A Modest Proposal Issues Beyond Palo Alto, posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 11, 2009 at 7:49 pm Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
A MODEST PROPOSAL
When I was a lad -
There were for profit hospitals, often owned by doctors.
There were fraternal hospitals, maintained for association members.
There were company hospitals, like the SP hospital in Frisco, for employees.
There were religious charity hospitals
And there were the County hospitals, often called pest houses, for the indigents.
While it may have happened, I never heard of anyone being denied immediate medical assistance because he could not pay.
Then things changed -
After the war, both the capabilities and expectations of medicine were raised. The cost of supplying the greater capabilities was borne by employers, Medicare and like programs, but, to catch the ones missed by other programs, laws required facilities to admit anyone, irrespective of ability to pay. Facilities had to pay the costs of that treatment by surcharges on funded treatment.
MY MODEST PROPOSAL
The admit all policy would continue as today, but the cost of their treatment, plus a reasonable profit and overhead, would be paid by State and/or Federal government. Taxing agencies would then examine the income and assets of the patient to determine ability to pay, and collect payment from those capable by a surcharge on income and a levy on assets. No new agencies would be required and the level of care would be maintained. The only losers would be the free loaders and those lusting after employment in a new, sure to grow agency.
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 12, 2009 at 3:07 am Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
Doctors with large practices often owned clinics, with necessary ancillary functions, and these facilities were often called doctor's hospitals. As an observer of some present day non-profits, I can attest non profit does not translate to non-money making since executive salaries and benefits can be quite generous. Are we to suppose that law associations and, perish the thought, Professional Engineering associations are likewise unethical? I believe Ralph Nader, much of whose sustenance is wrested from college students, prided his collection of a modest income - of course when your salary is just walking around money...
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 12, 2009 at 12:13 pm Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
And how about them "Illegal" toll collectors. You know, they catch you walking to your car and collect a toll of all you have, damn gumint interferes [not enough] with them, too. Funny thing about laws, they are the law.
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 12, 2009 at 1:47 pm Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
Paul, we are on opposite sides on almost everything, possibly by your design. I must assume, then, you are in favor of the private tax collection that is the centerpiece of the Obama energy program, Cap & Trade, about the only obeisance to private enterprise in the democrat platform.
Posted by Paul, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Aug 12, 2009 at 4:37 pm
Of course I favor cap & trade. Those who can't afford to pollute have no business doing it in a capitalist state. Besides, it's another marketable, tradeable item upon which fortunes can be built. Where's your capitalist instinct anyway?
But please tell me why you are in favor of the hidden state tax on beverage containers.
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 12, 2009 at 4:40 pm Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
Now that is just silly, "leader", and 5 battle stars, the C.I.B. and a special little desecration I committed on the main street of Pyongyang probably ruined my chance either of dancing with Dear Leader a la Halfbright or swapping phone numbers a la PlayBill. "Yes, makin' mock o' uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an' they're starvation cheap;..."
I suspect Paul and his ilk are the JV of the groups that sit around drinking their daddy's beer or their mommy's gin, planning the zinger that will reduce Bill Wattenburg or Rush to a quivering mush. Kids, if you ever get a day job, don't quit it.
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 13, 2009 at 4:03 am Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
Paul, Martin Luther railed against an early version of Cap & Trade. This is not trade, this is rent seeking. I have no problem with a legitimate deposit that reflects the value of the object, bu nothing I have ever said indicates any concurrence in the practice as presently legislated, one that makes us a nation of trash pickers.
Posted by leader, a resident of Stanford, on Aug 13, 2009 at 6:41 am
Looks like Walter is having a conversation with himself, while he reminisces about his glory days in DPRK (which of course only happened in his dreams)--he then throws some more of patented petty insults, which no one takes seriously--come on, Walter, time for your meds.
Posted by Perspective, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 13, 2009 at 10:40 am
Walter, back to the thread, interesting idea.
I will have to think about it. I have to admit, I am still hoping for reform, not destruction, of our health care system so that we defend what works right and fix what doesn't.
1) Let me buy health insurance that covers what I want to pay for, not what I don't, like insurance payments for addiction, language translation, chiropractors, abortions, most end-of-life prolongment procedures I am not interested in.
2) Lower liability suits and payouts for medical "malpractice" so I am not required to pay for so much testing for obvious conclusions.
