Author Topic: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare  (Read 5585 times)

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Offline sonofasailor

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #90 on: March 20, 2017, 10:45:47 AM »
two packs of monkeys

Good lord is that what we are? Hasn't sapien evolved a bit?
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Offline durhamlad

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #91 on: March 20, 2017, 11:24:05 AM »
My simple take on this is that healthcare companies both providers and insurance companies continually strive for growth. Growth in profits and value for their shareholders is the only thing that matters, and that is the same ideology as a cancer cell.
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Offline jimbocz

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #92 on: March 20, 2017, 11:40:13 AM »
I disagree that health care has to be a zero sum game, I'm happy for the government to even out the costs for everyone.  And surprisingly , nobody actually has their food taken off their table to do it.  People aren't punished by paying taxes, it's the common sense thing you have to do in order to live in society.

Nobody thinks the NHS is perfect, but it's popularity in the UK is undeniable. 

Offline Texas2uk

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #93 on: March 20, 2017, 02:34:00 PM »
Good lord is that what we are? Hasn't sapien evolved a bit?
'Two packs of monkeys, two countries, or anything else in competition with anything else'... seems to imply that while we are evolved well beyond that, the same laws of nature define the world in which we live simply because we exist. Just like the laws of physics just exist regardless if we understand them and cannot be legislated into something different because we don't like how they work.

Offline Texas2uk

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #94 on: March 20, 2017, 02:40:40 PM »
I disagree that health care has to be a zero sum game, I'm happy for the government to even out the costs for everyone.  And surprisingly , nobody actually has their food taken off their table to do it.  People aren't punished by paying taxes, it's the common sense thing you have to do in order to live in society.

Nobody thinks the NHS is perfect, but it's popularity in the UK is undeniable.

It is more like calculus. It is zero sum in the moment, but variable over time. There is only X capacity to be distributed to society. You can't wave a magic wand and quickly increase capacity. In order to take on more patients with existing capacity, you must by definition either lower quality, decrease access, or both.

Over time you can absolutely increase capacity, which is precisely what I advocate as the best way to reduce cost through competition to make it more affordable while maintaining access. But, we're not even attempting to do anything about capacity. Instead, we're trying to force lower payments on doctors and force doctors to see so many patients that they might maybe get five minutes with someone, after a long delay waiting for an appointment. Competent care cannot be provided in that manner.

Offline Nan D.

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #95 on: March 20, 2017, 11:20:18 PM »
Just for argument's sake, don't you think it a bit odd that almost every other developed country has some form of universal healthcare, while the USA does not?  I guess they all most be completely unaware of how the economics of healthcare works.  ::)


https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/06/heres-a-map-of-the-countries-that-provide-universal-health-care-americas-still-not-on-it/259153/

Offline jimbocz

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #96 on: March 21, 2017, 11:46:25 AM »
Just for argument's sake, don't you think it a bit odd that almost every other developed country has some form of universal healthcare, while the USA does not?  I guess they all most be completely unaware of how the economics of healthcare works.  ::)


https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/06/heres-a-map-of-the-countries-that-provide-universal-health-care-americas-still-not-on-it/259153/

It's even more odd that all those people in England and Canada put up with food being taken off their table in order to provide health care for their neighbors. 

Sarcasm aside, I think all of these limited government, every man for himself arguments are pretty tired.  Most people are willing to pay taxes to support the poorest in society so they aren't begging on the streets like India. 

Offline Texas2uk

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #97 on: March 21, 2017, 12:44:56 PM »
It's even more odd that all those people in England and Canada put up with food being taken off their table in order to provide health care for their neighbors. 

Sarcasm aside, I think all of these limited government, every man for himself arguments are pretty tired.  Most people are willing to pay taxes to support the poorest in society so they aren't begging on the streets like India.
There's a difference between paying taxes and paying excessive taxes to the point that the county's economy is restrained for the long term with real direct impact to jobs, opportunity, and poverty.

There's also a difference when government extends further and further what its functions should be, and needs to spend ever more money to pay for its own self directed assumption of ever more decisions in and control over people's lives.

But, you're misunderstanding my argument if you think I only mean taxes paid by those that can afford it are the problem. That is a problem, but it isn't the only one.

It is also a problem at the bottom of the spectrum. Not the people on Medicaid, but the working poor struggling to get by with too few resources to cover their basic necessities. Before Obamacare, there were deciding between health insurance and necessities like food. With Obamacare, you're taking that decision out of their hands and ordering them to choose health insurance over things they might need even more to get by. And you know what income ranges elect to pay the penalty rather than get insurance? Yeah, the working poor who cannot sacrifice things like food & housing for health insurance.

