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09.21 Greed is killing Alaska's salmon habitat – but we can still save it

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09.20 The $11 trillion question Chris Cillizza can't answer

09.20 Florence sparks pollution fears after excrement-filled 'hog lagoons' overflow

09.20 EU must end new petrol and diesel car sales by 2030 to meet climate targets – report

09.19 Air pollution linked to much greater risk of dementia

09.19 Shell and Exxon's secret 1980s climate change warnings [that capitalists suppressed this for continuing profit is the most unforgivable crime ever]Trump administration rolls back methane pollution rule despite harmful health impacts [continuing in the tradition of stupid capitalism at all costs]

09.18 'I was horrified that children are breathing air this dirty inside the school' [if your government isn't working, change it!]

09.17 For Whom the Climate Bell Tolls

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09.22 Progressives to DNC: It Would Be 'Insane' Not to Hand Over Twitter Account to Ocasio-Cortez

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09.22 As Right-Wingers Push Trump to Fire Rosenstein, Here's What to Do If He Does

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09.18 Voters Are Ready for a Green New Deal. Are Democrats?

09.18 'This Election Is Last Chance to Stop Them': Kudlow Confirms Trump and GOP Ready to Gut Safety Net After Midterms [Yes, there are far too many sociopaths]

09.18 You'll miss Trump one day

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09.18 'Unconscionable' and 'Appalling': In Affront to Those Fleeing US-Backed Wars and Persecution, Trump Slams Door on Refugees

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  It's Time For Some Peaceful Revolution
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ANALYSIS:

It's Time For Some Peaceful Revolution

by Marc Cherbonnier

Obama's cost-cutting goal for health care costs is ridiculously small. Why isn't our goal to cut spending in half and save a $Trillion in health care costs every year?

Unsurprisingly, Obama only compares our health spending per capita to the next-highest spending nation, and ignores mentioning that we spend more than double what dozens of higher rated health systems do in Europe and Asia. You would hope that our leaders would want a program as efficient and as high in quality, but Obama's goal is only this:

"And if we are able to slow the growth of health care costs by just one-tenth of 1 percent each year—one-tenth of 1 percent—it will actually reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over the long term."

Why isn't our goal to cut spending in half and save a $Trillion in health care costs every year?

The main differences between our broken health care system and qualitatively better efficient systems in Europe and Asia are that these countries use non-profit insurance instead of high-profit insurance, and they negotiate to minimize costs of medical procedures and drugs. Obama and Congress seem not to see our over-spending as a problem; thus the timid goal of reducing growth of costs by just one-tenth of 1 percent, ignoring the real extent by which we overpay now.

The refusal of our leaders, and our mainstream media, to openly identify the largest problem of our broken health care system severely limits what will be "fixed" to more marginal aspects of the system, and this telegraphs to me that We the People no longer matter, and that self-interested corporations control our government—to our peril and to our detriment.

In view of the fascism (corporate control of the state) so evident now in the health care debate, we must all do our best to minimize such corporate dominance in order to regain real public influence of government.

In view of this fascism (corporate control of the state) so evident now in the health care debate, we must all do our best to minimize such corporate dominance in order to regain real public influence of our government.

Toward this goal, the public's discontent needs to be recognized. Merely writing blogs is not good enough. We need to act.

I propose we show our discontent by going around the proposed—and guaranteed to be still most expensive—US health care system and avoid US for-profit health insurers altogether. We need to secure our health care coverage from either new non-profit insurers or from sources outside the US Monopoly Bubble.

To cut our health care costs by as much as 40%—presupposing such change is impossible in our corporate controlled government—here are some proposed options:

  • By referendum vote, states/regions bordering Canada could secede and become part of Canada (Canada spends $3895/person compared to US spending of $7290/person, 2007 data).
  • We should invite other nations to offer their systems internationally for a small additional premium above their normal low per capita rates—perhaps to their self-interest, since a greater population of participants could be leverage to negotiate even bigger concessions from their suppliers. Such expansion would require arrangements with US clinics and hospitals.
  • We could lobby for the United Nations to offer a world-wide health care system, with a small approved profit-per-capita going toward funding UN activities around the world. (Allowed profits could reduce or eliminate annual dues nations now pay.)
Compared to their peers in other "advanced" countries, Americans are paying more than double for their health care—and for their cellphones, cable TV, and broadband service. It's time for some constructive blowback against the US Monopoly Bubble.

Similar actions could be pursued wherever corporate monopolies are taking advantage of their captive market of American citizens, as in monthly cellphone service charges, monthly cable TV services, monthly broadband Internet service, and so on. We pay double or more for all of these, too.


Marc Cherbonnier, a systems analyst and webmaster, writes from Baltimore, Md.



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This story was published on September 11, 2009.
 

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