“VIP” Treatment Under Nationalized Health Care

posted at 9:55 am on January 2, 2010 by Dafydd ab Hugh

I’m taking a Christmas liberty here, publishing a blogpost written by my wife, Sachi, on our blog, Big Lizards. Ordinarily I only publish my own scribblings on Hot Air’s rogues’ gallery, no one else’s; but this is such a powerful and prophetic true-life story that I thought I might break the rules just this once

~~~~~

A few days ago, my 77 year old father, who lives in Japan, fell and couldn’t get up for more than an hour. He was taken to a hospital, where he still rests.

Last night my mother called to update me with a summary of his condition: He has a compressed disk, it seems (it’s hard to translate from Japanese to English and from Mom-speak to ordinary human language). The condition is somewhat serious but not life threatening; he’ll have to spend a few weeks in hospital. Too bad; New Year’s is the biggest holiday season in Japan.

I’m sure everyone reading this post knows that Japan has socialized medicine (national health care, single-payer, however you want to call it). It’s not as draconian as the NHS in the United Kingdom or the Canadian national and provincial health-care system; but it is universal — everyone must pay for government insurance. Fortunately, those who are well off can also buy private insurance in addition… and they can use that instead of the government system (unlike in the UK or Canada).

In other words, Japan already has the system that proponents of ObamaCare eventually want to install here in America. So let’s take a look at how it works in the real world.

After Mom reassured me about my father’s condition, she started talking about last year around this time, when she had to have stomach surgery.

“Oh Sachi, the care I received was wonderful!” she said; “I stayed in a private room which was like in a nice hotel. It had a private bathroom. The nurses were nice. The doctors were wonderful. I spent nine days in the hospital and only paid ¥80,000!” [About 800 dollars]

“Really?” I asked; “government insurance actually covered all that?”

“Oh, of course not; I have three insurance policies,” she proudly announced.

Before retirement, my father was a patent attorney. As a private business owner, he had to pay an exorbitant government insurance premium, both for himself and his three employees. But he always knew that would never be enough coverage, so he purchased two more private insurance policies. In other words, he spent more than twice as much on health insurance as a typical American spends now, pre-ObamaCare.

But even those extra policies wouldn’t cover the VIP treatment my Mom got. I asked a few more questions, and she finally spilled the beans:

“I was supposed to be in a 4-person room. But I had a private room all to myself, thanks to your uncle.”

Ah, my uncle the hospital administrator. I’d forgotten about him!

My mother’s third or fourth youngest brother (I forget which) holds a high administrative position at a major university hospital. It seems he has a great deal of clout there, which has been a great help to our family in times of medical need.

My mother is quite the hypochondriac; she always complains about one ailment or another, usually imaginary. So whenever she is not satisfied with her general practitioner, she talks to my uncle. First thing you know, she’s seeing a specialist — skipping the long waiting list that those without such connections must endure under Japanese system.

On another occasion, Mom hurt her knee. My uncle “referred” his sister to a university hospital doctor who was Japan’s most famous doctor for ligament tears. Patients from all over Kanto Plain (where Tokyo sits) would come to see him.

“He only takes 40 patients a day,” mom said (only 40! Imagine that!) He doesn’t accept appointments; so if you want to see him, you have to get there by 7:00 a.m, take a number, and… wait. And wait, and wait.

My mother strolled in at 9:00, the time the office officially opens; the waiting room was already full, and they had long stopped issuing any numbers. One lady told my mom that she had gotten up at four and had her daughter drive her for two hours to get to the hospital. She was lucky; she got number 38 and had waited three hours already. “There are no specialists in my city,” the lady explained.

My mother-the-sister-of-one-of-the-nomenklatura presented her letter of introduction to the receptionist:

“Don’t worry, Ma’am, never mind the number. Just have a seat; we will call you.”

My mother did not have to wait. The doctor was most courteous, a rarity in Japan, and he asked about my uncle. Then he gave Mom a thorough examination, spending far longer with her than other patients.

So my parents have the more expensive national health care for business owners (Dad pays higher taxes), Kokumin Hoken — Citizens’ Health Insurance; the lesser one is for ordinary salaryman, Shykai Hoken — Society Health Insurance. In addition, they have not one but two private health insurance plans, a primary and a supplementary. On top of that, my mother’s brother is a high-ranking official at a major hospital in Japan.

But Mom is not so foolish as to rely upon such insecure health-care planning as that; she has a back-up system that she also uses…

After such nice treatment as she got for her knee and her stomach, my mother never forgets to send “gifts,” typically cash and premium liquor to the doctors, expensive chocolate to the nurses — and of cours, something extra special to my uncle, her brother. She was laughing that after her hospitalization, she spent more money on gifts than the actual medical bill. That means over thousand dollars of, let’s be honest, bribery.

Wonderful. The national health-care system works!

That’s why my mother isn’t worried about Dad’s care; he’s going to be treated better than anybody other than corporate CEOs and of course government officials. But even with that kind of influence, my father had to wait three days for his preliminary examination and to have X-rays taken. After all, it was a holiday week, the Emperor Akahito’s birthday, and no doctor was willing to return to the hospital for anything other than a life or death situation. (And maybe not even then; how many extra private insurance plans is the fellow carrying?)

The day my father was taken to the hospital, the nurse told Mom to obtain several changes of clean pajamas, underwear, and towels for my father. Also soap, shampoo, and other toiletries, which were needed right away. Conveniently, the hospital has a kiosk that sells all kinds of items and is open 24 hours. Just a little markup over buying at a regular store, miles away… maybe 100% or so.

