America has the best health care system?
Some people say America has the #1 health care system in the world. Those people are probably not counting the other 36 countries that are beating us. Aasif Mandvi decided to go investigate whether we really have the not-best system ever. What he finds is kind of appalling. At 4:00 is the most awkward 15 seconds I've seen in quite some time, you can watch it here: http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/th...nessee-edition
BTW, if you are poor and can't afford the best care, the solution is simple (according to conservatives): just stop being poor!
Last edited by DiabloViejo; 03-13-2014 at 10:11 AM.
There is no stupider creature on earth than a poor Republican. Such a person would stand in line to be sodomized and then thank their assailant afterward.
Watch an expert teach a smug U.S. senator about Canadian healthcare
(The ultimate zinger came at the end of the exchange, when Burr thought he had Martin down for the count about wait times in Canada, and she neatly put the difference between the Canadian and U.S. systems in perspective.)
BURR: On average, how many Canadian patients on a waiting list die each year? Do you know?
MARTIN: I donít, sir, but I know that there are 45,000 in America who die waiting because they donít have insurance at all.
There is no stupider creature on earth than a poor Republican. Such a person would stand in line to be sodomized and then thank their assailant afterward.
If u don't hav insurance then u kannot be waiting ie az if on a waiting list, if u are not waiting then u karnt die waiting. They simply die, while not waiting.
But we aint really talking about a healthcare system, we are talking about a healthcare insurance system. A different thing.
More than that, most global insurance systems are mainly a socialist help the poor systems, ie they aint just straight pure insurance.
What me and everyone else iz waiting for iz for the usofa to die a natural death. The usofa iz based on weak and strong, the weak die. Its time for theusofa to die. Thusly this way the usofa would proov that it works, funny that, proving u work by dieing.
Could it happen to us? Of course. From where I sit, a global economic catastrophe would be the blow that started the dominoes falling. The inability of the government in Washington to pay its bills, especially for the military, could cause a rapid breakdown in the system. It is unthinkable that the US would face a military challenge from its neighbors, but an inability to guard its borders, which we’re living through now with Mexico, would allow for a peaceful invasion from outside tribes, so to speak (well, a bigger one than we’re now experiencing). And the weakness of society — the fraying of communal bonds, the decline of the family, the loss of personal discipline and the forgetting of skills necessary to self-reliance — would compound the chaos. As the Oxford historian Bryan Ward-Perkins, a specialist in the Late Roman period, told me, we are especially vulnerable because of the extreme complexity of our system. Ward-Perkins points out that when the Romans withdrew from Britain, the level of material culture and knowledge there collapsed spectacularly, and didn’t recover for centuries. Given our technological capabilities, it seems impossible for a similar fate to befall us — I mean, people in the erstwhile Roman Britain, and in other regions once ruled by Rome, not only forgot what they knew, but forgot that they had forgotten. Could that happen to us? I don’t see it. But then, nobody ever sees this coming.
Hmmmmmm -- the above Xray of theusofa duznt look good. The usofa might die it says. The main cancer iz not being able to pay its bills it says. How kan the usofa not pay its bills????? It duznt say.
Not being able to pay its bills.
Possible frayed community bonds. This means white bonds.
Decline of the family. This means white familys.
Loss of personal discipline. This means white familys stop going to church eech sunday.
Forgetting skills for self reliance. This means white skills, banking, stockbroking, insurance etc.
Tsk tsk tsk tsk. Not a good Xray.
And worst of all, nobody ever sees it coming. Nobody. Ever.
I would ask for an ultrasound scan.
And a CT scan.
And an MRI.
But its too late. The problem goze back to the The Constitution. A birth defekt. The usofa never had a chance.
Last edited by cushioncrawler; 03-14-2014 at 03:44 AM.
After a year of traveling, I had planned a last, short trip. I was going to take the train from Montreal to New Orleans. The travels I had been undertaking earlier this year had brought me to places that were meant to form the background of my second novel.
This trip, however, was for my dad. He, a trumpet player, loved New Orleans and had died a year ago. It felt like the first sensible trip I undertook this year. I had been searching for ways to forget about the last hours at his deathbed. He had been ill for 15 years and his body just would not give up. It was a violent sight. I had decided the trip to New Orleans would put an end to those memories.
Usually, I barely plan my trips in advance. But this time I had booked everything: my train tickets, hotels and my flight back to Montreal, from which I would depart back to Amsterdam. In total the trip was supposed to take three weeks. The confirmations and tickets I had printed and tucked away in a brown envelope I had bought especially for the trip. I like things to be neatly arranged. At home, in Amsterdam, my house enjoys a slight version of OCD.
