March 2010


From This site I am posting the whole piece as it has a good message.
The power of vision
To someone who has next to nothing, medical care is a gift from higher up. I wonder what would happen if everyone were like this:

Dhanuk is third in line on the front row. As soon as the bandages are removed, her face fills with life. She leaps to her feet smiling and pulling her hands to her chest in a prayer position, a traditional Nepalese way of giving thanks.

After nearly a year of total blindness, Dhanuk drinks in the blue sky, the green grass and all the other patients around her. She easily counts fingers, and then Ruit asks her to squeeze his nose if she can see it. It only takes a second for her jump up and grab it with both hands. Applause erupts in this moment Ruit calls the power of vision.

Dr. Sanduk Ruit is a Sherpa born doc who pioneered a new method of removing cataracts – free of cost to the patient. I can only imagine how different out country would be if instead of looking at health care as some ingrained birthright we were instead so thankful for the teeny things. And also, of course, if we abandoned the make-more-money approach. After all, Ruit says, “this is really too good for money.”

Read the entire story here.

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The test is done. Actually, it wasn’t too bad. More importantly, we own the car. As in title and registration with the state. Finally the car is ours. Last payment was made today and we had a small celebration tonight.
Next comes the SallieMae loan. Time to get the feds off my payroll. It’s bad enough that they are taking taxes out of the paycheck. Now the loan interest is also getting redistributed. And we working stiffs don’t even get a thank you. This gets me close to a rant, so I’ll stop and enjoy the thought of no car payment any more.

and as such have not been keeping up on things like postings. One of the links from class caught my eye.
This looks really interesting. Maybe when class gets finished I’ll try it.

and have a small request. Would the imp please remove the wheelbarrow inner-tube from my knee or at least stop pumping it up.
For full disclosure, I’m back from a visit with another kidinbox who lives up North. We were at activity #3 – skating rink, at which venue I was getting into the flow of the wheels, music, air passing the head, etc. I am left handed and as such noted that my left foot was doing most of the single foot gliding and decided to remedy that situation with a bit of practice on the right. This necessitated changing feet and passing the left in front of the right in just the reverse fashion I had used the other direction. Or so I thought. It seems that friction had a quick effect on the wheel of the right skate and the coefficient of friction increased which offset my momentum and I learned what a jiffy was.
Jiffy (n): that portion of time equal to 1/100 of a second, (2) the amount of time for a body to come into contact with the roller rink floor.
I didn’t even have time to think “ouch”. Well, since that time, the size of the knee has been increasing with the parallel increase in difficulty of walking. So, I would be more than happy if this inner-tube would go its merry way.

A couple of days ago, I heard a representative from an undisclosed insurance company describe how her company would be out of business in a couple of years now that the bill has passed. The math was simple. By law, they have to spend 65% of premium on the policy and 35% on their business expenses. This monstrosity has a requirement to spend 85% on the policy and only 15% on the business. I found that documented here:
Under the bill, insurers could not deny coverage because of a person’s medical condition; could not charge higher premiums because of a person’s sex or health status; and could not rescind coverage when a person becomes sick or disabled. The government would, in effect, limit the profits of insurers by requiring them to spend at least 80 to 85 cents of every premium dollar on medical care.
The congress has taken 1/2 of the insurance company’s income away and they are to cover their employees with a higher amount of insurance. This is designed to put them out of business and create a crisis just in time for the government to come to the rescue with a single payer system.
No matter what happens this next November, the die has been cast to force this conclusion later. That is why the dims don’t worry about this election. The Republicans will take the heat for the increased costs that will inevitably come as a result of this legislation and allow the dims to scar the Republicans as the party that was in power when the crisis hit. Their return, I believe, is planned to have the same effect as the New Deal – another 40 years of rule. If we can get rid of this law – repeal – there is a chance of survival for this country.

were originally designed to indicate the individual for the benefits promised. I looked at an original card and on the bottom margin are the words “not to be used for identification”. Interesting how that has morphed into the usage today. It is required of all major items as proof of who the individual is. In fact, our video rental store requested that same number. I mention this to note that the original purpose isn’t what the government does with a product. It becomes much more intrusive and personal than the original promise. Some might be led to believe that the preset usage was the original intent, and the officials knew the starting promise was the only way to get the camel’s nose under the tent. Now we have this:
“We would require all U.S. citizens and legal immigrants who want jobs to obtain a high-tech, fraud-proof Social Security card. Each card’s unique biometric identifier would be stored only on the card; no government database would house everyone’s information,” they said. “The cards would not contain any private information, medical information or tracking devices. The card would be a high-tech version of the Social Security card that citizens already have.”

Does anyone believe these congresscritters think this card would be limited to their proposal? And also, how about enforcing the existing laws? There was a law passed a couple of years ago about building a fence between us and Mexico. Last I heard, about 70 miles had been constructed. Out of 700. There is no action they take that would make me believe this pair wants to increase security unless they start doing the laws that are already there. They let the enforcement be lax and then try to tie the citizen’s hands more using the natural effect of lax enforcement as the impetus. I’m disgusted. Come November, be sure this pair is in the list of those removed from congress.

“In a private fee-for-service medical system, a dead patient is a revenue loss. In the National Health Service (UK), a dead patient was a cost savings.”
Read the rest.
In the new system, dead patients are desired. More than cost savings, once removed they can no longer speak to how things were before the entitlement programs were placed. History then can be rewritten without challenge.
(addition from link)
Medicare doesn’t control costs, it controls prices. The costs just get shifted to someone else. The decisions on what to pay for exams were more or less completely arbitrary. Any time Medicare was looking for “cost” savings it simply dictated them by reducing reimbursement rates or, in other words, price fixing. The costs didn’t actually disappear though. They just had to be shifted to the private patients who ended up subsidizing the Medicare patients. It is in this way that healthcare has become so expensive in the private sector. We pay for our own healthcare, subsidize the Medicare/Medicaid patients and carry the full freight on the people with no insurance who show up in the ER and must, by law, be treated.

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