminate the tax preference for employer-provided health insurance. The next best thing is to disallow the "free" care being provided via the ER. Mark, again, would see this as cruel and unusual, but he doesn't understand the problem.

I responded to Mark earlier with a chart from this same source:


jsid-1246808106-608610  Liberty at Sun, 05 Jul 2009 15:35:06 +0000

Have you seen todays Boston Globe?

Cohn claims that The Won has no intention of making Obamacare like the British or Canadian version.

"But no serious politician is talking about recreating either the British or the Canadian system here. The British have truly “socialized medicine,” in which the government directly employs most doctors. The Canadians have one of the world’s most centralized “single-payer” systems, in which the government insures everybody directly and private insurance has virtually no role. A better understanding for how universal healthcare might work in America would come from other countries - countries whose insurance architecture and medical cultures more closely resemble the framework we’d likely create here."

I always feel like I live in an alternate universe when I read leftist talking points.

jsid-1246814060-608611  GrumpyOldFart at Sun, 05 Jul 2009 17:14:20 +0000

"A better understanding for how universal healthcare might work in America would come from other countries - countries whose insurance architecture and medical cultures more closely resemble the framework we’d likely create here."

That sounds good if you say it fast enough... but what other countries, and what framework?

The bottom line is that governments support themselves by taxes, in other words by force, and private sector companies do not have such an option. Therefore government supported programs will always tend to supplant private programs, even those whose services are superior, simply because the consumer does not have the option to refuse to pay for the government program. I may (and indeed have) found myself in a position where I had to have a doctor, but in the private sector I can always go to a different doctor if I'm not satisfied with the one I have. And if that doctor fails to satisfy the needs of too many patients, he won't be able to make a living as a doctor anymore. With a government doctor (or anything else), I can quit using his services, but I cannot fire him, regardless of how bad, even dangerous, the quality of his work is.

I have yet to hear President Hussein address those problems, or even treat them as if they exist at all.

jsid-1246828563-608617  Old NFO at Sun, 05 Jul 2009 21:16:03 +0000

Canada is now looking at expanding private health care...

jsid-1246862290-608630  Mike at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 06:38:10 +0000

My advice to those who would prefer to live under socialism is the same as to those who would prefer warmer weather. Move! Buy a one-way ticket, and move!

Why fight and claw, for years on end, to bring socialism here when you could buy yourself a one-way ticket to what you consider socialist nirvana, and be there within hours?

jsid-1246879188-608632  David Beatty at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 11:19:48 +0000

I should find it amazing that most people think the problems in the health care industry, the most regulated of all industries except education, are caused by the free market. Sadly, I don't. To paraphrase Reagan, very often government is not the solution, it is the problem.

jsid-1246884017-608633  geekWithA.45 at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 12:40:17 +0000

>>Why fight and claw, for years on end, to bring socialism here when you could buy yourself a one-way ticket to what you consider socialist nirvana, and be there within hours?

The answer to that question is important, illuminating, and deserves dilligence of thought.

For many in the rank & file, it's a simple matter of sloth: voting for socialism is the easiest path to free stuff. Besides, getting a passport & plane ticket takes for some effort & planning.

For others in the rank & file, they get a kick out of how enlightened they are, bringing forth all that free stuff for the less fortunate.

The vanguard & leaders, however, who scheme these dreams, are a whole 'nother story. For them, collectivoStatism is a simple, expedient means to power, power whose credibility will always be suspect so long as a counter example of prosperity exists involving free markets & minds.

jsid-1246888722-608635  karrde at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 13:58:42 +0000

Did I read that right?

A government mandate to provide ER care within 4 hours of admittance?

A year ago, I saw a billboard in the Detroit area.

The Detroit Medical Center was promising every ER patient that a doctor would see them in 29 minutes or less.

