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07.11 7,000+ Colleges and Universities Declare Climate Emergency and Unveil Three-Point Plan to Combat It [Fox News and Betsy DeVos never talk about this stuff so it must be Bull Shit, right?]


Ref. : Letters to the editor

Health Care & Environment

07.16 US aid cuts to UN agency will hurt vulnerable women and children, critics say

07.16 Trump abortion restrictions in effect for taxpayer-funded clinics

07.15 The response to DRC’s Ebola crisis isn’t working. Here’s what we need to do

07.15 Extinction Rebellion protests block traffic in five UK cities [Non-corporate human animals make their annoying bleating sounds...]

07.14 A Glacier the Size of Florida Is Becoming Unstable. It Has Dire Implications for Global Sea Levels [The willfully ignorant needn't read more, Trump]

07.13 'Climate Despair' Is Making People Give Up on Life [Willfully ignorant governments—having fired many of their best scientists—have made themselves too stupid to despair]

07.13 Trump administration to approve pesticide that may harm bees [The worst government money can buy!]

07.12 These solar panels don’t just generate power—they produce drinking water

07.12 David Attenborough: polluting planet may become as reviled as slavery [1:34 video]

07.10 Plastic Has A Big Carbon Footprint — But That Isn't The Whole Story [Fixing our world begins by educating your consciousness with the best truth from trustworthy news sources—so you'll then insist truly bad things will get fixed. But if instead you are educated by untrustworthy news sources—then your consciousness could be warped to where you are hating and fighting with your best friends. Clue: untrustworthy news sources never seriously report news about the world's most critical emergency—Global warming.]

07.10 Molly Scott Cato: ‘It’s the wealthy who are causing climate change’

07.09 Judge reinstates Madrid's low emissions zone [Yeh!]

07.07 How Solar Panels Work (And Why They're Taking Over the World) [Hope they leave space between panels for wild flowers to grow so birds and butterflies can flourish!]

07.05 Tree planting 'has mind-blowing potential' to tackle climate crisis

07.04 On reflection: how the 'albedo effect' is melting the Antarctic

07.04 US produces far more waste and recycles far less of it than other developed countries [As expected—and made worse by Trump—the U.S. is best at being the worst]07.03 Booming LNG industry could be as bad for climate as coal, experts warn

07.03 Deep-sea mining to turn oceans into ‘new industrial frontier’

07.03 Caravan of Americans battling diabetes heads to Canada for affordable insulin [3:36 video; Like Central Americans flee for their lives from criminal drug gangs, Americans flee for their lives for affordable pharmaceutical drugs]

07.02 American Medical Association sues North Dakota over abortion laws

07.02 'Committed' CO2 emissions jeopardize international climate goals, study finds

07.01 New Solar + Battery Price Crushes Fossil Fuels, Buries Nuclear

07.01 Freak summer hailstorm buries cars in Mexico's Guadalajara [0:50 video]

07.01 Climate Change is Devastating India With Heat Waves and Water Shortages [13:48 video]

06.30 American farmers can't afford this administration's climate apathy

06.30 The US military is a bigger polluter than more than 140 countries combined [Could a world-wide moratorium of military activity dramatically slow the climate crises?]

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US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'

07.16 Describing 'Future We Want to Live In' Scores of Groups Unveil New Blueprint for Reproductive Rights

07.16 'Do not take the bait': congresswomen denounce racist Trump attack [3:50 video]

07.16 Money Laundering Scandal Forces Puerto Rico’s Governor to Cut His Vacation Short — Just in Time for Another Scandal

07.16 Turnstile teaching [The problem is NOT the color of students skin, as our fake President reflexively thinks. The problem is the lax attitude and deficient funding by government to always do a much better job for a better future.]

07.15 Finding the Future in Radical Rural America

07.15 Sanders Accuses Biden of Parroting Pharma and Insurance Industry Script With Attacks on Medicare for All [Like Trump, Biden explains why he's unelectable every day.]

