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U.S. Congress completes overhaul of health care; more threats come in

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That Obama, what a real uniter.

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Nah, sailwind, President Obama's just giving as good as he gets; I can't blame him, especially with all the opportunities he gave the Repugs to get with the program. Oh well, all those GOP Congresspersons who are gonna lose their jobs in November will find work somewhere, I suppose.

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USAFudge you don't look at polls much do you? If you knew a fraction of what is going on you would see that it is indeed the democrats who are in grave danger of losing come November. But you are right about jobs being lost....many more people will be losing their jobs.

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Nah, sailwind, President Obama's just giving as good as he gets; I can't blame him, especially with all the opportunities he gave the Repugs to get with the program. Oh well, all those GOP Congresspersons who are gonna lose their jobs in November will find work somewhere, I suppose.

No, you don't understand. He and the Dumbs are desperate. He knows he's going to lose the house, Pelosi is going to be out of a job. Thats why he's out there daring Republicans to repeal it. He knows that when they take control of the House, and though in my books its still a longshot, the senate, they can make the effort, but that with his veto, the soonest it can realistically happen is 2012.

I give the man some credit though. He is trying to convince Americans that the pile of mud he just made for them, is tasty. Hence the chocolate sprinkles on top. Still doesn't change the fact, that he's making America eat dirt.

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As for Americans who are unsure about the health care bill, election day is a long way off and people have very short memories. In November the economy will be better and any anger(which is a minority) will be forgotten. That's the hand the democrats are playing.

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In November the economy will be better

Boy I hope so.

I'm still struggling with how to feel about this bill, but I have to admit, the chances of Obama getting back in office don't seem that high, considering most people I know (Democrats and Republicans) are not happy with the outcome. I'm not saying any of this condescendingly either.

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Perhaps there is a 'test' vote (similiar to the Mass vote last Dec). FL-19 is having a 'special election' (April 13th) long before the Nov elections and the people's repeal of the Health Care Law is on the ballot ... watch and see what the American people think about ~ But remember we still have to deal with this;

“In The Phantom Public, Walter Lippmann took a hard and realistic look at the role played by the American people in government decision-making. He portrayed citizens as relatively uninformed, disinterested, and ritually haphazard in their views. Opinions emerge only in time of crisis, and they fade quickly. Many people do not participate at all.”

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I see A.P has now changed the headline to quite the postitive slant now than it was originally. Go figure.

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This conversation is all moot anyway. Has anyone heard of any one running on repelling a law?

Since they are going to jack my industry, insiders are now saying they are jacking up prices, thus its going to be more costly for hospitals and thus its going cost tax payers in the future a lot more than what they are saying it will. Go check the latest list prices by region.

Yes Black Knight, there is a special election coming up in my birth state. And we now have my own running against another old white guy and I do hope, regardless of political positions, black Americans assist us as we did them in this vote.

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Obama issued the equivalent fighting words of "Bring it on!" after it was clear the Republicans were not interested in any sort of reform. What they are worried about is the benefits which kick in immediately, such as the right to keep children on a family plan until the age of 26, will prove popular. I have two friends who plan to just that because it will save them money and provide their kids with better coverage.

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I see A.P has now changed the headline to quite the postitive slant now than it was originally. Go figure.

Sailwind, AP does tack on headlines to identify its syndicated stories but their use by subscribers is optional.

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It's a victory for the Democrat Party. But everyone else loses.

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kokorocloud: I worked for thirty years in the financial field and have continuously called the U.S. stock market going up since last year. In fact, I see the markets approaching 2007 highs in 2011. Some,not all,are blinded by their politics and have been talking down the economy. Of course ecomomic statistics don't go straight up and there will be backing and filling. As for the health care bill it won't be "the end of the world" (seriously,some are saying this).

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I can see why the U.S. is heading in the leftward direction. Those with anti-establishment mentailities or flower-power syndromes from the "Woodstock" generation in the 60's and 70's are now occupying the seats of power. It's just a generational cycle that will come and go with each generation having whatever political proclivities they may have at the time. As for healthcare, I'm not concerned about it. Go with the flow as long as you have full access as before. Japan's isn't bad except for dental treatment...took forever when I was there. I went private with that. Not the end of the world, guys. It's just a start with a lot of tweakings from whomever is in power in Congress.

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USAFudge you don't look at polls much do you?

Stay classy there, kid. Check out my other posts to see how many polls I've seen.

He and the Dumbs are desperate. He knows he's going to lose the house, Pelosi is going to be out of a job.

Ain't gonna happen, sweetheart. Don't forget where you heard it first.

Moderator: Well, that didn't take long. Not even the simple respect of a notificaton of message removal anymore, huh?

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Obama and Dems are upgrading their agenda in moving from the low income bracket into the middle class. They are creating a larger pool of dependable class and entitlements society who relying on government for job. The problem about counting on taxing the rich is that eventually we are running out of rich peoples to tax. An inch closer to the failure of European socialism model and further communist China in the name of social justice. The future children of America will bear the burden of debts. We should create a generation of accountability, and not dependability and addicting to entitlements at the cot of our future. DEFICIT IDIOTS.

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A very revealing Quote from John Dingell (D-Mich): "The harsh fact of the matter is when you’re passing legislation that will cover 300 million American people in different ways, it takes a long time to do the necessary administrative steps that have to be taken to put the legislation together TO CONTROL THE PEOPLE."

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Melenir. Dream on! The GOP have leaned on fear to get their way for ages now. Fear of terror, fear of losing control of your health care, fear of this, fear of that. It just isn't selling any more. People now want change and I think Obama is right that efforts to show their true corporate colors will cost the GOP a lot.

Like it or not, corporate rule of healthcare will change. People are tired of being left out to dry up by the insurance industry. We are fighting back and change is just begining. Be ready for more.

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paulinusa-- Oh, I didn't mean to sound sarcastic by my comment. I really do want to believe things will pick up, and I trust people who know way more about the market than I do. I also don't think it will be the end of the world, but it is going to take a lot of time before Americans will be able to adjust. I don't think it'll be as "easy" as some people seem to think (the ones who I think don't understand the bill at all are the ones who suddenly think 'everyone has free health care now yaaay!', but as far as I know, it's not that simple), nor utterly impossible.

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Work is done. Now comes the praise:

AssociatedPress " Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro on Thursday declared passage of American health care reform “a miracle” and a major victory for Obama’s presidency…"We consider health reform to have been an important battle and a success of his (Obama’s) government, "

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President Barack Obama: “I welcome that fight.”

So does the American people. It's going to be a good election for the GOP.

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The GOP have leaned on fear to get their way for ages now

zzzzzzzzz... watch President Teleprompter, Robert Gibbs, or MSNBC - all they do is spout fear and threats.

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Vice President Joe Biden

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Vice President Joe Biden

LOL!!

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Kokorocloud: I'm sure there will be some tweaks and adjustments of the bill over time, but people will ultimately accept it. My father, who is in his 80's,and isn't exactly left-wing, is happy because the cost of paying for the "donut hole" for prescription drugs will be closed and save him maybe close to $1000.

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Now what's next? Health care took longer than it should, but we still have more time to make more changes.

The next election will be a monumental event. The stakes have gotten bigger. I think that a lot of people who used to say my vote doesn't mean anything might reconsider.

There are more issues to tackle. < :-)

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paulinusa-- Glad to hear that about your father! I mean, there's no doubt that of course there are good things to come. The intention behind the bill, to me, is about things like that. I'm mostly worried about the cons of course, which leave me undecided, so I'm still trying to work out what this bill will really mean in the long run. I hope the tweaks and adjustments are allowed to happen and the ignorance (from both parties) will die down.

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because the cost of paying for the "donut hole" for prescription drugs will be closed and save him maybe close to $1000.

really? did he say donut hole? sounds more like a regurgitated talking point that a genuine story.

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Pres. obama's friend and mentor Reverend al sharpton has the courage to tell America what most high rankin demcrats still won't admit

"First of all, then we have to say the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they elected President Obama," Sharpton said.

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manfromamerica: Are you really from America? Do a little research, google,yahoo,bing "donut hole medicare"

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Obama: “I welcome that fight.”

It's not the Republican lawmakers he needs to fear, it's the American public.

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paulinusa- Ahh, I see... I must not be American because I disagree with you. You certainly are a Democrat.

Did your grandfather say "donut hole"? Did he google it? Is that even a true personal story? I doubt it, it sounds like a canned line from the democrat's press office.

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If you are in your 80's and are happy this bill passed, you will have to wait four more years to receive any of the benefits! That is the Democrat way of sticking it to seniors. BTW Democrat Anthony "the weasel" Weiner would not answer Bill O'Reilly's question about the IRS having the power to penalize people who cannot prove they have (US) health insurance. That will be $750 per dependent -- even for your posters living out of USA...

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Did your grandfather say "donut hole"?

oops. I meant your "father"

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manfromamerica: I question if you're from America because you evidently have never heard of the "donut hole". And if millions of retired people are affected by this, why does it seem so farfetched that my father isn't one of them?

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If you are in your 80's and are happy this bill passed, you will have to wait four more years to receive any of the benefits!

Yep, the story is sounding even more "hypothetical".

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I will say that once the IRS starts enforcing this and when people start getting fined, you will hear a lot of yelling.

I can't believe the IRS is now in your supporting corner.

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paulinusa- you're getting boring. "are you even from america"?? wow, great argument! LOL

everyone is affected by the huge debt and government "control" this bill will have. It's your unlikely-sounding story that I am skeptical about.

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Victory is complete now. What a great leap forward for civil society in the USA. Obama is the new FDR and republicans have become the Tories.

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No, not four years for some benefits. Right now people on Medicare get a % deductible up to $2830 and over $6440 for their prescription drugs, but if your costs fall in between you pay total costs out-of-pocket. That's why it's called the donut hole. As a result of the bill, next year Medicare will subsidize 50% of those costs and more each year after.

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paulinusa- did your 80+ year old dad call it the "donut hole"? I'm not doubting that you yourself know about googling donut holes, but your story sounds contrived.

Moderator: Readers, please focus your comments on the story, not at or about each other.

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No, not four years for some benefits.

Right, the multi trillion dollar debt will start accumulating much quicker. The Dems are trying to bully anyone who doesn't support this. However, most Americans see through this and are against this bill. November is going to be a difficult election for the Congressional Dems.

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The US House of Representatives backed amendments by 220 votes to 207. Bu YA!

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re the quote "Obama is the new FDR and republicans have become the Tories."

FDR was also an authoritarian elitist with no grasp of economics, but a firm belief in 'enlightened' state socialism ( fascism ).

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Medicare will subsidize 50% of those costs and more each year after.

Medicare is going broke has been going that direction for years. If you really believe giving how Medicare has been run in the past and even now with all the fraud, waste and abuse in the system as it is that it can be counted on to deliver the goods in the future.......Well I've got a Health Care Reform Law that just passsed to re-sell you.

We couldn't even start to reform our own Medicare program first before we started on this new Government program. What a nightmare.

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Many people in the States CHOOSE to go without health insurance. They will continue to do so, because the fine for not having it is actually less money than the premiums would cost. The Democrats can't be stupid enough not to know this. It's just another hidden tax. Or maybe not so hidden.

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They will continue to do so, because the fine for not having it is actually less money than the premiums would cost."

I disagree. I believe the IRS, as now being published, will grow, and go after those that don't pay in a very zealous manner. Don't forget, which is readily available, you don't just get a fine. Your credit will be damaged, which hurts if you are a small biz and can't afford the 2000 per employee.

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Skip,

Don't forget, which is readily available, you don't just get a fine. Your credit will be damaged, which hurts if you are a small biz and can't afford the 2000 per employee.

You've been on the streets long enough and I've been around the block long enough to know that they're is now going to be an explosion of under the table workers that will be paid cash and not reported on any rolls by so many small businesses to avoid all the new penalities and insurance requirements. Another thing I hate about this bill it didn't take real human nature into account with all its rosy predictions. The bill may have been motivated by the best but naive intentions that all people are 'good and caring' but the reality is it will produce the absolute worst results as people will ultimately game it to their own selfish advantages.

Reality and idealism seldom ever meet on the same road.