3) Require all who wish to take advantage of a privilege, like driving, show proof of health insurance before being given a driver's license.
These 3 measures alone would return sanity to our insurance system, lower costs overall, and cause most of the uninsured, who have chosen not to pay for insurance they can afford or have chosen not to sign up for the govt insurance they are eligible for, to become insured.
Once the dust settles on these minor changes, we can address who is REALLY left of the uninsured citizens of the USA, and do something about THEM. But, I suspect a lot of them would now be able to afford health insurance, since they could buy much less expensive insurance that covers the basics at the VW bug level, instead of being forced to pay for Jaguar level insurance.
With the power Democrats have now, they could easily do a lot of good by implementing the above measures, but I suspect the goal is not to actually help anyone, but to gain control and power..and none of these suggestions achieve that goal.
Ya know, cuz Obama is so much more qualified to know when a kid needs a tonsillectomy, an asthmatic needs to be hospitalized, or a diabetic needs an amputation. Can't wait for him and all the other bureaucrats without medical degrees to make these decisions for us to "save money"
Posted by Paul, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Aug 13, 2009 at 12:18 pm
"I suspect Paul and his ilk are the JV of the groups that sit around drinking their daddy's beer or their mommy's gin, planning the zinger that will reduce Bill Wattenburg or Rush to a quivering mush."
Uh-uh. It's much more fun to deliver actual zingers that reduce their targets to sputtering incoherency, to wit: "Paul, Martin Luther railed against an early version of Cap & Trade..."
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 14, 2009 at 2:53 am Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
Paul, there are elements of socialism in many religions, but with one exception they are voluntary organizations. You will be a better man when you can comprehend my citations, but if you chose invincible ignorance that is your right. I seek no acolytes.
Posted by Paul, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Aug 14, 2009 at 9:54 am
"Paul, there are elements of socialism in many religions, but with one exception they are voluntary organizations."
Sorry, but your point escapes me again.
"You will be a better man when you can comprehend my citations, but if you chose invincible ignorance that is your right."
The moment when the scales fall from the eyes is archetypically not a good one for the messenger. I believe you mean I will be a more agreeable correspondent when I adopt your point of view. I've tried, six times before breakfast this very morning, but invincible logic and instinct for orderly thinking always intervene.
Posted by anon., a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Aug 18, 2009 at 1:55 pm
remove health insurance and divert all money paid for the first year to the government, and institute a single payer system to paid with tax money. divide the cost of health care between all who pay taxes in a progressive way.
at the end of the year look at the stats.
over time we will realize the real costs are of having a economy built on delivering unhealthy food and lifestyles to people and we will get tired of paying for that.
if we got rid of fast food and promoted locally grown food how much more employment would there be and how much more healthy would we end up?
All the cooperatives mentioned at the top do not take advantage of the economy of scale.
We are afraid to make health care free because of the sickness we make so much money off of and the bad habits that we make money off of by training people to do things that are bad for them.
This will happen sooner or later anyway, what we are doing now is unsustainable and is dragging us down farther ever year.
Posted by Perspective, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Aug 19, 2009 at 6:32 am
Anon: Your collectivist beliefs are incredible: and thus were born the great societies of Nazi Germany and Italy, and Communist Russia, China, Cuba, the emerging Venezuela.
If I hadn't had kids, I wouldn't care what your Party did to this country. I am too old to have much of it affect me. But, those of us with kids care enough to want them to have the same opportunities we had, so will keep fighting those horrific plans of yours, the same plans that seem to crop up every 30 years here, and have already ripened and rotted in most other countries.
Too bad the "progressives" like Dean, Schumer, Pelosi, Reid, Obama, et al don't learn history. Their leadership will destroy the Democrat party, like the elitist RINO Repubs destroyed the Repub party.
Just as well, it is forcing the Repubs to wake up, and if the Dems keep going on this socialist path, they will take the same lesson. This country now has more self-proclaimed Conservatives than Liberals in EVERY State, now that the party of "liberal" has revealed itself to be a statist collectivist party, so the Dem party is in self-destruct mode also.
The Repubs got it wrong, time after time. Every time they saw the plummeting numbers about how the country was heading in the wrong direction, they thought it meant we wanted to go MORE left....the Dems are making the same mistake.