07.15 If there is an 'immigrant' who has failed to integrate in America, it's Donald Trump

07.15 Trump tells Ocasio-Cortez and other female progressives to 'go back' to 'original' countries

07.15 Trump Takes Pelosi's Side Against AOC and The Squad as Intraparty Fight Over Immigration Continues [Its about much more than immigration, its about the Corporate Dominance—by many of the same companies, even—over both major Political Parties. With too few exceptions, neither party has represented The Public since Nixon generously raised the minimum wage (Part D Medicare and ACA both became Frankenstein legislation due to excessive corporate price-fixing influence), and that has to change!]

07.14 Trump: People like Paul Ryan almost killed the Republican Party [Then it's too bad he didn't stay to finish the job!]

07.13 Trump's POS Labor Secretary, Acosta, Out. POS Number 2, Linked to Abramoff, to Fill Role [A willingness to perform criminal behavior seems the only competency required...]

Justice Matters

07.15 Australia 'deeply concerned' about China's treatment of Uighur people [What are the reasons, exactly, that justify harsh imprisonment of a million people?]

07.15 Zuma tells South Africa corruption inquiry he is victim of foreign plot [Unaccountable corrupt governments are so in fashion these days...]

07.14 Warren vows to probe U.S. crimes on immigrants if elected [Can you imagine living in a nation with a working Justice System? How far we've fallen!]

High Crimes
Economics & Corrupt Capitalism

07.15 China’s Economic Growth Hits 27-Year Low as Trade War Stings

International & Futurism

07.16 Trump’s race fantasy is clear: the US as home for whites fleeing Europe [1:09 video]

07.15 India’s Terrifying Water Crisis

07.15 Australia now has the highest minimum wage in the world [From 1960 to 2018 – the U.S. has fallen from 1st place to below the tenth place and off the chart]

07.14 Kasich: The chilling effect of British ambassador's leaked memos

07.14 'Just a matter of when': the $20bn plan to power Singapore with Australian solar

07.14 At least 24 Yellow Vests lost eyes in violent protests. Now they're more determined than ever [Protests of all kinds will continue until systemic inequality loses political dominance]

07.13 New Zealand Begins Gun Buyback Prompted by Mosque Attacks

07.13 After a Police Shooting, Ethiopian Israelis Seek a ‘Black Lives Matter’ Reckoning [Since so-called modern humans evolved there have been 10,000 generations of people. It is extremely far-fetched to think anyone is racially pure. SO ALL THIS HATE IS INCREDIBLY STUPID.]

07.13 After a Police Shooting, Ethiopian Israelis Seek a ‘Black Lives Matter’ Reckoning

07.13 Brazil’s President May Appoint Son, Friend to the Trumps, as Ambassador to U.S. [Friend of the Trumps, so we know they're all brain-dead except about near-term profits. They are clear-cutting the Amazon Rain Forest to feed-then-butcher millions of methane farting cows, over and over. Yep, that's there business plan. So therefore the rest of the world will hopefully plant billions of trees elsewhere to sequester CO2 to offset what the Bolsonaro family and investors are destroying. What's wrong with this picture?]

07.13 Trump’s Cruelty and Mexico’s Duty [Our president is immoral to his core and reacts to things like a child, not understanding that his actions are often crueler than they should be. And that cruelty will never completely be excused or forgotten—the people's hatred of Trump is growing, like the Texan's hatred when President General Santa Anna laid seige to the Alamo, which was Mexico's territory at the time...]

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  U.S. Wastes over $1 Trillion a Year on Health Care Spending
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U.S. Wastes over $1 Trillion a Year on Health Care Spending

Even worse, we're not getting any better quality of care for double the spending per person.

by Marc Cherbonnier
2 September 2009
US medical bill
Dozens of countries with better-rated health care systems would save us at least one $trillion a year every year, if we would just adopt one of their systems for ourselves. So why are we dithering?

