Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


The Forgotten Question in the Health Care Debate

Do you deserve to die?
Do your friends and family?



Rationed care. Image

The Forgotten Question in the Health Care Debate


Michael Collins

Scenario 1: You've just been diagnosed with a cancer of the lymphatic system. You're told that it requires a procedure within the next two weeks. Unfortunately, you were laid off from your corporate job 11 months, 30 days ago. You are on your last day of COBRA. Your company retirement and savings are all gone. You can't afford the $1,200 a month premium needed to continue your coverage. Without the operation, you will die. Do you deserve to die?

Scenario 2: Your spouse has a long history of illness. Then you discover she has a virulent infection that, if untreated, threatens to disable her to the point where she's immobile and requires 'round the clock medical care. You work for yourself. While you have catastrophic health insurance, it doesn't cover the needed treatment nor does it provide for nursing care. Does your wife deserve to experience this untreated sickness and suffering until her premature death?

Do you or your family members deserve to die simply because the rulers of this country can't get their act together to provide universal health care?

Do your friends and neighbors deserve the same fate?

What's the meaning of a nation based on a common bond when other citizens, those we don't know and will never meet, face the same grim end to their lives?

Others Determine Our Suffering and Death

We hear talk about health care rationing but one theme is missing from that dialog. Some of you who are the subjects of rationing will certainly suffer and some will clearly die well before your time as a result of health care denied.

Public health care rationing is a term that needs to be changed. Rationing is a conscious choice. Policy makers, legislators, and those who hold this view are saying that it is necessary to deliberately deny citizens health care because there "isn't enough money." These people need to be honest and stop hiding behind abstract terms. It's not rationing. It is mandated suffering and death guaranteed by those who support the current system or future systems that deny care for those in need.

Health care rationing is based on the assumption that we don't have enough dollars to provide for open access to health care by all citizens. But wait! Didn't we have enough dollars just recently to give $4 trillion to failed Wall Street financial institutions? That's now part of our deficit. We will have to pay it back. Yet we're told that we don't have enough dollars for a truly comprehensive universal health care system. We're also told that the health care system that we do end up with cannot, under any circumstances, add to the national debt.

Let's see now, we can't afford to ease suffering and save lives across the board and whatever we do short of that can't incur any debt. But we've just seen a bipartisan commitment of $4 trillion (plus another $8.6 trillion set aside) to bailout banks and save bank executive jobs but we can't do the same to save your life or that of your friends, family and fellow citizens.

Here's another example of distorted thinking and priorities. It is a conscious choice.

The proposed defense budget for 2010 is $664 billion dollars. A large portion will be spent on the Iraq and Afghan wars "defending" us by creating even more enemies than we ever had in that part of the world. But it's a matter of priorities. In order to defend us, the rulers require that we sacrifice our well being and lives at home to pay for that defense.

The Culture of Rationed Death

This is what's called a crisis in values.

The culture of rationed death prevails over the fundamental decency and humanity of caring for the sick.

Those aligned against universal health care consciously choose to impose their culture of death on the entirety of the population.

Who speaks for those of us who will end up without health care?

Which major figures on either side of the debate address universal health care as a life or death issue?

Who among the advocates of rationing are without health insurance?

Who among them are unable to afford or obtain their own critical care or the same for their loved ones?

Who among them will step forward and tell those denied medical care:

"You deserve to die."

END

Special thanks to Kathlyn Stone for her very helpful comments.

This article may be reproduced in part or whole with attribution of authorship and a link to this article.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Delusions Driving The “Leave” Option

Voting for “Leave” requires (a) a fantastically unbalanced view of the impact of immigration on modern Britain (b) a demonizing of the EU “regulations” that are commonplace within a modern economy and (c) a simple-minded optimism that Britain would not suffer any major damage to its economy, or to the status of the City of London. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The “T” Word, And This Sunday’s Election In Spain

Once again, the RNZ news packages from the US and UK this morning underlined the striking difference in the treatment of the Pulse night club killings in Florida and the murder of the British Labour MP, Jo Cox. More>>

Werewolf: Getting Roasted, Kiwi Style

Roasting coffee beans is an essential step in the process from plant to cup. New Zealand does not grow any coffee, so it therefore imports 100% of its coffee supply from other countries. New Zealand does however roast a lot of coffee beans. More>>

Alastair Thompson: Jo Cox's Killing Looms Large As Brexit Heads Down To Wire

The mourning period for the brutally slain pro-remain Labour MP and mother of two Jo Cox was always going to be brief. Today, Sunday 19th June, with four days to go till polling, the Brexit campaign resumed. More>>

ALSO:

Pledge Me Goal Met!
On Scoop's Current Journalism Project

Gordon Campbell: Before this crowd funding effort wraps up tonight, I thought I should provide an update on the mental health journalism project that Scoop – and its readers – are funding. More>>

ALSO:

Thanks Joining Us! Scoop Turns 17; Has Party

Margaret Thompson welcomed visitors to Scoop's birthday celebration on Wednesday night and reflected on the state of the media during a year in which Scoop formed its new structure... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news