I humbly invite your comments on the following:
We have arrived at a point that was predicted and feared by many of us in the boomer generation who watched in horror as Leftist forces dominated our young adult thoughts about social policy and set the wheels in motion toward the quagmire we now endure.
America’s political power structure is now dominated by members of a generation that once proudly insisted: “Never trust anyone over thirty.” Thanks largely to this nonsense mentality, we now live in a time when historical ignorance is greater and more destructive than at any time in at least the last two centuries! Indeed, the objective study of history, may well be the most important of all intellectual activities because it is the only way we can understand how we arrived where we are today and how to avoid the mistakes of the past. Please believe me — over the last 7000 years or so, just about every mistake that can be made has already been made many times, all too often at great human cost! And yet, most people today who are thirty or younger, received almost zero inspiration to study history from the comical, diabolically warped institutions we now refer to as “public education”. The little history they were exposed to in that doctrinaire venue was delivered in support of a revisionist, Leftist political agenda. IOW, self-serving lies!
Our current struggle over nationalizing one-fifth of the US economy simply because 45 million out of 300 million Americans have no health insurance is significantly driven by our deliberately instilled ignorance of history. BTW, that forty-five million of us are not without heath CARE, they just don’t have health INSURANCE! One-third of the people without health insurance earn $75,000 or more per year and are young enough that they feel no need to pay for health insurance! Many of these people simply save a portion of their earnings (created wealth) as a medical emergency fund. Gee! What a concept!
Please note the article below by one of the most innovative people on Earth today, John Mackey, co-founder of Whole Foods Market, Inc. His is the kind of mind that Ayn Rand modeled as a wealth creator in “Atlas Shrugged” — the kind of mind that is routinely enslaved by Collectivism’s envious mediocrity!
The Whole Foods Alternative to ObamaCare
Eight things we can do to improve health care without adding to the deficit.
By JOHN MACKEY
"The problem with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money." —Margaret Thatcher
[Lament: Oh the great Maggie Thatcher! Where are these kinds of leaders today!]
With a projected $1.8 trillion deficit for 2009, several trillions more in deficits projected over the next decade, and with both Medicare and Social Security entitlement spending about to ratchet up several notches over the next 15 years as Baby Boomers become eligible for both, we are rapidly running out of other people's money. These deficits are simply not sustainable. They are either going to result in unprecedented new taxes and inflation, or they will bankrupt us. [BOTH!]
While we clearly need health-care reform, the last thing our country needs is a massive new health-care entitlement that will create hundreds of billions of dollars of new unfunded deficits and move us much closer to a government takeover of our health-care system. Instead, we should be trying to achieve reforms by moving in the opposite direction—toward less government control and more individual empowerment. Here are eight reforms that would greatly lower the cost of health care for everyone:
· Remove the legal obstacles that slow the creation of high-deductible health insurance plans and health savings accounts (HSAs). The combination of high-deductible health insurance and HSAs is one solution that could solve many of our health-care problems. For example, Whole Foods Market pays 100% of the premiums for all our team members who work 30 hours or more per week (about 89% of all team members) for our high-deductible health-insurance plan. We also provide up to $1,800 per year in additional health-care dollars through deposits into employees' Personal Wellness Accounts to spend as they choose on their own health and wellness.
· Money not spent in one year rolls over to the next and grows over time. Our team members therefore spend their own health-care dollars until the annual deductible is covered (about $2,500) and the insurance plan kicks in. This creates incentives to spend the first $2,500 more carefully. Our plan's costs are much lower than typical health insurance, while providing a very high degree of worker satisfaction.
· Equalize the tax laws so that employer-provided health insurance and individually owned health insurance have the same tax benefits. Now employer health insurance benefits are fully tax deductible, but individual health insurance is not. This is unfair.
· Repeal all state laws which prevent insurance companies from competing across state lines. We should all have the legal right to purchase health insurance from any insurance company in any state and we should be able use that insurance wherever we live. Health insurance should be portable.
· Repeal government mandates regarding what insurance companies must cover. These mandates have increased the cost of health insurance by billions of dollars. What is insured and what is not insured should be determined by individual customer preferences and not through special-interest lobbying.
