Thursday, September 20, 2007

HillaryCare, My Sister, and Me ... and Everyone Else

My younger sister, Indigo Rose, wrote in response to the last article on HillaryCare:

I don't understand how a person could be carrying insurance BEFORE looking for a job? Most of us work to get the insurance benefit. Rural area, State of California, we share the cost of $925.10/mo for 2 people (our share $276- and it raises 6% in January). A family plan is $1,202.63/mo right now.

After a visit to British Columbia in the 1990's the Canadian's were telling us to DO WHATEVER NECESSARY TO NEVER ALLOW UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE!!! The wait for surgery, any surgery... tonsils, heart.., took too long. Lives were being lost.
I got carried away with a 'short' response.


Your concern is a common one and one with which we should all be very clear.

Currently, as you state, most workers obtain their insurance through their employer. In my case, the employer pays 100% of the insurance premium while I pay a small deductible - $15 office visit, $25 prescription drug, $200 ER usage, $2000 hospitalization. Of course, these are not the actual costs of the medical services, but merely the part I pay; the insurance company pays the difference.

Our Dad paid all of the insurance premiums while he worked in the late 20th century. It wwas expensive for the time, but everyone paid their own way. During the 1980s, employers could not afford to pay larger salaries to everybody, so they began offering health and dental care as inducements to work for company X, rather than company Y. Soon, employer paid health care was assumed to be a "right" instead of the benefit it truly was.

As the cost of health care increased for employers, many companies began transferring a portion of the cost to the employee - the deductible. However, employees had become accustomed to health insurance paid by others and the concept that health care is a right had taken firm hold. Employers began lobbying Congress to help them out with tax breaks. This action got government into the mix.

Currently, health care and health insurance as a right guaranteed by the Constitution (...provide for the common Welfare...) to all persons in America is a belief that will not be easily debunked, if it's at all possible. Employers have successfully transferred the responsibility from the employee to the employer and finally to the government. Under government auspices, health care is moving toward not just a right guaranteed to the citizens, but an obligation of each citizen. The responsibility has come full circle, but where it was once a free choice, it will be a government requirement for living here like paying taxes. Most assuredly there will eventually be penalties for not having health insurance.

Hillary Clinton's plan would require all workers have a health identification card much like a license - hunting, fishing, driving, etc. Without the health care license, a prospective employee would not be eligible for employment. Conceivably, this license could become the standard ID used for all transactions, especially if our individual genetic code is used as our ultimate identifier, much as fingerprinting is used today. Let's be very honest here, Hillary Clinton is not a Democrat, she is not a Socialist. Hillary Clinton is a Communist and complete control of our lives is the ultimate goal to be achieved through incremental 'give-backs' by the citizenry to the central government.

I know this sounds very paranoid and Big Brother-ish, but it's not unprecedented. The Social Security card was not supposed to be used as a primary ID, but that is what has happened and is now issued at birth. The drivers license was never supposed to used as a primary ID, but it is. Credit cards definitely were never meant to be used as a primary ID, but try renting a DVD without one.

Our medical records have been the last of our private data that is private. Under universal heath care, like all of our other private information, the medical records of all Americans will be available to anyone with the money to purchase access. Supermarkets keep records on what we eat through in-store discount membership cards. By signing on to a political party roll, we identify our neighborhoods enabling political operatives to target likely voters per household rather than general geographic area. Credit card companies and banks track every purchase, location, and the time the issued card is used. Our locations are tracked when we use our automated toll-pass. Phone companies know where we are and with whom we talk every time we make a phone call; some folks even advocate issuing a "phone-number-for-life" to every newborn child. Even information on our pets is compiled when we use the Petco and PetSmart discount cards and our pets can be tracked by satellite by use of an implanted chip; the same chips are being touted as an anti-kidnapping tool to be implanted in children, and the military is toying with the idea implanting the chips into soldiers so they are easier to find if lost in the fog of war. How long before we are all required to be implanted with the satellite tracking chips?

This is all very saddening. The even sadder truth is that no matter how much we may protest or resist, all of these "progressive advancements" will eventually be commonplace. Our treasured freedoms and liberties will be just quaint memories for those who survive and long ago history for the futures children. History demonstrates that people are more likely to entrust more and more of their unalienable rights to governments than to embrace the much more difficult habits of the heart of freedom and personal responsibility. Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1776, "all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed."

