Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Today, boys and girls, we're going to talk about health care.

More specifically, we're going to talk about health care systems around the world, and the myth that countries like Canada and France have a health care delivery system utopia where everyone is shiny and happy and holding hands.

Catch that REM allusion there?

And I promise to keep the political party jabs and jibes to a minimum, since health care certainly is an issue that warrants discussion because it affects everyone. I do not want to open up the nationalize/privatize debate, but just share some things I learned from an online seminar and (hopefully) make some people at least reevaluate if they think the path we're going down is the best idea.

Okay, just that one jab-I couldn't resist!

One of the largest CPA firms in the world, did a worldwide study on health care consumerism, which included polls of health care consumers.

Let me say that again-they actually asked the consumer.

They didn't have a bunch of wealthy middle-aged jerks who are card-carrying Council On Foreign Relations members who can afford private physicians on retainers discuss health care…they asked the people who actually consume health care services from the system at large.

To be specific, they asked 15,735 consumers in 12 countries. Their sampling method was randomly selected from the online population, representative with respect to age, gender, geography and income.

The results are interesting to say the least.

Let's start at the top-how satisfied were people with their country's health care system?

The survey asked for a rating on a scale of one to ten, where satisfied was between 8-10 and dissatisfied was between 1-3.

Remember during the Clinton and Obama health care reform debates, France and Canada were put forth as the Cadillac, the model that the United States should emulate.

And they did finish well, at fourth and fifth, with the United States at tenth. No country really got a mandate from their people, however.

Only one third of those polled in the two "utopia" countries indicated that they were satisfied.

Surprisingly, the number of people in ALL countries surveyed who rated their health care system between four and seven (I called this neutral) was amazingly similar.

Other questions asked about how those polled felt their country's health care system compared to other countries' systems.

This time, France came in second (average of the three answers), with the United States averaging right in the middle, Canada just below the US and Switzerland at the top. Still, I was a little surprised that the two "Cadillac" countries were not coming in with mandates from the people.

The study pointed out that the typical consumer does not have an informed view of other health care systems, so they typically compare to an "idealistic version" of their own system.

One interesting answer-when asked if they'd be willing to travel outside of their country for care, 9% of Canadians and 5% of French answered yes, compared to 3% of Americans. Even though the French think their system is the best in the world, they were almost twice as likely to seek care outside their country.

I think the most interesting information comes from the strengths and weaknesses of the systems as percieved by the consumers.

When looking at system strengths, which considered treatment innovation and up-to-date technology and facilities, the United States ranked second (behind Switzerland) with an average of 69%, and well ahead of the Clinton/Obama "Cadillac" countries France (59%) and Canada (52%).

Now let's look at weaknesses.

When considering consumer focus, wellness focus and wait time, the United States ranked third (behind Switzerland and Belgium) with an average of 30%, ahead of France (34%) and Canada (35%).

Now all of our innovation is not free. The United States spends $5,711 per capita on healthcare, compared to $3,048 spent by France and $2,998 spent by Canada. That means for every dollar they spend, we're spending $1.89.

Add it all up, and it begs the question, what is Switzerland doing and why don't we model after them?

It's really hard to point to France and Canada's national systems being the solution to our health care issues. Their residents appear more satisifed than ours, but at the same time seem to feel that the care they are getting is not as good.

As opposed as I am to socialism (funny because I work in insuance, and industry that exists on socialism), the idea of health care for all is certainly far more noble a cause than taxing Americans to wage war on various smaller nations.

I am still very concerned on how America can really afford to pay for all of its excess. Obama paints a rosy picture, but the government is living on credit, and many former homeowners in the Phoenix city limits could tell you how well that worked out for them.

I guess the point of this, my lengthiest post ever, is this. Be careful what you wish for, America. You may think you're getting this:

And end up with this:

PS-I hope the accounting firm that conducted this study does not object to my quoting their results and displaying two of their slides.

Friday, June 17, 2011


Though the president himself, his staff, and his supporters around the country are busy devoting everything they've got to his 2012 re-election campaign, Obama revealed Monday that his family isn't necessarily as "invested."