Oh, yes, I almost forgot, they told Mom to bring a thousand-dollar deposit. Cash.

My sister and mother take turns visiting Dad everyday. They have to pick up his dirty laundry, wash it and bring it back, because the hospital doesn’t do that. But Dad’s quite lucky that he stays in a nice hospital with three different insurance policies, under the auspices of his brother in law. My girlfriend’s father only had government insurance when he was hospitalized, and the hospital did not even turn on an air conditioner in the middle of August, with temperatures over a hundred degrees and humidity close to 100%.

My girlfriend visited her father as often as she could; she had to: Half the time, they didn’t even empty his bedpan.

You see? National health care works great… so long as you’re rich enough to afford the premium level of government insurance and to buy multiple additional private policies; so long as you have influential relatives; and so long as you’re willing and able to brazenly bribe the doctors and bureaucrats who run the system.

“I am so glad we live in Japan,” Mom said. “I worry about you in America, with no national health care!” Thanks, Mom, but I’m afraid “help” is on the way from President Barack H. Obama.

Are you looking forward to it as eagerly as I?

Cross-posted on Big Lizards

This post was promoted from GreenRoom to HotAir.com.
To see the comments on the original post, look here.


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Comment pages: 1 2

Some people are treated more fairly than others

Congress expects every ones treatment to worsen so they won’t use the mess they want to proive.

seven on January 2, 2010 at 9:57 AM

All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

blatantblue on January 2, 2010 at 9:59 AM

These political fools are taking the world’s best healthcare system and turning it into a deadly disaster. Get ready people because the actions taken by the Arizona Mayo clinic are defining your future.

rplat on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

“VIP” Treatment Under Nationalized Health Care Dafydd ab Hugh

You totally missed the point of your Mom’s story and “Obamacare” in the US. Yes, it’s great your Mom has three private health insurance plans but what about people who can’t afford it. Your Mom was covered from every angle that’s not the case in America. And btw, Canada allows private insurance to cover hospital amenities like a private room so your argument against government health insurance in your article is bogus.

You have a smart Mom. Get her advice before you write stupid articles like the one above.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Racist.

rogerb on January 2, 2010 at 10:08 AM

Why can’t we just practice on the Gov. employees?

uber on January 2, 2010 at 10:08 AM

Great insight on our future, does any really think it will be any different here?

whbates on January 2, 2010 at 10:09 AM

Congresscritters have conveniently designated themselves and their families as deserving privileged care while we, their constituents and nominally their employers, deserve nothing but long lines, rationing and earlier, more painful deaths. Are you happy now, statist creeps? What do you fail to understand?

ya2daup on January 2, 2010 at 10:09 AM

Great insight on our future, does any really think it will be any different here?

whbates on January 2, 2010 at 10:09 AM

Yes because THERE’S NO PUBLIC OPTION, remember?

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:10 AM

Thanks for posting this. I shared it on FB.

ladyingray on January 2, 2010 at 10:12 AM

Hope and Cheange:

I hope they empty the bedpan and change the sheets.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Yes, millions are rushing to Canada and England for their magnificent brand of medical care. Oh, and Cuba as well……Just be sure to bring along a new hacksaw blade for the amputation.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 10:13 AM

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

WTF? You miss the entire point while claiming the author does.

” Yes, it’s great your Mom has three private health insurance plans but what about people who can’t afford it”.

They get crappy care numbnut … get it? Socialized medicine sucks. Once health care falls under the wing of the government, people stop giving a rat’s ass. There’s no incentive to excel, no incentive to improve, no incentive to go out of one’s way to provide the best possible.

You’re an idiot.

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 10:15 AM

Let’s see – if you have Medicare and a Medicare Advantage cushy insurance that help defer costs and gets you into more physicians offices in a quicker amount of time, we’re going to cancel that, US citizens. Well, unless you live in Broward, Palm Beach, or Dade counties.

They think this will pass legal muster, and/or a Florida Senator is stupid enough to think it will be left in the bill.

Marcus on January 2, 2010 at 10:16 AM

Wherever there’s socialism, it always always happens. There’s the normal impersonal and perfunctory (on a good day) treatment that the normal Joe Shmoe off the street gets, and then there’s the treatment that people with extra money or better connections get. And they’re very different. Economic systems can change, but human nature doesn’t.

RBMN on January 2, 2010 at 10:17 AM

Yes because THERE’S NO PUBLIC OPTION, remember?

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:10 AM

You’re a moron. Forcing people to buy insurance that’s regulated by the government in every aspect including what they must cover and price is what … a private option?

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 10:18 AM

“I am so glad we live in Japan,” Mom said. “I worry about you in America, with no national health care!”

Moms say the darndest things sometimes!

At least this holiday season, I didn’t have to listen to anybody of the older generation make any surreal comments about social security and medicare still being around when my wife and I retire. I think reality is starting to sink in.

forest on January 2, 2010 at 10:19 AM

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Yeah, what about the poor bastards who can’t afford three interlocking private health plans? Did you even read the article? Even with private health plans, “connections,” and bribes, her husband still had to wait three damn days for an x-ray.

Three days’ wait for an x-ray is damn good service in Japan. What do those who don’t qualify for such “consideration” get?

Sekhmet on January 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Mayo Clinic to Stop Accepting Medicare Patients

The Mayo organization had 3,700 staff physicians and scientists and treated 526,000 patients in 2008. It lost $840 million last year on Medicare, the government’s health program for the disabled and those 65 and older, Mayo spokeswoman Lynn Closway said.