Technology has changed, mankind hasn't.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

American Health the Greatest Say Canadians

Sen. Hillary Clinton, Democrat Presidential candidate, has introduced HillaryCare 2.0 this week. Her plan is a massive enlargement of government bureaucracy and spending, despite a promise of “no new bureaucracies.”

Sen Clinton (what happened to Rodham?) seeks to make Health Care Insurance a requirement for everyone in the U.S. Every worker would have to show proof of insurance in order to obtain a job. She also promises that everyone will pay higher taxes to pay for her health care improvements that she admits will cost $110 billion per year. That's an extra tax contribution of $367 for every man, woman, and child in America.

We are told our health care system is broken and 47 million Americans are without insurance; about half the 47 million are illegal aliens - 20 million. But, that doesn't mean the health care system is broken, it only means many people don't have health INSURANCE, not an inability to obtain health services. Many people simply choose not to carry the expense of insurance. It's estimated that 9.3 million people with household incomes above $75,000 are uninsured. Another 8.5 million of the uninsured have household incomes of $50,000 to $74,999.

Why would anybody want to pay for health insurance in a country with health care so bad that New York City 9/11 rescue workers had to be taken to Cuba for adequate care by Michael Moore? Why indeed, when tens of thousands of Canadians come to America for health care even though Hillary & Co. tout the Canadian health service system as far superior to ours.

The most recent example of this trend is Belinda Stronach, a Liberal Party member of Canada's Parliament and daughter of Canadian billionaire industrialist Frank Stronach.

Stronach, a close friend of Bill and Hillary Clinton, came to California last June for a cancer operation. Her spokesman, Greg MacEachern, told the Toronto Star that she made the decision to go to the U.S. because it was the "best place" for her type of surgery — not that she lacked any confidence in Canada's health care.

But Stronach, who has the resources to afford the finest in foreign care, isn't alone. Stronach's fellow Liberal Party member Robert Bourassa, who served as premier of Quebec in the early 1990s,chose to be treated in Cleveland, Ohio, when he was diagnosed with cancer — not in Canada.

Just last month, , we wrote about Karen and J.P. Jepp, who had to leave their home in Calgary, Alberta, for Great Falls, Montana, to give birth to their identical quadruplets. Why? A shortage of neonatal beds and inability to perform a C-section for multiple babies.

You might wonder, if Canada's health care system is so great, why would a Canadian city of more than a million people have fewer beds for newborns and fewer services than a fairly remote prairie city of 57,000? Good question.

In fact, these and other instances lay bare the ugly truth about Canada's system: Far from being a health care paradise, Canada's system is in disarray — and getting worse. That's why it's pursuing private-sector reforms, even as we consider national health care.

In 1998, 212,990 Canadians were on hospital waiting lists for surgery, waiting on average 13.3 weeks. Today, more than 800,000 Canadians are on waiting lists, waiting often 20 weeks or more.

Survival rates for major types of cancer in the U.S. are higher than in Canada. As such, seven of 10 Canadian provinces send their prostate-cancer patients to the U.S. for treatment. What does that tell you?

Americans have more access to advanced medical procedures like dialysis and coronary bypass surgery, and use more medical technology like CT scanners and MRI imaging machines. Canada's Fraser Institute puts it bluntly: "Canadian patients do not get the same quality or quantity of care as American patients."

Universal care, as pushed by Stronach's friend Hillary Clinton, will have the same results in the U.S. as in Canada.

Do Americans really want that?

This American certainly doesn't want any part of HillaryCare. As for the cost of the bloated program, just what does 110 billion dollars really look like? Try this:

$68 billion (Department of Education)
+ $22 billion (Department of Energy)
+ $8.03 billion(Environmental Protection Agency)
+ $7.77 billion ( Corps of Engineers)
+ $2.68 billion (Executive Office of the President)
+ $675 million ( Small Business Administration).