"Michelle and the kids are wonderful in that if I said, 'You know, guys, I want to do something different,' they'd be fine. They're not invested in daddy being president or my husband being president. But they do believe in what we're doing," Obama told NBC "Today Show" host Ann Curry in an interview that aired Tuesday.

And the president revealed that even he sometimes feels like giving up.

"I'm sure there are days where I say that one term is enough," the president said, but he added that what keeps him going is the unfinished work regarding energy, education, and other issues.

In the end, Obama said, if his family is happy, he's happy.

"If the family is doing well, if Michelle is still putting up with me, then I've got enough energy to keep on doing the work that I'm doing."

What is this USAP? Are you quitting? Laying the groundwork for defeat?

Funny-I have been predicting the Kenya Kommunist is a shoe-in for a second term, and Stephen T. McCarthy has been predicting he'd be a one-hit-wonder. Just last night, we had a conversation on that topic.

Maybe McDogg is not just being optomistic...

Why is it that politicians spend most of their time in office spending taxpayer money campaigning to keep their jobs or to apply for new ones? I've lived in Arizona since 1995, and I can't point to one thing John McCain has done except run for president and for reelection to the Senate.

And now we have Obama campainging when he should be, oh I don't know DOING HIS FRIGGIN' JOB!
Many of the president's potential 2012 rivals have been calling for Americans to make Obama a one-term president.

If I want to interview for a new job, I have to take vacation time.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in March dismissed Obama as a one-term president over the issue of health care.  "Obamacare is bad law, bad policy, and it is bad for America's families," Romney told a New Hampshire audience. "And that's the reason why President Obama will be a one-term president."

Last night, Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.) drew wide applause during a televised GOP presidential debate in New Hampshire for declaring: "President Obama is going to be a one-term president."

And has Michele said anything tangble about what she'd do in the chair? Nope. More hope and change.
Polls show that economic woes across the country and unemployment continue to drag down the president's approval numbers.

A Quinnipiac University poll released last week showed that after a brief "bounce" following the death of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, the president's poll numbers are back down to a 47-46 approval rating. Polls taken in key swing states of Ohio and Florida this spring have shown that voters are split on whether the president deserves a second term.

I would encourage anyone who is serious about change to read what Ron Paul is saying.  AT LEAST HE'S SAYING SOMETHING!

Quite frankly, if you're just going to vote Romney, you may as well vote Obama in for a second term.



It will save the taxpayers the cost of moving his shit out of the White House. And there really won't be any frigging difference in the outcome.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


The other night, Stephen T. McCarthy and I were talking about my last post, where I pointed out that the same Democruds who voted AGAINST raising the debt ceiling under Bush were now voting FOR it under Barry O.

And lest we forget, I also revealed that the same Repugnicans who thought not raising the debt ceiling would be akin to the One Ring falling into the grasp of Mordor, now all of a sudden have had an attack on conscience and can’t bear to spend more money than they are able to steal…er, tax-from the Americonned Sheeple.

Sadly, this fell right in line with comments Stephen made on his blog back in November 2010-the more things change, the more they stay the same.

During our discussion, Stephen likened our political scenario to the making of a movie about the Civil War-the actors fight on screen, but off-screen take lunch together, go to happy hours, sleep together…

Not a bad analogy.

But just then, an image popped into my head.

Remember Sam Sheepdog and Ralph Wolf?

From the old Warner cartoons?

Wolf and Sheepdog, also known as Ralph E. Wolf and Sam Sheepdog, are characters in a series of animated cartoons in the Warner Bros. Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies line of cartoons. They were created by Chuck Jones.

Ralph is virtually identical to another Chuck Jones character, Wile E. Coyote. He also shares the Coyote's appetite, and persistent use of Acme Corporation products, but he covets sheep instead of road runners.

Sam is a large, burly sheepdog with white fur and a mop of red hair that usually covers his eyes. He very rarely runs and tends to be sedentary in his movements. He does, however, possess effective strength to incapacitate Ralph with a single punch once he catches him.