Mayo’s hospital and four clinics in Arizona, including the Glendale facility, lost $120 million on Medicare patients last year, Yardley said. The program’s payments cover about 50 percent of the cost of treating elderly primary-care patients at the Glendale clinic, he said.

“We firmly believe that Medicare needs to be reformed,” Yardley said in a Dec. 23 e-mail. “It has been true for many years that Medicare payments no longer reflect the increasing cost of providing services for patients.”

Mayo will assess the financial effect of the decision in Glendale to drop Medicare patients “to see if it could have implications beyond Arizona,” he said.
[snip]

OmahaConservative on January 2, 2010 at 10:22 AM

Great post. Best to your Father.

FireBlogger on January 2, 2010 at 10:22 AM

And don’t think Congress will ever have to live like the rest of us. Even now.

http://www.alldeaf.com/war-political-news/70208-special-health-care-congress.html

Cindy Munford on January 2, 2010 at 10:23 AM

Forcing people to buy insurance that’s regulated by the government in every aspect including what they must cover and price is what … a private option?

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 10:18 AM

Dumbass, what you seem to forget is the people who can’t afford insurance or insurance policies that don’t cover treatment or people with pre-existing conditions who can’t get coverage. Next time get your head out of your ass. I guess you can’t because Darwin,
YOU ARE A COMPLETE IDIOT!!!

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:23 AM

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

How’s your medical insurance working out for your mental retardation?

Gregor on January 2, 2010 at 10:24 AM

You see? National health care works great… so long as you’re rich enough to afford the premium level of government insurance and to buy multiple additional private policies; so long as you have influential relatives; and so long as you’re willing and able to brazenly bribe the doctors and bureaucrats who run the system.

Great system, mom even has to bribe her brother.

Jeff2161 on January 2, 2010 at 10:24 AM

Remember, they are cutting Medicare coverage by 500 BILLION and 40% of all doctors plan to retire, quit or go overseas. There is no other senior medical plan other than rationing and who will work for gov’t insurance for less pay as a doctor or nurse?

No wonder the democrats want seniors to die, they will be one PO’d voting block in 2010 and 2012.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 10:24 AM

Yeah, what about the poor bastards who can’t afford three interlocking private health plans? Did you even read the article?
Sekhmet on January 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Didn’t you read it and the mother’s conclusion you stupid illiterate?

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:26 AM

Norman,

Are you a Senator? Did you even read what was written?

Howcome on January 2, 2010 at 10:26 AM

How’s your medical insurance working out for your mental retardation?

Gregor on January 2, 2010 at 10:24 AM

It’s pretty obvious you don’t have insurance since your preexisting condition is stupidity.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:27 AM

But he always knew that would never be enough coverage, so he purchased two more private insurance policies.

At least he still had that option, which I worry will not be available here.

petefrt on January 2, 2010 at 10:27 AM

Our baby boy got very sick while my wife and he were visiting the ‘rents up in British Columbia. They were in a small town about 4 hours drive from Vancouver, and the local hospital knew he needed more than they could give him, so he was promptly air-evaced to Vancouver, specifically BC Children’s Hospital, which is sort of a star/showpiece facility. For the first week he was in the PICU, and the care was phenomenal – there was a nurse assigned to him 24/7, on a one-on-one basis, and they the whole staff did a fantastic job bringing him back from the edge. After a week he was transferred up to a normal ward, and that’s where things got problematic. The doctors and nurses were still excellent, but it was clear that the nursing staff was severely overworked/understaffed, and as a result my wife was expected to do a great deal of the work – like feedings and changings, and if she wasn’t around then things would get missed. She was essentially on shift 24 hours a day, and as a result she almost ended up in a hospital.

This is the end result of a system that dispenses care like it is government cheese – it is in no way patient centric, and is subject to the whims of bureaucrats who may be required to trim their budget or do other things that in no way relate to the reality of the patients who are supposed to be being cared for.

holdfast on January 2, 2010 at 10:27 AM

Three days’ wait for an x-ray is damn good service in Japan. What do those who don’t qualify for such “consideration” get?

Sekhmet on January 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Obamacare…or Obowmadoesntcare.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 10:27 AM

Liberal Utopia: Ensuring everyone suffers equally.

perroviejo on January 2, 2010 at 10:30 AM

Reminiscent of all those unionized public school teachers who take the extra salary (extorted from blue-collar taxpayers with kids in public school) and use it to send their own kids to private school. Can’t really blame ‘em. They know better than anyone why kids shouldn’t be subjected to the place where they work.

RBMN on January 2, 2010 at 10:30 AM

The troll is up early and often today!

Chris_Balsz on January 2, 2010 at 10:31 AM

Uh, excuse me, but 40% of British citizens have private insurance. There are private Hospitals, like the Wellington in St. Johns Wood, and the only reason NIH works even badly is that so many people have purchased private care. I used to own businesses there and there was no way you could hire anyone worth a damn unless you bought them private coverage.

flyoverland on January 2, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Three days’ wait for an x-ray is damn good service in Japan. What do those who don’t qualify for such “consideration” get?

Sekhmet on January 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM

My mother strolled in at 9:00, the time the office officially opens; the waiting room was already full, and they had long stopped issuing any numbers. One lady told my mom that she had gotten up at four and had her daughter drive her for two hours to get to the hospital. She was lucky; she got number 38 and had waited three hours already. “There are no specialists in my city,” the lady explained.