The first part of the trip, from Montreal to New York, is known to be one of the world's prettiest train routes. When we had just passed the sign 'Welcome to the State of New York,' the train pulled over for a border check. I put the brown envelope on my lap. On top of the envelope I filled in my migration form with utmost dedication. I love border crossings. Forms don't lie.
The customs officer walked by and asked everybody on the train a few questions. Where they were from, where they were heading. The usual stuff. Everybody who was not a U.S. or Canadian citizen was to head for the dining car to fill in an additional green form.
In the dining car sat a cheerful looking family from the Middle East and a German man with a mouth in which a small frisbee could easily be inserted. I took the seat across the German, who had already filled in his green paper, and started on my own, dedicated, hoping to impress him. He was not throwing me friendly looks. The customs officer took the German's papers and welcomed him to America. They switched seats. He put his hands on the table and looked at me. We must have been of similar ages. He had a goatee and slid my passport towards him like it was a small gift.
I had not finished my novel yet, but my passport was complete. It was filled with pretty stamps. He did not like the stamps.
First, he saw my Sri Lankan stamp. The customs officer raised his eyebrows.
"Sri Lanka, what were you doing over there?"
"Surfing. Traveling. My best friend lives there. He is an architect."
The officer flipped on, seemingly satisfied. Secondly, he found my stamps from Singapore and Malaysia.
"What were you doing over there? Singapore and Malaysia? Aren't those countries Islamic?"
Looking over my shoulder, his eyes searched for his colleague's confirmation.
"Malaysia, I think so, yeah. But not Singapore. It's a melting pot. A very futuristic city. Airconditioned to the ceiling. To Singapore I went mostly for the food, to be honest."
"Nothing. And how about Malaysia?"
I explained flights departing from Malaysia were cheaper compared to Singapore. That I only went there for a few days, but also, a little bit, for the food. The customs officer went through some more pages. Then he found my Yemeni visa. He put my passport down and stared at me.
"What the hell were you doing in Yemen?"
"I went to the island Socotra, it's not on mainland Yemen. It's a small island closer to Somalia. A very special place, some call it 'Galapagos of the Middle East.' I think 85 percent of the plants and animals there, are indigenous."
"Weren't you scared?"
"Yeah. I was scared. When I was at the airport in mainland Yemen. That entire area is now taken by al Qaeda, I believe."
The customs officer was looking at my passport no longer. If he would have leafed through, he would have found Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi stamps.
That was the first time I had to open my suitcase. Six customs officers went through my two phones, iPad, laptop and camera. In my wallet they found an SD card I had totally forgotten about. They did not like that. By now I was the only one left in the dining car and the center of attention. I had put a raincoat in my suitcase, because I'd heard New Orleans tends to get hit by thunderstorms in the late summer. An officer held up the coat and barked:
"Who takes a coat to the U.S. in the summer?"
I answered it would keep me dry, in case the New Orleans levees would break again. The officer remained silent. He dropped my coat like a dishcloth.
The raincoat seemed to be the last straw. The customs officers exchanged looks.
"We'd like to ask you some more questions. But the train has to continue, so we're going to take you off here."
I looked out of the window. We weren't at a proper station. Along the tracks were piles of old pallets.
"Will you put me on another train, afterwards?"
"This is the only train. But in case we decide to let you in, we'll put you on a bus. Don't worry."
I started to worry. I packed my suitcase as quickly as possible and was escorted off the train. There were three officers in front of me, and three behind. My suitcase was too wide for the aisle, it kept getting stuck between the seats. I apologized to the train in general. While I struggled, the officers waited patiently and studied the relation between me and my suitcase.
Outside, we stopped in front of a white van. The officers permitted me to put my suitcase in the back and I was about climb into the van, when the they halted me.
"You are not under arrest. There is no need to be scared. But we would like to search you."
"I'm not scared. But it's kind of exciting. It's like I'm in a movie. You're just doing your job. I get that."
To me, that seemed the right attitude. They searched me for the first time then, just like in the movies. Before I climbed into the van, I had to give up my phones. I seemed unable to close my belt by myself, so an officer helped me out. This is when the sweating started.
In a little building made of corrugated tin, I opened my suitcase once more. Behind me, there was a man in tears. An officer was telling him about the prison sentence the man was looking forward to. He had been caught with a trunk full of cocaine. The man kept talking about a woman who seemed to be able to prove his innocence, but he was unable to reach her.
After that they searched me again. Thoroughly.
Just like in the movies.
In the room next to me they tried to take my fingerprints, but my hands were too clammy. It took half an hour. An officer said:
Another officer confirmed:
"Yeah. He's scared."
I repeated, another attempt to be disarming:
"This is just like in the movies."
