Healthcare: Here’s the problem
If you are male and cannot wrap your head around why women think they should own their bodies and be allowed to have an abortion then you clearly do not have an issue with today’s healthcare system because it has morphed into what women have been fighting against for decades: government being in control of our bodies. I find it laughable we have two political parties whose position on abortion and healthcare are completely in conflict with their individual party platforms.
Democrats have long been the party of pro choice. They have simplified the abortion argument to one where they say no government should have the right to tell a woman what she can or cannot do with her body. I agree. Whether it is an abortion, plastic surgery, a tattoo, or exercise routine, our government has no business telling us what we can or cannot do with our bodies and yet it is the Democratic Party that has pushed a universal health care system on us that now makes it damn near impossible to get a timely procedure done when necessary.
Republicans are the opposite. Their party argues a pro-life philosophy and they have done all they can to make abortion as difficult to come by while ripping our government for creating a forced health care system that has resulted in too many people unable to get the care they want or need. The party of “older white men” is fine with women getting breast implants, tummy tucks, and face lifts if they can afford them. They love access to Viagra and they certainly want to see people treated for life threatening illnesses like breast cancer, but don’t allow a woman to decide on whether or not she wants to carry a baby to term. Their solution is to blow up healthcare entirely and eliminate abortion funding.
So now, depending on your political affiliation, we either have a fantastic system of healthcare in place that allows many previously uninsured people to have health care, even those who don’t want it because not to comes with a penalty, or we have a forced system in which government controls what we can and cannot have done.
Now before you say government does not determine what we can or cannot have done and blame the insurance companies, let me remind you our insurance providers are government. Congress and our president have allowed the insurance industry to turn into the monster it is. They are the ones who backed away when the pharmaceutical and insurance companies told Democrats they were not going to take it on the chin so Americans can have affordable healthcare. The insurance industry has been telling Congress what it will and will not accept, which is like a kid telling mom and dad what the house rules will be. No wonder Republicans have no real alternative in place. It’s easier to deride what we have than it is to fix it.
So what does this result in? Now, when you go “shopping” for your required health plan, you are hit with a multitude of options, almost all of which are just a disguise for healthcare and are actually nothing more than a way for insurance companies to deflect the cost of insurance entirely onto the customer. There is your monthly fee, your deductible which runs into the thousands, your co-pay, and the taxes you pay for the uninsured all so you can have the insurance company decide for you weather or not you need to see a specialist, have a prescription filled, get a procedure, or live or die.
Is it really that difficult to create a system where the customer pays for insurance and then decides who to see and what to see them about while paying their fair share of the cost while their insurance picks up the rest? Should a doctor have to wait for an insurance company to decide for them what the patient does or does not need?
If Congress can okay a budget that will allow billions of dollars for a new weapons system that will end up with cost overruns that double or triple the original cost, can’t it okay the money to keep our citizens healthy before we kill people half way around the world?
Healthcare is a mess in this nation and it is not the fault of any singular party. Both parties are at fault. The system we have is broken and needs replacing, but the fixers can’t fix it without losing their much needed kick backs from big insurance and big pharma. It only serves to show what happens when government steps in and tells us what we can or cannot do with our bodies. Just as they have complicated or screwed up everything else they take over, our healthcare is now being overly managed by a government that cannot keep itself from over reaching and controlling our lives.
No one of sound mind in this nation would say Americans do not deserve affordable health care. Those of us who want to see Obama’s system replaced want what was originally promised, affordable care that allows the patient to control their life, not the government. Yes, some will be able to afford better care than others, but then some people can afford a better home or flat screen television, neither of which we are required to purchase.
If someone wants to go without health care (all those 26 to 36 year olds with college debts they are paying off, but who drive down the insurance cost), let them do so without a penalty. Perhaps if we made college more affordable or didn’t push it as the only path to success in life, maybe more would opt for health care.
Now, before you tell me how wrong I am or how heartless I am toward the poor or any other group, keep this in mind: 80-90 percent of the money that is spent on people for healthcare is spent on the final two years of their lives. Where does this make sense? There is no desire to keep us healthy. Think of your body as a house. Does it make sense to spend a ton of money to fix, repair, and replace all that was ignored for decades just to see it demolished in two years?
One of the main reasons I did not vote for Hillary Clinton was because I saw her as someone who was only going to fix Obamacare by making it more convoluted than it already is. Her ideas were just going to result in more government control and not less. I also did not vote for Donald Trump, but for a slew of other reasons. However, if he really fixes health care in this country and gives people and doctors more say over it than government and insurance, I will likely be like many Americans and vote to re elect him on the basis of fixing a broken system (I am not banking on him doing this).
Until then, I will continue to wait for an insurance company to decide when or if I can get a much-needed epidural for my back. Countless other Americans will wonder just how many more hoops they have to jump through before they can get needed care all while our leaders go with a better plan than any of us can afford while the tab is picked up by us, the tax paying fool.
Top photo: Congressman Tom Price of Georgia during one of his confirmation hearings
to be the Secretary of Health and Human Services (YouTube)
Jim is a life long resident of California and retired school teacher with 30 years in public education. Jim earned his BA in History from CSU Chico in 1981 and his MA in Education from Azusa Pacific University in 1994. He is also the author of Teaching The Teacher: Lessons Learned From Teaching. Jim considers himself an equal opportunity pain in the ass to any political party, group, or individual who looks to profit off of hypocrisy. When he is not pointing out the conflicting words and actions of our leaders, the NFL commissioner, or humans in general, he can be found riding his bike for hours on end while pondering his next article. Jim recently moved to Camarillo, CA after being convinced to join the witness protection program.