Jeff2161 on January 2, 2010 at 10:32 AM

When you can’t use $$ to buy the best coverage, you find other ways, including and especially political influence and connections – it happens all the time in Canada, and a lot of folks are PROUD to tell you they did it!

holdfast on January 2, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Canada allows private insurance to cover hospital amenities like a private room so your argument against government health insurance in your article is bogus.

You have a smart Mom. Get her advice before you write stupid articles like the one above.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

So having enough money to pay double what we pay in the US for health insurance, having “family connections” at the hospital, and using even more money to bribe doctors makes Mom “smart”?

I thought having the elite paying exorbitant $ to get top notch care while the plebes wait in line is the kind of thing leftists usually pretend to be against. Your mask is slipping, Norman.

forest on January 2, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Didn’t you read it and the mother’s conclusion you stupid illiterate?

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:26 AM

The mother has lowered her expectations of care, and likes living in a pile of shit for a healthcare system. Sorry. My nose is too sensitive to live in shit.

Do you think there’s anybody in your life who gives a damn about you enough to change your bedpan for you on your next hospital stay? Bong buddies and fbuddies ain’t too good for that, dude.

Sekhmet on January 2, 2010 at 10:33 AM

On New Year’s Eve, my uncle – in his early 60s – fell in a store. He hit his head on something (a shelf, I think), broke his nose, and was knocked unconscious.

The staff at the store called an ambulance and he was taken to one of the best hospitals in the area, where he was treated and released.

The next day – a holiday – someone from the hospital called. A doctor had looked at his x-rays an noticed a blood clot in one of his lungs. He was immediately taken back to the hospital.

Would he get that same treatment under Obamacare?

NO.

In fact, since he’s retired, he’s not really a producer, so he’d probably just be given pain pills and told to go home and hope the clot doesn’t kill him before he can see someone in 3, 4, 5, 6 months.

And lest you think he’s rich, he’s not. He’s got a few financial troubles. But regardless of that, he made sure to purchase health insurance rather than fancy cell phones or cars…because a significant number of people who “can’t afford insurance” often can afford lots of other really nice, but unnecessary things.

And I’ve talked here before about my mother-in-law, who’s in assisted living losing a battle with ALS. Under Obamacare, she’d have been dead last Jan. 1, when she went into respiratory arrest and needed to go on a ventilator. She wouldn’t have gotten to see her 6th grandchild born this past August, nor would we have gotten to share warm memories with her on Christmas Eve, nor would she be able to watch my eldest son grow into a lovely young boy.

So this notion we all have to pay when a very small minority genuinely can’t afford insurance, and the rest who “can’t” merely don’t have the discipline or ability to budget appropriately, is ridiculous. Especially when health care – which, right now is a RIGHT the government must provide – will be rationed for those who need it most.

And I don’t care if I have to work six jobs, I will purchase one or two additional private plans under Obamacare so that my sons and husband don’t have to sit in filthy waiting rooms for hours on end.

Unlike the left, I understand that making sure my family is insured is MY RESPONSIBILITY and NO ONE ELSE’S.

englishqueen01 on January 2, 2010 at 10:34 AM

Dumbass, what you seem to forget is the people who can’t afford insurance or insurance policies that don’t cover treatment or people with pre-existing conditions

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:23 AM

To quote Joe Wilson – YOU LIE!!!

ANYONE, legal or illegal, can get treatment at any clinic right now for free. They walk in and wait, claim they have no money and the clinic is bound by law to treat them. The cost is passed to the next paying customer and the rest of us in higher premiums, the reason for higher medical costs now.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 10:34 AM

I remember years ago an interesting little story about Hilary. She had visited some African country or something and saw how they had their baby clinic set up in a small village. She loved it and said that was what we needed in America.
Here is what it was: The clinic was set up outside under tents. There were rows of tables and all these parents had their babies sitting on tables. The doctor would just walk by the babies like it was an assembly line and yell out orders and conditions to another nurse standing near writing stuff on a large chalkboard. Then another nurse gave shots and medicine.
Hilary just thought this was incredible treatment.

JellyToast on January 2, 2010 at 10:34 AM

When you can’t use $$ to buy the best coverage, you find other ways, including and especially political influence and connections – it happens all the time in Canada, and a lot of folks are PROUD to tell you they did it!

holdfast on January 2, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Yep, I have a well to do acquaintance from England who pays out of pocket for real health care for his family. I’m not sure of the details, but he’s never been in huddled in a NHS line with the commoners.

forest on January 2, 2010 at 10:35 AM

The only flunkie from the Schlussel school of persuasive argumentation is stinking up another thread…

daesleeper on January 2, 2010 at 10:35 AM

Dumbass, what you seem to forget is the people who can’t afford insurance or insurance policies that don’t cover treatment or people with pre-existing conditions who can’t get coverage. Next time get your head out of your ass. I guess you can’t because Darwin,
YOU ARE A COMPLETE IDIOT!!!

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:23 AM

So what you’re saying is the government is going to drive the insurance companies out of business with the goal of a single payer system … right?

I mean your comments are so incoherent and jumbled it’s hard to make heads or tails out of them. First you scream there’s no public option, then you whine about people not being covered. The only way an insurance company can cover these people is to go in the red and charge out the friggin’ ass for their policies.

Government takeover? Yes.

“Public option”? Yes

Does your mamma have to slap you each morning to kick start that slow brain of yours?

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 10:37 AM

I thought having the elite paying exorbitant $ to get top notch care while the plebes wait in line is the kind of thing leftists usually pretend to be against. Your mask is slipping, Norman.

