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News Why not free universal healthcare if

  1. Mar 4, 2008 #1
    why not free universal healthcare if ....

    ... the united states military and NASA is funded directly through our taxes? I must admit I am not very knowledgeable of what will happen to the quality of our healthcare system if funding was supported through taxes. I know socialized medicine works in some parts of the world and is terrible in other parts of the world. Frankly , I do not think we as taxpayers should forced to pay for others peoples health care costs just because they are to lazy to go out and exercise and keep a healthy diet. But on the other hand , if we can afford to send rockets and satellites to space and to planets that costs up to billions of billions of dollars in taxes, not to mentioned contiunue to expand new NASA programs like their Robotics programs, then why can't we provide universal healthcare to every citizen? Do we really need to continue to expand our military? We already supposedly have the best military in the world and in history.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 4, 2008 #2
    Since all of the top Healthcare providers are at least part socialised, and very few are purely private and are not as well rated. I can only assume that like everywhere else, the same thing would happen, your healthcare overall would improve.

    US GDP Military=3.9%
    US GDP Healthcare=14%
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2008
  4. Mar 5, 2008 #3
    I think we should keep health care as it is but that our government (taxes) should take care of certain life threatening things like cancer, transplants, and the like. If we did things this way our health care premiums would go down, probably signicantly since typcal health care plans wouldn't have to provide for these few but enormously expensive situations. But that is as close to socialized medicine I would ever buy in to.
  5. Mar 5, 2008 #4
    Yes after all a mix of social and private systems elsewhere are only doing much better. Who'd want that?
  6. Mar 5, 2008 #5
    Please provide some examples of what "better" looks like and explain how it would work in the US. I've been to military hospitals, I know what Uncle Sam is capable and not capable of providing.
  7. Mar 5, 2008 #6
    Well since you're not in the top 15 for Healthcare services, under the WHO statistics, primarily because of poor coverage, high infant mortality, and low overall mortality in comparison with Europe, then I'd say it's all very well but if people aren't getting the best healthcare in the world for whatever reason, then it means nothing.

    The same way partial private and nationalised service works in every other country in the world, and of course even the most expensive systems in Europe are 6% less than your extraordinary 15.4% GDP.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  8. Mar 5, 2008 #7


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    Health care would improve (overall coverage, treatment of chronic and preventable diseases, etc) if it was universal, and the cost of health care would decrease. Private insurance companies are intent on maximizing their profits, and the very quickest, easiest way to do this it to delay payments to health-care providers or to deny payments outright. Generally, they do this through a series of red-tape arguments, in which they deny payment (or most of a payment) because they say that the doctor's bill for treatment does not meet their coding requirements. Coding is the most important function in a medical practice if the practice is to be financially stable. A coding specialist knows how to navigate the vagaries of the various insurance companies' coding requirements (sometimes varying by plan within insurance companies) in order to get the patients' treatments properly covered. Eliminate the private insurance companies, and most of the delay, denial, and financial friction in the US health-care system would be eliminated as well.

    The insurance companies are parasites. Among the worst are Blue Cross - Blue Shield. When my wife was in a serious car accident, BC - BS denied every claim repeatedly, so that I had to resubmit claims over and over again, and they did not coordinate benefits, so that once her medical bills were well over the limit at which BS should have kicked in, I still had to submit each bill to BC, only to have it denied, and then have to re-submit it to BS, perhaps multiple times, before it was paid. At the time, I was in my 30's, working in a well-paying industrial job with what I thought was decent health insurance. If I had been unable to keep up with all the denials and obfuscations that the insurance company kept throwing at me, my wife and I would have been saddled with debt and bad credit for years. Repeat - health insurance companies are parasites. The most cost-effective way for them to make money is to deny or delay payment of legitimate claims, and that is how they operate.
  9. Mar 5, 2008 #8
    I would like to see what sources you used to obtained to this information.
  10. Mar 5, 2008 #9
    Well the Health service statistic of GDP was from the WHO and the other was from wikipedia, which was out by .16% according to the CIA factbook.

    Ah seems to have gone up to 15.2

    See this link, check out the figures for 2003.


    4.06% military expenditure. From CIA factbook


    I presume they are reliable enough.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2017
  11. Mar 5, 2008 #10
    Using that hunk of logic, shouldn't everything be free for everyone?
  12. Mar 5, 2008 #11
    No just basically understood necessities, education, water, electricty, welfare programs, unless of course you consider accessible healthcare to be a luxury of course?
  13. Mar 5, 2008 #12
    Not food, clothing and shelter?
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  14. Mar 5, 2008 #13
    Er not sure why you are asking this, are you assuming that that was meant to be an exhaustive list of basic needs? It wasn't. They were just examples.
  15. Mar 5, 2008 #14
    So all basic needs should be free. Basic needs includes food, clothing, shelter, education, water, electricity, welfare, accessible healthcare, and this is not an exhaustive list. Can you give me an example of something that should not be free?
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  16. Mar 5, 2008 #15
    Alcohol. :smile:
  17. Mar 5, 2008 #16
    I repeat, with the logic of the OP, everything should be free to everyone.

  18. Mar 5, 2008 #17


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    Heck, I'm still trying to get my arms around the idea that there are people who believe all basic needs should be provided by the government. I didn't know anyone actually believed such a thing.

    Could I see a logical explanation for why the government should provide such things for free, followed then by a logical explanation for how a goverenment could provide such things? In particular:

    -What political theory holds that it is the responsibility of government to provide for all the basic needs of all citizens?
    -Based on the history of economics, is there an example of a system that was capable of functioning (stable-ly) without the primary motivator for human activity (need) applying? Ie, if peoples' needs are met without any effort, why would people work?

    History is chock-full of counterexamples, such as the pervasive medicrity of life in the USSR prior to its demise, and the lack of an increase in poverty rate with the slashing of welfare rolls in the US a few years ago. And western political theory is based on the concept of individual freedom, which necessarily must similarly include individual responsibility.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  19. Mar 5, 2008 #18
    No your just taking an absurd approach. There are some things that are considered basic requirements, and some things that aren't and some things that are luxuries. Just saying everything should be free is frankly just avoiding the issue. No one is saying everything should be free, but some things are more practical and beneficial if they are given to all, the right to healthcare is a basic right, in almost all countries in the West; not because every country is socialist, but because most people aren't obsessed with profit. Healthcare is not something that should be provided on the basis of wealth, that is frankly in this day and age a little worrying.

    Vanesch I never said all basic needs should be free either, so where that came from is also a mystery.

    I presume you pay for your electricity, water, food and so on. And likewise you would pay for your healthcare in taxes. The point is if you can't you aren't abandoned.

    And yes free universal healthcare is absurd, I don't know any country that operates such a system. But the OP's point aside, I don't think anyone is suggesting it be free.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
  20. Mar 5, 2008 #19


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    I don't doubt that your assertions are true (with the exception of infant mortality), however, I would actually like to see the data. Do you have references for those claims?
  21. Mar 5, 2008 #20
    Of course it's all on the WHO website. If you want to take a look just go there.

    Of course when you have 1 in 6 people without health cover, then to be frank you would expect mortality to go down, and infant mortality to rise anyway. And I am joshing you not, infant mortality is higher in the US than in most European countries.


    However here's a summary. Obviously lower is better for infant mortality.

    Source: U.S. Census Bureau, International Database.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2008
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