Friday, 21 August 2009

Sarah Palin's evil notes

Sarah Palin never misses an opportunity to play the victim. In her latest Facebook note, she whines:

As Governor of Alaska, I learned a little bit about being a target for frivolous suits and complaints (Please, do I really need to footnote that?). I went my whole life without needing a lawyer on speed-dial, but all that changes when you become a target for opportunists and people with no scruples. Our nation’s health care providers have been the targets of similar opportunists for years, and they too have found themselves subjected to false, frivolous, and baseless claims.

Her ghostwriter is getting better at making her notes sound more personal.

As for her ideas on healthcare reform, I'm past trying to make sense of all the drivel. There seems to be a lot of jumping from one thing to the next. I'm not terribly familiar with healthcare insurance in the US, but looking from the outside, I get the impression the big insurance companies are feeding $arah's team some talking points and they run with them. Sarah Palin's notes may have a personal touch, but the message is still toxic.

I have lived most of my life in a country with national health insurance. When you're in work, a certain percentage of your pay is deducted each month and your employer also makes a contribution. The money goes into a big pot and EVERYBODY gets healthcare, whether they work or not. Children and seniors included. The children are still to make their contribution, the seniors have contributed all their lives.

Certain consultations and treatments have a small price tag, but children, seniors, pregnant women, the disabled and the unemployed are exempt from payment. Which means you NEVER have to remortgage your home in order to receive healthcare. And you never have to go without.

Rich people prefer to purchase private healthcare insurance or simply pay hospital bills. It's their prerogative. Rich people have choices. Some employers offer private insurance as a perk, but the employee is then taxed for it.

My husband had such a perk and it was the ONLY time we had to face rationing of healthcare. In the NHS we had to face some delay having exams performed, but urgent procedures are treated as urgent, so no worries there.

I should add that going into a private hospital will ensure luxury, but not necessarily the best healthcare. The protocols for nursing care in the NHS are much more stringent than in private hospitals. I read about a woman who chose to give birth in the lap of luxury but died because she wasn't checked as often as she would in a NHS hospital. It has happened. If the same woman had been sharing a ward with six other patients she would have survived.

The difference between the NHS and private healthcare is that one is focused on care, the other on profits.

The NHS is far from perfect and also needs some reform, but people don't get turned away because they can't pay or because they don't have insurance. The doctors and the nurses in this "evil" system will pull all stops to save the lives of anybody who comes to them.

Healthcare is a basic need, just as food and shelter, and it's very hard to believe that the largest economy in the Western world has a rationing system based on ability to pay.

It's the ugly face of capitalism. Capitalism without compassion, without humanity, THAT is evil.


midnightcajun said...

I lived many years in countries with "socialized medicine." Moving back to the States and its system of capitalized medicine (pay up front or die) was a hideous shock to me.

I was particularly enraged when I took out private health insurance and realized that those with insurance pay far less for procedures than the uninsured, because the companies negotiate fees with hospitals and doctors. So someone too poor to be able to afford health insurance gets charged $1500 for a procedure that a health insurance company gets charged $350. Where is the sense or fairness in that? And every year, the insurance companies jack your premiums up, but you can't change providers because your conditions are now "pre-existing" and won't be covered.

Ironically, I now have government health insurance through my husband. Most people don't realize that the US government already successfully runs several health care programs that cover tens of millions--Medicare, Medicaid, the VA, and two separate TriCare systems (managed by a private company) for active duty and retired military.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Regina, what a great blog!

Dianne said...

THANK YOU!!! I was actually going to personally ask you to do a post on this exact topic and explain the "evil" health care most of the civilized world has a right to. My private insurance company is a nightmare. It might pay, it might not. Everything has to be preauthorized. It has gotten so expensive that I may have to drop my coverage. The thought is quite frightening. And, Sarah "I've got mine but I don't want you to have yours" is playing to big business, as usual, all the while her family is covered by Todd's native status with that evil government issued health care.
I wonder if her panting followers know this or just don't care.

Dianne said...

Oops! Not most of the civilized world has a right to - most of the civilized world already has. EVERYBODY has a right to health care, damnit!

Should have gone to work today.

Anonymous said...

Thankyou for such a well written post about the NHS - I think you covered it all really well.
I have paid into the NHS "pot" before I retired. I am now in my early 60's.

I have every reason to be happy with the NHS. OK pa,rts of it need sorting, but it is an enormous organisation, and given it's sheer size it really does work marvelously considering!

Love your blog!

Floyd M. Orr said...

