Huckleby wrote: It is quite managable, easy in fact, for the richest nation in the world to provide health care access to all its citizens, thereby saving tens of thousands of lives every year.
"Easy in fact". That is obviously not the case. I think you are under the impression that it is not arguable. If that is the case then pursuing the discussion with you is ridiculous..
Obviously not the case? There are about 80 developed countries around the world. 79 of them provide universal health care. I was talking to a guy from Morocco yesterday, a relatively poor country that is just getting developed. Everyone in his country can access government-run clinics. He is baffled at why American citizens accept that lower income people often can not get basic medical care here. He beleives it is becasue Americans are ignorant of the rest of the world.
You are deeply ignorant. You believe that providing basic medical care to all is some collosally expensive, utopian dream. Universal health models are practical and cheaper.
The reason our medical expenses have run through the roof has NOTHING whatsover to do with providing universal access or Medicaid to poor people. Something like 70% of medical costs are going to 10% of population, often end-of-life expenses.
We have a medical system that is wildly screwy and inefficient. It needs to be reformed. Medicare needs to be reformed. These are not issues related to universal access. We already have 85% of the population with access, expanding patient pool by 15% is not a make or break proposition.
bdog wrote: Assuming it is a practical, limited resources situation, and assuming that tough cuts are needed to ensure the survival of a safety net for future generations, would it be fair for Obama opponents to call him a mass murderer? No. It is a difference of opinion, nothing more..
Reforms need to be made to lower costs. The "tough cuts" that are needed aren't to throw people off medicaid, in fact medicaid expansion is desperately required. Republicans are liars in presenting this false choice.
Obama has a sense of morality, unlike so many on the right. I trust he will not make decisions on cuts that will result in many deaths.
bdog wrote: Altruism does not exist. People do compassionate things because it makes them feel good. If they don't feel good about it they won't do it for very long.
WEll, you've defined altruism in terms of selfish impusles. Ayn Rand did a similar Orwelian trick, defining selfishness as benefiting all, i.e. unselfishness.
Certainly saying altruism does not exist goes to far, we know that some people show care for others and act on that impulse. But I'll accept that self-gratification underlies such behavior, doesn't matter to me. If you cynically wish for a world where people don't exhibit altruism, well, I guess that just makes you a 21st century Republican.