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Like Stupid To Stupid

Well, well, well. It appears that my piece comparing ObamaCare to the draft struck a nerve. Specifically, in Media Matters Mouthpiece Oliver Willis.

Here's his scintillating, insightful commentary in toto:

That's the idiotic conclusion drawn by former regular commenter Jay Tea back at his old digs, Wizbang. He concludes that somehow people paying in to support universal care is just like a draft. That's right. A few cents on your pay stub is just like slogging through the swap in the 'Nam. Jeez.

In five brief sentences (we'll give him credit for "That's right" and "Jeez" as sentences), he makes two huge blunders. I think that's a personal record for him for accuracy. (That's probably why he writes in such short form -- it minimizes the things he can get wrong.)

First up, "a few cents on your pay stub." Let's run with that one.

Just for giggles, let's say that it's 99 cents on each pay stub, and you get paid weekly. That works out to $51.48 a year. Does anyone in their right mind actually think that ObamaCare will ONLY cost you $51.48 a year?

I happen to have one of my own pay stubs handy. My insurance coverage (not great, but adequate) costs me almost that much -- $48.99.

But that's for every two weeks, not for the entire year.

Oh, and look, here's another germane line item -- $14.46 for Federal Medicare. Obama's talking about expanding MediCare, so I bet that one will go up, too.

Anyone stupid or gullible enough to think that ObamaCare will only cost "a few cents on your pay stub" would be incapable of functioning in modern society, to the only conclusion is that Willis is lying. This should come as no great shock.

As for the second part of Willis' laughable analogy... "like slogging through the swap (sic) in the 'Nam."

Oddly enough, I didn't mention Viet Nam in the article.The only reference to a foreign country would be my use of "shanghai" as a verb, and even that's a stretch.

Obama's plan for "mandatory universal coverage" is a slave's collar on all of us. That some don't think the collar chafes too much, or is so soft and loose that they barely notice it, or simply don't mind being enslaved doesn't diminish the fact that they have lost their freedom.

We should have listened to Michelle Obama:

"Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."

All for the common good, of course. "The common good" meaning, naturally, "for the benefit of everyone else, whether you want to or not."


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Comments (66)

"All for the common good"</... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"All for the common good"

Yeah, we'll see how many of the young will want to have their paychecks raped to pay for the care of others. They're already aware their getting screwed on Social Security.

JayTea, forgive me for jump... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

JayTea, forgive me for jumping to the end of your post, but I don't give a damn about Mr. Willis or I'd be there now. He's unimportant. Let him wet his pants on his own blog.

Michelle Obama's statement at the bottom of your piece is far more important:

"Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."

Well, we've pretty much got that "engage" thing down, Mrs. Messiah. And we're getting better at it every damned day. Even in our isolation.

And we're working on the "Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed." thingie, too.

As a matter of fact, the more involved and informed we are, the better we understand that Barack will never allow us to do a lot of other things as well, if he has his way.

Like quietly enjoy our lives without the government's hand in our pants.

Typical Liberal, tries to e... (Below threshold)
Oldflyer:

Typical Liberal, tries to equate everything to Viet Nam. Truth is that the draft was a big part of every young man's life in the '50s. You knew that whatever plans you had for your life, you owed the government two years either before or after college (if your plans included college). Women were always exempt from the draft.

Around 1957, the law was changed and you could do 6 months active followed by about 8 years reserve.

I remember my college contemporaries were ecstatic with the news, even though the government still levied a mandatory requirement. (But it was kind of like a tax cut; they took less from you than before.) Didn't matter to me as I was already a Naval Aviator.

So, the analogy is not too far-fetched. The government is planning to levy another mandatory requirement on (a segment of) the citizenry. Is it justified? Opinions obviously vary.

"Barack Obama will... (Below threshold)
Sabba Hillel:
"Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."

Actually, while the quote may be true, Barak Obama is actually hoping that it turns out to be false. The more involved and informed the electorate becomes, the less his chances of success. In effect, Mrs. Obama is calling upon all of us to defeat her husband (though she does not realise it).

"The common good" meanin... (Below threshold)

"The common good" meaning, naturally, "for the benefit of everyone else...

Not even close to accurate, Obama's domestic policies benefit a relative few at the expense of everyone else.

His health care reform? Higher prices and longer waits for the majority with health insurance. Housing reform? Relief for deadbeat homeowners at the expense of the majority of homeowners who didn't overbuy and overstate their income. Rules on credit car companies? Higher fees for everybody to benefit a relative handful who charged too much and now has trouble paying it back. Tire tariffs? Payoff to the union at the expense of the far larger tire buying public. And the list goes on. Treating terrorists like common criminals? Good for them, bad for the public as a whole. Cap and trade? Good for who? Bad for almost everyone.

The puzzle is why the majority stands for it, why they continue to (almost willingly) bend over instead of standing up and saying no.