This is a hospital in downtown Detroit, not a suburban hospital.

jsid-1246903866-608648  Keith at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 18:11:06 +0000

Oakwood Hospital (SW suburbs of Detroit) offer Zero Wait. I'm sure that the costs for the additional staff are higher, but if you go to the emergency room you will have no wait time before Triage commences.


jsid-1246913425-608650  Unix-Jedi at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 20:50:25 +0000

Steyn, unleashed:


My father is currently ill, and the health "system" is doing its best to ensure it's fatal. When an ambulance has to be called, they take him to a different hospital according to the determinations of the bed-availability bureaucrats and which facility hasn't had to be quarantined for an infection outbreak. At the first hospital, he picked up C Difficile. At the second, MRSA. At the third, like the lady above, he got septicaemia. He's lying there now, enjoying the socialized health care jackpot — C Diff, MRSA, septicaemia. None of these ailments are what he went in to be treated for. They were given to him by the medical system.

jsid-1246916376-608651  geekWithA.45 at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 21:39:36 +0000

I remember a professor once commented that while the prosperity of a society might form a limiting factor on the quality of medical care available, that the primary determinant was the degree to which that society did or did not value the individual vs the collective.

A case in point would be Japanese medicine. It is an example of a society that was both prosperous and collectivist in nature.

My parents lived in Japan in the 80's when my mother was struck seriously ill, necessitating an extended encounter with their medical system.

Mom's hospital room was scrubbed top to bottom by Dad & friends (seriously...Japanese cabs are spotless, but not their hospitals)...who had to intercept filthy & bloodstained linens before they were installed onto her bed, essentially smuggling them to the laundry.

The medical case was horribly mishandled...mom underwent a 3 month macabre comedy of misdiagnosis and botched surgery. Dad finally pulled the plug on that circus and had mom more or less medically abducted back to the States before they killed her.(You do not want to know how much it costs to rent a team of physicians, med techs, and arrange for life support capable aircraft to fly them to and from the Far East...you just don't...)....and it was worth every penny. An ordinary American hospital had mom sorted out in a month, and she's still alive and well, enjoying her retirement.

Never get sick outside of CONUS, and if you do, make it your first priority to get back.

jsid-1246916719-608652  DJ at Mon, 06 Jul 2009 21:45:19 +0000

"Never get sick outside of CONUS, and if you do, make it your first priority to get back."

I've been there. I'll stay here.

jsid-1246926034-608664  DirtCrashr at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 00:20:34 +0000

Living overseas on Asian Subcontinent I've had numerous opportunities to be sick outside CONUS - from sinus infections to bowl infections, from worms to bacillary dysentery, from having the tip of my finger removed to having both my tonsils removed...it's all NOT good, none of it, particularly in the area of emergency surgery. But the finger was re-attached when I was young, and later when I returned home and had to take antibiotics for another sinus-infection - I took a shit and a dead, 14-to-18-inch+ worm was evacuated.

jsid-1246973921-608695  Ken at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 13:38:41 +0000

Well, I won't be sorry to see this article drop off the front page. I have children myself.

I Read The Whole Linked Thing, and I cannot find words both suitable for polite company and adequate to express what I think.

jsid-1246979014-608706  Ed "What the" Heckman at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 15:03:34 +0000


Can you find adequate words to express what you think even without the polite company restriction? I can't. 'Course, I'm no sailor. :)

jsid-1246981993-608710  Ken at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 15:53:13 +0000

Ed, the sentence "Then Gollum would die in a corner" is about as close as I can get without ending up on several lists.

jsid-1246985664-608715  Ed "What the" Heckman at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 16:54:24 +0000

I wasn't asking you to actually state the words. I was just wondering if you could find them. :)

jsid-1247002100-608726  DJ at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 21:28:20 +0000

Here is a comparison of health care in Britain v. the United States, by the numbers. The numbers ought to scare the hell out of you.

One of the numbers therein hit home:

"81: Average percentage of those who survive a diagnosis of prostate cancer in the United States versus 43% in Britain under their National Health Service."

Having just survived such, that sat my ass right up.

