July 16, 2017
The cost of not having a national single payer healthcare system in the US
I’m not sure the cost is $1.7 trillion per year for US citizens, as this article asserts, but I would be willing to bet the figure is not too far off the mark of reality.
Read all about it, right here…
The Cost of Not Having Single Payer: $1.4 Trillion Per Year
July 13, 2017
As if people just discovered fake news last year. There have always been lies and rumors of lies, and little certainty about anything economically and politically, thanks to humans lying by commission and omission, not only making shit up but hiding the truth, as in keeping secrets, especially classified state secrets. The problem is worse now because there has never been a professional liar on the world stage like Donald Trump, and there has never been so much to hide.
An America paradox: Pillorying fake news while promoting false flags
By Matthew Maavak
Published in the Intrepid Report
July 13, 2017
This article is an eye opener based on serious intellectual comprehension, by Paul Street. The Fourth of July will never be the same after you read it.
On American Revolution
By Paul Street
Published in COUNTERPUNCH
“It’s true that slaveowner Thomas Jefferson’s July 4, 1776 Declaration of Independence (DOI) articulated the revolutionary notion that the people have the right to dissolve a government that no longer serves their interests. But the “American Revolution” was a national independence movement led by wealthy landowners, slaveowners, and merchants who feared uprisings from below. They wanted more breathing space to develop further systems of racial oppression, territorial conquest, and class rule. For them national independence was required among other things to prevent social revolution. The last thing the nation’s wealth aristo-republican Founders wanted was a world turned upside down.”
Read all about it…
July 13, 2017
Here is a must read article with real intellectual merit by Margaret Flowers, a pediatrician with seventeen years experience, now professionally writing and lobbying for a single payer Medicare for all system. Be sure and read her linked article in this article explaining why the US healthcare system is so inferior to the health systems of other developed nations.
To Fix the ACA, We Do Not Need a Public Option, We Need a Private Extraction
By Margaret Flowers
Published in Truth-Out
“2017 is the make or break year for the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Seven years in, the flaws of the ACA are clear — tens of millions are still without health insurance, premiums and out of pocket costs are rising and causing people to either avoid and delay care or go into debt, and the US continues to rank poorly in health outcomes. There is one way to fix the ACA, and I call it the Private Extraction.
“What Are We to do?”
Read all about it…
July 13, 2017
Nancy Pelosi Rejects Single Payer Being Added to Democratic Party Platform: By blasting the proposal, the Democratic Party ignores its voters
By Michael Sainato
“Politico reported on May 3 that House Democrats want Republicans to pass an Obamacare repeal bill in the House, citing that the vote could be used against Republicans in the 2018 midterm elections.
“Democrats affirmed this report by chanting “hey hey hey goodbye” to Republicans after Obamacare repeal marginally passed in the House by a vote of 217 to 213 on May 4. This strategy is terrible for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, it reveals that the Democratic Party is willing to sell out constituents just to receive some attack fodder.”
Read all about it…
July 13, 2017
Why Healthcare Should Be Managed as a Natural Monopoly
by Richard John Stapleton
In industries in which there is inelastic demand, in industries in which people have to buy a product or service regardless of prices charged, free competition does not work in the best interest of customers. Prices charged are not inexorably driven down by competition to an optimum level for all stakeholders, to the lowest prices for customers and prices that fairly compensate all factors of production in the industry, including a rational return for the owners of capital.
In such industries the price system degenerates in such a way that providers can fix prices about the way they want, as in the case of high priced drugs, and engage in price discrimination, as in the case of medical services and treatments, that is, charge different prices to different patients. This behavior creates chaotic situations in which almost no one knows what many treatments will or should cost.
The solution is to regulate such industries by the state as full monopolies, or as what are called natural monopolies, in which prices are set by the state, as in the cases of electricity and water utilities. In such cases, under capitalism, effective and ethical regulators set customer prices at levels that provide competitive market prices for suppliers of raw materials, competitive wages and salaries for workers and managers, and competitive returns on investment for the owners of employed capital.
Medicine and health services are basically public utilities, since they are required, like electricity and water, demand being inelastic, caused by people not wanting to die or become impaired or go blind or go crazy and empathetic human beings not wanting to suffer grief and sadness caused by having to observe these things happening to people in droves, unnecessarily.
Consequently, if people cannot pay for their medical treatments providers have to treat them free for humanitarian reasons, and this forces and allows providers to set exorbitant uneconomic prices for customers that can pay to compensate for their losses on those that cannot or will not pay, causing chaos and widespread unfairness.
Therefore, as Obama pointed out, a decent society must provide affordable health insurance for everyone in order to control medical prices. What Obama did not fight hard enough for, unfortunately, is the solution for the whole problem, the logical conclusion that the federal government must provide affordable health insurance for everyone, aka Medicare for All, as a good natural monopolist, not only setting prices for national health insurance, but also fair and rational national prices for drug and medical treatments, just like good state regulators set prices for electricity and water.
The US is the only developed nation on Earth in which medical bills are a major cause of bankruptcy for citizens, a painful and degrading fate, but a fate less painful and degrading, perhaps, than people becoming debt slaves the rest of their lives, harassed by horrendous medical bills hanging over their heads, and bill collectors, caused by avoiding premature deaths and impairments, by agreeing to pay for drugs and medical procedures at the time of service, or die.
The only cure for this inhumane mental anguish, pain, and suffering is the federal government regulating the healthcare industry as a natural monopoly, using proven time-honored necessary and rational procedures under capitalism.
The federal government should allow insurance companies to sell all the life, automobile, and home insurance policies they want, but it should get them out of the business of selling health insurance; and federal regulators should start fairly and rationally regulating drug and medical prices, while providing rational and fair rates of return on invested capital for all providers, using standard procedures used forever in regulated natural monopolies.
Federal regulators probably won’t do this because politicians won’t let them do it, since elected senators, representatives, and presidents need campaign contributions from fat cats running the healthcare industry, one of the most profitable industries in the US, earning exorbitant irrational uneconomic profits because of being allowed to operate as an unregulated monopoly. To verify this just take a look at the stock price increases of healthcare corporations relative to the Standard & Poors index since the Crash of 2007 at https://us.spindices.com/indices/equity/sp-500-health-care-sector.
To consider that satisfying the money, power, and fame needs and drives of one hundred thousand or so politicians, healthcare industry corporate fat cats, and healthcare industry professionals and employees, caused by not having a national health service, would count more in the US than curing the spiritual, economic, and psychological pain and suffering of one hundred million or more ordinary citizens caused by not having a national health service is mind boggling, another sad example of the venality, callousness, corruption, obtuseness, and ethical incompetence now reigning in Washington.
Feel free to forward, reprint, or otherwise circulate this essay any way you see fit.
Richard John Stapleton, Editor & Publisher, Effective Learning Report, 32 East Main Street, Statesboro, Georgia, July 15, 2017.