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You've been on the streets long enough and I've been around the block long enough to know that they're is now going to be an explosion of under the table workers that will be paid cash and not reported on any rolls by so many small businesses" Well, I guess I haven't been around long enough and you'll need to teach me how I can do that for my biz in the states as its the only thing bringing money in at the moment and I'd like to protect what "little" it brings in.

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Well, I guess I haven't been around long enough and you'll need to teach me how I can do that for my biz in the states as its the only thing bringing money in at the moment and I'd like to protect what "little" it brings in.

Just saying Skip that all those undocumented workers that are 'off the official' rolls and employed by Mom and Pop eating joints as dishwashers and nannys and construction workers and such as we see now by some small business employers to save money for themselves, that with this bill passed on small businesses your going to see a lot more of that except it won't be confined as such anymore to undocumented workers but more skilled actual American citizens to avoid the taxes and penalities by some small business owners. Just human nature, no intention to ever imply that you don't play by the rules or you would ever do that, your too good of man for that but to say many more will now not play by the rules and take that route. Hope you can understand that was th point I was making and I'm pretty sure you've seen that also in your life. I hope it is a little clearer now to my point about some folks will game the new system and not in a very good way, heck look at AIG and how they gamed the sub-prime loan racket and damn near wrecked the whole worlds economy.

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They will continue to do so, because the fine for not having it is actually less money than the premiums would cost." I disagree. I believe the IRS, as now being published, will grow, and go after those that don't pay in a very zealous manner. Don't forget, which is readily available, you don't just get a fine. Your credit will be damaged, which hurts if you are a small biz and can't afford the 2000 per employee.

That will most likely lead to another round of armed tax rebellions that occurred in the 18 century, and I have to be honest I would join them in rebelling.

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Actually most of the threats are coming from the leftists/liberals/dems.

A window in one of the offices of Republican Representative Eric Cantor was actually shot out.

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/03/25/cantor-democrats-dangerously-fanning-the-flames-by-screeching-about-security-threats/

By the way the AP is wholly devoted to furthering pro Obama propaganda. This article is from the AP.

"Violence originating from the Right!" is merely propaganda from the Left.

The libs have used strong-arm tactics to move the US to the Left and in the process have violated the Constitution.

The next few years are going to be very historical indeed.

And historical is not always a good thing.

Stalin was historical.

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Man, the article morphed again. reading it now you would think Obama was Superman. He signed that bill with 'with a flourish'.

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Lenin said:Actually most of the threats are coming from the leftists/liberals/dems. A window in one of the offices of Republican Representative Eric Cantor was actually shot out.

More than a little deceitful to put those two sentences back to back. We don't know why Cantor's office window was shot out or who did it. In the article it says Cantor said the rhetoric was causing a danger and had to stop. I can think of many reasons why a Jewish politician would have a bullet shot at his office window, but in light of that statement I doubt it was a simple Democrat. It could have been a far leftist but more likely a far rightist who wants more violence. A neo-con even. But a liberal? Not a real one if so. True liberals don't shoot windows out as a message, and certainly not for suggesting dangerous rhetoric stop! Its rednecks that do that!

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True liberals don't shoot windows out as a message, and certainly not for suggesting dangerous rhetoric stop! Its rednecks that do that!

True, Liberals just hang effigy's of who they don't like and call it free speech.

http://www.theage.com.au/world/us-election-2008/sarah-palin-effigy-hanged-from-house-20081028-5a2r.html

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Sailwind, how do you know that person was a liberal? The article says he did not have an Obama effigy because of possible reactions, not his politics. I suspect he hates all politicians equally, much like I do! And dude, it was for Halloween and on private property! Details man. You say a car is a car is a car. Which is the same as saying a family car is the same as a broken car is the same as a Porche!

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HeyLars,

Your now defending hanging an effigy of a Conservative. The irony I hope is not lost on you.

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The comments here read like a rehash of "Fox and Friends." Probably because that's where the posters are getting their information in the first place. I can just see the right-wing looney-tunes, manning the parapets of their conservative fortress like Davey Crockett swinging Old Betsy by the barrel as the topples Santa Ana's troops. Nah. Despite all the sound and fury at this point, they'll eventually give slink away with their tails between their legs. Rugged individualism has been dead since the 1860s. All that's left are old John Wayne movies.

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sailwind, the irony is indeed lost on me. Circumstance is what makes it code-speak to incite violence. The situations are different.

Besides, violence has already been incited in this case, so, obviously, its time to clamp down on the rhetoric. Sometimes a sort of martial law on free speech is necessary, and its when the crap hits the fan and not before. The crap has hit the fan.

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I see team temper tantrum is well represented here.

Get your paranoia on boys!

Taka

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Oh my. I remember when US politics had an air of respect and people engaged in polite debate. Now someone votes differently and they are a criminal, communist heathen and deserve to get their windows bashed in and get death threats.

Over what?

Some insurance premiums. Seriously. What is changing that much? Despite what each side might claim, this is not a huge change for daily life in America. Compared to the fiscal and financial mayhem of what is known as the LEHMAN SHOCK, this is nothing. People should seriously chill out and remember that this "great step forward" still leaves the US in the dark ages in terms of a rational and fair health care system. The US health system was on a trajectory of failure in many ways, and that will continue over the long run. America is all about FAIL these days, and whether the Repubs are in charge or not will make little difference. The squabbling and failure are now leading to death threats. Apparently if the Republicans can't drive, they want to wreck the car. Why am I not surprised?

HeyLars. I happen to disagree. I think it is time to EXAMINE the rhetoric, not force an end to it. It is time for Republicans to be realistic with their people and let them know that this has been called the END OF THE WORLD, but it is not ACTUALLY THE END OF THE WORLD. What the Reps and Fox are figuring out is that people are stupid enough to take them at their word. While that must exhilirating for them, they are going to have to take responsibility for shouting LIAR! and BABY KILLER! while there are impressionable children listening. When someone gets killed because of Republican hate mongering, the shock and revulsion will sweep every Republican out of office.

The rhetoric shows indeed how desperate and out-of-control the Republicans are.

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Well Speed, I would just prefer that the nonsense stop before someone gets killed. And I have to admit that I have no faith that that too will not be spun in some way as to get ignored until more people get killed.

Apparently if the Republicans can't drive, they want to wreck the car.

I had to seriously LOL! Thanks!

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Not being from the states, I'm always astonished to observe what an exotic species conservative republicans from the US are. They seem to live on a different planet from the rest of the developed (and of course developing) world. Japanese behaviour, as strange as it may be at times, seems so much more familiar to me then conservative american comportment.

I haven't really read through the details of the health care bill, but judging from an international viewpoint it seems a rather conservative bill, nothing to get so discomposed about.

Just take a deep breath, close your eyes and tell yourself everything will be fine... no need to panik. You managed to survive 8 years Bush, you will survive a health care reform, that lingers at the lowest level of the developed nation's standard.

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I see team temper tantrum is well represented here.

Please specific in what why Sir? I do have ask if ever I my opinion does not square with yours I'm having a temper tantrum?

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I haven't really read through the details of the health care bill, but judging from an international viewpoint it seems a rather conservative bill, nothing to get so discomposed about.

Umm..that's kind of the problem. I don't think very many have read through the entire bill, including those who signed off on it. People in this country have become too stupid to actually read something in depth and attempt to understand the consequences, what might affect something else, long term costs vs. benefits. In the business world this always leads to project failure. Taken on a government/nationwide scale will bring much of the same.

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The Democrat-controlled Congress ('most ethical congress evah!')owns this one. And sex offenders across the land applaud Democrat protection of their "right to taxpayer subsidized Viagra".

Mission Accomplished.

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Yes, it's no big deal, just like Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, Welfare, were and are no big deal/ (sarcasm). These programs have totally changed the US for the worse. The republicans are the only ones who have any idea of all what freedom means. Healthcare is not a right; that is absurd. This healthcare bill is no different that slavery. Free! Free! Free! Kill your infants, bankrupt your living descendants, the fruits of your labor are someone ele's right!! The BEST healthcare system in the world trashed. Shortages of doctors... YES hope and chains. And people wonder how Hitler consolidated power... dumb Americans!!!

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Cantor's house was not shot at by evil liberals.

Sorry republicans. More reality to rain on your delusional parade.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/wire/sns-ap-us-health-care-threats-cantor,0,2057248.story

At least you're all good at being wrong. That's something, I guess.

Taka

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And sex offenders across the land applaud Democrat protection of their "right to taxpayer subsidized Viagra".

That's funny. I had heard you were opposed to the bill.

Taka

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"And sex offenders across the land applaud Democrat protection of their "right to taxpayer subsidized Viagra".

Are these supposedly applauding kiddy fiddlers accross the US aquaintances of your own?

Heh, or did it just sound like the right time to drop into the "debate" that snippet you lifted earlier from some breathless teabagger blog?

The far right wing have become so un-hinged they really are starting to sound like Hitler's anti Jewish propoganda of the 1930's

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Actually with the increasing government control and role in our lives in telling us what to do thanks to the left, I would say it's the dems that more closely resemble the NSDAP of the 1930's.

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The second of the two bills also presented Obama with another victory, stripping banks and other private lenders of their ability to originate student loans in favor of a system of direct government lending.

=Socialism

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@Badsey - all lending and banking in the US is now a system of direct government lending.

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The far right wing have become so un-hinged they really are starting to sound like Hitler's anti Jewish propoganda of the 1930's

Really? How odd, and yet despite your claims of propoganda, its actually true that the Dems voted to allow pedophiles and sex offenders government subsidized viagra. Thats a matter of public record, not propaganda. So, the question becomes, do you, like the guys you think represent you back in Washington, also support the pedos?

Actually with the increasing government control and role in our lives in telling us what to do thanks to the left, I would say it's the dems that more closely resemble the NSDAP of the 1930's.

Sad, but very true.

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Molenir said:

Really? How odd, and yet despite your claims of propoganda [propaganda], its actually true that the Dems voted to allow pedophiles and sex offenders government subsidized viagra. Thats [That's] a matter of public record, not propaganda.

Another untrue statement. Not including an exception to a rule is not the same as voting for a rule. If you had a logical bone in your body you would realize this. The Democrats never, ever voted to allow pedophiles and sex offenders (repetitive) to receive government subsidized Viagara. They may not have included an exception but that is not the same. I don't expect you to understand and I fully expect you to continue arguing the point.

Moderator: Readers, please keep the discussion civil.

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http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/mar/25/obamacares-subsidy-for-the-sexually-depraved-viagr/

Senate Democrats voted almost unanimously Wednesday night to ensure the right of rapists and child molesters to have guaranteed access to government-subsidized Viagra under the president's health care plan. Only Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana broke ranks with his Democratic colleagues.

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Nice try Badsey but that was an editorial not news. Even that biased editorial eventually said what really happened. It was just like I said. They didn't vote yes "because any changes to the reconciliation bill would have required the House to vote once again on health care legislation."

Shame on you for posting and editorial opinion as news.

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"More threats". The Left does hate crime hoaxes almost weekly now - on campuses, at campaign offices, astroturfing at tea party protests, and of course online. They have overplayed the sick trick. Most Americans no longer buy it.

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Website Politico has this on the democrat Party and their coercive health care reform by proxy:

March 24, 2010 Categories:

Senate

"Dems reject amendment to ban Viagra for sex offenders

"Democrats killed an amendment by Republican Sen. Tom Coburn to prevent the newly created insurance exchanges from using federal money to cover Viagra and other erectile dysfunction drugs for rapists, pedophiles and other sex offenders. The amendment failed 57-42"

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That's funny. I had heard you were opposed to the bill.

That's funny. I had heard you support the bill that gives pedophiles and sex offenders government subsidized viagra.

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Just for you.

Taka

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Just to be clear, hear is what happened. An ammendment was put forth.

"Sen. Tom Coburn, Oklahoma Republican, put the Senate's majority party on the spot by offering an amendment denying convicted sex offenders coverage for erectile-dysfunction medications. Dr. Coburn's proposal would also have prohibited health care exchanges from offering any coverage of elective-abortion drugs like RU-486 at taxpayer expense."

The Republicans knew that any change would send it back to the House to vote on it again. The Republicans would keep doing that forever if they were given a chance.

