Honesty Sleeps With The Fishes, Part 2
My sleep has been troubled recently by an uneasy feeling that we are all missing something important in what has now become hot and poorly-directed debate over the White House’s plans to fix what Obama calls our “broken health care system”. I know one thing. The people’s side is not being taken seriously.
Perhaps it’s because we are being corralled into a different direction by Mister Beautiful to divert our attention from what's actually on those 1,000-plus pages. Maybe the “something important” is so important that if brought into the light where it could be looked at clearly, it would change the entire debate. And maybe someone doesn’t want us to go there.
Well, I’m going there.
I’ve been pondering the issue of the “quality of medical care in the USA”, and the fact that it has become a main tool in Washington’s case for imposing socialized medicine on the nation - for make no mistake, that’s where Washington aims to take us. Liberals, including the president of the United States (who should know enough to research things like this before mouthing off) keep telling us that according to the WHO, the United States is only in 37th place in “quality of care” among the list of the world’s nations. Politicians throw this back at attendees of town-hall meetings when they try to point out that they like Medicine the way it is and nobody has explained the new “plan” to anyone’s satisfaction.
Well, the WHO ranking is right . . . as far as it goes. World Health Org. officials are at pains to suggest reasons why America’s medical care system is not as good as 36 others above it in the rankings. Unfortunately, the arcane parameters they choose to measure, like “runaway administrative costs”, “value for the dollar in hospital care” and other similar factors, have nothing to do with actual care outcomes.
As a matter of fact, despite that America’s melting pot includes people from possibly every last race and culture on the planet, each with it’s own set of disease propensities, overall care outcomes in the United States are better than in any other country in the world. And this despite that we compete with many industrialized countries that are culturally and racially homogeneous. You might want to put this into the equation when Britain and Sweden tell us how successful their socialized medical-care system is. Britain’s proportion of races other than Anglo Saxon is roughly 1/60th of the Island’s population. Sweden’s is microscopic. Compare those to America’s 47%.
Note too, that “runaway administrative costs” and “value for the dollar” are metrics that are directly affected by American malpractice laws . . . laws that were written by these same politicians to provide malpractice lawyers with easy pickings and to force doctors and hospitals to dance to their very expensive tune to avoid being sued.
And does anyone not think that medical-care fees and practice are not driven by malpractice insurance costs that now run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars annually for individual practitioners in several major specialties?
Frankly, the World Health Organization's priorities have never been that sharp.
What my pondering comes down to at bottom is that politicians using such inaccurate statistics to convince Americans that our health-care system is broken and can only be “fixed” by a government take-over is a dishonest sham. I won’t say that it is beneath our Washington officeholders, because as we are learning, no lie is too despicable, no deceit too shabby. Left-wing Congressional leaders and the White House are making accusations of people being bought and paid for, to go to meetings and raise hell. If you want to identify the people in this country being bought and paid for, you don’t have to look much further than Congress.
This, by the way, is the same government that is in charge of medical care for native-American Indians. And we all know what wonderful medical care they get.
Meanwhile, we, poor fools, inexperienced as we are in the fine points of dealing with liars, thieves and Wall Street deal-makers, can only sputter our frustration at town-hall meetings while the likes of Barack Obama suavely maneuver us into his Socialized Utopia. Like the cattle that until now, we have proven ourselves to be. Pray we’ve seen the last of that. Even suckers like us have limits.
NYC, August, 2009