Volume 35, Issue 1
COUNTY'S NEWS MONTHLY - FREE PRESS
| Why The Republicans Were Right To Reject "Healthcare Reform" For All The Wrong Reasons|
By Stephen Simac
rocks in a roadway the Republicans stood firm against "socialized
medicine, at least if it's not for seniors, the military and
themselves. The Public Option promised by House Speaker Pelosi to shore
up the liberal base was drowned in the bathtub as the Senate and
Congressional bills coalesce into some rough beast.
A dose of reality is the best medicine. It's not about "health care",
only about paying for the crippling costs of medical treatment for
Americans. An aging population getting fatter and sicker ever younger.
Caused by the American Way of Life (AWOL).
Seventy Five % of medical costs are from epidemics of chronic,
preventable diseases. Paying for their pills or cutting off
diabetic limbs can't touch that.
fixing the cause, trillions thrown at repairing the results won't
work. However, that's not why the Repubs are adamantly opposed to
It wasn't a sudden shyness about
deficits, for they insisted that President Obama obey General
McChrystalball's commands for more troops in the "graveyard of
Empires". That will bleed the treasury white, without making us
safer from our greatest threat, AWOL.
It can't be to save the best medical care system in the world. The more
than 2 trillion a year spent on medical care in the states delivers
worse outcomes at twice the cost of all other western nations.
wasn't to support the housing market. The American Journal of Medicine
found that 60% of bankruptcies in the US were caused by medical
expenses, whether insured or not.
lower medical insurance rates for Americans, or they'd have demanded
Medicare for All. That's already the largest insurance company in the
country. It manages with only 3% overhead instead of ten times
that for private insurance companies, which also post 25% profit
margins. The medical insurance industry will pocket a quarter
trillion dollars this year, while millions of sick and injured
Americans go belly up with debt.
It wasn't to
dance with the medical services goliaths that bought them. Democrat
"reform" plans will deliver tens of millions of new customers with
federal subsidies attached to the insurance conglomerates,
pharmaceutical behemoths, medical treatment armies with equipment and
support trains chugging behind.
Real reform must
improve Americans health. It will require transforming AWOL, more
sacred than Revelations to the masses. Politicians have no stomach for
jumping off the gravy train, even as it heads off the economic cliff.
AN OUNCE IN TIME SAVES NINE
Dr. Dean Ornish, founder of Preventive Medicine Research Institute in
Sausalito has shown that diet and lifestyle changes could cut sickcare
costs in half in a year based on his reversal of heart disease in 2,000
Dr. Michael Roizen of
the Cleveland Clinic, estimates that 80% of medical costs could be
reduced with evidence based health habits. Dr. Andrew Weil,
director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of
Arizona, believes we need a new culture of health and a complete
transformation of medicine in this country to avoid being inundated by
a silver tsunami of unhealthy boomers.
Len Saputo has published a plan for "radical health care reform based
on the integral health medicine model." This would mix other licensed
health providers into the current medical monopoly.
Just like Single Payer advocates, these doctors were kept off the
"reform" table. Yes, Virginia, republicans were right to oppose
'reform" plans that will blow 25 times more money on disease treatment
than real prevention. But that's not why they just said No! It
was purely political, a fight to the death between red and blue.
They were gambling on repeating the 1994 Harry and Louise roll again,
when they killed reform, regained the majority and hung Gingrich around
Clinton's neck. The dems are throwing loaded dice, hoping that any plan
will convince voters they care.
HEALING POWER OF PRAYER
Congress isn't debating or addressing the causes of spiraling medical
costs. Their resistance to changing AWOL is symbolized by scheming to
harness younger Americans with the unbearable burden of paying for
conventional medical care for sick, aging Americans. This is
sheer fantasy when future earnings, much less the health of ballooning
younger Americans is considered.
steppers would say the way out of this mess starts with admitting that
we've got a problem and need some higher power for outside assistance.
We have enshrined AWOL, a sickening, stressful, unbalanced,
unsustainable system as a false god. Because it glitters at the top of
the pyramid, the base lusts to be gilded with their stardust, feasting
on toxic waste, accumulating heavy metals and debts that can never be
We could save hundreds of billions from
medical care by improving Americans health. It can be done without
saddling our descendents with crushing debts and obligations.
Charging mitigation fees for products and practices known to cause
medical problems will pay for their externalized costs to society,
instead of inflating profits of death, disease and injury merchants.