The Democrats never voted to give Viagara to sex offenders; they did not vote for it for completely separate reasons. There is also the addition of withholding coverage of elective-abortion drugs like RU-486 that Democrats found unacceptable.

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"more threats come in"

The democrat party wants a VAT tax next?

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Come on guys. You all support the Dems too right. Lets get you all on record as saying you support giving government subsidized viagra to sex-offenders. After all, the Dems in the Senate do, and you are strong supporters of them right. Come out and admit it! Or are you going to finally admit that there is one thing, just one thing, that you have the courage to condemn the democrats for? Somehow I doubt we'll get too many takers. Most of you loons have drunk the kool-aid. Obama could call for child sacrifice, and you'd either defend him, or at least keep quiet while others defended him.

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Ha, ha! Molenir just proved my point.

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Molenir, i come Britain where we have a real free health care. We aint commies. You nit pick on little details about Viagra which are tiny puddles in thr sea of change. Hopefully the piir won`t die and suffer anymore. Check you American health care records and life standards before the bill passed.

Anyone who thinks it won`t stop suffering and help families is a sompleton. The facts are free health care works, however extremist right wingers paint it.

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Stevecptc posted some interesting stuff. So I searched for stories about the british system. Scary:

Hospital wards to shut in secret NHS cuts Tens of thousands of NHS workers would be sacked, hospital units closed and patients denied treatments under secret plans for £20 billion of health cuts.

By Jon Swaine and Holly Watt Published: 10:41PM GMT 26 Mar 2010 Surgeons conduct an operation Internal NHS documents show cuts are expected to fall on hospital services Photo: GETTY

The sick would be urged to stay at home and email doctors rather than visit surgeries, while procedures such as hip replacements could be scrapped.

Moderator: Readers, please stay on topic. The British health care system is not relevant to this discussion.

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Actually with the increasing government control and role in our lives in telling us what to do thanks to the left, I would say it's the dems that more closely resemble the NSDAP of the 1930's.

tigermoth,

Being a german who has studied the history of my country I can tell you there's nothing, really nothing to compare between nazi germany and the situation in the US health care discussion now.

To use such arguments, tigermoth, makes me believe that you have never ever seriously read one history book about nazi germany and how things really worked there.

Anyone who stated such explicit anti-opinions on political topics in such an insulting way, as you and your right-wing fellows frequently do, would find himself in a concentration camp within days, at gunpoint of people who really didn't bother much about putting up with different opinions.

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SenatorAcorn, if either Conservative or New labour win, health costs will increase above inflation.

the British health service is secure and teh public will ot tolerate underspending. In USA, with private operations the paying public have no voice and no choice until now.

american health care will cost less if the middleman is removed and the greedy insurance companies are ruled out of the equation.

Finally Senatoracorn, after 10 years outside of Britain i needed emergency treatment. free of course no questions asked, and saw specialist witin 5 minutes. America can do the same if right wing nutters don`t undermine. Also NHS doc receive an average of 160,000 USD a year.

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I get a good chuckle watching non Americans try and explain theUS system to those of us who use it and pay for it.

"American health care will cost less if the middleman is removed and the greedy insurance companies are ruled out of the equation."

Greedy insurances companies are only a part of the problem. Greedy lawyers donate waaaaaay more to the democrat party and drive up medical costs (try searching 'defensive medicine' if u dont believe) , but obama and the kleptocrat democrats have seen to it that the blood suckers are still free to use the law as a weapon of plunder.

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SenatorAcorm, Suppose that is why Americans pay over 70% more than Britains (average per head), but tens of milions are uninsured. So which greedy people are ripping you off? lawyers? doctors?

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Millions are still uninsured. Much of obama care doesn't kick in til 2014 - after the pres election of 2012, of course, although the economic havoc has begun already. Lawyers will still make out like bandits.Thats why they overwhelmingly support the democrat party. I predict large numbers of doctors will retire early or leave specialty work for GP work. Believe me, this wasnt about improving health care for ordinary folks. it was a power grab by the democrats. They now hold half the nation's mortgages, they own a car company, they have nationalized health care and they want the banks. It is too much power concentrated in too few hands.

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I get a good chuckle watching non Americans try and explain theUS system to those of us who use it and pay for it.

All I know about the US medical system is what I've seen on ER. So I don't pretend to understand it at all. In fact I find it quite mystifying.

Perhaps Senator Acorn would like to explain to those of us who don't understand, what is so awful about having medical care affordable and available to all; why the current system, which puts the US in 41st place in the maternal mortality league tables with a 1 in 4,800 chance of death and saw death rates in pregnancy and childbirth doubling between 1986 and 2006, is better than the evil 'social' medicine which puts the UK at 26th place, with a 1 in 8,200 chance of death in childbirth?

Why is this OK?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/mar/12/amnesty-us-maternal-mortality-rates

And according to Nationmaster, a person living in the medically-advanced US has a 12.8% chance of not reaching the age of 60, while a person in 'socialist' Britain or Japan has only a 9.9% or 8.2% chance of not living that long.

Why is this OK?

http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/hea_pro_of_not_rea_60-health-probability-not-reaching-60

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Cleo, "And according to Nationmaster, a person living in the medically-advanced US has a 12.8% chance of not reaching the age of 60, while a person in 'socialist' Britain or Japan has only a 9.9% or 8.2% chance of not living that long. Why is this OK?"

I've never used Nationmaster, and just checked it out now at: http://www.nationmaster.com/index.php

However, going through the search engine I can't seem to locate statistics on the quote above. I am curious to see how they come up with those percentages, especially thinking about US deaths do to firearms--illegal in both Japan and England. If you can give me a link, I'd appreciate it. Meanwhile I'll keep searching.

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SenatorAcorn wrote: Believe me, this wasnt about improving health care for ordinary folks. it was a power grab by the democrats. They now hold half the nation's mortgages, they own a car company, they have nationalized health care and they want the banks. It is too much power concentrated in too few hands.

Man, this dude says the darndest things! If that does not get editted out, I offer this response: who owns the other half of the nation's mortages? Who owns all the other car companies? Why do you mean they "have" nationalized health care? They "want" the banks? Well I "want" a spaceship! Does wanting count? What do mean by "the democrats" when you say they "hold" those things anyway? Who is "the democrats"? You screech a lot about unrelated things. Could we just talk about health care and leave the tactical rumor mongering aside?

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Lars,

You're putting questions to people who seem to think the Democrats have a policy of ensuring susidized viagra for paedophiles....

They're just here to entertain us, as surely nobody can be that anal...

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GD,

The whole viagara thing is pure rovian politics. Find a weakness and project it onto your opponent.

team temper tantrum is trying to grab the moral high ground which is laughable when they voted to deny their own countrymen healthcare.

They don't get the moral high ground.

But they sure as hell own the bottom line.

Taka

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Ah, you people and your "statistics". Can we just clarify one age old saying- "There are lies, There are damn lies, and there are Statistics" ! Once again I sense a few of you coming to the podium with your "lemme see, there are 10 people to my right standing at 80 centimeters tall- and to my left 10 of you coming in at 70 cms ! OK, the average height in this room is 75 centis- right" ? Yes true- but the fact is "nobody" in the room meets "the average" as defined. The same is true with all this health care nonsense. Stick to the facts people- "not living to 60" ? Nonsense ! There are more people over 100 years of age in the US than anywhere else in the world. More than in Japan, Brazil, India, China- anywhere ! And that is "OK". Cleo- might I suggest that "Americans advanced medical technology" actually draws seriously and terminaly ill patients who extend their lives but eventually succumb to their diseases on American soil ? We have seen this with bse patients, cancer patients, MS, etc. Thousands flee Mexico, Cuba, Canada every year for advanced care in the US- as do Japanese wanting transplants of all kinds. Unfortunately this creates an artificial blip in the data- and fodder for the masses looking to criticise the US at every opportunity- lets not become one of "those" now. I don't believe health care is in need of an overhaul whatsoever. Free health care is available for those in need here in the US ! Identifying "those in need" is the real issue as too many illegals have flooded the system to the breaking point. In short, the quality of health care is world class and affordable- identifying "tax paying American citizens" is whats in need of an overhaul !

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Branded -

You're quite right to be wary of 'statistics'. But this talk of terminally ill patients all rushing to America to succumb and push the mortality rates up - how much of a blip do you think 'thousands' of rich sick people make in a country of over 300 million? And how many of those 'thousands' are expectant mothers facing childbirth with no previous antenatal care? According to the Guardian, the figures don't show seriously and terminally gravid ladies eager to throw their money at US doctors rushing to America from neighbouring countries there to expire and blip up the statistics, they show poor, uninsured, African American and Native American women who are dying in their own country.

In short, the quality of health care is world class and affordable

Then why are these American women not getting the kind of health care that will keep them alive through pregnancy and childbirth?

There are more people over 100 years of age in the US than anywhere else in the world.

This coming right after your dissing of 'statistics'. It means nothing. At the time of the Roman Empire, the average lifespan was 22 years, yet the rich who survived military service often lived to a ripe old age. The fact that eg Augustus and Tiberius both hung around until their late seventies says absolutely nothing about the short lifespan of the common man of the time.

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Cleo; "According to the Guardian"... they show poor, uninsured, African American and Native American women who are dying in their own country."

And probably nary a word from the Guardian about the "documented" billions of dollars in states like California, Arizona, Colorado, Texas etc that are going to illegal immigrants. Billions, Cleo- Billions ! Maybe the African American community should refocus their energies and learn to do what the illegals have, seems they've got the "system" figured out.

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probably nary a word from the Guardian about the "documented" billions of dollars in states like California, Arizona, Colorado, Texas etc that are going to illegal immigrants.

Probably? You mean you'll take the trouble to dismiss out of hand a report you can't be bothered to read? Remove the probablies from your life - the Guardian states clearly that immigrants and those who do not speak English face serious barriers in obtaining care.

Maybe the African American community should refocus their energies and learn to do what the illegals have, seems they've got the "system" figured out.

I'm still not getting this. You're saying it's OK for bona fide American women to die in childbirth because illegal immigrants play the system (a link to those 'documented billions' would have been nice, Branded - I really do not know anything about the American system, and a bit of info would be very helpful)? Or are you suggesting that bona fide but poor American citizens should work outside the system because they aren't a part of it, and that's OK?

I really do hope you're not simply dismissing the African American community because it's the African American community. Isn't that, like, a part of the American community?

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Cmon now Cleo, you know better than this; "You're saying it's OK for bona fide American women to die in childbirth because illegal immigrants play the system"

I never said, insinuated, or hinted at any such remark whatsoever- please don't put words into my mouth.

If you want to learn about the US healthcare system, google it up and do some research. Find out how many billions of health care dollars go to illegal immigrants and non-citizens in the USA- this is at the heart of Americas distaste for Obama's health care bill. This is at the meat of the "You Lie" outburst by Republicans as Obama stated his healthcare reform would not go to illegals. This may just be one of the main reasons your poor black african american won't bother with health care- even if it may save their life- illegals have bogged down the system forcing it into financial crisis. Here's a thought- ban illegals from receiving health care all together. Use those new found billions to take care of American citizens- "all American citizens" !

I must say I too am perplexed. For someone to openly admit knowing nothing about the US healthcare system- you sure have some strong negative opinions.

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Branded,

you are the one emitting strong negative opinions, playing of weak (illegal immigrants) against weak (african american).

Cleo at least tries to stick with provable information and it's a fact that the american health system seen in its entirety is below the international standard for developed nations in crucial areas such as infant mortality. It's not one statistic that show this, but all available statistics.

Of course there's super-high-class-high-tech medicine in the states, but who has proper access to it?

I've lived in the States, in Canada, in various European countries and now in Japan and from my experience all systems have their plus and minus, but it was obvious that the US system is the one with least equality in treatment and most focus on money. If you manage to see a doctor in the states usually you are in very good hands, but in order to see a doctor you are usually asked more questions about your financial background then about your health problems. I would never want to experience that system from a weak social standpoint.

In Japan the system's focus is on basic and equal treatment and for that it works incredibly efficient, though from an conservative US standpoint it's socialism pure...