Insurance when needed comes... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

Insurance when needed comes in very handy. As a cynic, I have always characterized insurance as the one product you purchase that no one is really anxious to have you use.

If I may lift a statement from your original post that you have linked:
"Young people -- Americans -- will be required to pay for a program that they are being told, up front, that they are not supposed to get full value for their payments for years to come."

If any young person is aware enough to have had even a passing interest in the health care debate up to this point he/she should be well aware that they will be asked to pay into a program that at a young age he/she will not reap a full return in value. However, it should also not be lost on them that in old age - when they would then need this care the most and their economic impact on the system will be greatest - this same system will also limit the value they reap after a lifetime of contributing to it. In between youth and old age I am sure it will be the system's design to limit access to value in the most severe medical conditions.

There needs to be a groundswell of pressure on legislators from the people they reperesent to say, "Please don't go to all that trouble debating a healthcare reform program. The program you have appears to work very well, just let us sign up for it too."

Does anyone in the... (Below threshold)
Marc:
Does anyone in their right mind actually think that ObamaCare will ONLY cost you $51.48 a year?
So where's the problem?

You did say "right mind," and noted Willis.

Shouldn't it be obvious Willis isn't, or never has been of sound mind?

So, Oliver Willis criticize... (Below threshold)
Cameron:

So, Oliver Willis criticizes your analogy, mandatory payments for health coverage is like a draft, and your response is... "Actually, it's like slavery!"

Obama's plan for "mandatory universal coverage" is a slave's collar on all of us. That some don't think the collar chafes too much, or is so soft and loose that they barely notice it, or simply don't mind being enslaved doesn't diminish the fact that they have lost their freedom.
Yes, it sucks paying for health insurance. And yes, being a slave sucks as well. But doesn't being a slave suck so much more that the analogy is, well, a bad one?

"Barack will never allow yo... (Below threshold)
xiphos:

"Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."

The pot calling the kettle black...so to speak.

Cameron #8:Only if... (Below threshold)
JustRuss:

Cameron #8:

Only if you instantly think of African-Americans when you think of slavery. There is slavery all over the world and in alot of cases it is not those of African descent that are the slaves.

RACIST!

"Whenever I hear the phrase... (Below threshold)
davidt:

"Whenever I hear the phrase, "The common good," my BS detector starts blaring. When people say it you know what they really mean is, "For my benefit." When politicians say it you know something is going to cost you a lot more than them, and benefit them a lot more than you.

"Yes, it sucks paying for h... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

"Yes, it sucks paying for health insurance. And yes, being a slave sucks as well. But doesn't being a slave suck so much more that the analogy is, well, a bad one?"

Cameron, If you can make the argument that under ObamaCare, in whatever form it eventually emerges, the only impact on we the people of the United States will be is that we all have to pay for mandatory health insurance than I will admit that being what is traditionally referred to as a slave is worse than our lives will be under ObamaCare.

But, you can't. And neither can Obama. Or Reid. Or Pelosi.

Anyone who has given this any thought already knows that the loss of personal freedoms and the intrusions of the government into our lives will be enormous. It won't happen all at once of course, but it will over time. ObamaCare is everything it's proponents ever wanted as a way of having control over us rolled up into one big, messy package.

There are other less expensive ways of getting health care coverage to the 25-30 million citizens lacking insurance, but ObamaCare sucks us all in. Why is that?

Obama has come to us and stated they've found billions of dollars of waste and fraud in Medicare/Medicaid. But he's done nothing to stop it. Instead he's told us those "savings" will be used to offset the cost of ObamaCare. Doesn't it seem irresponsible to allow all that waste and fraud to continue until 2013 when ObamaCare would be implemented? Doesn't it seem odd to allow that waste and fraud to continue in light of the record setting deficit he as created? Doesn't his promise to fix that problem in the ObamaCare bill look like the con-man flashing a fat roll of bills (one hundred $1.00s with a couple of $100.00s wrapped around the outside).

Obama is a con-man. He's running a con. ObamaCare isn't about health care, and it never was. If you don't want to think of it as a slave's collar, think of it as a jackboot on the back of you neck.

re:12Ditto... (Below threshold)
epador:

re:12

Ditto

Anyone who has gi... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
Anyone who has given this any thought already knows that the loss of personal freedoms and the intrusions of the government into our lives will be enormous.

So true. We'll all be chained to treadmills and force fed natural, organic foods after the government puts us all in "Preventive Care Camps."

It's coming. Don't say you weren't warned!

Jay,Here my argume... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Jay,

Here my argument in support of the draft. I use the same reasoning in your analysis of mandatory coverage.

Being drafted is a good thing, it's like winning the lottery in that both are selected in a random drawing.