The national health care debate in Washington and at Town Hall meetings around the country has been especially terrible because of the lack of focus on what the most important priorities of our future health care system should be. This isn't surprising, because our politicians and the media are dodging the most important issue, and the public doesn't know about it.

Do you know how much we spend per capita on health care in the U.S. when compared to our peers in other advanced countries? You should. Here are some examples:

The Japanese spend only 35% of what Americans pay ($2581 vs $7290). Those in the United Kingdom pay just 41% of what we pay. And the French, whose health care system is rated the best in the world, pay less than half of what we pay.

Now, you would think this excessive spending in the US would be a major issue, wouldn't you? But no, it's been hushed up. Why?

Do U.S. citizens get better health care than in these other countries? Not according to the World Health Organization's ranking of the world's health systems. The US ranks 37th in the world, between Costa Rica and Slovenia. The UK ranks 18th and Japan ranks 10th.

Given that US citizens aren't getting very good value for the huge amount they're spending, you would think cutting costs and improving quality would be an extremely important part of our public discussion. But strangely, it isn't. We're being diverted by divisive side issues.

How much money are we talking about here? Let's do some simple math. If we adopted the Japanese plan just as it is, the US savings per person per year would be $4709. Multiply that by our 300,000,000 citizens, and the savings amounts to $1,412,700,000,000 per year, every year. That's $1.4 trillion dollars. [Ref. Total spending on health care, per person, 2007]

If we adopted the United Kingdom's plan as-is, the savings would be $4298 per year per person, resulting in $1,289,400,000,000 savings per year, every year.

Dozens of countries with better-rated health care systems would save us at least one trillion a year every year, if we would just adopt one of their systems for ourselves. So why are we dithering? Think of the money we're wasting by dithering!

Sure, questions would need to be answered if we were to adopt another country's system, such as how much doctors and nurses would be paid, etc. We could tinker, and maybe spend a few billion more than our peers overall--but that would be a drop in the bucket compared to overall savings we can realize.

So why aren't we focusing on reducing our wildly excessive health care spending? We're talking huge money here.

So why aren't we focusing on reducing our wildly excessive health care spending? We're talking huge money here.

And who would get the savings if the US were to emulate one of its peer countries? Let's start with employers, who would benefit the most because they'd significantly reduce their costs for employee benefits. This would enable employers to give employees raises and/or reduce product costs and sell more products—thereby maybe hiring more US employees. Employees who now pay for all or part of their health care insurance coverage would pay less, so their net pay would be increased, and so the overall economy would benefit, too. The self-employed, who pay for 100% of their health insurance, would benefit handsomely, getting a effective annual raise of about $4,000 in disposable annual income ($8,000/yr. if they have family coverage). Retirees could avoid current co-pays and the cost of a Medicare Part B entirely.

We're paying more than twice as much as our peers in other countries and not even getting as good a level of health care quality. Regardless of political persuasion, we should all be steaming mad, and demanding parity.

Government, too, would benefit because its per-person spending for Medicare and Medicaid would likewise be reduced, perhaps by larger-insured-group negotiated price cuts and/or profit-margin-capping. This in turn would substantially reduce the system's projected unfunded liability for future years, thereby cutting back, and perhaps even reversing, the pace of deficit spending. Such government savings, in turn, could result in tax cuts, further stimulating the economy.

Here we are, paying more than twice as much as our peers in other countries and not even getting as good a level of health care quality for the money. Regardless of political persuasion, we should all be steaming mad, and demanding parity.

But unfortunately most of us don't realize this situation exists, because our media and politicians are allowing our attention to be diverted by more trivial, and more divisive, issues.

So—what's all that extra money we're spending going for? The usual pigs at the trough: for-profit insurance companies (who rake it in from malpractice premiums as well as from medical insurance policies), drug companies (who charge much more in the US than elsewhere for the same drugs), politicians, and the media (via all those ads).

Marc Cherbonnier, a systems analyst, is webmaster for the Baltimore Chronicle.

Copyright © 2009 The Baltimore News Network. All rights reserved.

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This story was published on September 2, 2009.


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