NHS doesn't solve that. It doesn't matter if they're paying health insurance premiums or higher taxes or a penalty. It all ends up in the same position. Which is not enough to get by.

My arguments are not primarily about oh the poor rich people having to support everyone else. It is that socialized programs that remove individual choice while levying cost on the public harm poor people. Not normally the very poorest, but the working poor struggling to get by. It harms them and pushes even more people into poverty rather than letting them make their own decisions. That may very well average out to a slightly lower cost for society as a whole, but at the cost of trampling a lot of helpless people and taking away individual freedom. That's not an endowment of new rights nor within the character of either of these nations.


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Offline jimbocz

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Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #98 on: March 21, 2017, 01:32:46 PM »


NHS doesn't solve that. It doesn't matter if they're paying health insurance premiums or higher taxes or a penalty. It all ends up in the same position. Which is not enough to get by.


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There you go again, assuming that people in the UK are starving because the government has forced them to buy healthcare rather then food.  It's just not reality here.  There's a small number of people who are so poor that food is a problem, but that's a different problem that won't be solved by dismantling the NHS. 

Without a layer of insurance companies skimming their share out of the middle, the NHS is broadly doing OK.   You'd be amazed how much freedom you have when you don't have to worry about health care.  If that's socialism, I'll have some more please.

God knows what's going on in the US, I can't comment other than to say WTF.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2017, 01:36:43 PM by jimbocz »

Offline jimbocz

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #99 on: March 21, 2017, 02:05:18 PM »
By the way, if you think that the amount of taxes that are being paid in the UK is restraining the economy, you are mistaken.  Corporate tax evasion is greeted with a wink and a laugh by the Tories.  For example, Cafe Nero paid no taxes at all on 25 million pounds of profit:

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4266122/amp/Caffe-Nero-pays-no-corporation-tax-25m-profit.html

Just two years ago, I personally paid more taxes than Facebook. 

That's not excessive taxes.

Offline ksand24

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #100 on: March 21, 2017, 02:15:16 PM »
There's a small number of people who are so poor that food is a problem, but that's a different problem that won't be solved by dismantling the NHS.

Exactly - those people who are so poor that food is a problem aren't even paying for the NHS anyway, because they don't earn enough to pay taxes.

They get all their NHS care for free, so the small amount they do have can go towards food and clothes and a roof over their head, and they don't have to worry about what will happen if they get sick.

Offline durhamlad

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #101 on: March 21, 2017, 03:36:06 PM »
Exactly - those people who are so poor that food is a problem aren't even paying for the NHS anyway, because they don't earn enough to pay taxes.

They get all their NHS care for free, so the small amount they do have can go towards food and clothes and a roof over their head, and they don't have to worry about what will happen if they get sick.

+1

This year any individual with income below £11,000 (~$14,000) pays no income tax.
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Offline Texas2uk

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #102 on: March 21, 2017, 10:49:55 PM »
There you go again, assuming that people in the UK are starving because the government has forced them to buy healthcare rather then food.  It's just not reality here.  There's a small number of people who are so poor that food is a problem, but that's a different problem that won't be solved by dismantling the NHS. 

Without a layer of insurance companies skimming their share out of the middle, the NHS is broadly doing OK.   You'd be amazed how much freedom you have when you don't have to worry about health care.  If that's socialism, I'll have some more please.

God knows what's going on in the US, I can't comment other than to say WTF.
I'm not advocating dismantling NHS. But you have to understand that people pay much higher taxes in the UK, which does leave them much less disposable income to pay for necessities, oh like housing. But food in fact does cost substantially more. And the tax rates generally do reduce the velocity of money on the consumer side and limit capital expenditure on the employer side, such that there is substantially less economic activity for the salary points & less and lower paying jobs to go around as a result. It is fine for the society to make the decision to have socialized medicine, but there are cascading economic consequences that harm lots of people. Again, it generally is not the absolute poorest, but the rung just above them, the working poor, who are living paycheck to paycheck struggling to get by and do not have enough to meet their necessities. You are putting more people in that situation and giving them less choices on how to deal with it, but at least they have healthcare. If that's the decision the country wants to take them that's fine, but understand it and own it.


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Offline ksand24

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Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #103 on: March 21, 2017, 11:25:13 PM »
But we don't pay much higher taxes in the U.K. - that's the point. Yes, income tax is a bit higher than in the US, but not by that much.

