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Ugh politics

One of my LJFriend wrote an LJFriends-locked post about the US healthcare reforms. The following is what I left in a comment (with the warning and caveat that it is written from MY POINT OF VIEW, may contain MY OPINIONS, it is POTENTIALLY FACTUALLY INCORRECT and I might be totally useless!):

That is one thing where having more than two political parties improves. The do not automatically just say the opposite of what another party says.

Apology in advance if this is not of interest to you! We have three main parties;

  • Labour, in power at the moment, are moderate "left" and pretty socialist, historically, whilst becoming more and more centrist as time goes by. They are probably to the left of your Democrats.

  • The Conservatives (or Tories) are the moderate "right" concerned with personal profits and so on. They equate to your Republicans in some ways.

  • The Liberal Democrats (Lib Dems) are roughly central and probably actually more like your Democrats than our Labour are. I don't know what people in the US with more social-focussed views do with their vote, to be honest.

  • Green Party. Concentrate on ecology, energy saving and other "green" issues.

  • CND (The Campaign for Neuclear Disarmament) is a one policy party.

  • UKIP (The UK Independent Party) who want us to remove ourselves from the European Union - but who also have members that are Members of the European Parliament (MEPs). Yes, many of them are as confused as that sounds. ;-p

  • BNP (British Nationalist party). The hard, far right. Used to be called the National Front. Very racist and anti-immigration. Nuff said. :(

  • Comunist Party. The far left. True socialists that aim for tru socialism (á la what is seen in France and Italy, rather than the failed comunism of the USSR).

  • other parties that I have probably forgotten including ones that are regional not national (e.g. the SNP - the Scottish National Party) as well as Independent candidates/MPs (members of parliament) with no party affiliation.

Bear im mind, though, that this is about all I know about UK politics and that much of this might be wrong! Also, I apologise for descending into lecture here. I despair of the few people on my FL that are/were LOUDLY against the healthcare reforms over in the US. I just cannot understand how they can claim to care about other people whilst wanting to deprive some other people of the basic human right to medical care. *shakes head* I admit to just switching off, even when one or two of them leave comments on my LJ. I would have argued and tried to reason with them in the past but have learned that they have very closed minds about such subjects.

PLEASE! I do not want to discuss your politics on my LJ. Comments are not screened but may be screened if they are at all inflammatory or I find them at all upsetting. Just sayin'.



( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 29th, 2010 09:06 am (UTC)
I don't understand any of the extremism against the reforms, especially to the point of threatening the lives and causing damage to the property of the people who voted for it. I am not completely in favor of everything in the reforms but I know it is something that needs to be addressed and it is a starting point at least. I am actually in favor of a more socialist system but I don't trust our government enough to manage it.
Mar. 29th, 2010 11:22 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I saw your comments on our mutual friend's entry. It does all seem a bit of a mish-mash, especially having read the other replies here! Thank you for your reply.
Mar. 29th, 2010 01:59 pm (UTC)
I don't get all the vitriol from the Republicans either. But here's a good article that tries to explain it: http://www.prospect.org/cs/articles?article=all_the_rage_over_health_care

My concerns over health care reform is that giving more people access to a broken system is just as bad as not giving them any health care at all. It also increases the costs for everyone else and gives the insurance companies no incentives to reduce their costs or increase coverage.

Secondly, I think requiring everyone to have health care is wrong. If there is an affordable public option and increased coverage for the poor and under-insured then I don't see why requiring health care is needed. You might be rich enough to afford medical treatment without health care. Or you might have a religious objection. Again, it's a firehose treatment that doesn't really do anything except make people spend money.

Thirdly, I'm against requiring businesses to offer health care. As a former employee of a few small businesses, health care costs can kill a company that has a very tight profit margin. Small businesses get screwed on health care because the most affordable options are always in bulk. If you only have 10-50 employees, a) finding a company that will issue you that few policies is tough and b) those policies are often extortionate. Again, if there is an affordable public option, people have that option so why do businesses need to provide it? It's proven that companies will provide better benefits as they grow and people always want better health care so that's an incentive for companies to provide health care when they are able.

Lastly, I'm disappointed that congress isn't attacking the real problem of why health care costs are skyrocketing in the first place. There are many factors for this one of which is out of control lawsuits. Those lawsuits cause doctor's malpractice insurance to go up and thus they have to charge more. They also prescribe more tests and medicines to cover their butts, which in turn costs the insurance companies more. I also think that more emphasis should be placed on preventative care instead of treatment. I can't get insurance to pay for my $450 orthodics but it will pay for $5000 of surgery on my foot, which could have been prevented with $450 worth of orthodics. That's just nuts. Insurance companies are also regional so if you are in a region with only one or two options, you have to take whatever crappy or expensive health care is in your area and can't shop around. This might be alleviated a bit with the national option but I doubt it will help much.

As an afterthought, screaming to the government to fix something is just "unamerican". We founded this country to get away from government control and do things our own way so I find it amusing that people are now yelling to the government to fix something that's our own faults. If people would donate a $1 to a free clinic or a rural medical program, this whole insurance debate would be moot. But hey, that good old American work ethic and helping our fellow man seems to have gone out the window.

So that's one American's take on the whole insurance reform issue. It's complicated and not something that's going to be solved with one bill.
Mar. 29th, 2010 11:21 pm (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. It was very interesting!
Mar. 30th, 2010 01:21 am (UTC)
You're welcome! The one thing to remember in all the debating back and forth is that at no point did congress consider (or consider for very long) nationalizing the health care system like what you guys have. We will NOT have socialized medicine, no matter how loud the teabaggers yell about it. What is/was being considered are types of government subsidized plans sort of like what Germany has.
Mar. 30th, 2010 01:24 am (UTC)
Oh, here's the article about all of the rage over health care that I originally wanted to share with you: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/28/opinion/28rich.html
Mar. 29th, 2010 07:01 pm (UTC)
I am 'mildly' for the health care reform, because I believe basic health care should be something we WANT everyone to have available, and also because I don't think people should be denied due to pre-existing conditions. The reason I put this as 'mildly' for it is for the reasons my husband is STRONGLY against it. We have very good insurance - what is being referred to as a 'Cadillac Health Plan'. The reform would make us unable to have this type of covers everything plan despite the fact that we work hard and can afford it. He says we will also have to wait longer for our specialist care since we will now be competing with everyone else for appointments. Our flexible spending account will now be cut in a third and no longer cover over the counter medical expenses.

While it is good for the un- or under-insured, it is a major step back for the well-insured. Therefore, there isn't a clear-cut good to it for me.
Mar. 29th, 2010 11:20 pm (UTC)
Oh wow. How idiotic of them. I did not know that. That is not even logical! :(
Mar. 30th, 2010 01:17 am (UTC)
EXACTLY!! I'm worried about my coverage as well. There is also a concern about just seeing a regular GP as there aren't enough of them to handle the current load of appointments, let alone the amount that they will get when more people get insurance. The reason - malpractice insurance and med school bills are so steep that med students are practically forced to go into a specialty area in order to make the payments. On the other hand, maybe you won't have to wait that long for a specialist after all.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )


Nat S Ford
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