Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not enough to satisfy every man's greed.
United Health, based right here in Minnesota, had a 155% increase in profit from one year ago. Do you need to have an IQ of 200 to get it?
They obviously are feeling secure, as they are busily buying smaller HMO's across the country. It would seem they are confident the industry spending 1.4 million per day lobbying Congress will pay off for them. They are probably right.
I know I harp on this issue, but I have a personal stake in it. With the continuation of the historical premium increases we will not be able to afford health insurance much longer. I sit here with a broken wrist. I had my appendix removed last year. I would be in big trouble without insurance, but I'm not home free with it. There is the little matter of a high deductible, which starts all over again the next year. Year after year, we spend five figures on premiums and now for two years, the deductible on top of it. It's a fast track to being broke. Now consider that 155% increase in profit.
This should make everyone mad. If we don't get a public option, hang on. This cannot be sustained and in the not-to-distant future there is going to be a massive crisis. We are already at critical mass.
This leads me to something I often think about. What is wrong with Americans. Why are we so resistant to forward thinking? Why do we so smugly settle into the idea we are different, that what works for the rest of the world will never work for us. We, as a culture, are so caught up in the false idea of Rugged Individualism that we fail to see the forest for the trees.
I have concluded that as a culture we lack critical thinking. We are unable, or unwilling to extrapolate. We are very easily led by fear and simplistic language. Over the past forty-five years or so we have been conditioned to ignore our own best interests in exchange for a false premise; that if you put any restraints on business, the so-called free market, it will spell disaster for all. Allow business to operate without constraint and it will benefit everyone.
We have also been taught government is bad. Government is inefficient. Our teachers have been the anti-government conservatives in government. The people who don't believe the purpose of government is to guard the welfare of the people. The people who, when they have the power, gut federal agencies which are supposed to operate with the public welfare in mind. Remove the professionals and replace them with political hacks. De-fund the programs and agencies and then turn around to tell us, see government doesn't work. And for the most part, we believe them. Lack of critical thinking; unable to extrapolate. We don't bother to connect the dots.
The same thing is happening with the healthcare issue and it's starting to work. We aren't a stupid people, but I think our culture is mentally lazy. Therefore we always go with the easy route. Fear and simplistic language. This allows for a lazy, disengaged mind. After all, we think, this is America, the greatest nation in the world. Nothing can be wrong here. We don't want to know we have the highest infant mortality rate in all of the industrialized nations. That we have the highest mortality rate for women in childbirth. That we rank fiftieth in the world for healthiness. We pay more for our healthcare than any other country, but we receive less for it. Remember that 155% profit increase? Wonder why we are in this position? 155% increase in profit that is earned directly off our backs. During a time when people are losing their jobs, their homes and yes, their lives. Where is the outrage?
We are lazy. I believe I can stop pondering the question in my mind now. Intellectually lazy.