I followed the link listed there and found the following:

"If you're a man diagnosed with prostate cancer, you have a 57 percent chance of it killing you in Britain. In the United States, the chance of dying drops to 19 percent. Again, reports Bartholomew, "Britain is at the bottom of the class and America is at the top.""

Wonderful. There's more:

"More specifically, three-quarters of Americans who've had a heart attack are given beta-blocker drugs, compared to fewer than a third in Britain."

Been there, had one, got that.

"Similarly, American patients are more likely than British patients to have a heart condition diagnosed with an angiogram, ..."

Had one, 24 hours after the onset of symptoms. I'm alive today because of it.

"... more likely to have an artery widened with angioplasty, ..."

Not appropriate in my case.

"... and more likely to get back on their feet by way of a by-pass."

Had a triple bypass, 48 hours after the onset of symptoms. Again, I'm alive today because of it.

Here's the gumdrop (and I suggest you read the whole thing for context):

"What she saw was an unexpected passivity, a lethal submissiveness to systemic incompetence and tragedy, a reaction that seemed poles apart from how things happen in the United States."

Wait for it.

jsid-1247007491-608730  geekWithA.45 at Tue, 07 Jul 2009 22:58:11 +0000

That, I think, states one of the differences between subject & citizen.

A subject submits to some higher civil authority. A citizen IS the higher civil authority.

jsid-1247012058-608731  juris imprudent at Wed, 08 Jul 2009 00:14:18 +0000

'Course, I'm no sailor.

When I'm properly incensed in my professional capacity I inquire as to whether I need to explain something in language a Chief Petty Officer would use. That usually makes the point.

jsid-1247017902-608734  GrumpyOldFart at Wed, 08 Jul 2009 01:51:42 +0000

Unless you really want to offend someone deeply, then you go for warrant officer.

jsid-1247064773-608751  Ed "What the" Heckman at Wed, 08 Jul 2009 14:52:53 +0000

Last night I checked with my wife (a nurse) on the chickenpox story. She told me that even extreme cases of chickenpox like this can be treated. The story said the couple was given antibiotics. But chickenpox is a virus and is not treated by antibiotics. (If the sores become infected, then an antibiotic would be used to treat the infection.)

This was medical malpractice on a systemic level.

jsid-1247076677-608769  J.T. Wenting at Wed, 08 Jul 2009 18:11:17 +0000

No Ed, it was policy. Dictated by the NHS ruling body that rejects treatment if there's a risk it'll become expensive and that dictates that only specific drugs are prescribed for specific ailments with little thought into the usefulness of those drugs or the possible adverse reactions they could have on the patients.
So the list of approved drugs mentions a specific antibiotic for chickenpox, the doctor has no choice but to give that and only that and hope it works.

Such is socialised healthcare.

It's not medical malpractice, it's government dictated euthenasia of ill people by denial of treatment.

Here in the Netherlands it's getting to be much the same.
Except the system is sometimes even weirder.
When my father had a heart attack in 2002, he was promptly taken to hospital by an ambulance. There he spent over 4 hours in a hallway outside the ER without anyone looking in on him.
He was told there were no beds for heart patients and that the staff would try to find him another hospital.
When one was found (he learned later), he had to wait for an ambulance being dispatched from there (35 miles away) to pick him up. By law the ambulance that had brought him in (which was still waiting idle outside the door where he could see it) was not allowed to deliver him to any other hospital except the one it was assigned to. That took another hour as the highway was closed and the ambulance had to travel over narrow secondary roads.
So between the time he went off heart monitoring and the time he was back on it in another ambulance were 5 hours in which he was not attended to.
Between the time he called 112 (our 911) and the time he was in an ICU bed were 6 hours. No doctor would see him for another 6 because they were all at home, asleep.