Those who are living paycheck to paycheck are barely paying any taxes anyway, so your argument has no basis in the UK... you can't claim that those people are being put in a situation where they are paying such high taxes that they can't afford food... because they aren't actually paying any taxes (or are only paying a small amount in tax), and they may well qualify for government benefits to give them even cheaper rent/bills/food/healthcare.

We have less disposable income in the UK because overall salaries are lower, not because we pay massively high taxes. That's a problem with salaries in general, not with taxes.

A lot of food actually costs LESS in the U.K. than in the US, as do things like broadband internet and cell phone contracts.

As mentioned previously, I have a fairly decent salary with a good government benefits scheme - in fact, I work with the military (I brief air force pilots). I pay more towards my pension and student loan repayments each month than I contribute towards the NHS in taxes. Despite my so-called 'high taxes', I have more than enough disposable income (about half of my monthly salary is disposable).

In the US I would earn maybe 1.5 times my UK salary doing the same job, but I would likely have to pay thousands in health insurance per year, and my food would generally cost more, so I might not actually have much more, if any more, disposable income than I do in the UK.


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Offline Texas2uk

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Re: Americans begging for money to pay for basic healthcare
« Reply #104 on: March 22, 2017, 09:48:58 AM »
But we don't pay much higher taxes in the U.K. - that's the point. Yes, income tax is a bit higher than in the US, but not by that much.

Those who are living paycheck to paycheck are barely paying any taxes anyway, so your argument has no basis in the UK... you can't claim that those people are being put in a situation where they are paying such high taxes that they can't afford food... because they aren't actually paying any taxes (or are only paying a small amount in tax), and they may well qualify for government benefits to give them even cheaper rent/bills/food/healthcare.

We have less disposable income in the UK because overall salaries are lower, not because we pay massively high taxes. That's a problem with salaries in general, not with taxes.

A lot of food actually costs LESS in the U.K. than in the US, as do things like broadband internet and cell phone contracts.

As mentioned previously, I have a fairly decent salary with a good government benefits scheme - in fact, I work with the military (I brief air force pilots). I pay more towards my pension and student loan repayments each month than I contribute towards the NHS in taxes. Despite my so-called 'high taxes', I have more than enough disposable income (about half of my monthly salary is disposable).

In the US I would earn maybe 1.5 times my UK salary doing the same job, but I would likely have to pay thousands in health insurance per year, and my food would generally cost more, so I might not actually have much more, if any more, disposable income than I do in the UK.


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Most people in the 20% band are likely living paycheck to paycheck and struggle to sufficiently provide all the necessities they need. A lot of people well into the 40% band struggle with more expensive necessities like housing and transportation.

There's a fairly direct link between higher taxes and higher cost of living on one hand, and on the other hand lower salaries, less job creation, and less upward mobility. When you reduce the velocity of money, it causes those impacts.

As to food... US spending on food as a percentage of income is the lowest in the world. Actual item to item price comparison is lower in the US. So, if you believe you'd spend more on food in the US, either you'd be buying dramatically different items/quantities or you're thinking of something like manhattan prices versus somewhere in the North. On the whole though, prices are a lot lower in the US and that's largely due to low cost free trade with the whole of the world. Food isn't the point though. It is all necessities. When there isn't enough to go around and you require contribution towards one thing, then by definition something else has to give.

And by the way, I didn't attack the UK system. I was talking chiefly about the US system. When you force people struggling to get by to pay for health insurance when they cannot afford both it and other necessities, then either they pay the penalty with even less to go around, or they have to sacrifice something else.

I am not defending Obamacare, or what came before it, or the proposed replacement. All of that is a disaster. The individual mandate though is a problem. I would love for everyone to have access to high quality healthcare and be able to afford all their other necessities, but there is not the capacity to do it. What we've done with Obamacare is reduce access and quality while massively increasing costs on most people in order to extend relatively low quality coverage to an additional low single digit percentage of the population (excluding new Medicaid recipients) who didn't have coverage before. And yet still left well more than double that behind. That is a horrible result that makes society on avg worse off and does create more poverty.

The way to solve this stuff is not about treating the symptoms. That just exacerbates the problem, as we've seen. It is about attacking the roots by growing capacity and decreasing cost of living across all categories of necessities. If those are the objectives, instead of getting people health insurance no matter how bad it is or how much it costs society, then there are entirely different ways to go about that. Ways that increase rather than decrease the velocity of money and therefore create rather than destroy economic opportunities across all industries.




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