Libertarians would stand by and watch someone die rather than help someone caught in a bad spot. I suppose if someone gets a flat tire and they need a jack you'd laugh and drive off?

Comment by Arcus on September 16, 2011 at 11:22am

Some benefits of a socialized/mandated health care system:

-It's cheaper than any alternative.

-It promotes public health.

-It increases labor productivity.

-It reduces crime rate.

-It promotes social equality.

-It reduces inter-generational distributive justice issues.

-It reduces social and class tensions.

It's generally just a good and decent idea.

--------

Get laid off, lose your health insurance, get cancer. Them come up with good arguments against socialized health care.

Comment by Brady on September 16, 2011 at 1:44pm

@arcus I do support the idea that everyone get medical treatment as needed. I wouldn't want myself or loved ones to go without treatment when it's desperately needed. However, someone has to pay the exaggerated costs for medical treatment. Putting it on the government's tab will only encourage more people to flock to the United States for the world's best medical treatment. Bringing up another issue later, should we turn away anyone that comes here from around the world for treatment? I mean, in your words, "It's generally just a good and decent idea". Where does it stop? Does it?

Many countries that have socialized health care still have people that come to America for the best treatment. Those people that come here have lots of money. Just imagine if the government foots the bill to anyone with a pulse. It has good intentions, but just is not sustainable. To make it sustainable, we will have to give up something in return.

That something will have to be lower standards of medical care. We would have to match our medical treatment with the lowest common denominator from around the world. It won't happen intentionally, but that is economics. It is a noble idea but just not realistic.

Comment by Unseen on September 16, 2011 at 1:53pm

I guess I just don't understand how anyone can support an ethic that does not require that people needing essential life-sustaining care get it. I also don't think that holding to such a view really helps promote atheism. Discuss.

Comment by Arcus on September 16, 2011 at 2:06pm

"However, someone has to pay the exaggerated costs for medical treatment."

Which is why you have the option of a government run/mandated insurance scheme. One of the substantial costs of a decentralized system is that the cost of the uninsured is carried by the insured, especially in health care since doctors have taken an oath to care for the sick, damned the costs.

"Putting it on the government's tab will only encourage more people to flock to the United States for the world's best medical treatment."

Those are two statements, let me deal with the one after the other. First is the 'encouragement'. Currently the encouragement is for doctors to prescribe unnecessary and costly procedures merely to cover their own asses in case of law suits. It's one of the driving forces behind the exuberant cost of the current US system. I'm not denying that the US has the best health care system that money can buy, which is indeed perhaps the highest quality of treatment around the world. However, when perhaps as much as 1/3 of the population are either uninsured or under-insured, and another such a high deductible that another 1/3 is practically without access to this great offer, it's not very great. The ultra rich can have the Rolls Royce of health care, but people mostly have Hyundai's.

"would we turn away anyone that comes here from around the world for treatment?"

Yes, if they are un(der)insured you would. Luckily, my government picked up the bill for my health care while I lived in the US.

"Where does it stop? Does it?"

It tends to stop where the cost of keeping someone alive, from a medical professional evaluation, is too high. Spending millions on someone with stage 4 cancer is generally not done in socialized medicine. In an insurance based system they are legally obliged to provide unnecessary life-prolonging treatment due to fear of lawsuits.

"Many countries that have socialized health care still have people that come to America for the best treatment."

Seeing as America is a very large country and experience is the best teaching method, US doctors have a lot of experience with rare diseases and surgeries. "Flock" is a bit of an exaggeration, it tends only to be those ailments which affect very few statistically. I.e. tiny Norway has extremely few heart transplants, and Norwegian doctors may not be the best heart surgeons merely because they lack experience.

"Those people that come here have lots of money. Just imagine if the government foots the bill to anyone with a pulse."

The bills of those who "flock to America" tends to be picked up by the home governments or they are people of enough wealth. In fact, my sister considered going to the US to get fertility treatment, but the gvmt would only refund around 25% of the cost, which would be the same cost as the lesser and unsuccessful treatment she could receive at home for free.

"To make it sustainable, we will have to give up something in return."

yes, it would be your tax dollars. But on the other hand, if you choose to finance it over the tax bill or have a insurance company bill dump down in your mailbox, it will not be for free however you twist it. Difference is, it's cheaper to finance it over the tax bill.

"That something will have to be lower standards of medical care."

If you have a rare disease or having end-of-life treatment it will probably be a lesser form of care to cope with the cost. Also, there tends to be queuing. As an example, my dad had to wait 9 months for hip replacement and I had to wait 3 months for a neurological exam.

"We would have to match our medical treatment with the lowest common denominator from around the world."

Not at all. You have the advantage of taking lesson from the failures of socialized m

Comment by Arcus on September 16, 2011 at 2:14pm

DAMMIT! My post got cut.

You could learn from all the other countries, and I mean all the other first world countries (and most of the second world and some of the third world), which have a type or another of socialized medicine. I'm pretty sure America could kick ass. :)

Comment by Anonymous on September 16, 2011 at 2:42pm

@Arcus, Again you avoid the question. You are starting to remind me of the many politicians. 

Some benefits of a socialized/mandated health care system:

-It's cheaper than any alternative.

-It promotes public health.

-It increases labor productivity.

-It reduces crime rate.

-It promotes social equality.

-It reduces inter-generational distributive justice issues.

-It reduces social and class tensions.

It's generally just a good and decent idea.

If I sum this up this post your predicted ends justify the means. As much as I want to debate your points, I am more interested in debating the means. Debating the predicted ends for a long list of uncontrollable variables is a red herring, is unscientific and leads us running around in circles. When politicians do this, there is a lot of collateral damage. Let's be a better example.  I am now open, willing and eager to have an honest debate for the means. But for this to continue, you have to answer this simple question,

"Who is responsible for my choices?"

@Unseen, I would be happy to give you objective evidence of how I support my conclusions. Maybe a claim I presumably thought atheists would be eager to evaluate for themselves.  If I do not know your answer for this simple question (see above) I keep asking, I see no utility for me in continuing a debate with you. It leaves me guessing each of your positions, from which makes all of us look like fools.  I take full responsibility for making false assumptions and once again am eager to find common ground so that we can have an honest and enlightening debate.

Comment by Arcus on September 16, 2011 at 2:44pm

@Anon: I believe the question was to provide rational arguments for health care. I've provided a list, unfortunately completely explaining them would take a few years in a higher educational institutions.

Please provide me rational explanations why every other first world country has one. Are they all just bonkers?

Comment by Anonymous on September 16, 2011 at 2:57pm

Please provide me rational explanations why every other first world country has one. Are they all just bonkers?

@Arcus, I'll be happy to compromise by answering your question if you agree to answer mine.

"Who is responsible for my choices?"

 

Comment by Anonymous on September 16, 2011 at 2:59pm

I did ask first :)

Comment by Arcus on September 16, 2011 at 2:59pm

"Who is responsible for my choices?"

1. You (mostly, depending on inherited and environmental factors.)

2. It's a fallacious argument.

Now, go on...

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