Letters to the Editor

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HEALTH CARE: U.S. is not like Europe

Letter by Beth Woodbury Hart, Puyallup on April 4, 2012 at 11:43 am with 24 Comments »
April 4, 2012 1:44 pm

Re: “‘System pales in comparison” (letter, 4-4).

Comparing the United States with Norway is like comparing apples and bicycles. Norway’s population is about the size of Alabama. It is simply not realistic to suggest that the U.S. could develop a health care system similar to that of a small European country.

Our federal government has become too big and bureaucratic to run anything efficiently, including itself. Medicare is a mess, and President Obama is in the process of cutting military benefits so he can preserve entitlements for his cronies.

How can we expect the feds to provide health insurance for more than 300 million people when we can’t even take care of our soldiers?

 

Leave a comment Comments → 24
  1. sandblower says:

    We are taking better care of our soldiers. It takes time to recognize the problems and to develop proper treatments. That is why we need to begin now with changing our system of healthcare. Norway is a good example and so is France. Their systems can work anywhere in any size.
    Your real argument is that you do not want to poor to be treated equally in the health care arena.

  2. sandblower says:

    “the poor”

  3. menopaws says:

    Hey, if being mediocre is your life goal—you are definitely in the right place. Private health care hasn’t exactly done a great job, Lady. We lag far behind other industrialized nations in life expectancy, infant mortality and cure rates for chronic diseases……..So, while government may not be the best—-the current system is nothing to be bragging about. I actually didn’t hear any solutions to the problem in your letter—just a lot of partisan sniping……..I keep forgetting—solutions are not part of the agenda. Criticism is all that can be mustered.

  4. So….the argument against US universal coverage is that we aren’t good enough to do it?

  5. Does the right understand scale at all?
    The population of one country compared to another is meaningless.
    Why is that so hard for the right wing to understand or is that as deep as they can get?

  6. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Govt bureaucracy explodes with the size of a given program. Why is that hard for you understand?

  7. alindasue says:

    By going to a single payer universal health system, we would actually be cutting down on the bureaucracy. Our current system has several different medical assistance programs and insurance billing is a nightmare for most doctor’s offices.

  8. “Govt bureaucracy explodes with the size of a given program.”

    No it doesn’t, but don’t let facts and truth get in your way.

  9. sumyungboi says:

    In addition, Norway’s population is roughly that of The Puget Sound region, most of that is in one city, almost all are white, and most are Christians. They don’t have nearly the diversified social spending that we have, since they don’t have the social problems, and even at that, well over half of individual income goes back to the state, mostly for social services.

    Comparing the USA to Norway for the purpose of pushing government run health care is not apples to apples, far from it.

  10. harleyrider1 says:

    Unaffordable. Who will pay for it?

    Countries like Norway have populations ofr less than 8-million and very few people do not work; Canada has 34-million population.

    The USA has 312-million people of which less than half work to support the rest now. This half is paying for the infrastructure, welfare, hospitals, food stamps, subsidized housing, subsidized college for illegal immigrants (only), and social security.

    I’m not sure there is any money left to pay year after year for 312-million people to have “free” health care.

    Party politics aside, we need to rebuild America, balance our budget, and then take a look at what we spend our money on.

    Before we can do that, we need a leader to create jobs and unite Americans. Someone that does not see himself singing, flying around the Country to appear on every TV show he can, attacking millionaires when he just became one, and pitting race against race.

    A leader is one who represents all of us and does what’s best for the Country. Let’s elect one.

  11. Geez rigthies, the population means NOTHING!
    Can’t any of you think out side of the slogans and talking points spoon fed to you???!!

  12. sumyungboi says:

    klu: “Can’t any of you think out side of the slogans and talking points spoon fed to you”

    Attempting to silence through insults. Fail.

  13. Harleyrider1 says, “Before we can do that, we need a leader to create jobs and unite Americans. Someone that does not see himself singing, flying around the Country to appear on every TV show he can, attacking millionaires when he just became one, and pitting race against race”

    That’s a good thought Harley except for one reality. The real problem in this country is the PEOPLE. Take a look at the daily comments posted in this paper! God himself couldn’t “unite” these people! If our local “commentators” are a mirror of the rest of the population of this country, we are dead and gone, we just haven’t had the final burial yet!

    Partisan bickering has taken the place of actually building this country. And putting it back where it WAS would be a backward step for the Liberal Left who have taken deliberate steps to tear down this nation over the last several decades.

  14. averageJoseph says:

    If mediocre is your goal let the government take care of you cradle to grave.

  15. alindasue says:

    harleyrider1 said, “The USA has 312-million people of which less than half work to support the rest now.”

    Less than half work…? Last I heard, the unemployment estimates including those who fell off the unemployment rolls was at about 15%. That’s NOT more than half the US population. If your “less than half work” figure includes children and retired elderly, it might be of worth to note that they have children and elderly in Norway as well.

    Yes, we have more people in this country, but that also means we have more people who can pay into the health care system. Most of us are already paying into the bloated for-profit “insurance” and “medical care” monster. The only reason universal health care is “unaffordable” is because we currently are all so indebted to that monster.

    “Party politics aside, we need to rebuild America, balance our budget, and then take a look at what we spend our money on.”

    That’s the smartest thing you’ve written all week. However, I submit that we are not going to be able to accomplish the first two items if we don’t “look at what we spend our money on” first. Right now we, individually and as a country, are spending way to much on medical with too little return for our dollar.

  16. sumyungboi says:

    alindasue, read carefully what he said. “The USA has 312-million people of which less than half work to support the rest now.”

    No mention of unemployment. Simply a reference to givers v takers.

  17. So the US can’t compete with small European Nations when it comes to heal care?

    So much for American Exceptionalism.

  18. “Simply a reference to givers v takers.”

    Red states take far more than they give, why is that?

  19. sumyungboi says:

    klu, I just don’t care why, but if you think you need more free stuff, you should move to Alabama. Wasn’t even a decent red herring, man, you’ll have to work on that.

  20. alindasue says:

    sumyungboi said, “Simply a reference to givers v takers.”

    The reference was to people who “WORK to support the rest…” (emphasis mine)

    My contention was that a lot more people WORK (are givers) than he gives credit for. I know the common claim is that only half the people in the country pay taxes, but even among those whose incomes are low enough to avoid a net income tax most still pay taxes for medicare, unemployment and worker comp, and (when available) also pay medical insurance premiums.

    To say that we can’t support a universal medical system because over half the people are “takers” would be a fallacy.

  21. The givers v takers meme is another Ayn Rand idea that the “producers” are hampered by the “useless eaters”. Simplistic ideas that sound good to simple minds.

  22. LornaDoone says:

    “Comparing the United States with Norway is like comparing apples and bicycles. Norway’s population is about the size of Alabama.”

    Would you like to compare health care in Alabama to Norway?

  23. LornaDoone says:

    Is the argument that the United States is too big to provide adequately for its citizens, as other countries do?

    What happened to all that exceptionalism?

  24. Normally, the bigger system has the advantage. Its called “Economics of scale”, and it is why Wall-mart outcompetes mom-and-pop stores, and Starbucks drive out the local coffe shops.

    If it works in Norway or France, the 300+ million pople of America should do better.

    In the area of health care, if it works in Iceland with 300 000 people, Finland with 5 million, Germany with 80 million and Japan with 125 million, there is no reason to assume some kind of hereto unforeseen magic limit beyond which it will not work.

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