forest on January 2, 2010 at 10:32 AM


ZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ladyingray on January 2, 2010 at 10:40 AM

daesleeper on January 2, 2010 at 10:35 AM

Or paid Acorn employee. He’s smugggling in the 13 year old Nicaraguan hookers this year….of course, Acorn cleaned all those bad apples out.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 10:42 AM

All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

blatantblue on January 2, 2010 at 9:59 AM

“No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?”
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 5

lovingmyUSA on January 2, 2010 at 10:43 AM

Yup,

I commented yesterday and I’ll say it again. My own Doctor, one I have had for several years and whom I have a GREAT relationship with, plans to retire if ObamaCare passes. My Doctor will keep working for 6 months to phase out all the patients, then hit the beach, and I suspect there will be a very LARGE number of doctors following suit, which means we’ll be importing sub-standard physicians and other techs from other countries to make up for the slack.

AW1 Tim on January 2, 2010 at 10:45 AM

So what you’re saying is the government is going to drive the insurance companies out of business with the goal of a single payer system … right?
darwin on January 2, 2010 at 10:37 AM

NO SINCE THERE’S NO PUBLIC OPTION THAT’S WHY BLUE DOG DEMS IN THE SENATE SUPPORT OBAMACARE!!!

First you scream there’s no public option, then you whine about people not being covered.

There’s no contradiction. Obamacare is attempting to get as many people covered at affordable rates without the public option.

Does your mamma have to slap you each morning to kick start that slow brain of yours?

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 10:37 AM

Darwin, for you stupidity isn’t just a preexisting condition but also a terminal disease.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:46 AM

When we are conditioned to consider our older generations as a liability instead of the keepers of our love and history it is just another break down of the family and our way of life. The funny thing is that the government will allow our elders to die early then raise our costs because we will need to do more about our nation’s shorter life expectancy average.

Cindy Munford on January 2, 2010 at 10:50 AM

AW1 Tim on January 2, 2010 at 10:45 AM

More unemployement, poor medical care, less qualified doctors, less nursing staff all adds up to rationing medical care.

A million Acorn workers trolling here can’t convince anyone otherwise.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 10:50 AM

Didn’t you read it and the mother’s conclusion you stupid illiterate?

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:26 AM

Damn, that 8th grade education isn’t working to well for you. Calling names–in an adult forum–you are just so cool, playing with the adults…
Now run and change, your sister wants her dress back…

lovingmyUSA on January 2, 2010 at 10:52 AM

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:06 AM

Norm, can I call you Norm? (cause what I really want to call you would bring the wrath of the banhammer upon me)

If Obamacare is going to be sooooo frackin good, why did the Senate and Congress exempt themselves from it?? Why are they so special that they dont deserve the wonders of this craptastic powergrabbing legislative turd?

Ok and one last question Normie, why are you such a spiteful hateful little man??

mrfixit on January 2, 2010 at 10:52 AM

Mr. Blizter you seem to be the only one using personal attacks to make your point, do you really think that is a winning strategy?

Cindy Munford on January 2, 2010 at 10:53 AM

Socialist health care was implemented in a number of countries and it always creates waiting lists, rationing, “VIP wards” and corruption. Nothing new here.

TomB on January 2, 2010 at 10:54 AM

There’s no contradiction. Obamacare is attempting to get as many people covered at affordable rates without the public option.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:46 AM

BS. At 2.5 trillion dollars to cover an additional 20 million ILLEGAL ALIENS? They admit they are not covering everyone, another Obowma lie exposed on his claim of covering everyone.

At a cost of 125,000 per additional covered, that is not cheap. A family of four WILL pay 16,000 to 20,000 per year for coverage. When families can’t afford the cost for care, the gov’t option kicks in, that is the plan.

What does Acorn pay you to believe this crap?

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 11:00 AM

englishqueen01 on January 2, 2010 at 10:34 AM

Barring a decision by SCOTUS that forbids congress from regulating prices of private insurance there will not be private insurance to purchase. The intent of the regulations is to get to singe payer and bankrupt the evil insurance industry.

chemman on January 2, 2010 at 11:01 AM

Now run and change, your sister wants her dress back…

lovingmyUSA on January 2, 2010 at 10:52 AM

And she wants you to stay out of her make-up too!

lovingmyUSA on January 2, 2010 at 11:02 AM

mrfixit,

Congress is sacrificing by staying on the broken free market health care system. While they sacrifice for us, the rest of us will be allowed the privilege of free health care. I hope you take that into account the next time you criticize our brave and bold leaders.

Howcome on January 2, 2010 at 11:02 AM

The system in Japan is almost identical to the one in Taiwan, which has a population roughly equivalent to Canada. Their healthcare system is a giant black hole of debt (or is that a red hole?) and the only reason it hasn’t bankrupted the country is because of all the gold the KMT took from China when they fled Mao’s revolution (Taiwan has one of the largest gold reserves in Asia, if not the world).

Mindcrime on January 2, 2010 at 11:03 AM

Ah yes, after working for the government for 20 years I took another job. I tell people I am planning on working forever, to save up bribe money for the health care commissars. I know how government works.

PattyJ on January 2, 2010 at 11:05 AM

Norman can’t see the forest for the trees. He thinks the insurance companies administering a government program still qualifies as “private insurance”.

The government dictates what they must cover, what they will charge, who they will cover and what treatment they will pay for. The government also dictates what treatment anyone can receive.

Norman = useless useful idiot.