He survived, he got lucky. He got even luckier when he read the medication he was given on being discharded. Had he not he'd have taken strong blood pressure boosters, mistakenly prescribed instead of the blood pressure reduction pills he needed, boosters which would likely have killed him in hours had he taken them.

jsid-1247084693-608773  DJ at Wed, 08 Jul 2009 20:24:53 +0000

Ed: "This was medical malpractice on a systemic level."

J. T. Wenting: "No Ed, it was policy."

Think again, J. T.

Medical practice is diagnosis, recommendation, and treatment. Socialized healthcare allows the doctor to diagnose, but it subjects his recommendations and treatment to bureaucratic veto. Thus, the bureacracy assumes the medical functions that it does not allow the doctor to perform. It is malpractice and it is medical, thus medical malpractice both labels and describes it perfectly.

Socialized healthcare performs medical malpractice as policy. Thus, Ed is correct, because systemic level is what policy is.

So, there it is: Socialized healthcare IS medical malpractice on a systemic level, i.e. doing it wrong as a matter of policy.

jsid-1247158353-608795  staghounds at Thu, 09 Jul 2009 16:52:33 +0000

National Health was created to give basic 1950s era medical care to everyone without charging directly for the service.

It still does that pretty well- 1950s era medical care without direct charge.

Gas is $8 a gallon, though.

jsid-1247167717-608801  DJ at Thu, 09 Jul 2009 19:28:37 +0000

"It still does that pretty well- 1950s era medical care ..."

I remember 1950's medical care first hand. What comes to mind at the moment is a sight that was (at least to me) always intimidating as hell -- the table in the doctor's examining room always had a small glass on it, filled with an alcohol solution (hence the smell of the room), with a glass and steel syringe sitting in it.

Every year, my two brothers and I got "booster shots" of various kinds of vaccines. The good doctor pulled the syringe out of the glass, wiped it dry, filled it, and injected my older brother. Then he did the same to me, using the same syringe and the same needle. Then he did the same to my younger brother again using the same syringe and needle.

Then he dumped (yes, dumped) the syringe, needle down, back in the glass. No wonder the injections hurt so damned much; the needle was as blunt as an axe handle.

I also remember a story told by a former co-worker. While in the army during the Korean War (early 50's, for those who went to gubmint schools), he served as a dentist's assistant. A "gopher" was probably a more correct term.

He described sharpening the dentist's syringe needles using a fine hard Arkansas stone and oil, the result being the patients didn't scream so loud when he stuck those needles into their gums.

So, today, things are a mite better than the 50's. At least everyone gets a new syringe and needle, and the needles are both thin and sharp.

jsid-1247254962-608839  geekWithA.45 at Fri, 10 Jul 2009 19:42:42 +0000

For contrast, the American standard of emergency heart treatment is to warm up the cath lab for a potiential Angioplasty while the ambulance is on the way, and once a heart attack is confirmed, for the patient to be in the treatment lab and under the gear inside of an hour.

jsid-1247588663-608977  Ed "What the" Heckman at Tue, 14 Jul 2009 16:24:23 +0000

PajamasTV just posted this video of a brief foray into the Canadian Health "Care" System. One of the more shocking things they found out is that to get a personal physician (normally called a primary care provider in this country), you have to call a phone number then wait 2 to 3 years to be assigned to one.

The video clips of Democrats at the beginning are also quite eye opening.

jsid-1247590104-608984  Kevin Baker at Tue, 14 Jul 2009 16:48:24 +0000

Yes, I just watched that this morning on YouTube, and it will be embedded in a post this evening.

You want a simple blood test? Neither clinics nor emergency rooms do preventative care. You need a personal physician. Don't have one? 2-3 year wait for one.

The story about the woman who had both legs amputated because of the wait for treatment was chilling, too. Much like the woman who came to the U.S. for vascular surgery to allow her to digest food. Canada said it was "elective surgery" - she said the only thing elective about it was she elected to LIVE.

And YES - the Democrats in their own words, yet those words never seem to haunt them. If it weren't for "Right-wing media" those quotes would never again see the light of day.

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