This is not precisely on your current topic, Regina, but it is something that has been bugging me about Palin for a long time. The MSM is our #1 enemy. We have to stop acting as if they don't know every single evil thing about this witch that we know. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I’ve been following your blog for ages, but this is the first time I’ve really felt prompted to comment. Problem is – I hardly even know where to start. This woman is not only breathtakingly ignorant, but terrifyingly unscrupulous. Anyone who is willing to propagate such blatant lies purely for political (and presumably financial) gain to the detriment of millions of ordinary Americans simply beggars belief. Especially a woman with a special-needs (grand-) child. And one who professes to be a “Christian” at that – whatever happened to “love thy neighbour” and the “loaves-and-fishes” principle of sharing? But no – it isn’t about religion, is it? Oh, then it must be about constitutional rights. Errm, doesn’t the American constitution say something about the right to life and liberty? And how, pray, can you have either of those things if you cannot even afford to visit a doctor when you or your child is ill? Now, I have lived and worked in several different European countries (ooooh – “socialist”?) over the years, and I have never, ever had to worry my head for one moment about access to decent health care for myself or my offspring. That in itself is liberating. But what astonishes me most of all is that people in America actually buy this B.S. about the “dangers” of “socialised” medicine. What on earth are they afraid of? Surely even the most rabid capitalist would surely agree that a “healthy workforce” is a fine thing. Fewer sick days, higher morale, less risk of embezzlement by those crippled by healthcare bills… easier to contain pandemics like swine flu…. just trying to see it from the other side for a moment. But for a nation as wealthy as the USA to deny such a basic right to so many of its citizens is truly shocking. Oh – I forgot: they have the death penalty as well. Positively medieval.
As for the NHS: please, just back off, USA… they are truly fantastic. Like family – we love to moan about them when they do something silly, but we can’t help admiring their many qualities and just adoring them for what they do. I recently moved back to the UK, but have already experienced only the very best… a friend of mine whose employer offers private insurance as a perk recently turned down the private option, having found over the years that it had no particular advantages for him.
As for the others: the German system has a special place in my heart because it is very strong on complementary medicines (not everyone’s cup of herbal tea). But, in my experience, France is fabulous, Italy ideal in a crisis, Belgium brilliant…. Point being: you live your life without ever worrying about what might happen if you get ill. You go along for your routine check-ups just in case; potentially nasty illnesses get nipped in the bud, and unfortunate accidents don’t mean you risk losing your home…what’s not to love about it? Or, to paraphrase Barney Frank “on what planet do these people spend most of their time?”

Anonymous said...

Wow, this Sarah FB comment has 3 ad nauseum whines to it: 1. I was criticized, I was a target. 2. I'll stand up for the wealthy Health Care providers, I feel their pain when they are targeted like I was. 3. I didn't need anyone until I became a target, and had to "speed-dial" my lawyer to threaten my critics; poor, poor me.

Emily said...

Capitalism without compassion, without humanity, THAT is evil.

I just want to, like many others here, thank you for saying that. Capitalism, along with fanatical religion, is part of what's holding back the United States from its potential to become a free and egalitarian nation.

basheert said...

The rationing of health care in the US has gone on for years. It is done by the Health Insurance biggies, BC/BS, Aetna and United Health Care.

The CEO of United Health makes $100K PER HOUR. And where does he get that salary? From premiums and denials-of-service. That's where.

We have a huge problem in this country. Every single person over the age of 65 that is PROTESTING health care reform needs to sign a statement withdrawing from Medicare/Medicaid and giving up their Social Security benefits.

It has been suggested that people take these blank statements to the meetings and ask people to GIVE UP THEIR MEDICARE since many of them are too ravingly incoherently stupid to realize it is run by the Government.

If they don't like it, let them get the hell out. If they are that stupid, they deserve what they get. I am so sick of these idiots driving the discussion. Socialized medicine - yeah right.

Sorry to go off topic, but the elderly are being used by the Repukes. And they appear to be very low I.Q. seniors they are exploiting.

Make all of them give up Medicare so the rest of us can have it.

basheert said...

Just one more aside on my current rant: my husband has paid into Medicare for 5 years and never used it because he has insurance. His ex-wife on the other hand, has exactly the SAME AARP supplement (they have many, this is a gold plated one).

His premium is approximately $300 per month for something he does not use (but might someday) - because she squandered every dime and pretends to be an artist, she has no money, no income and no fall back. HER medicare supplement which is identical is FREE.

All of us get's just a matter of who gets your $$ first.

basheert said...

Sorry everyone - I don't mean to rant, but the unfairness is all over this system. In all different ways.

So many people right now don't realize that Medicare is a well run Government program - yes it has problems but it also works. Yes it will run dry - because our Government takes money from it and uses that money for other things.

Medicare works. And again, I challenge all the anti-health care reform seniors to opt out if you don't like it. If you're on Medicare, you have NO RIGHT TO SPEAK AGAINST IT.

Again I'm sorry I went a bit off topic.