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August 17, 2009

Why has rationing become a dirty word?


The third rail of the health care reform debate, rationing of care is decried by everyone, no matter which side you're on.

But think for a minute: everything is rationed.

Some people shop at Whole Foods, others can't afford to.

It that rationing?

If I only have a dollar in my pocket when I go to McDonald's, does that mean they're rationing quarter pounders with cheese because I can't pay for one?

I don't think so.

Some people subscribe to magazines, others can't afford to so they read them at bookstores or libraries.

Are magazines being rationed?

Some people buy a Lexus, others drive a Kia because they can't pay for anything else.

Some people take the bus or ride a bike or walk because a even a Kia's out of reach.

When I went to U.C.L.A., I did all three because I couldn't afford a car.

It never occurred to me they were rationing transportation.

Lots of time health insurance won't cover this or that.

So you have a choice: pay cash or forget about it.

Isn't that rationing?

Everyone accepts it as a given, at least in the U.S., and I don't see anyone saying everyone's medical insurance policy should cover everything.

When it comes to insurance, you get what you pay for.

Kind of like life.

People with more money will always have more options, whether it comes to food, media, cars or health care.

August 17, 2009 at 04:01 PM | Permalink


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In Canada it is illegal to buy supplementry health insurance .... unless you are a pro athlete. Injured workers and politicians also move to the head of the queue. In Canada the line for appointments and operations is months long.

The whole point of government run healthcare is make it illegal to choose to spend money on extra healthcare (unless you are a member of a privledged group).

People ... many, many people die in Canada and UK waiting for care. Survival rates for cancers and heart problems are lower and sometimes a lot lower in Canada and the UK.

The point of rationing is to kill you before you use up too much money.

Posted by: Bruce | Aug 18, 2009 7:12:24 PM

Oh Jo, it's hard to understand a nation (USA) so amazing and befuddling as not to somewhere along the line have a health care program not to cosmetically fix but just give the basics for life! I don't mind being taxed for basic needs. I know I completely simplify this the concept, but I do support something better then what we have.

Posted by: Joe Peach | Aug 17, 2009 6:12:32 PM

GW told us we were going to have to make sacrifices to fight his wars. That evidently meant extortion by the bankers and rationing to the citizens.
And we ain't seen nothing yet. Wait until there is a Bankers Holiday and all those people who are scrapping by on Social Security suddenly are cut off.

Posted by: Boone | Aug 17, 2009 5:51:37 PM

´Sick for profit´ makes some points.


Posted by: gina | Aug 17, 2009 5:31:15 PM

I saw a documentary the other day on US health care. A single mum of 5, queuing in the street for a cancer check up from welfare. She had about 6 months to live. Noone to care for her kids. they would go into care. I doubt very much this mother is upset because she is not rich enough to buy glossy magazines or ride in big cars, I should imagine she just wants to live, so she can care for her kids. Making paralells between being able to have 'luxuries' in life and staying ALIVE?? Come live in the UK for a bit. You'll see how amazing our NHS is, and you'l realise how, if america doesn't get on board, you will be failing Obama. Are you all so conditioned to be materialistic and selfish??? you can't pay your taxes to keep working class mothers alive?? My daughter has a cromosonal disorder, I get padiatricians/urologists/cardiologist/endocrinologists/speech therapists/psychologist/and lots of other ologists FREEE!!!!! FREEE!!! To say I am gratful is the understatement of the century. I am heartbroken by what my daughter has to face, but I celebrate that we are going through this in the UK, because my country is looking after my baby, despite the fact that I've got about 3 quid to my name. I chat on MSN with other mothers whos child has the same condition. THe american mums are saying 'we're bankrupt paying for hormone treatment' 'my marriage is falling apart from the stress' 'we're selling our home to pay the heart op'. IT's wrong. Your the richest country in the world. SORT it out people!!!

Posted by: jo | Aug 17, 2009 4:52:47 PM

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