Archive for February, 2011

Bush Administration’s $950 million spent on Iraqi Universal Healthcare

As many of you know, a large number of Americans are not in favor of the healthcare bill passed last year. While many of those I have spoken with are basing their discontent on misconceptions about the bill, I would like to share this article with you.

In this short article, you will see that the United States spent $950 million on establishing a system of universal health care in Iraq in 2004. In 2004, in terms of government spending, $950 million was a more significant amount.

There is a quote in the article from former Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson that reads, “Even if you don’t have health insurance, you are still taken care of in America. That certainly could be defined as universal coverage. Every American’s health care is far superior to what the health care is in Iraq.”

I have one problem with that quote: that’s not universal coverage; yes, you will be treated if you are in an accident, having a child, or are seriously ill. However, this does not include preventative care.

After reading the first article, read this from the Huffington Post, an excerpt from the Iraqi Constitution signed in 2005. In Article 31 of the Iraqi Constitution, the “right to health care” is for “every citizen.”

Many doctors have said that the best way to heal someone from cancer is to catch the cancer early—that’s the problem with the American healthcare system. I do not think it’s right that some in America are dying because of a lack of access to a doctor. I heard one conservative on television one time saying that not having insurance does not deny you access to a doctor—but for all intents and purposes, yes, it does.

While the pundit or congressman (I can’t remember which it was) probably has somewhere between a $10 and $50 co-pay at his physician’s office, those working minimum wage jobs without health insurance pay 10 times as much, if not more. For those of you new to math, that’s working 69 hours at minimum wage ($7.25 per hour) just to see a doctor. That’s ridiculous. That is not the America that I know and love.

While I believe the United States operates efficiently when major industries are controlled privately or by publicly traded companies, I do not believe that private industry should control whether you live or die. In corporate America, and this has been proven multiple times over the last three years, executives and high-level management are greedy—too greedy.

I also do not believe the government has the right to infringe on private industry and control the public health. I believe the government should have founded a co-operative where its members elect the Board of Directors, who in turn set the rates charged to its members. If members are not happy with the rates, they can simply not reelect members of the Board of Directors.

Whether the health care bill is altered or not, lives will be saved because of this bill. I do not want to listen to Republicans saying that its detrimental to America…saving lives of American people is detrimental to America? How?

If Republican congressmen hate this bill so much, they should join the 30 million Americans that would not gain health care coverage in 2014 if the bill is nullified. They should be denied the same access that they are denying to 30 million Americans that usually cannot afford coverage.

Disclaimer: I’m not a wholehearted proponent of the bill that was passed, but something needed to be done.