It's obvious that the disparities in US society play into the system, leading to an unequal health care coverage that, to this degree, would never be acceptable in Europe or Japan and South Korea.

What conservative reps seem to be saying about this is

if you're in a weak and unfavorable situation basically it's your own fault, we don't care.

if there's any problem with health care in the states illegal immigrants (and of course dems) are to blame. (I wonder how do illegal immigrants do lobbying in the states? Maybe Branded has an answer?)

even if there's a prospect to improve disparities, we don't want to pay for it. Basta!

not exactly a display of compassion...

All in all with this US health care discussion I get the feeling wealthy conservative americans who earn mor then $200000 a year are amongst the most unfortunate hunted people in the world and desperately need protection from public-minded politics.

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More threats - analysts suggest that thanks to this democrat party power grab dressed up as 'health care reform' the total first-quarter hit to S and P 500 firms will be $4.5 billion. Unemployment goin even higher, folks.

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For someone to openly admit knowing nothing about the US healthcare system- you sure have some strong negative opinions.

Strange that you should get that impression, since I haven't actually expressed any opinions, I've just asked questions. And got no answers.

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People who threaten any member of Congress with violence are criminals in my book. People who carry out violence against any member of Congress for political reasons are traitors, or more accurately, seditionists. Why would anyone support them no matter what they think about the health care bill?

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bam boo; "Branded, you are the one emitting strong negative opinions, playing of weak (illegal immigrants) against weak (african american)."

Sorry, these are not "opinions". My observations are based on the facts out there. Do a little research before making such silly claims as above. Neither illegals nor the black community are considered "weak" in the USA.

"the US system is the one with least equality in treatment and most focus on money. If you manage to see a doctor in the states usually you are in very good hands, but in order to see a doctor you are usually asked more questions about your financial background then about your health problems."

Really ? Not sure which "US System" you are talking about, but mine has taken care of all (100%) of my families needs quickly, professionaly, and at no cost to me whatsoever ! We have received medical check-ups, injections, inoculations, and follow up visits at no price. These programs are openly advertised to the community as part of ongoing health education programs. Most recently we took advantage of winter flu shots- all free and totally painless with the introduction of the nasal vaccines. Bam boo- how would you explain these differences ? Maybe State ? Location ? Or something more simplistic- "knowledge" ! I have stated before that illegals in the US may pocess more knowledge than the black community in the USA- congrats to them, they know how to "use" the system even if others- including yourself- don't.

I too have lived in Europe, Asia, and North America. I wouldn't trade the US system for anything in the world. Japans long lines, cattle drive mentality, no privacy, focus on pills and constant medication, hospitalization for minor afflictions, and worst of all substandard quality of medical doctors. Sorry but my experience has taught me that if its serious- get out of Japan or face misdiagnosis or worse. Too many horror stories and actual data indicating low levels of knowledge and expertise, for example: There are more transplants done in the USA in one day than there are in a year in Japan. Japanese citizens, like Canadian and Mexican, often choose medical care in the US when it is not provided in Japan- these are facts ! Unfortunately this health care bill may possibly turn the US system into those like Canada, Japan, and Mexico- and then where will you turn for world class skills ? China maybe ? Good luck.

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this health care bill may possibly turn the US system into those like Canada, Japan, and Mexico - then where will you turn for world class skills ? China maybe ?

Well if it's world class skills in getting you alive through pregnancy and childbirth you're after, your best bet appears to be Greece or Grenada.

If you want your baby to see its first birthday, there are 41 countries that offer it a better chance than the US, including Canada and Japan.

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Farmboy at 03:09 PM JST - 28th March

Great Post!

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"If you want your baby to see its first birthday, there are 41 countries that offer it a better chance than the US, including Canada and Japan."

Sorry, but those stats are completely unreliable. Different nations have different benchmarks. In some countries a death within the first 24 hrs of birth is not even counted.In the US should the infant draw 1 breath it is considered having been 'alive'. Now, after that you need to do a search on 'anchor babies' and see how that further invalidates what you have posted .

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Different nations have different benchmarks. In some countries a death within the first 24 hrs of birth is not even counted.

Fair enough. But how does that explain the disparity in infant mortality rates within the US?

In 2002, the United States' infant mortality rate varied widely by race of the mother from 14.3 for infants of black mothers to 5.9 for infants of Hispanic mothers to 5.8 for infants of white mothers.

http://www.answers.com/topic/infant-mortality

How do anchor babies invalidate anything? Are you saying that the babies of immigrants are being counted in a different way? Given different medical treatment? And this is OK?

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The funniest thing that the Republicans constantly bring up is that the Democrats are ruining 1/6 of our economy. How stupid is that? If it cost less for good health care (1/3 or more in some cases per country) that is a very good thing. I applaud Great Brittan, Canada and Japan for their stellar health care systems.

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SenatorAcorn; Well you can try to use any kind of fact twisting you would like but if you go by child mortality rate (children under 5) you come up with about the same statistics.

Unless you use the USA governments own CIA World Factbook witch puts the USA at number at number 46!

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Cleo; "Fair enough. But how does that explain the disparity in infant mortality rates within the US?"

Ummm- Cleo, why do you care ? Why this obsession with infant mortality ? The US healthcare overhaul is about much more than this. SenatorAcorn and I have both pointed out the "whys and hows" concerning your posts- you seem to be struggling with the facts as they pertain to an immigrant based "multi-culture" "multi-ethnic" society of more than 300 million citizens. Maybe you should ask the black community in the US why they fail to take advantage of the healthcare system as is, I imagine there are many Americans tired of the black community dragging down the national statistics like you have latched on to. Welcome to an American concept about freedom Cleo- "you are free to make choices on your own" ! Being forced into a subpar medical system like what I experienced in Japan is hardly the answer. "And this is OK?"

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gooddonkey, "On the other end there are plenty of countries where you can grow older on average and it cost a lot less every year on average to get to that age"

Really ? I was paying in excess of $250 dollars a month for mandatory national health insurance for 20 years in Japan. I accessed the system once during that time- house dust ! $2,500 dollars a year X's 20 ? You do the math ! Why should I dole out such a large sum for a service I never needed ? I would have rather put that money somewhere else, in investments, in an IRA- but no, the Japanese government forced me into paying them ! Pure highway robbery !

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Branded, where did you learn math from? President Bush's school of fuzzy math. 12 x $250 = $3,000 not $2,500 as you stated. Your logic and reasoning are just like your math.

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America needs Obama-Care like Nancy Pelosi needs a Halloween mask. — Jay Leno

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gooddonkey, "Your logic and reasoning are just like your math."

Actually I was "rounding off" and speaking in generalities because, as you should know, your monthly payments fluctuate in accordance with your yearly salary. The $250 a month is a conservative figure, as was the $2,500. Try not to be so anal- the point remains the same- Pure highway robbery !

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The US healthcare overhaul is about much more than this.

A healthcare system that isn't about saving lives and keeping people healthy? I'm intrigued.

SenatorAcorn and I have both pointed out the "whys and hows" concerning your posts

Mmm, no, as far as I can see you seem to have slagged off your fellow Americans and stated that yes, it is perfectly OK for people to be denied health care if they're poor and the wrong colour. And they should all go and die somewhere else because they're messing up the statistics.

you seem to be struggling with the facts

That's why I'm asking questions..... but still getting no answers.

a subpar medical system like what I experienced in Japan

Granted, the Japanese system isn't perfect, but it is available for all. What's the point of your 'world-class health care' if a substantial proportion of your own citizens cannot afford it?

I accessed the system once during that time

I congratulate you on your robust good health. Maybe you would have been happier to come down with some debilitating disease so that you could have got your money's worth.

Do you complain about property insurance when your house doesn't burn down?

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Last year, former Pres Clinton told Political Wire that "the minute health care reform passed, President Obama’s approval ratings would go up 10 points."

Yesterday obama lost two points. LOL

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re "Mmm, no, as far as I can see you seem to have slagged off your fellow Americans and stated that yes, it is perfectly OK for people to be denied health care if they're poor and the wrong colour."

No one in the US is denied health care, not even illegal aliens, and we have between 12 and 20 million in America. Republicans and Libertarians also want reform, but with market solutions. Generations of democrats have gradually this made impossible.By their own admission they have been working on nationalized health care for close to 100 years, since the proto-fascist Wilson. Have you ever been to the US?

"And they should all go and die somewhere else because they're messing up the statistics."

The stats tweaked by people who really should crawl off and die somewhere else - maybe they can go to Canada, as so many progressives 'threaten' to do but never seem capable of leaving the country they love to hate...

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No one in the US is denied health care, not even illegal aliens

Then why is the mortality rate so high? What's the problem with your 'free' health care that people prefer not to get prenatal checks? And how do you suggest it should be fixed?

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re Then why is the mortality rate so high

I have already explained that different nations have different metrics. And the US has a far more varied population. Crack babies and the infant of a Mexican woman who has risked her life getting to the US to 'drop' her 'anchor baby' (and thereby get citizenship for child and mother) skewer the stats.What is so hard to grasp about how 12 or 20 million illegal aliens from C and S America altering the picture?

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I'd like to congratulate Obama on what seemed like an impossible task. After he is done, his legacy of health care reform will continue to improve the majority of Americans' lives. How he got those dumb Americans to finally vote for something actually good for themselves was depressing and amazing at the same time.

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I have already explained that different nations have different metrics

That don't explain the difference in the mortality rate within the American population.

Crack babies and the infant of a Mexican woman

The link I gave above says that the figures are not all that different from Hispanics and whites, so the Mexican lady who's dragged her fecund belly over the border seems to be doing OK.

So what's being done about the 'crack babies'? Are you suggesting that the infant mortality rate for black babies is more than twice what it is for white and Hispanic babies because a significant proportion of the black population are druggies? And that makes it OK to dismiss their babies, who are bona fide american citizens?

What does it say about the 'American dream' when a significant part of the population feel the need to escape into a drugged dreamworld?

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"What does it say about the 'American dream' when a significant part of the population feel the need to escape into a drugged dreamworld?"

What does it say about the American Dream when 12 to 20 million mexicans and countless Cubans risk their lives to try and realize it?

Youre not here to debate but to take pot shots at America.

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Youre not here to debate but to take pot shots at America.

Not at all. I'm asking questions in an attempt to get an understanding of what it is about the present set-up that makes a sizable part of the population so dead set against what appears to be a pretty sensible attempt to get affordable health care to more Americans.

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Branded,

I suggest that you google 'US health care' and read through the articles that pop up. They definately don't support your arguments. Every single research/article (WHO, OECD, Commonwealth Fund, etc.) that compares the US health care system to ones in other countries mentions disparaties in access to health care, high infant mortality, relatively short disability adjusted life expectancy and super-high costs. They also state that responsiveness in the US is best amongs all developed nations.

I guess you want to say this is all based on wrong statistics?

Or that it's all the fault of illigeal immigrants and laizy african americans?

Not sure which "US System" you are talking about, but mine has taken care of all (100%) of my families needs quickly, professionaly, and at no cost to me whatsoever !

not sure which system you are talking about, but it's very clear that, except for special prevention programs and specific limited services in communtiy/public health facilities, not all americans have such at-no-cost-to-me-whatsoever access to health care.

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Unfortunately cleo, people are nice sometimes and not at others. Maybe anything that Obama does is wrong because of racism. Maybe there is something against the immigrants (let them rot). Maybe there is a lack of a conscience clause so that a doctor has to accept the insurance payment (values money) and on the other side of the coin forced to terminate the life of a fetus (values moral behavior). Maybe people do not want their tax dollars paying for certain procedures. Maybe it is the forced pay system or fines (why not just have an income tax). Maybe it is the extra layer of government that will come into being. Maybe it is the knowledge that government usually is not efficient. Maybe people are afraid of the costs. Maybe the Federal government will take away State rights to make this all work (most States have conscience clauses for health care and have passed a voluntary payment scheme for healthcare). Maybe it was the way it was passed with some constitutional issues. Maybe some see it as a power grab by an already too big central government. Maybe the 85% of the people that have health care feel the quality will drop. Maybe a fear of "Big Bother" controlling everything.

A lot of ifs out there and to just believe in "Trust Me" from a government is dangerous.