But he’s ok with that because he’s a touchy feely communist liberal! As we all know, touchy feely communist liberals don’t give a damn what’s destroyed, or whose lives are destroyed, or who dies … as long as they feel good about themselves while it happens!

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Do notice that for lovely ‘public insurance’ to get decent coverage with any sort of timeliness you will need:

- 3 insurance plans and pay about twice what the average US citizen now pays for healthcare.

- pick up ‘necessities’ at the hospital store with a high mark-up, including clean clothes.

- have someone clean your clothes for you and deliver them everyday you are in a hospital.

- while in hospital you will find the staff can’t find time to empty your bedpan.

- if you want to see a specialist you need ‘referals’ if you want to see one in a timely fashion you need ‘connections’.

- if you want a good room in a hospital you need ‘connections’.

- to keep said ‘connections’ you will need to send ‘gifts’ in the way of high priced goods to doctors and nurses, and hospital administrators… including your relatives who have such jobs.

For all of that you get second rate care, at best, if you have the money to do those things. Now picture the people who don’t have money to carry multiple plans, don’t have money to bribe doctors and staff, don’t have money to get clean clothes everyday in hospital and may just need some help so as not to have their own waste near them waiting for lax hospital staff to clean up after them.

That is what the poor get.

Meanwhile, in the US, I see no unburied bodies in the streets and the poor, somehow, seem to get medical care. Considering how quickly people can get bankruptcy protection what, exactly, is the problem with the US system? We used to have well funded charitable hospitals… and still do in many parts of the Nation. You can pay for better care for the poor and indigent and know that the money goes DIRECTLY to such work. And you hold such insitutions accountable with your donations or lack of same. Instead of paying more money to the government for a poorly run, high overhead, low quality, high cost service, why not pay NOW to charitable institutions and help relieve that burden to society?

You can make a difference in those areas that concern you and not by getting government to ‘help’. Do It Yourself and make a difference, an immediate difference, now. It is our responsibility as individuals to recognize our role in society and NOT hand it off to government. Of course that requires getting government out of the way, not making it more intrusive, so that we can exercise our positive liberty to make a stronger society. Strange that so many want to hand positive liberty to government to weaken society and make us beholden to government for our essential liberties.

ajacksonian on January 2, 2010 at 11:08 AM

Darwin, for you stupidity isn’t just a preexisting condition but also a terminal disease.

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:46 AM

^^ Useless useful idiot displaying his tiny cojones.

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 11:08 AM

Dumbass, what you seem to forget is the people who can’t afford insurance or insurance policies that don’t cover treatment or people with pre-existing conditions who can’t get coverage. Next time get your head out of your ass. I guess you can’t because Darwin,
YOU ARE A COMPLETE IDIOT!!!

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:23 AM

Sorry, Norm. I’m voting that you get put off the island.

Ed, I’m now e-mailing the tips.

BuckeyeSam on January 2, 2010 at 11:11 AM

Under this administration, the entire country will become gov’t employees. Work sets you free!!!!

I hope I’m elected the Czar of Medical Bribes and Special Treatment or as Obowma calls it: The Office of Extra Special Medical Coverage for All and Super Happy Treatment at a Super-Duper Low Price for Exceptional Coverage by The Greatest Medial Staff in the History of History.

And in four years when it fails, they’ll blame Bush.

dthorny on January 2, 2010 at 11:14 AM

Makes those death panels sound better and better. At least there will be a way out. s/

jeanie on January 2, 2010 at 11:24 AM

You see? National health care works great… so long as you’re rich enough to afford the premium level of government insurance and to buy multiple additional private policies; so long as you have influential relatives; and so long as you’re willing and able to brazenly bribe the doctors and bureaucrats who run the system.

Ah, this sizes it up wonderfully. Too bad it will be far too late when peeps realize. And oh, all the complaining and regret that will go on! I’ll stick the knife in deeper when I also remind them that most of Congress never even read the HISTORIC bill.

Nice piece, thanks for sharing!

Gob on January 2, 2010 at 11:31 AM

Wow, Norm’s in a tizzy this morning, isn’t he?

Too bad he only saw what he wanted to see in the article – The fact that they have guaranteed minimum insurance and that Mom thinks it’s great. The rest, bah. Not noting the difference between the author’s father’s treatment and author’s friend’s father’s treatment WITHOUT the extra policies, family connections, and cumshaw. Norm seems to think that’s better than what we have now.

Reminds me of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWsx1X8PV_A

JeffWeimer on January 2, 2010 at 11:35 AM

Yes because THERE’S NO PUBLIC OPTION, remember?

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010 at 10:10 AM

No, but there WILL BE A PUBLIC OPTION. This bill just gets the camel’s nose under the tent. Single payer is the ultimate goal as stated my several Dem pols. This bill gets the ball rolling and will be ammended many times in the years to come in a slow and steady march toward single payer.

stvnscott on January 2, 2010 at 11:35 AM

Norman should go the way of simplesimon/getalife.
Personal attacks are over the top.

OmahaConservative on January 2, 2010 at 11:36 AM

darwin on January 2, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Don’t worry Darwin. You’ll win the “survival of the fittest” battle with that Dope Norman Bates. He’s embarrassed himself yet again.

At least someone now can be treated (and rather speedily) if they had a dread disease whether they had coverage or not. Paying for it may be a huge problem, but at least one can be treated without the long lines and potentially dying due to wait. Batesy just wants aggregate misery. All Commies do.