But border patrol is not easily disarmed.
In the five hours that followed, I was questioned twice more. During the first round I told, amongst others, my life's story, about my second novel's plot, gave my publisher's name, my bank's name and my real estate agent's name. Together we went through all the photos on my laptop and messages my phones had been receiving for the past months. They wrote down the names of everybody I had been in touch with. In my pirated software and movies they showed no interest.
During the second round of questioning, we talked about religion. I told them my mother was raised a Catholic, and that my dad had an atheist mother and a Jewish dad.
"We don't understand. Why would a Jew go to Yemen?"
"But... I'm not Jewish."
"Yeah, well. We just don't understand why would a Jew go to Yemen."
Again, I showed them the photos I took in Yemen and explained how nice the island's flora and fauna had been. That the dolphins come and hang out, even in the shallow water and how cheap the lobsters were. I showed them the Dragonblood trees and the Bedouin family where I had to eat goat intestines. They did not seem to appreciate it as much as I had.
"You yourself, what do you believe in?"
I thought about it for a second and replied.
Obviously, I should have said:
"Freedom of speech."
When I'm supposed to watch my words, I tend to say the wrong ones.
The last hour was spent on phone calls about me. Now and then an officer came and asked me for a password on my equipment. By then, the cocaine trafficker had been brought to a cell where they did have a toilet. I continued my wait. An officer, who I had not seen before, flung the door open and asked if I was on the Greyhound heading to New York. I shrugged hopefully. He closed the door again, as if he had entered the wrong room.
Finally, two officers came rushing into my waiting room.
"You can pack your bag. And make sure you have everything."
They gave me my phones back. All apps had been opened. I had not used my phones that day, but the batteries were completely drained. Because I was soaked in sweat, I attempted to change shirts while packing my bag. It seemed like I had made it.
"How much time do we have? What time will the bus depart?"
"We don't know."
I was unable to find the entrance to my clean shirt. I held it high with two hands, as if it was a white flag.
"So... what's the verdict?"
"We are under the impression you have more ties with more countries we are not on friendly terms with than your own. We decided to bring you back to the Canadian border."
They brought me back. In the car, no words were said. It was no use. I was defeated. To the Canadian border they said:
"We got another one. This one is from the Netherlands."
The Canadian officer looked at me with pity. She asked if there was anything I needed. I said I could use some coffee and a cigarette. She took my passport to a back room and returned within five minutes, carrying an apologetic smile, a freshly stamped passport, coffee, a cigarette, and a ticket to the next bus back to Montreal.
I have been cursed at a Chinese border. In Dubai, my passport was studied by three veiled women for over an hour and my suitcase completely dismembered. In the Philippines I had to bribe someone in order to get my visa extended for a few days. Borders, they can be tough, especially in countries known for corruption.
But never, ever, will I return to the United States of America.
Niels Gerson Lohman is a writer, designer and musician from The Netherlands. His website is: www.nielsgersonlohman.com.
From time to time, someone under 30 will ask me, "When did this all begin, America's downward slide?" They say they've heard of a time when working people could raise a family and send the kids to college on just one parent's income (and that college in states like California and New York was almost free). That anyone who wanted a decent paying job could get one. That people only worked five days a week, eight hours a day, got the whole weekend off and had a paid vacation every summer. That many jobs were union jobs, from baggers at the grocery store to the guy painting your house, and this meant that no matter how "lowly" your job was you had guarantees of a pension, occasional raises, health insurance and someone to stick up for you if you were unfairly treated.
Young people have heard of this mythical time -- but it was no myth, it was real. And when they ask, "When did this all end?", I say, "It ended on this day: August 5th, 1981."
Beginning on this date, 30 years ago, Big Business and the Right Wing decided to "go for it" -- to see if they could actually destroy the middle class so that they could become richer themselves.
And they've succeeded.
On August 5, 1981, President Ronald Reagan fired every member of the air traffic controllers union (PATCO) who'd defied his order to return to work and declared their union illegal. They had been on strike for just two days.
It was a bold and brash move. No one had ever tried it. What made it even bolder was that PATCO was one of only three unions that had endorsed Reagan for president! It sent a shock wave through workers across the country. If he would do this to the people who were with him, what would he do to us?
Reagan had been backed by Wall Street in his run for the White House and they, along with right-wing Christians, wanted to restructure America and turn back the tide that President Franklin D. Roosevelt started -- a tide that was intended to make life better for the average working person. The rich hated paying better wages and providing benefits. They hated paying taxes even more. And they despised unions. The right-wing Christians hated anything that sounded like socialism or holding out a helping hand to minorities or women.