One thing for certain something had to be done. All people should have health care. I hope the constitutional issues are worked out so that people can live and act according to their conscience, State rights are preserved, individuals are not fined, quality remains, and the marginalized (other 15%) are taken care of. I think all Americans wish this. However, do we want a system like China has?

The extremes bother me, on the right and the left. They are both flirting with totalitarianism: as we saw in the 20th century between the fascists and communists. They both crushed the freedom of people for the "benefit" of people.

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Cleo says: "I'm asking questions in an attempt to get an understanding of what it is about the present set-up that makes a sizable part of the population so dead set against what appears to be a pretty sensible attempt to get affordable health care to more Americans."

I see. I have been wondering what piqued your curiousity with something that has no effect on you. I noticed you like to cherry pick the 2000 plus page bill. Who in his/her right mind could/would disagree with a couple of things you question? I surely couldn't. But, I am curious about where you are trying to go with this. I am sure most people are not against insuring what you question, but this is a complex, comprehensive bill that can and will have unforeseen consequences for US citizens. This bill, the way it stands, is an "all or nothing" law, so coming into the debate with statistics that show that a "slightly" higher percentage of Americans die before reaching the age of 60, than say UK subjects and then asking why is that, is surely cherry picking and in fact, that statistic you offer has little to do with health care because if you actually delve further into that category, click mortality and start chosing causes of death (in the nationmaster you cited), you will discover that many in the US die from causes that all the medicine in the world can't save: traffic accidents: highest in the world (all motorists must have insurance, so there is no debate about lack of insurance not saving them), accidental deaths, violence (it ends up a huge number as there is a great list of non-health related causes to choose from, but I will simply say that the stat you offered has little to do with health care, so I cannot even wonder why you brought it up in the first place. But since you did bring it up, then I wonder if a 9.9% (2.9% lower than the US) in England is something to brag about, what with universal health care across the pond. Again, the US bill is all or nothing. There are many wonderful things in the bill, but there are bad things, too. Thus, controversy. I find it interesting how the foreign community here in Japan jumped for joy when the JP govt decided to strike out a provision for foreigners in the Visa guideline:

http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/visa-guideline-on-health-insurance-deleted#comment_496609

The Japanese govt had the luxury to strike out an "upsetting" provision: note 8 provisons became 7 (not an all or nothing: take it or leave it). Interesting how "Free Choice Foundation", an organization set up by members of the foreign community, could have such a profound impact on Japanese policy, yet you can't seem to understand what it is "about the present set-up ... a pretty sensible attempt to get affordable healthcare ..." There might be a whole lotta "no free choice" in that "sensible attempt" and thus a "sizable part of ..." so dead against it.

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brotokyo -

Obviously any far-reaching bill is likely to have 'unforeseen consequences' - if they were foreseen, they could be tackled from the outset.....But what exactly are the 'unforeseen consequences' that people are foreseeing and fearing?

Again, the US bill is all or nothing. There are many wonderful things in the bill, but there are bad things, too.

It's the 'all or nothing' factor, ie (almost) everybody is included (as you would expect in a national insurance scheme), that people are objecting to? Apart from everyone is expected to join up even if they're not sick, what are the bad things?

I find it interesting how the foreign community here in Japan jumped for joy when the JP govt decided to strike out a provision for foreigners in the Visa guideline

Check my history if you have the time to go that far back - I didn't jump for joy. I think those who choose not to join the national scheme, thus putting everyone else's premiums up, deserve a sharp slap up the back of the head and an injection of IARJ antidote. The Japanese government's backtracking may have pleased the IARJ expats with the wherewithal to fix themselves up with private insurance, but it also gave the employers of low-wage foreign workers the 'Free Choice' not to offer basic health benefits. NOT a good thing.

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Cleo, thanks for the response. I begin by stating I do enjoy reading your comments on this board because you actually bring reason and solid genuine questions. The first unforeseen consequence is the role of the IRS. Americans are so fearful of this "band" and it is estimamted that 16,000 new IRS "hounds" will be hired to ensure ..... I'll leave this part blank simply because it is an unknown and scarey as hell. I imagine British subjects living and working in Japan for Japanese companies aren't required to "do" British taxes (I'm no expert on this so forgive me if I'm wrong), but Americans are, so there is no doubt fear from the US expat community. There is other uncertaintity: Americans, for example, truly worry that Palin's (and a number of others) claim that the system will have death panels. Hey, the number of seniors worrying about this is alarming. Anyway, I don't want to go into each and every reason Americans worry about this new law; suffice it to say "politics" is heavily involved, but many Americans do have genuine questions that need to be addressed.

Secondly, I did not say YOU "jumped for joy" and I have read your posts in the last comment you made above and I quite agree with you that "I think those who choose not to join the national scheme, thus putting everyone else's premiums up, deserve a sharp slap up the back of the head and an injection of IARJ antidote." However, I would take it a step further. A slap might not be enough as I know there are a number who live/work here and have no insurance at all, a clear violation of Japanese law. This is criminal. I don't advocate they be shot, but a sharp slap doesn't sound quite enough.

I have a question: Can a British subject who lives and works in Japan really not have to file taxes in his/her home country and at the same time return to England (during summer holiday, whatever) and enjoy the benefits of Britains National health care scheme? Thanks for your take and comments. I am not challenging you, but simply have curiousity. When I watched Michael Moore's documentary on healthcare (or lack thereof) in the US, I noted, with alarm, that when he went to France, one Frenchman he interviewed proudly claimed that he got free medical attention/care in France. The alarm came for me because this Frenchman had lived and worked in the US for a number of years, didn't join a health scheme there, paid no taxes back in his homeland France, and then returned (from the way I interpreted it) because he needed health care. I heard from Englandman here that he could return to England to enjoy those health benefits even though he doesn't pay for it and one friend even bragged that he returns there to get his dental work done (simple dentistry involving fillings, not cosmetic), yet doesn't pay into the British system. Just curious, and thanks.

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brotokyo -

The IRS is The Taxman, right? 16,000 new taxmen hired to ....lemmee see, what is it taxmen do....oh yes, make sure people pay their taxes. So people are afraid it will come out that they haven't been paying the taxes they're supposed to pay?

I've never actually paid taxes in the UK (never earned enough as a student, moved to Japan before I ever got a proper job) so I've never actually 'done' UK taxes. But I have been led to understand from doing my kakuteishinkoku that people working in Japan are not obliged to pay double taxes - what you pay in overseas taxes gets set against what you're obliged to pay in Japan.

Death panels? What are those? If you're old and incurable, you don't get medical care? As opposed to being poor and probably of colour? Where do these people get these ideas?

Can a British subject who lives and works in Japan really not have to file taxes in his/her home country and at the same time return to England (during summer holiday, whatever) and enjoy the benefits of Britains National health care scheme?

I don't have much experience of using the NHS on trips, apart from once many many years ago, when we were visiting and my daughter who was then a toddler developed a fever in the middle of the night. We were staying in a hotel at the time and reception put me through to a local hospital, who gave me advice on how to bring the temperature down and told me to bring her in to see them in the morning if I was still worried. By morning she was fine, so we never actually got to the hospital, so I have no idea if there would have been any problem. If I were in the UK and got ill I would go and see a doctor and worry about the ethics of it later, but I think I would have a problem personally with the idea of going back to the UK just to get free medical treatment, knowing I hadn't paid anything in for years. But maybe that's just me.

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Cleo, I knew I could depend on you to be both civil and genuine. Again, good questions from you: "Death panels? What are those? If you're old and incurable, you don't get medical care? As opposed to being poor and probably of colour? Where do these people get these ideas?

Remember, please, that I responded because you wrote: ""I'm asking questions in an attempt to get an understanding of what it is about the present set-up... ."

Hey, who in the world does know what a death panel is? I can't answer that question but one can always google (I prefer Yahoo search) "health care death panels" and get lots of "literature" on the topic. Nonetheless, many older Americans want to understand how this new law affects their health care. You said you want to understand "what it is about the present set-up that makes a sizable part of the population so dead set against .... "I know why so many Americans are against it--it is because they don't understand it.

And yes, the IRS is the taxman and yes you are right, "I have been led to understand from doing my kakuteishinkoku that people working in Japan are not obliged to pay double taxes - what you pay in overseas taxes gets set against what you're obliged to pay in Japan."

I have never paid double taxes! Nonetheless, I go back again to your original statement: "I'm asking questions in an attempt to get an understanding of what it is about the present set-up that makes a sizable part of the population so dead set against what appears to be a pretty sensible attempt to get affordable health care to more Americans." The answer is as obvious as my earlier comment about foreigners going against Japan's new law on Visa renewal: no one wants Big Brother watching everything, period. That includes me, and I file taxes properly every year in both countries and have nothing to fear. However, I confess I don't like it, either. In the end, the average American always does the right thing and one of the biggest questions that weighs heavily in the American psych is: if it is right for America, why are the "rich" elected officials exempted? I never profess to have the answers and I certainly don't dispute your questions and reasoning for the items you place in this thread. I simply address your curiousity (above). What is happening in the USA is normal. Thank God for that, because if Americans don't question and make demands, then all kinds of unwarranted BS will be placed on the masses. I applaud you for having "a problem personally with the idea of going back to the UK just to get free medical treatment, knowing I hadn't paid anything in for years. But maybe that's just me."

But back to an earlier comment "sharp slap on the head" just doesn't seem proper to me (for those who get around the system). That is worse than a "proper" Japanese "bow", you know, the one that miraculously wipes away all sins (perhaps the Chinese dumplin tainter should takes notes!). This new American law is a very costly and I might add a necessary "evil/blessing". However, it needs to be ironed out. I personally dislike the "all or nothing" approach and believe America should work on health problems, one problem at a time; one law at a time: not all in a basket of "health care" and deal with questions later. It is much easier to digest one new law, a few necessary pages at a time, than a raft of "related" laws jumbled in a 2000 plus page package.

You and I have both been here long enough to realize Japan will have its way with the "Visa" question (item 8, above) and foreigners living here and skirting the aforementioned system. I just hope the USA can do the right thing here with health care. Again, thanks, I truly believe you have a heartfelt interest in the members of society who struggle, as I do, too, but neither you nor I can save the world. Let America deal with this issue because no matter what you say in this forum (it is Japan Today, not the USA Today), it has little to no impact on what will happen. Thanks for your curiousity in the American system, though.

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Tigermoth,

Being a german who has studied the history of my country I can tell you there's nothing, really nothing to compare between nazi germany and the situation in the US health care discussion now.

To use such arguments, tigermoth, makes me believe that you have never ever seriously read one history book about nazi germany and how things really worked there.

Anyone who stated such explicit anti-opinions on political topics in such an insulting way, as you and your right-wing fellows frequently do, would find himself in a concentration camp within days, at gunpoint of people who really didn't bother much about putting up with different opinions.

Bam Boo if you read the posting above mine you will see that mine was a response to a posting from the left accusing the right of Hitleresque 'anti-Jewish' propaganda - so it was not I that originated a comparison to the Third Reich, but rather one of your left-wing compatriots. I dare say that I have read likely more than you on National Socialist Germany as at one point I was utterly fascinated with the horror of what occurred and read everything I could get my hands on.

Actually, you must not have studied your country's history very well, as increased governmental control of various aspects of German life was indeed very much a part of Hitler's Germany, and indeed a trademark of fascist control. Certainly as a scholar of such you cannot deny that truth. And it's rather amusing that you speak about the right to criticize not being allowed in Hitler's Germany, as it seems here in the good 'ole US of A anytime anyone questions a policy of our President the left immediately labels them a racist. So now if I don't agree with his policies, it's because of his color, not not the policy itself??