Gob on January 2, 2010 at 11:41 AM

Howcome on January 2, 2010 at 11:02 AM

“there are none so blind, as those who would not see”

I would advise you, bud, to buy a clue. They do not exempt themselves from this crap sandwich to sacrifice for a noble cause, they do it cause they know how aweful it it will be. They are like Marie Antionette(sp), saying “Let them eat cake”. They care not one wit for us ‘proles, the sooner you realize and accept that fact, the sooner you might grow up.

mrfixit on January 2, 2010 at 11:41 AM

My neighbor, a good guy mostly, really got into this national health care debate and he was sending us e-mails all of the time about how we needed to get a national health care system. One time he told me that we needed national health care system because it would be based on need rather than how much you could pay. I just laughed in his face. I told him that under such a system that best place to be was either in the government or to have a close friend or relative who worked for the govenment. They would never want under such a system based on “need”.

PackerBronco on January 2, 2010 at 11:44 AM

Norman Blizter on January 2, 2010

You keep proving your ugliness over and over. What a sad unhappy soulless goon.

CWforFreedom on January 2, 2010 at 11:47 AM

I’d like to add that once Government has TOTAL control of the health care system (and you know they eventually will) people tend to forget that once you have to pay premiums to the Gov’t system, this will give the Gov’t CARTE BLANCHE to garnish one’s wages if for whatever reason the person CANNOT afford to keep paying their premiums to the Government.

Just ask someone what happens when they default on GOVERNMENT student loans. Eventually, the big hand of Gov’t WILL garnish wages…even if one is living paycheck to paycheck. Peeps tend to forget this.

Gob on January 2, 2010 at 11:48 AM

I thought having the elite paying exorbitant $ to get top notch care while the plebes wait in line is the kind of thing leftists usually pretend to be against.

But isn’t this part of the Dem’s plan to “fund” Obamacare? You know, the tax on so called “Cadillac plans?”

If Obamacare is going to be sooooo frackin good, why did the Senate and Congress exempt themselves from it??

And why the special treatment for Nebraska and Florida, and others? The supposed party of Fairness is about anything but…

karl9000 on January 2, 2010 at 11:50 AM

Envision the college TA that you had in the past. In the future a large percentage of your doctors will speak as well. Good luck America. You with buddies in the government will not need my wishes of luck because you and I know your care will be more than equal.

CWforFreedom on January 2, 2010 at 11:51 AM

That is a horror story. Try this one on for size.

The national institutes of health is a research organization with extensive hospital facilities. Care in the hospitals is free and they only take a limited number of patients with diseases that they are studying. Most of the diseases they study are life threatening and don’t have reliably successful treatment regimes. My friend worked in the melanoma ward at NIH for many years. Melanoma is one of the easier cancers to detect but it still kills one fifth of the people in the United States who contract it. The melanoma patients at NIH were among those for whom non experimental treatments had not worked and were dying.

When Gore was Vice President, his mother in law lived with the Gore family because she needed constant care i.e. watching to keep her away from liquor since she was a severe alcoholic. What did they do with her when the Gores left town? She was admitted to the melanoma ward for expensive free baby sitting. At that time that ward was doing break through research on an important disease.

burt on January 2, 2010 at 11:52 AM

Thank you for the post. Hope your father has a quick recovery.

unlisted on January 2, 2010 at 11:55 AM

Reminds me of that movie about the Canadian health care system, barbarian something. Done by a devout socialist who was shocked to discover there are 2 health care systems in Canada’s “national” health care. One for the peasants and the other for politicians, celebrities, and CEO’s like his father.

Yep, I have a well to do acquaintance from England who pays out of pocket for real health care for his family. I’m not sure of the details, but he’s never been in huddled in a NHS line with the commoners.

forest on January 2, 2010 at 10:35 AM

Awesome system, I wish I could pay double to avoid the stench of commoners. Yeah I do know about Britain’s private health insurance after reading an article by a WSJ reporter who vacationed in Britain and only hs private health care saved his wife’s life from the NHS (iirc blood clot in the leg moved to the brain and needed immediate treatment but NHS either wasn’t or couldn’t be interested).

jarodea on January 2, 2010 at 11:58 AM

mrfixit,

I thought I wrote that with enough over the top kool-aid mess on my lips that you would detect the sarcasm. I don’t blame you though, we have plenty of kool-aid drunk morons around here it becomes hard to tell if it’s sarcasm or their reality. Anyways, your point about exempting themselves is still one of the best indicators of what they really think of this mess.

Howcome on January 2, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Obama and health care reminds me of an apple commercial. Obama is PC… Mac would be the people.

http://movies.apple.com/media/us/mac/getamac/2009/apple-mvp-broken_promises-us-20091023_480x272.mov

nobleclem on January 2, 2010 at 12:01 PM

You keep proving your ugliness over and over. What a sad unhappy soulless goon.

CWforFreedom on January 2, 2010 at 11:47 AM

That’s what happens when you challenge someone’s religion. Try pointing out man-made global warming is a fraud and watch Norm append Gaiahu Akbar at the end of his increasingly nonsensical comments.

jarodea on January 2, 2010 at 12:02 PM

…. Meanwhile, in the US, I see no unburied bodies in the streets and the poor, somehow, seem to get medical care … ajacksonian on January 2, 2010 at 11:08 AM

.

Under Obamacare the DSH’s will be defunded, and the burden of Medicaid will be passed on in a greater portion to the States. Currently a good portion of the “uninsured” are people who just won’t sign up for Medicaid/or their kids for SCHIP, those same people won’t sign up for Obamacare. But the difference is they will still come in for care and their won’t be a funding mechanism to reimburse the facilities who provide the care. It’s meant to bankrupt the Charity hospitals, and maybe even shut down our county facilities – talk about a crisis.