They’d clock in, and the wolf would get abused in ways that Wile E. Coyote never imagined. Then the lunch whistle would blow, they’d break bread together, and after lunch they’d be back at it until quitting time.

This is our political system.

Ralph and Sam have become a sort of American cultural shorthand for "the usual suspects" or "the loyal opposition," describing two adversaries who have opposed each other for so long and become so familiar with each other that they've come full circle and are now nearly friendly.

Check out the lunch scene at 3:52 and quitting time at 5:50.
Heck watch the whole thing and relive some of your misspent youth!

Like the Republicans and Democrats.

They clock in, and go through the motions of being adversaries, but if you watch their behavior and the outcomes, nothing changes from administration to administration.

Bush spent a fortune and ran up the national debt, mortgaging your children’s future under the umbrella of being the “small government” president.

Obama will spend a fortune and run up the national debt, FURTHER mortgaging your children’s future under the umbrella of jump-starting the economy.

The only constant is the running up of the national debt and the mortgaging of your children’s future.

Wanna bet it continues with the next administration?

People wake up!

Both parties are a farce!

One politician is telling you the truth, although his proposed solutions are too rooted in reality for most Americans.

One politician is calling for sound monetary policy, sound foreign policy, and a return to the framework of the Constitution.

Check out what Ron Paul is saying.

Even if you won’t consider giving him your vote, at least listen to what he’s saying.

And consider it.

And then look at what politicians have been doing since the seventies.

And see if what Doctor Paul is saying has the ring of truth to it.

They're YOUR children. They deserve a sound financial future. And you can still give it to them

Monday, June 6, 2011


Five years ago, Senate Democrats -- including a certain Senator Obama -- objected to President George W. Bush's spending priorities and voted en bloc against Bush's call for raising the debt ceiling.

Now, in an amazing twist of fate, we have a Democratic president (that same Obama feller) and the Democrats are voting to raise the debt ceiling. Obviously, they have all had an epiphany, and this has nothing to do with partisan politics.

The Republicans, ever the fiscal watchdogs, are voting against the limit increase.

The Republicans haven’t always been against increasing the federal debt ceiling. This is the first time in recent history (the past decade or so) that no Republican has voted for the increase. In fact, on most of the ten other votes to increase the federal debt limit that the Senate has taken since 1997, the Republicans provided the majority of the votes in favor.

But we have a Democrat in the White House, so guess which way these guys are voting?

Do you see a pattern here?

These traitors are not doing their duty and looking out for your interest. They are voting their party line. And that party line changes depending on what party sits in the oval office, even if he is an illegal alien.

Some may call this....


I call it....


And who will pay the price for this? Your children and grandchildren!

Our political system has the same “rah rah go team” mentality of the average American sports bar. In fact, the sports fans may be smarter.

Until Americans can stop with this mentality where they choose up sides in politics like they’re picking a team to root for in the Super Bowl, the policitcal machine will continue to rolling on.

Does anybody ever stop and think, what’s really the difference?

Are liberals really liberal? After Bill Clinton was elected, did military foxholes become gay bath houses? Did half the country go on the dole? Besides a very liberal interpretation of his marriage vows, it seemed not so very different from business as usual in Washington.

Under Reagan or either Bush, did corporate executives really take over America (well, more than they had already usurped by the creation of the Federal Reserve, which is a topic unto itself)?

There’s a Spock’s Beard lyric that goes, “At the end of the day, It’s what you do not what you say.”

People-look at what our politicians do!

Look at what they have done for the last forty years. There are no liberals or conservatives. They’re the same. They spew the party rhetoric to get you all fired up, so in the American “my team is the best” mentality you’ll be a staunch Republican or open-minded Democrat without ever giving much thought to what that may mean.

But if you look at how they act, they’re all Marxists who can’t balance a budget. So they borrow money from Communist China and inflate a national debt to the point that your grandchildren will probably be destitute. Or speaking Mandarin, because China will call the loans and reposess all the good places. Better not buy real estate in Manhattan, and I wouldn’t hold out long-term hopes for that rent control.

For what we’re paying in taxes, shouldn’t we all get an intern and a box of Cubans?