It seems now that the conversation on health care here has turned to the inevitable. Those not of the left who disagree with this bill must be doing so because they are racist, and don't want to help the poor minorities in the country. I'm not sure why anyone here that leans left cannot understand a simple truth. You erroneously seem to think that all Americans that aren't currently on public assistance are well-off, or at least enough so that they shouldn't care if Uncle Sugar dips his hands in our pockets one more time to help our unfortunate brethren. If you could see beyond this myth, you would see a country full of folks that are struggling, even the ones above the poverty line. What's a few more dollars out of my pocket? A few more bucks that I earned that I don't want to give to someone else. Because I'm a cruel, uncaring, thoughtless horrible racist? No. I work for a living, not because I want to but because I have to. We might want more children, but we don't have them because we know we can't afford them. We aren't addicted to crack, not drunk more often than not, not getting welfare because it 'pays better than flipping burgers'. We get up every day, sick, tired, bored - whatever. We go to jobs we hate and work our arses off. We come home too tired to do much, too broke to go to the movies, too broke to take a real vacation and painfully do it the next day. We pay taxes, do what we must and try to better our lives. Many months we owe more than we make. We get by and survive.

Now enter this bill. No one really knows what's in the whole thing, few have read it but all on the left think it's nothing short of Moses coming down from the mount with a couple of stone tablets. Is the cost of what I am currently paying for insurance going to go up? No one can answer that yet. How much will I actually pay in taxes for everyone elses' health care? No once can give a definite figure yet. Despite the 'predicted' deficit reduction, what is this actually going to cost the American public? What affect will this have on large US firms that now must follow the guidelines of this bill? Will it cost them money? Will they pass these costs to the consumer? Will the quality of our health care deteriorate when doctors decide that entering or staying in the profession is no longer lucrative enough to match the cost, both financially and psychologically, of becoming a physician? Will the amount of time it takes to get an office visit with a doctor increase significantly as the number of doctors lessen and the number of patients increases (most likely I should think)?

The question are numerous and the answers are few. So you can't see why so many oppose this bill? We're not evil, uncaring louts. We're an American public tired of ill thought out government legislation from any party that tends more to make bad situations worse rather than supplying sustainable gains. We're tired of being asked to pay more when we're paid less and the economy is in the toilet. We're tired of a government increasingly in our lives telling us what to do despite the fact that they can't even agree that the sky is blue.

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More threats, indeed. If your gov't can force you to buy health care they can force you to buy just about anything. Tigermoth is dead on:

"Actually, you must not have studied your country's history very well, as increased governmental control of various aspects of German life was indeed very much a part of Hitler's Germany, and indeed a trademark of fascist control."

Obama has the playbook. But the American people will not go down without a fight.

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tigermoth - You just defeated your own argument with this line: You erroneously seem to think that all Americans that aren't currently on public assistance are well-off, or at least enough so that they shouldn't care if Uncle Sugar dips his hands in our pockets one more time to help our unfortunate brethren.

It's exactly those kinds of Americans that this law will help; unfortunately, it's also those kinds of Americans that the right-wingers never talk about. The right-wingers want to say that the only ones who will be benefit from this bill are lazy welfare recipients; they never mention the vast majority of Americans who, like you say, work their arses (arses?) off and still can't make ends meet, despite being above the poverty line. It's precisely these Americans who stand to benefit most from this welcome law.

Acorn -

But the American people will not go down without a fight.

We sure won't. We'll defend America against your pathetic rebellion just like we did last time. I own guns; how 'bout you, tough guy?

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USAFdude - explain to me then how I will benefit? Assuming that I never get dropped from medical coverage by my insurer anyway(my parents never were, and I know of no one that was - not saying it doesn't frequently happen, as quite obviously it does) and don't have need to keep my child covered until the age of 26. How is is going to benefit me? Because there will be less insurance fraud? I would say that insurance companies will just adapt to bilk you another way. I know there are a lot of theoretical bits that could save us money, but the optimum word is 'could'.

But I'm not talking theoretical here, I'm talking reality. And obviously by the failure to answer my other question, you have in fact answered my other questions. You don't know. No one does - and that doesn't make you at all uneasy??

Right now I pay $100 per pay period (every two weeks) for family health coverage. Can you with assurance tell me that I will pay no more for that under the new plan. Because what I'm understanding is that if my insurer's plan doesn't meet with the standards laid down in this bill, the company I work for has to change plans, or the insurer has to change coverage. Maybe I'm wrong and it will get better, i.e. cheaper. But maybe not. And no matter how you spin it, we all pay for this in taxes. Yes, we paid for having a flawed system. But I'll bet when all is said and done the price tag for this 'miraculous' bill is going to be quite high. And in the end I'll pay more for equal or less coverage. Convince me otherwise with hard fact; I'm open minded.

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tigermoth -

You don't know. No one does - and that doesn't make you at all uneasy??

Nope, it doesn't; I'm much more uneasy at the idea of my kids not being able to afford reliable health care after their care under my military coverage is yanked out from under them. I would much rather support a government that is actually interested in bringing health care to Americans that make my kids take a "crapshoot" on having decent health care as they grow older.

This is my main motivation for supporting the long-overdue universal health care in America. As much as I respect the civility with which you offer your opinions (sadly lacking with other JT posters), I feel no need to convince you of anything. I support President Obama's health care plan because my family benefits from it.

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Good news - one of those crazy Lefties that have been threatening all of the Congressmen has finally been caught! A guy named Norman Leboon actually put up a YouTube video threatening to kill Republican Congressman Cantor and his family.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/virginiapolitics/2010/03/post_662.html

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tigermoth - I do agree entirely that the well-being of our children is paramount to us both. I think you and I are "on the egg", meaning that if you picture an egg with both of us starting at the bottom and heading towards the top (but choosing opposite sides of the egg), we soon find ourselves as separated as possible, yet still heading towards the same goal. As always, I very much appreciate your civility in both expressing your views and reading mine. I just think it's a pity more don't follow our example.

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On Cleo; "Youre not here to debate but to take pot shots at America."

I tend to agree. African Americans have a culture of avoidance, Illegal immigrants have taxed the system, and hmmm- some of this;

"There are a number of other very important factors that contribute to higher infant mortality rates in the U.S. First, the U.S. is far more successful at delivering premature babies - other "industrialized countries" don't deliver nearly as many as we do per capita nor do they spend anywhere close to what we do on such infants. They just let them die. Second, the U.S. is much farther ahead in terms of various fertility enhancing techniques, resulting in far more preemie births, driving up the number of premature multiple births which, due to their risk, have a much higher death rate. The stats don't take into account miscarriages, which is how many of these other countries count the deaths that we would call infant deaths because we get more of them out of the womb alive, but more of them die. Finally, it's completely inaccurate to say we don't "guarantee health care" in the U.S. First, all poor people are eligible for Medicaid and second, by law (passed in 1969) no health care provider can deny lifesaving care to anyone based on their inability to pay."

Again, I got worked for more than $50,000 in health care payments I never utilized there in Japan- lets hope the American people can torpedo this ship.

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More threats have come in. Two Republican campaign headquarters in different states had bricks tossed thru their windows yesterday. FBI also arrested an unhinged Obama donor who published a death threat, replete w/ antiSemitic hate speech, meant for Republican House Whip Eric Cantor.

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thanks, branded. Good points. I hope they are read and remembered by posters here.

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Cleo; "I think those who choose not to join the national scheme, thus putting everyone else's premiums up, deserve a sharp slap up the back of the head and an injection of IARJ antidote."

Cleo, national health insurance sucks ! As I've mentioned before- I paid big bucks and got nothing out of it. $50 wasted ! Why should healthy individuals be forced, by law, into having to pay ridiculous amounts for a national health care program- like that mess in Japan ? It's done nothing to improve the quality of health care there ! It's done nothing to releive the burden on hospitals, nurses, caregivers etc ! In fact it's done the opposite- The nation has hit critical mass with its lack of nurses- and I've already mentioned the documented cases of hospitals refusing to give care. National health care doesn't work ! What we have in the US right now is the best system out there- it aint perfect- but it is the best ! If you are sick and in need of healthcare you can find high quality affordable medical treatment from coast to coast- and real Americans know this. Whether they choose to utilize it is their freedom of choice- I had none of that from where you post I can honestly say that.

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tigermoth,

It seems now that the conversation on health care here has turned to the inevitable. Those not of the left who disagree with this bill must be doing so because they are racist, and don't want to help the poor minorities in the country.

I didn't say that I believe you are racist, though the arguments of some other anti-health-care-bill-posters here do appear racist in the generalising way they talk about african american and illegal immigrants.

Now enter this bill. No one really knows what's in the whole thing, few have read it but all on the left think it's nothing short of Moses coming down from the mount with a couple of stone tablets.

I don't get the impression that the left thinks this bill will fix it all, in contrary, most say it's only a first neccessary step in the right direction. Nobody seems to deny that there will be a lot to fix and adjust.

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To me the main points in this whole discussion are:

why does the US health care system cost twice as much to deliver a mediocre or sub-par result?

and why is the US system do such a bad job at delivering equal treatment to all members of society?

If you compare the health care of all developed nations the vast majority delivers better results (in all available statistics) at much lower costs through a public centered system.

Of course there's some draw backs, for example in Japan the lack of individualized care, but this draw back on the individual level goes hand in hand with a very equal and, except for some very rare exceptions, high quality treatment for all.

The draw backs in terms of the quality of provided care in the US system now are mostly felt by the poor, the lower middle class, and by the unfortunate that have pre-existing conditions, lose their job and get sick (or the other way around), or by the ones that lack enough education to identify and use the available resources.

Though the draw backs in terms of costs in the US system are felt by all, including the rich, I believe.

In most developed nations above mentioned unfortunate enjoy the same advantages (with some minor draw backs in rare cases) of a developed health care system as the fortunate.

So why shouldn't a system, that puts more responsibility into public hands, work in the states as well?

Is US public service so much worse then the one in 20+ other developed nations? Are civil servants in the states all incompetent, politicians all corrupt?

And where does this completely irrational fear of socialism amongst US conservatives come from?

Non of the developed nations that beat the US health care in statistic evaluation terms is socialist or communist. They are all well established free-market democracies that rely on a well defined and well working public system.

Anyway, I don't believe it's the question whether public or private, but what kind of public, as you will not be able to avoid public involvement in health care, unless you want to beam yourself back to stone age.

And I haven't heard any meaningfull contribution to this discussion from right-wing conservatives as they are so busy with discrediting the public as a whole while shouting 'socialism'.

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bam boo - the main point is you are not American so you know nothing about the US or its medical system.

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SenatorAcorn,

bam boo - the main point is you are not American so you know nothing about the US or its medical system.

thank you for your conclusive argument.

I have lived in the US, though back in the 70ies. In a central neighborhood of Trenton, New Jersey, that was turning from a white middle class neighborhood into a black neighborhood while I was there. Being a child then my memories are not suitable to judge the health care system, but what I remember very clear is a divided society that didn't manage to provide it's different fractions an equal environment.

I'm sure US society changed a lot since then, but the discussion now evokes very vivid memories of the severe circumstances our african american neighbors and friends were in. And, being from a not wealthy family, I do well remember encounters with completely understaffed and underequipped public and communal health facilities, where, as I found, really dedicated staff was trying their very best to cope with what to us immigrants from a european country seemed to be astonishing shortcomings for such a wealthy nation.

I also rember that we were the only white friends that some of our black american neighbors had and I was the only white boy to play with the black children around the neighborhood.

I do believe that the health care discussion now is related to my experience of social disparity in the 70ies and I do feel in the position to offer an 'outsider' opinion to this discussion.

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First, all poor people are eligible for Medicaid ...

Not true. http://www.cms.hhs.gov/MedicaidEligibility/03_MandatoryEligibilityGroups.asp#TopOfPage

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Branded,

"I got worked for more than $50,000 in health care payments I never utilized there in Japan- lets hope the American people can torpedo this ship."

$50,000?!

At roughly $150 (converted to dollars) per month for Shakai Hoken based on a median annual income of $35,000, you didn't get sick once requiring a trip to a local clinic or hospital while in Japan for some 20 years?! Not ONCE in 20 years?? Wow!! Color me impressed, and, well, good for you! Congratulations on your incredible streak of good fortune and an iron constitution. They do say the best kind of insurance is the kind you never have to use.

So, I assume your disdain for paying for healthcare extends to your legal requirement to pay for auto insurance, right? After all, if you've never had an accident requiring the use of that insurance (since it's almost aaaaaalways the other guy's fault) then you're most certainly getting "worked" by the auto insurance industry as well. And if your apartment or home hasn't burned down as a result of an electrical fire, then you're getting "worked" there, too. Or perhaps not. Perhaps you're just complaining simply to complain.