Mr. Blitzer you know perfectly well our country already has a process in place under the HIPPA laws to protect individuals with pre-existing conditions, you can do a search on the hot air archives as many posters have helped you with this numerous times. You have also been made aware of the network of charity clinics and state high risk insurance pools. Frankly your tantrum here acting like you don’t understand how this works is absurd.

Dafydd ab Hugh
Thank you for this insightful first person look into the system in Japan. It sounds like citizens with only the government plan also get aides instead of professionally licensed nurses to care for them. The Dr.’s office situation your wife described is worse than our medically indigent have in the clinics here.

batterup on January 2, 2010 at 12:06 PM

Now run and change, your sister wants her dress back…

lovingmyUSA on January 2, 2010 at 10:52 AM
And she wants you to stay out of her make-up too!

lovingmyUSA on January 2, 2010 at 11:02 AM

HAHAHAHA!!

ladyingray on January 2, 2010 at 12:07 PM

jarodea on January 2, 2010 at 11:58 AM

The movie is The Barbarian Invasions. Rent it now, it’s really good.

PattyJ on January 2, 2010 at 12:21 PM

The movie is The Barbarian Invasions. Rent it now, it’s really good.

PattyJ on January 2, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Thanks, I have, a long time ago now. I suppose a second viewing wouldn’t be so bad.

jarodea on January 2, 2010 at 12:27 PM

The funny thing is that the “Normans” of the world whine and scream about “the poor”, but never seem to reach into their own pockets.

How many people could Soros buy health insurance for with one year’s worth of what he wastes on Media Matters?

How many “poor” people could be insured for what Pelosi spends annually on her vineyard?

Norman is just another one of those welfare moochers who wants the rest of us to pay his bills.

northdallasthirty on January 2, 2010 at 12:30 PM

“If Obamacare is going to be sooooo frackin good, why did the Senate and Congress exempt themselves from it??
mrfixit on January 2, 2010 at 10:52 AM”

Great question mrfixit!
Back in the 70′s, I’d taken time off from college and was working for an auto dealership. We had a mechanic and his wife who emigrated from Poland. Their sponsors here in Minnesota took them to a grocery store to buy groceries. The wife became visibly shaken and nervous. When asked why she said that she knew she wasn’t allowed to be in a “Party officials store” after seeing all the full shelves with an incredible variety of products, especially fruit, vegetables and meat. She was used to what was offered to the rest of the citizens of Poland who weren’t Party members.
Hey, Norm, another question: If Obamacare is the way to go, why is it that 80-90% of act doesn’t take effect until 2013-2014? Why wait for years? Why not have Obamacare take effect immediately?
Give me an answer would ya buddy?

Amendment X on January 2, 2010 at 1:26 PM

Imagine single payer in a country three times the population of Japan, without the population density. Oh just imagine.

This country needs to focus on subsidizing the education of more physician assistants, more FP’s and surgeons. Change the structure of medical education so PA’s can have a path to a speciality as they practice to insure an adequate supply of specialists,

The problem is not just payment for services, it is delivery of services and the bottlenecks all the socialists are experiencing.

There is a solution, an outside the box one. But socialists don’t want solutions, they want control.

eaglesdontflock on January 2, 2010 at 1:54 PM

This article also ignores a critical fact:

In Japan, the hospitals are going bankrupt.

If Japan’s structure is close to what we were going to implement with Obama Care then some critical issues are raised:

1) Health Care access has been extremely diminished for all but the rich who can afford to buy multiple expensive policies and outright bribe the doctors and nurses (and still get sub-standard care compared to the US).

2) Actual health Care costs have also gone up significantly, even for the rich. I emphasize costs for a reason: costs do not equal price.

3) The argument that it hurts our doctors and medical systems has been validated (see the two links… their medical infastructure is going bankrupt). Is this what the system will look like in 10 years: hospitals going bankrupt because they aren’t receiving enough to cover costs while those younger than 50 are waiting in long lines with no guarantee that they’ll see a doctor?

4) What good is it if the government’s willing to pay for 100 percent of my healthcare when there’s no doctors to see and no hospitals to care for my ailing health. In other words: when will this system make healthcare unavailable for any price?

Chaz706 on January 2, 2010 at 2:14 PM

Poor, poor Norman, as he watches his utopia crumble around him, and all his hopes and dreams get proven to be false, he finds a way in insult someone in every single one of his posts.

He couldn’t be more proof that when losing the argument, liberals resort to name-calling and crying.

uknowmorethanme on January 2, 2010 at 2:19 PM

How many people could Soros buy health insurance for with one year’s worth of what he wastes on Media Matters?

Exactly. $10 million to write a blog post about Breitbart finding Bertha Lewis on the WH sign-in sheet.

How many insurance policies could that buy for the poor? Many. But no, liberals hord their money. NEVER give to charity, NEVER pay more in taxes then they are obligated. NEVER put 38 cents into the Salvation Army pail. Hell, the libs who go to church probably don’t even tithe.

uknowmorethanme on January 2, 2010 at 2:23 PM

Daffyd:

You missed a good opportunity to point out that Britain does have private insurance, but it can only be used to supplement NHS coverage. It is typically purchased by private employers as a ‘VIP’ benefit (and is fully taxed), and is used to “jump ahead of the queue” for obtaining medical services, whereas the plebes with NHS-only are forced to wait.

SWLiP on January 2, 2010 at 2:40 PM

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