· Enact tort reform [my emphasis] to end the ruinous lawsuits that force doctors to pay insurance costs of hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. These costs are passed back to us through much higher prices for health care. [The number one obstacle to Tort Reform is the tangled web of back-room influence from various, well funded attorney groups who prowl the halls of power and stalk our representatives like toxic parasites. The single most effective Tort Law change needed is to make the loser in any law suit pay all legal expenses for the winner. This single change will, almost overnight, eliminate most of the nuisance law suits that artificially increase the cost of health care.]
· Make costs transparent so that consumers understand what health-care treatments cost. How many people know the total cost of their last doctor's visit and how that total breaks down? What other goods or services do we buy without knowing how much they will cost us?
· Enact Medicare reform. We need to face up to the actuarial fact that Medicare is heading towards bankruptcy and enact reforms that create greater patient empowerment, choice and responsibility.
· Finally, revise tax forms to make it easier for individuals to make a voluntary, tax-deductible donation to help the millions of people who have no insurance and aren't covered by Medicare, Medicaid or the State Children's Health Insurance Program.
· Many promoters of health-care reform believe that people have an intrinsic ethical right to health care—to equal access to doctors, medicines and hospitals. While all of us empathize with those who are sick, how can we say that all people have more of an intrinsic right to health care than they have to food or shelter?
· Health care is a service that we all need, but just like food and shelter it is best provided through voluntary and mutually beneficial market exchanges. A careful reading of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution will not reveal any intrinsic right to health care, food or shelter. That's because there isn't any. This "right" has never existed in America [or anywhere else for that matter].
· Even in countries like Canada and the U.K., there is no intrinsic right to health care. Rather, citizens in these countries are told by government bureaucrats what health-care treatments they are eligible to receive and when they can receive them. All countries with socialized medicine ration health care by forcing their citizens to wait in lines to receive scarce treatments.
· Although Canada has a population smaller than California, 830,000 Canadians are currently waiting to be admitted to a hospital or to get treatment, according to a report last month in Investor's Business Daily. In England, the waiting list is 1.8 million.
· At Whole Foods we allow our team members to vote on what benefits they most want the company to fund. Our Canadian and British employees express their benefit preferences very clearly—they want supplemental health-care dollars that they can control and spend themselves without permission from their governments. Why would they want such additional health-care benefit dollars if they already have an "intrinsic right to health care"? The answer is clear—no such right truly exists in either Canada or the U.K.—or in any other country. [Because human beings are not the source of Rights!]
· Rather than increase government spending and control, we need to address the root causes of poor health. This begins with the realization that every American adult is responsible for his or her own health.
· Unfortunately many of our health-care problems are self-inflicted: two-thirds of Americans are now overweight and one-third are obese. Most of the diseases that kill us and account for about 70% of all health-care spending—heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes and obesity—are mostly preventable through proper diet, exercise, not smoking, minimal alcohol consumption and other healthy lifestyle choices.
· Recent scientific and medical evidence shows that a diet consisting of foods that are plant-based, nutrient dense and low-fat will help prevent and often reverse most degenerative diseases that kill us and are expensive to treat. We should be able to live largely disease-free lives until we are well into our 90s and even past 100 years of age.
· Health-care reform is very important. Whatever reforms are enacted it is essential that they be financially responsible, and that we have the freedom to choose doctors and the health-care services that best suit our own unique set of lifestyle choices. We are all responsible for our own lives and our own health. We should take that responsibility very seriously and use our freedom to make wise lifestyle choices that will protect our health. Doing so will enrich our lives and will help create a vibrant and sustainable American society.
To this I will add: Because of our widespread ignorance of history, most people today do not know how we originally got started down the road of health insurance being provided by employers as opposed to everyone purchasing their own health insurance that moved with them from employer to employer. That diabolical circumstance was originally caused by another example of Socialism poisoning the economy. During WWII (another highly suspicious event), the U.S. Federal government unlawfully imposed price and wage controls, allegedly to make funding the war effort easier. Since employers could no longer use wages as a means of attracting the most skilled employees, they started offering “benefits”, just one of which was health insurance. As they say, “the rest is history.”