Meanwhile, despite your simply ASTOUNDING health history, some aren't quite as lucky, and a countless number of others have benefited from an insurance system supported by your $50,000, as well as the contributions of hundreds of millions of Japanese (and expats) paying into the same system. Your $50,000 made it possible for everyone, myself included, to be able to receive life-saving treatment in the event of a catastrophic illness that could easily wipe out the financial security of someone making $35,000 per year -- like you, hypothetically.

By spreading the costs of healthcare for an entire population across that same population, it makes it attainable to all. Just like road and highway infrastructure. Just like police departments. Just like fire and ambulance services. Just like the education system. And those systems work . . . When society is united behind them.

Seriously, why, in this day and age, is it so damnably hard for some people to wrap their brains around the concept of helping out anyone besides themselves?

But then there are always those who can't or won't play well with others. In any given population, there's always that subset that somehow thinks they are quantifiably better than the rest of us poor slobs, and believes -- honestly believes -- that everything he or she is is the sole product of self-determination and some sort of fanciful idealization of Calvinistic "true grit," as if their successes in life had abolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the stability and security the American way of life has provided for us, combined with a hefty dose of dumb luck.

These folks seem to think it's perfectly okay to benefit from the sytem without doing their part to ensure the system continues to work for future generations, remaining myopically static with the sentiment, "I got mine. Tough s#it for the rest of you." And they dig in, circle their wagons, and extend a hearty middle-finger to to the very system that has given them the financial liberty to clack away at a keyboard late at night, telling other Americans who aren't as lucky to roll the dice and take their chances with a health system that stopped working a long time ago.

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With regard to health care insurance payments by healthy people being a waste of money and a violation of civil liberties (or whatever) - wot LFRAgain said.

And once more congratulations to Branded on his robust good health.

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LFRAgain - Excellent, excellent post.

Seriously, why, in this day and age, is it so damnably hard for some people to wrap their brains around the concept of helping out anyone besides themselves?

I'll go further: Why is sending billions of our hard-earned tax dollars to help "rebuild" Iraq considered patriotic, but spending the same to provide hard-working Americans and their families health care is considered "socialistic"?

I got mine. Tough s#it for the rest of you.

The Republican mantra. I'd say it's why they lost.

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21 million Americans will still be uninsured.

Talk about cynical - coverage for children w/pre-existing conditions doesn't kick in til 2014. but that is the kind of bait-and-switch Obama's Chicago mentors are notorious for.

Gallup reports that since passage of this unconstitutional bill there has been a 12-point swing in opinions polls - against it.

As Joe Biden might say, "that's a big f***ing deal."

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Acorn - As opposed to 0% more Americans getting health care under a (shudder) Republican "government".

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"As opposed to 0% more Americans getting health care under a (shudder) Republican "government"."

You still dont get it. I dont want either party to 'provide me' with health care. I want them to safeguard the freedoms and rights I am guaranteed by the Constitution.Health care is not among them.

21 million are still without coverage and the rest of us are looking at greatly reduced care.

We also face an economic crisis as a a direct result of this monstrosity.

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bamboo: "I have lived in the US, though back in the 70ies. In a central neighborhood of Trenton, New Jersey, that was turning from a white middle class neighborhood into a black neighborhood while I was there."

So basically you lived among those who are at the heart of the US healthcare problem ! A community know to shun healthcare until emrgencies arise. A community known for it's "above average" rates of obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes etc. A community that has a documented rate of "single parent" households twice the national average. In short a community that is... at the bottom and dragging the rest of us down !

Well, that explains a lot. And believe me, this community will "never" pay into Obama's healthcare plan- history shows they'll choose jail time over monthly payments in a sec ! Nooowwww- yer gonna have to pay, through your state taxes, their incarceration fees also ! Niiice ! Fortunately the American citizens- the vast majority out there- will have the last word and vote this down. Till then, you non Americans should sit back and learn more about US healthcare- simply the best in the world.

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The Democrat Party forgot to ask the experts for any input on the decision to nationalize 1/6th of the US economy.

"The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) became the first medical society to sue to overturn the newly enacted health care bill, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). AAPS sued Friday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia (AAPS v. Sebelius et al.).

“If the PPACA goes unchallenged, then it spells the end of freedom in medicine as we know it,”observed Jane Orient, M.D., the Executive Director of AAPS. “Courts should not allow this massive intrusion into the practice of medicine and the rights of patients.”

“There will be a dire shortage of physicians if the PPACA becomes effective and is not overturned by the courts.” read more at http://970wfla.com/cc-common/news/sections/newsarticle.html?feed=124415&article=6928168

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LFRagain; "$50,000?!

At roughly $150 (converted to dollars) per month for Shakai Hoken based on a median annual income of $35,000,"

Again lfragain- conservative figures as my monthly salary was well over $35,000 a year since the mid 90's.

"you didn't get sick once requiring a trip to a local clinic or hospital while in Japan for some 20 years?! Not ONCE in 20 years??

Not Once- for anything serious. Like I said, I visited a University hospital for what turned out to be a "house dust" allergy back in '91.

"Wow!! Color me impressed, and, well, good for you! Congratulations on your incredible streak of good fortune and an iron constitution. They do say the best kind of insurance is the kind you never have to use."

So why pay for it ? Where's my kickback for being healthy ? Now how's that for an incentive plan ? Actually there is none- I am being forced to pay for the ills of others ! For their poor lifestyle decisions, their lack of foresight, their carelessness in general. Why am I being punished, to the tune of $3,000 a year, for being healthy ?

"Seriously, why, in this day and age, is it so damnably hard for some people to wrap their brains around the concept of helping out anyone besides themselves?"

Because inevitably, at the end of the day, I am responsible to no-one else but me and my family. I do not receive assistance from anyone for anything out there- However LFRAgain, I'll make an exception just this one time-if you want to pony up $50K on my behalf I'll gladly accept. In fact, I'll go one better- I'll sing your praises right here at Japantoday on a monthly basis- in line with an insurance payment- for the next 20 years ! Lets put some teeth into that "concept of helping anyone out besides themselves" !

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Branded -

I do not receive assistance from anyone for anything out there.

Really? You lay down all the roads to get wherever you need to go? You have your own private hospital, your own private school, and you're independently wealthy? You have your own trained, equipped private military to protect you?

Checking... nah, you don't.

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Branded,

health outcomes for socialized healthcare are far better than the mixed US model, its not contest. And its usually 1/2 cheaper than the broken US model.

I find that the losers on the right who cry the most about government assitance are usually on the dole of some sort. Its like the teabaggers yelling get government out of my medicare. Beyond that they generally support corporate welfare, like staring wars to make the defense industry rich, but do not support assistance for the middle class or the poor. Its self-centered and frankly delusional.

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re "health outcomes for socialized healthcare are far better than the mixed US model, its not contest. And its usually 1/2 cheaper than the broken US model. "

I notice u cant provide any examples. Nice try.

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usafdude; "Branded" "You lay down all the roads to get wherever you need to go?"

Ever hear of toll roads ? Bridges ? Those are strictly "pay as you go" !

"You have your own private hospital"

Never needed one.

"your own private school"

Ever hear of home schooling ?

"and you're independently wealthy?"

What does that matter ? I'd be wealthier if I hadn't dole out more than $50k for national health in Japan !

"You have your own trained, equipped private military to protect you?"

Smith and Wesson do just fine thank you very much !

Next !

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Branded -

Ever hear of toll roads ? Bridges ? Those are strictly "pay as you go" !

So you drive only on toll roads/bridges, but never a taxpayer-funded road, huh? Suuure...

Never needed one. (hospital)

Yet...

Ever hear of home schooling ?

You mean the kind that still has to conform to... wait for it... government standards? Yep, I've heard of 'em.

What does that matter ? I'd be wealthier if I hadn't dole out more than $50k for national health in Japan !

It matters because unless you're independently wealthy, you DO have to rely on others to provide you with employment. So much for your ridiculous "I do not receive assistance from anyone for anything out there" statement.

Smith and Wesson do just fine thank you very much !

Unless you're fighting off an enemy invading force; that's where my colleagues and I step in, to make sure big, strong, tough guys like you don't get killed. You're welcome. Next!

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Branded,

"...if you want to pony up $50K on my behalf I'll gladly accept. "

Apparently, you still just don't get it. I DID pony up my share to help you out. I've been paying into the Japanese healthcare system for the past 9 years. If you happened to be in Japan during that time, well then, viola! you had access to the benefits my money provided. And if you were here before that, then it was some other perfect stranger that paid their share into the health system you didn't need.

"Because inevitably, at the end of the day, I am responsible to no-one else but me and my family."

Again, there are those warm and fuzzies that just get my heart all a pitter-patter. You should pray to whatever god(s) you believe in that if you and your family are ever, say, stuck behind the wheel of an out-of-control car barreling down the highway without brakes, that someone with less of a piss-poor attitude comes to your aid. It takes cooperation to build a healthy community.

"I do not receive assistance from anyone for anything out there"

That sir, is patently untrue. You receive assistance from the good People of the United States of America on a daily basis. You receive it in the form of a safe road and highway infrastructure, telecommunications infrastructure, power infrastructure, water and waste infrastructure, as well as police, fire, ambulance, and postal services, and a public education system. And the entire kit and kaboodle is protected and preserved by a publicly funded political and military system. You receive assistance every single day in the form of countless other services paid for by our tax dollars, yours, mine, and 300 billion other Americans you've never met.

You would never have acheived the success you have thus far without the collective efforts of the ENTIRE population of the United States contributing to maintaining a massive and complicated infrastructure that we -- well, you, more so than others, it would seem-- take very much for granted.

So don't sit there and have the audacity to claim no one helped you get where you are now. It's a bald faced lie.

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So you drive only on toll roads/bridges, but never a taxpayer-funded road, huh?

Apart from only driving his car on toll roads and bridges, I'm sure Branded makes a point of not buying anything that has been transported to his local store using any non-toll road. He probably raises all his own food and wears homespun, home-grown cotton.

And if his trusty Smith and Wesson serves to keep the whole of the hostile world at bay, I'd like him to have a talk with Hatoyama and tell him how it's done, then we can let all the boys in Okinawa go home. If he let Obama in on the secret US taxes could probably be halved overnight. (Though then you'd have to deal with a huge army of unemployed ex-service personnel....maybe Branded and his pals could find them jobs on the plantation. Only the healthy ones, of course)

Give the lad a break.

:-) (what's the smiley for 'rolls eyes'?)

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So basically you lived among those who are at the heart of the US healthcare problem ! In short a community that is... at the bottom and dragging the rest of us down !

What a lucky incident, Branded, that you weren't born into this community at the bottom!

Thank you for your clarity, I perfectly understand why you, and your right-wing soulmates, are so against this health care reform!

And I realize that it doesn't make much sense to discuss anything with you that requires a certain degree of empathy for people in different circumstances.

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Haven't these "threats", "spitting" and "racial insults" been proven fake, or shown to have no supporting evidence at all?

This is all part of the neo-communist playbook that Obama and Axelrod adhere to.

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are so against this health care reform!

Yes, because it's a sham. It's unconstitutional. It's trillions of dollars in debt. It's full of kickbacks. And the majority of the american people are against it.

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"USAFdude"

Unless you're fighting off an enemy invading force; that's where my colleagues and I step in,

Because that's constitutional. This health care sham, however, is unconstitutional.

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manfromamerica,

Hey, wait a sec . . . The Federal Income Tax that pays for things like roads, bridges, schools, and national defense is constitutional?!

Hmm . . . I don't recall seeing anything about that in the . . . D'Oh!

Aww, darn! Now I've gone and said it. Never mind. Just pretend I didn't mention that massive White IRS Elephant standing square in the middle of the living room of that "it's unconstitutional" pap coming from the right.

Man, the unconstitutionality argument is an empty one at best.

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Congratulations to the U.S. Congress for this important bill.

Well done, Americans.

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It's all quite amusing;

USAdude; "So you drive only on toll roads/bridges, but never a taxpayer-funded road, huh? Suuure..."