A recent UCLA study found that health complications from obesity costs
California $41 billion a year. Sweetened beverages, greasy
foods, psychotropic medications, hormone mimicking chemicals and
sedentary lifestyles cause obesity, the new normal for Americans.
We love to blame the victim, especially fat ones who smoke, but humans
crave sweet, greasy, salty foodstuffs, just like other addictive
substances, more so when under stress.
once ensured meeting nutritional needs. Former FDA commissioner David
Kessler revealed that Food product companies have been exploiting
innate biological signals by intentionally "loading and layering"
sugar, fat and salt, designing in color, scent, mouth appeal and
advertising their "bliss bombs" to hook consumers into overeating any
time/ any where.
These products are
physiologically as addictive and harmful as any of the illegal drugs
we've spent trillions to eradicate, unsuccessfully. Maybe we should
have just taxed them to pay for their medical costs.
The economic cost to California from alcohol is $38 billion a year, The
Marin Institute calculated. The legislature recently voted down a
proposed nickel a drink tax. Refusing to charge the vast majority of
drinkers a dime a day more to help pay for the medical costs of
uncontrolled alcoholics is that much more profit for the brewers,
bottlers and merchants. Not that it would have gone directly to pay for
these costs, any more than tobacco taxes do.
Burning fossil fuels costs the US at least $120 billion a year in
medical costs and premature deaths, the National Academy of Sciences
found. Burning coal for electricity in older dirtier power plants is
the biggest source of this externalized cost. Motor vehicle exhaust,
primarily from petroleum based fuels costs society almost $60 billion.
That doesn't even include traffic accidents, the major killer of
Americans fewer than forty.
GLOBAL COOLING PLAN
Medical mitigation fees on coal, gasoline, diesel and bunker oil that
help pay for Medicare for All, will reduce imports of terrorists oil
and slow global warming more than any cap and trade scheme. Coal would
be prohibitive if charged for the health care costs of its spewed
mercury, radiation, heavy metals, and carbon soot. Nuclear already is
prohibitive without massive subsidies. Add in the costs of increased
cancers, heart disease, and pregnancy miscarriages downwind and
investors will be flocking towards photovoltaic and windmills.
There is no shortage of products and practices with solid evidence for
charging medical mitigation fees. Most are fundamentals of AWOL,
so ending public subsidies for their true costs will be fiercely and
bitterly opposed. Yet politicians are desperate for new sources of
income, that aren't taxes. Mitigation fees only require a simple
majority of politicians in California. Paying for medical costs
directly with fees, will free up many billions in the budget to pay for
future pension costs.
AWOL advocates will
very likely die off sooner than abstainers, although there are no
guarantees in life, only warranties. There's no evidence that simply
paying for conventional disease care will make Americans healthier.
CALL ME IN THE MORNING
Although Harvard Medical School estimated that 45, 000 Americans died
in 2005 due to lack of medical insurance, medical treatment is our
third leading cause of death. The Institute of Medicine estimated that
over a hundred thousand Americans a year died from medical incompetence
in the 90's.
Few of their recommendations
to reduce medical havoc have been adopted. None of the Congressional
"reform" plans include the most critical changes to reduce deaths and
injuries. This year a Hearst Company study concluded that 200,000 die a
year die from iatrogenic causes now.
rates for all causes increase in direct proportion to the number of MDs
in an area. This is partially attributable to medical "errors", but Dr.
Goffman, a retired U.C. Berkeley professor blamed medical radiology for
up to 80% increases in heart disease and cancers he found in his
massive study of death rates related to doctor density in counties
across America. This was even before the routine use of CAT scans,
which deliver 1000 times more radiation than a chest x-ray. There's no
safe dose and radiation damage is cumulative.
Based on death rates and electrification from the early
decades of the 20th century Dr. Samuel Milham, an internationally
honored epidemiologist, linked electro-magnetic fields from
non-ionizing radiation with 60% higher mortality rates from cancer,
cardiovascular disease, diabetes and suicide in electrified cities over
then powerless rural areas. Filthy air and constant noise from motor
vehicle traffic are toxic long term, while traffic accidents have
immediate health impacts.
co-factors and synergistic effects from AWOL causing the many health
problems associated with it. Many have been identified
conclusively, but the political will to charge them for it has not.
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