Reagan promised to end all that. So when the air traffic controllers went on strike, he seized the moment. In getting rid of every single last one of them and outlawing their union, he sent a clear and strong message: The days of everyone having a comfortable middle class life were over. America, from now on, would be run this way:
* The super-rich will make more, much much more, and the rest of you will scramble for the crumbs that are left.
* Everyone must work! Mom, Dad, the teenagers in the house! Dad, you work a second job! Kids, here's your latch-key! Your parents might be home in time to put you to bed.
* 50 million of you must go without health insurance! And health insurance companies: you go ahead and decide who you want to help -- or not.
* Unions are evil! You will not belong to a union! You do not need an advocate! Shut up and get back to work! No, you can't leave now, we're not done. Your kids can make their own dinner.
* You want to go to college? No problem -- just sign here and be in hock to a bank for the next 20 years!
* What's "a raise"? Get back to work and shut up!
And so it went. But Reagan could not have pulled this off by himself in 1981. He had some big help:
The biggest organization of unions in America told its members to cross the picket lines of the air traffic controllers and go to work. And that's just what these union members did. Union pilots, flight attendants, delivery truck drivers, baggage handlers -- they all crossed the line and helped to break the strike. And union members of all stripes crossed the picket lines and continued to fly.
Reagan and Wall Street could not believe their eyes! Hundreds of thousands of working people and union members endorsing the firing of fellow union members. It was Christmas in August for Corporate America.
And that was the beginning of the end. Reagan and the Republicans knew they could get away with anything -- and they did. They slashed taxes on the rich. They made it harder for you to start a union at your workplace. They eliminated safety regulations on the job. They ignored the monopoly laws and allowed thousands of companies to merge or be bought out and closed down. Corporations froze wages and threatened to move overseas if the workers didn't accept lower pay and less benefits. And when the workers agreed to work for less, they moved the jobs overseas anyway.
And at every step along the way, the majority of Americans went along with this. There was little opposition or fight-back. The "masses" did not rise up and protect their jobs, their homes, their schools (which used to be the best in the world). They just accepted their fate and took the beating.
I have often wondered what would have happened had we all just stopped flying, period, back in 1981. What if all the unions had said to Reagan, "Give those controllers their jobs back or we're shutting the country down!"? You know what would have happened. The corporate elite and their boy Reagan would have buckled.
But we didn't do it. And so, bit by bit, piece by piece, in the ensuing 30 years, those in power have destroyed the middle class of our country and, in turn, have wrecked the future for our young people. Wages have remained stagnant for 30 years. Take a look at the statistics and you can see that every decline we're now suffering with had its beginning in 1981 (here's a little scene to illustrate that from my last movie).
It all began on this day, 30 years ago. One of the darkest days in American history. And we let it happen to us. Yes, they had the money, and the media and the cops. But we had 200 million of us. Ever wonder what it would look like if 200 million got truly upset and wanted their country, their life, their job, their weekend, their time with their kids back?
Have we all just given up? What are we waiting for? Forget about the 20% who support the Tea Party -- we are the other 80%! This decline will only end when we demand it. And not through an online petition or a tweet. We are going to have to turn the TV and the computer and the video games off and get out in the streets (like they've done in Wisconsin). Some of you need to run for local office next year. We need to demand that the Democrats either get a spine and stop taking corporate money -- or step aside.
When is enough, enough? The middle class dream will not just magically reappear. Wall Street's plan is clear: America is to be a nation of Haves and Have Nothings. Is that OK for you?
Why not use today to pause and think about the little steps you can take to turn this around in your neighborhood, at your workplace, in your school? Is there any better day to start than today?
So, you finally admit that you hate the USA?
Originally Posted by cushioncrawler
Guess what, Mac, we already knew that.
Additionally, all countries are based on the weak and the strong, that happens to be "Life" everywhere.
Not much of what you write here adds up to anything resembling common sense, but now, as you continue to attack my country, while proving your own limited common sense, you are also telling us you want to see our country die?
Are you really THAT jealous of America, Mack?
I can assure you that Americans aren't even thinking about your country, so whjy are you so obsessed with our country?
You'd better spend your time worrying about your own country, Mac.
I watched that live, and it was great! She was abslutely correct, and there have been millions waiting for the Affordable Care Act so that they could finally have the peace of being medically insured, but sadly, too many have died while waiting for our ACA to be available, direct victims of the Repiglican Party's time wasting obstruction.
Originally Posted by DiabloViejo
I applaud president Obama, AND the Democrats for launching the ACA, and it will be even better if we can obstruct Repiglicans from filling more seats across this country, and prevent them from obstrucing people of color from exercising their Constitutional right to vote.
Excellent articles, thanks!