Actually in Japan- I never drove at all ! I paid as I went via mass transit. Much like health care should be. Roads are paid through taxes- if you want a "health care tax" then call it that. Government regulated taxes are a far cry from free market insurance company system, those are allowed to compete with each other. Your nation should know this- having the worlds highest debt in terms of GDP ratio (198%)is partly due to the national health insurance (NHI) scam- no competition breeds expense.

LFRAgain; "Apparently, you still just don't get it. I DID pony up my share to help you out. I've been paying into the Japanese healthcare system for the past 9 years"

Noooo, "apparantly YOU still don't get it". You never helped me out once- not once, because I never accessed the system ! Unlike many in Japan, and probably many of you right here at JT, I never bogged down the system with a "runny nose, a scratched elbow, or a boo boo on the knee" ! I, in turn, have been shocked at your reaction to the fact that I never visited a Japanese doctor or hospital for 20 years. What's so odd about being healthy ? Newspapers in your country go on and on about how elderly waste services, drive up costs, flood waiting rooms, and basically bog down the system there with their frequent "unnecessary" trips to the hospital. NHI has created a system of failure. Pregnant women being turned away at the door. Ambulances that must "search" for an "available" hospital "after" picking up victims. A huge decline in nurses, doctors, and other medical professionals who have decided to leave the country- did you know that since the 90's doctors there must get written permission from the J gov before going overseas- even to attend medical conferences ! Americans have the same concerns as they've monitered other nations for quite some time. And the story remains the same- from Canada, France, The UK, Japan etc- nationilized goverment run health care drives down the quality of care and increases costs across the board. America's system "as is" works ! It's not perfect- but by and large it works ! You want to drive down costs in one fell swoop- I would suggest a cap on lawsuits as the first step. Insurance costs for individual doctors and hospitals are huge- and those get passed on to the customers eventually. So instead of all this hullabaloo about a national program- try "that" first !

Cleo; "I'm sure Branded makes a point of not buying anything that has been transported to his local store using any non-toll road."

Once again you are mistaking "Insurance" for "Taxes"- and no the state I live in has no "sales tax". One of just a few states here in the USA that doesn't. So are you "learning" anything about the USA yet ? Appears not-"And if his trusty Smith and Wesson serves to keep the whole of the hostile world at bay, I'd like him to have a talk with Hatoyama and tell him how it's done". Thats easy Cleo- it's called "a right to bear arms"- and it's in something called "a constitution".

Well, there you have it- 3 of Japantodays most prolific posters ganging up on yours truly. Unforyunately not one of them has answered some very simple questions-

-Why should we be forced to pay for a system we do not access ?

-Why are there no incentives for stayig healthy ?

-Why can't those nations that do have NHI programs keep their national debt lower than the USA ? Japan 198%, France 80%, Canada 72%, the UK 69% ?... The USA 53% !

Try again musketeers- Whats the emoticon for... Sheesh ?

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Branded - >It's all quite amusing

LOL! So "amusing" that you keep bitching about Americans winning this debate and those of your ilk losing?

Keep 'em coming!

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The federal government already regulates all primary education and soon college education as well.

No child left behind just made schools pay for underperforming results which is a good thing.

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No child left behind just made schools pay for underperforming results which is a good thing.

While forcing teachers to "teach to the test" instead of teaching kids what they need to know; that's a bad thing.

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It was about having kids graduating high school with an 8th grade reading level and that is a pretty sad situation in America. Teachers need to be fired sometimes for being substandard.

The federal government still regulates all education k - 12th grade via the department of education so saying Bush started a government intrusion in to the education system is just not true.

Give our current government enough time and the government will just own the entire economy lock stock and barrel.

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asafdud-"that you keep bitching about Americans winning this debate"

Which "Americans" are you talking about ? The vast majority of Americans, at least according to any respectable poll out there, continue to disapprove of this healthcare bill. "Americans" are not winning this debate- explains the unprecedented threats and violence being witnessed currently against Democrats nationwide. Seems you've ignored this part of the story here at JT.

"More than 10 lawmakers in the House said they had received threats or worse as a consequence of the health care debate, most of them Democrats who voted in favor of the legislation."

Sorry dude- the American people are firmly against this legislation- and will probably "show" their disapproval during the next election. In the meantime Ive left three direct questions in dire need of your attention- care to offer up a response ? No pressure now, but I am interested in the particulars.

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Yawningly easy...

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Obamas campaign has no concern to me or my family.

Sounds like your issues are more with Japan than the US. Ask the Japanese government for answers to that.

Hmm, for some "yawningly easy" questions you've failed miserably to date. How 'bout one more chance

Nope, resounding success on my part; I've addressed your questions as you posed them. Sorry if you don't like the factual answers I've provided.

$250 plus bucks a month for worthless health care. Too bad you can't say the same.

I proudly pay it knowing my children will never want for health care. Sorry if you feel screwed by the Japanese system; refer to my above statement.

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"my children will never want for health care."

Neither will mine nor the millions of illegal immigrants that take advantage of America's vaunted health care system- much of it free !

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Every country with nationalized healthcare has insane debt directly related to their entitlement programs.

The Europeans have quite adding their health care system debt in with their national debt. To boot everyone I know that actually lives in Europe that has to use their glorious health care systems all say it sucks. The only people I ever see praising those systems are American liberals and European government officials that oddly enough all seem to come to America when they need health care, surgeries or anything other then an aspirin.

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"Noooo, "apparantly YOU still don't get it". You never helped me out once- not once, because I never accessed the system !"

Wow. This is like trying to reason with a turnip. Apparently I have to walk you through it step by step.

1) A federally mandated law requiring all Americans to buy health insurance IS a form of taxation.

2) You already do pay into systems in the form of FEDERAL (not state) taxes.

3) Many, if not most of the services provided by your federal taxes remain eternally unused by you. For example, you probably don't use that stretch of federal highway linking Green River, Utah to Portland, Oregon, but you still pay for it (Please resist the temptation to claim you've actually used that very stretch of road. Your acrobatics to have an answer -- however much B.S. -- for everything are not only silly but very, very tiring).

4) Conversely, many Americans pay taxes for services they never use, yet you do, without, apparently, a hint of remorse over the "right" or "wrong" of it.

5) While you don't seem to have a problem with never using some services paid for by your taxes, while allowing others to use services that you don't, you magically take issue with who pays for and who uses a federally mandated healthcare system -- a system, mind you, that provides a readily visible benefit to the nation, namely keeping the engines of our economy -- that's you and me, in case you got lost there -- healthy.

5) That makes you a petulant hypocrite, not unlike the vast bulk of opponents to the nationalized healthcare system.

There? That wasn't so hard to understand, was it?

Oh, and before you build up another head of steam on yet another point you would be abjectly wrong about, the new national healthcare system does not cover illegal immigrants (again, we know how squeamish the right gets about affording any benefits whatsoever to the chattel labor you insist brings your fruits and vegetables to your dinner table since they’re too lazy to do that type of manual labor themselves). The new bill -- oops, sorry about that -- the new LAW has been examined at length by experts from both parties and any loopholes giving access to illegal immigrants have been closed.

You can rest easy knowing those filthy Mexicans won't get a dime of your money while you rant on incessantly about the magic Band-Aid of torn reform.

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Cleo:

"Death panels? What are those? If you're old and incurable, you don't get medical care?"

I am going to imagine a death panel is a rung or two below "postcode lottery." I also imagine Americans worry about this "Brave New World." If you aren't familiar with 33 year old Patsy Parsons, mother of four, ages two to 14, and her struggle with cancer (post cancer), here is the link:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1262483/Cancer-survivor-refused-breast-reconstruction-operation-NHS-officials-dismiss-cosmetic-surgery.html

Americans are inundated with these types of true stories, thus the outcry on this healthbill. And back to the "taxman"

smothered in that 2000 page bill is an "eye opener." Tanning salons across the US will pay a 5% tax on tanning services because tanning is deemed a luxury. Wow! Is this not racism. I have actually seen black people on beaches but I have never heard of one going to a tanning salon. So, if getting a tan is a luxury, wouldn't getting one's curly haired straightened or one's straight hair permed not be a luxury? I have no doubt that the tanning tax will end up in the courts (expensive for both the small businesses who bring this to court and the govt to defend it) and I would bet, giving great odds, that the govt would never approve of the "hair" luxury tax I raise because black America will cry racism on the grounds that the changing curly hair to straight "targets" blacks specifically, thus will be deemed racist. Last I checked, the First Lady did not don "nappy" hair, hair in its natural state. A tan done at a tanning salon is considered luxury as the skin is altered from its natural state. Again, I don't come to this thread to agree with the either side, left or right but return to your "not understanding why so many Americans are against this". If there is one thing I love about the US, it is that Americans protest, and don't go into the herd mentality. And while we have added words like "karaoke" and "sushi" to our English dictionaries, it will take a long, long time before the word "Shoganai" is added. I am for the things you ask about, but I can't wait to see this "racist" tanning tax have its day in court, just to cite one example from the "comprehensive" tax law just penned. It is sad that it was allowed in in the first place and that is why I said in an earlier post that this bill should have been sliced up and made into a bunch of new laws and not one "too-big-to-fail" law. And having a sister that lost a breast thanks to cancer, I hope the US system isn't reduced to the "postcode lottery" we so often read about in countries with NHS.

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LFRAgain; 1) "A federally mandated law requiring all Americans to buy health insurance IS a form of taxation."

And Americans don't want more taxes= "More threats come in" !

2) "You already do pay into systems in the form of FEDERAL (not state) taxes."

Not for "Health Care Insurance" we don't= "More threats come in" !

3) "you probably don't use that stretch of federal highway linking Green River, Utah to Portland, Oregon, but you still pay for it"

Those are "taxes", not "Insurance" ! Stop mixing the two ! Buying insurance is a free market enterprise- taxes are not !

4)"Conversely, many Americans pay taxes for services"

Those are "taxes" ! Sheesh, like dealing with a - what did you say- "like trying to reason with a turnip."

5)"While you don't seem to have a problem with never using some services paid for by your taxes"

Speak for yourself ! I use all the services provided by my tax dollars- the question here remains, why should I pay for health care "insurance" if I don't use it ? And why is there no kickback to me at the end of the year for being healthy- hell even uncle sam returns some of your tax dollars ! Oh sorry- that seems to have blown a huge hole in your "insurance is taxes" baloney !

"the new national healthcare system does not cover illegal immigrants"

Tell it South Carolina Republican Joe Wilson who shouted "you lie" to President Obama who made the same remark- finally this;

"the new LAW has been examined at length by experts from both parties and any loopholes giving access to illegal immigrants have been closed."

According to all the sources out there, this health bill is so massive- "nobody" has read through it all !

And... "That makes you a petulant hypocrite" !

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LFRAgain-

"D'oh!" that's right, it is unconstitutional. As are MANY things our government does. You really should read it, it's alot shorter than the 2,600 page health care scam.

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"I use all the services provided by my tax dollars"

Oh, reeeeeally now. You caught the Robert Mapplethorpe exhibit many years back supported by taxes through the National Endowment for the Arts? You've camped under the stars of Cibola National Forest? And you've actually driven the Route 70 / Route 6 / Route 15 stretch of national highway from Green River, Utah to Portland, Oregon? I'm impressed. You apparently have much more free time on your hands than I do to be able to partake in ALL the services your tax dollars pay for.

Buying insurance is a free market enterprise

And yet . . . We'll still ALL have to buy it now. Odd that. Sure sounds like kind of tax.

" . . . why should I pay for health care "insurance" if I don't use it ? And why is there no kickback to me at the end of the year for being healthy . . .

So, are you trying to say that you are currently enrolled in absolutely no health insurance plan whatsoever? Nor your children? (who "take advantage of America's vaunted health care system- much of it free!" -- I'm sure your conservative friends would LOVE to hear you're part of the problem with spiralling health care costs, or rather your kids are. I would want to lump you in with your kids, since you're all about that "It's me against the world" dynamic)

"According to all the sources out there, this health bill is so massive- "nobody" has read through it all !

Soooo . . . In other words, you're saying YOU have no idea either, and have just been parading an unproven statement as fact to support your opposition to national healthcare? Great. That explains a lot about your position.

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