Certainly, Sen Clinton would not create another bureaucracy. As President she would probably roll HillaryCare 2.0 into the Health and Human Services budget which for 2006-07 is a paltry $76 billion (increased by $2.7 billion for 2007-08.) So again, the former First Lady isn't really lying, there would be no new bureaucracy. Believing her only requires "a willing suspension of disbelief."

Investors Business Daily
Canadian Press
Milwaukee Journal Sentinal

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Constitution Day - Who Remembers Anymore?

Every September 17 is Constitution Day. How many of us actually remembered? I didn't. I forgot just as I've forgotten the Maine and the Alamo. Fortunatly, Joseph Farah of World Net Daily remembered and has reminded us of the special nature of our Constitution.

Today is Constitution Day. How will you celebrate? How will you mark the occasion?

On Sept. 17, 1787, the Constitutional Convention, meeting in Philadelphia for four months, agreed on the final draft of this special, inspired document and submitted to the several states for ratification.

That was 220 years ago.

It was ratified June 21, 1788, when New Hampshire approved it as the ninth state. Congress, acting under the Articles of Confederation, declared the Constitution the law of the land March 4, 1789.

By general assent and resolution of the Congress, Sept. 17 has been designated as Constitution Day ever since – designated, but not necessarily acknowledged or observed.

In the 21st century, we celebrate many holidays in America – Independence Day, presidential birthdays, Veterans Day, Memorial Day. Yet, no one even acknowledges Constitution Day anymore. That's tragic.

America has forgotten the two concepts that made her special as a nation – two unique factors that set her apart from the world from the start.

First, the Founding Fathers wrote a Constitution that strictly limited the role of the federal government in the lives of Americans. The idea that Washington had some role in education, redistribution of wealth, setting minimum wage requirements, nationalizing millions of acres of land, taxing income and subsidizing government-approved artists would have been anathema to the men who fought so valiantly for freedom against an overreaching foreign tyranny – if they could have even imagined such abuses.

Secondly, the framers of that Constitution spoke eloquently about the fact that only a moral people – a nation of Godly people with common spiritual and social values – were capable of self-government. They could not have envisioned the depths of depravity, licentiousness and vice to which our society has fallen – yet they warned about it.

The "Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States," painted by Howard Chandler Christy in 1940. It depicts the signing of the U.S. Constitution at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pa.

Our current debates about social and government policy seem disconnected from these two critical foundations of the American republic. Politicians will never solve the problems facing the country without acknowledging these two essential precepts.

In fact, I'll go further. Politicians will never solve our problems. Period. The more government tries to do, the worse things get.

And that's the beauty of the Constitution. It strictly limits what government can do. The trouble is that Americans have forgotten this. They've been dumbed-down by government schools and a government-media complex to believe that Uncle Sam is there to solve all their problems – from how much they get paid, to what they spend on health care, to how they should raise their own children.

We honor the flag in America, but not the Constitution. The flag is a mere symbol. The Constitution is the real thing. We should revere it, and, more importantly, live under it.

Why do we salute the flag and not the Constitution? The Constitution is every bit as symbolic as the flag, but it is much more – literally a guidepost to maintaining (or now, perhaps, to recovering) America's freedom. But it can only serve that function if we as a nation abide by it, pay heed to it, live by its code and its spirit.

Which symbol is really worth dying for? The flag is not my pick. After all, it is just a symbol. Symbols, of course, are important. But the Constitution is more. It is both symbol and substance. And its substance is being desecrated by some of those so piously concerned about the symbolic desecration of the flag.

A few years ago, a public opinion survey found that less than half of American adults would vote for the Constitution if it were on the ballot today. To that, I say, thank God there is no requirement for a referendum on the Constitution. Another poll showed close to half of Americans don't believe in the basic First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech, assembly, religion and the press.

So, there you see it. The Constitution is being desecrated before our eyes. Here in one document are the guiding principles of our nation succinctly and clearly stated. The Constitution, coupled with the Declaration of Independence, represents more of a national creed than a simple founding document for the nation.

But skeptics are winning the day. Not even the Constitution holds us together as a people any longer. Maybe, instead of reciting the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag in school every day, that time could be better spent reading the Constitution.

Maybe next year, 2008, an election year, we will remember Constitution Day. That is, if there is still a Constitution to remember.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.