Socialized Health Care (10/12/07)

Recently, President Bush vetoed a bill that would expand one of his own successful programs, extending health care to poor children, tenfold. Why did he veto a bill that merely expanded upon one of his own programs? Because he felt it was a step towards a federal health care system.

Ill be the first to admit that Im mostly summarizing the entire ordeal, that there was more to each side than what I just put forth, but Id say it sums it up quite nicely. Plus, I realize that the recent film Sicko addresses the socialized health care idea much better than I could in a few short paragraphs. But, Id like to cover a few basic points myself. So, Id like to ask the question, what is so bad about socialized health care?

Now, here youd expect somewhat of a rant, but Ill just display a few facts instead and let you draw your own conclusions.

Fact #1: A list of notable countries that utilize private health care: China (as ironic as that sounds), Turkey, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Colombia, Philippines, Nigeria, and Algeria. (These are notable as they have a GDP within the top 50 countries in the world). So, 80% of the top 50 GDPs have socialized health care.

Fact #2: An accurate way of determining the quality of health care can be found by examining life expectancy. For example, life expectancy was roughly 35 years in ancient Rome, whereas today with modern medicine, life expectancy averages worldwide around 67 years of age.

Fact #3: Among countries with privatized health care systems, the U.S. has the highest life expectancy.

Fact #4: The average life expectancy for a U.S. citizen is 78.2 years of age, placing it at 38th in the world. It should be noted that the Virgin Islands (24th) and Puerto Rico (31st), both U.S. territories, are also on the list ahead of the U.S, leaving 35 countries ahead of us in terms of life expectancy, each with federal health care systems.

Fact #5: The next highest country (on the list of average life expectancy per country) without a federal health care program on the list is Panama. It was 57th.

Fact #6: U.S. citizens spend more per capita on health care than in any other country in the world.

So what are we paying for exactly?