Thursday, October 15, 2009

Bill-Killers and Prayer-Killers

Well, been awhile since I've had time to blog about anything. I have a test today, and will have a test every week from now until the end of the semester, when I will, of course, have no less than four tests and one quiz in as many days. Still, I thought I'd toss my two cents' worth into the wishing well of public opinion, seeing as how the world continues to turn, in spite of my being too busy to even really watch it whizz on by.

First off, I have to chip in on the parents up near Wausau, WI, who had decided to pray over their daughter instead of taking her in to proper medical care, and the girl died. (Because, it turned out, she had an undiagnosed condition of diabetes.) They were sentanced not to long ago, to 6 months jail-time, and some community service besides. Now, a lot of my fellow unbelievers are stunned that the sentance was so light. After all, they killed their kid with their superstitious nonsense! But I actually found myself defending the verdict, because any parent who has lost a child (and who wasn't trying to kill the kid on purpose) has felt a sting and pain of loss that is beyond anything the State can possibly dish out. So I thought that they'd punished themselves sufficiently enough, and any jail time issued was essentially gravy. Ah, but no. I've recently had the time to go back over the whole story. This couple actually thought their daughter would be resurrected after she died. Furthermore, the husband, Mr. Neumann, who seems to be the driving force in this whole sad, stupid affair, actually dared to be defiant to the court at his sentancing. "I'm guilty of trusting my Lord's wisdom completely. Guilty of asking for heavenly intervention. Guilty of following Jesus Christ when the whole world doesn't understand. I am guilty of obeying my God."

Mr. Neumann, if that's really what your God demanded, then to hell with him!

I've completely changed my mind. Life sentance is too short for him! This prick actually dares to assume he knows God's will, as if anybody knows jack shit about God in the first place! He dares to be defiant, instead of contrite over committing such an obvious and colossal fuck-up! He actually thinks that if the whole world doesn't understand his actions, that it's the whole world's fault, and not his own!

The only difference between this prick and Jim Jones is that the poor little girl wasn't made to drink poisoned Kool-Aid.

I've said it before, and it bears repeating: In a world where, if there is a God, he obviously said nothing to guide us, the only sin truly deserving of an eternity in hellfire is the sin of presuming to speak for Him.

God's Willl is, apparently, for us not to know His Will!

Hey, parents! Do you hate your kids? Think they're a financial burden? Do they drive you nuts? Now, you too can get rid of them and receive a mere slap on the wrist! Just get religion. Then, get your hands on some type of disease that will kill them if not treated, like Typhoid, and add it to their drinking water. Better yet, put it in their Kool-Aid. Then, just pray for them instead of taking them to the doctor. You'll only have to do six months in jail, thanks to the myopia of the Wisconsin justice system! You'll be out and free in no time!

After all that, I almost don't have it in me to say anything more, much less say anything more about the health care debate. But I will anyway.

I had a chance the other day to stay up late into the morning, and go to the bank. During that time, I caught a little bit of the Charlie Sykes show, which I haven't been able to do in a little while. Charlie was talking about (you guessed it) health care reform, and was making the point about how many medical breakthroughs take place because of the desire for companies to make a profit off of the breakthrough. His point, I guess, was that medical care for profit is not necessarily a bad thing, especially in terms of advancement of medical technology.

Now, Charlie has morphed through the years. I liked the Charlie Sykes show back when it was newer, and he was more reasonable. Back then, the old Charlie would have asked the obvious question: What percentage of medical research is actually for-profit? The modern Charlie didn't touch the question with a 10-foot pole! How I miss the "old Charlie!"

Turns out, most medical research is still government and research-grant funded. The percentage which isn't, is geared towards mega-payoff, and isn't really looking to advance medicine in a way which would produce maximum health. Instead, its looking for maximum profit. This explains why we have many treatments for long-term ailments, such as acid reflux, sleep apnea, and heart disease, but few long-term cures. Long term cures, you see, means you get treated once, and don't make companies any more money afterward. For-profit medical care pretty much means that they'd prefer you be (ahem!) a "regular" customer.

Now, I'm not going to go off the deep end here like Bill Maher recently did, and say that alternative medicines are needed instead. But I am going to say that I think it's odd, and more than a little shameful, that we have a cure for male-pattern baldness, and pills that will give you an erection, but have no cures for things like alzheimer's disease. After all, if alzheimer's gets cured, all those treatment centers would have to close, wouldn't they?

Sometimes, especially with medicine, you simply have to take the system by the throat and say, "Fuck your profit! Do the right thing!"

But doing that will prove tricky. The lines have sharpened, and it's quite clear that this is a fight between our government and the insurance companies. And that's scary for a number of reasons. Sure, the Democrats may have a super-majority, but the insurance companies have a similar such super-majority in terms of the number of lawmakers they have in their pocket. We've already been sold down the river with the abandonment of the public option, even though I'd detailed in an earlier post why public-paid health care is as inevitable as death and taxes. What might get lost next?

The mantra that gets repeated is that private industry is better than government. That's almost true. Private industry sucks when there's a monopoly. That's why we have anti-trust laws. And it's interesting that it's phrased like that: "Anti-trust." What aren't we trusting, if not capitalism left unbridled? Don't get me wrong, I like capitalism, but not left unchecked, and it's already had far too much freedom than is good for it.

But there's another exception to private industry being better than government, and that's the insurance industry. In fact, the insurance industry is the one form of private industry that has consistently underperformed the government at every possible level. And this is what some want to trust our healthcare to? Isn't it the insurance industry which was, and is, the problem to begin with?

I mentioned anti-trust laws earlier. Did you know that insurance companies are exempt from anti-trust laws? This was outlined on Keith Olbermann's show last night. Any health care reform bill better at least slap an anti-trust clause onto the insurance giants, or we're going to be in for a whole world of hurt!

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