Typical Liberal, tries t... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Typical Liberal, tries to equate everything to Viet Nam.

ldflyer,

The "typical liberal" you are referring to is Jay Tea. It was Jay Tea equating mandatory coverage to being drafted.

No, Tina, a draft is a BAD ... (Below threshold)

No, Tina, a draft is a BAD THING.

We currently have a tremendously capable, professional military. It is filled with people who WANT to be there, who are willing to struggle to prove their fitness, and are tremendously proud of their service.

With a draft, we end up with a whole bunch of troops who don't want to be there and are just counting the days until they get out.

No, thanks.

J.

Tina, apparently you missed... (Below threshold)

Tina, apparently you missed it in the article, but I never said anything about Viet Nam. I just said the draft.

Oliver was the one who chose to conflate the two, and a major point of this article was to point out that I made no such comparison.

Oldflyer got it right, and you didn't...

J.

No, Tina, a draft ... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
No, Tina, a draft is a BAD THING.

Jay Tea could you please try to make a little sense?

If the draft is bad and requiring young people to have health insurance is just as bad, why did your young friend realize that it was a good thing to have any health insurance after he only escaped serious financial debts when his bad flue turned out to be swine flu?

Clearly, in your friend's case, having comprehensive health insurance while young would have been a good thing!

Does every young American have to come down with swine flu to understand the same thing?


The problem remains that wh... (Below threshold)
John S:

The problem remains that when Obamacare is phased in the number of unemployed, or those underemployed without benefits, will be about 50 million. These 50 million cash-strapped people won't be happy about coming up with a mandatory $500 - $1,000 a month for insurance. Do we pay this before we buy food for the month? Or before we try to make the mortgage payment?

Even worse for Bambi is that the phase in is set for 2013. This makes it a top issue for the next election.

Tina, apparently y... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
Tina, apparently you missed it in the article, but I never said anything about Viet Nam. I just said the draft.

Right. What war were we fighting the last time there was a draft?

Although it is true that this was the rallying cry of the anti-draft crowd circa 1942:

The older generation wants something done for their benefit, they can't swing it on their own, so they're shanghaiing the youth of America to bear the burden.

How could anyone think you were referencing the Vietnam Era there!

Because, fafaroo, it involv... (Below threshold)

Because, fafaroo, it involves some concepts that might be a bit foreign to you.

1) Free will. My friend had a CHOICE, and exercised it.

2) Making mistakes. He gambled, and nearly lost.

3) Learning from mistakes. He dodged a bullet this time; he won't be so reckless again.

It's called "personal growth." Your way is to protect everyone from the consequences of making bad decisions. As nice as that is, it keeps them from learning how to recognize bad decisions and not making them in the future.

It cultivates a person into being dependent on others -- why bother trying to smarten up, when nothing bad is going to happen anyway? Why learn which insurance coverage is right for you and your circumstances, if the government is going to make certain you're fine anyway?

Why do anything for yourself, when the government will do it for you?

My friend is wiser now, and better equipped to be a good father. I'm glad for him and his daughter.

Who was born almost small enough to qualify as a non-person stillbirth to England's National Health Service, but is thriving and growing like the proverbial weed.

J.

Now leave grass out of this... (Below threshold)
epador:

Now leave grass out of this thread, will you JT?

Doesn't Oliver realize that... (Below threshold)
SCSIwuzzy:

Doesn't Oliver realize that under socialist healthcare, he will be punnished for his dietary choices?
Like Kryptonite to salad...

fafaroo, watch M*A*S*H some... (Below threshold)

fafaroo, watch M*A*S*H some time. I caught some excellent reruns over the weekend.

But keep flogging that dead horse and avoiding the whole question of just where the government gets the authority to require everyone to buy health insurance...

J.

Jay Tea -As a 23-y... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Jay Tea -

As a 23-year veteran who joined shortly after the draft ended - I sure as hell wouldn't want to see a draft reinstituted - or even slightly thought of by the insane powers that be currently residing inside the Beltway asylum. There's far too much high-tech stuff that'd be quickly ruined - like a drafted aircraft mechanic 'accidentally' leaving a few small washers tucked inside a jet engine intake, or the tank mechanic using a wad of gum to hold a loose bolt inside the air intake of an M1 Abram's turbine...

And it's very true re the personal growth - sometimes it seems like our culture is trying very hard to make sure people have no chance at all to ever fail, so they never have a chance to learn from the mistakes they make.

People have to have a chance to fail - the failure makes the success all the sweeter when it's attained, and the knowledge all the more treasured when it's hard bought by the pain of not having it.

Oldflyer,Sorry, I ... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Oldflyer,

Sorry, I was wrong in my accusation. You were refering to Oliver, not Jay in your typical lib statement.

It's called "perso... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
It's called "personal growth." Your way is to protect everyone from the consequences of making bad decisions.

How dare the state of California rob me of my right to make bad decisions by requiring me to have a minimum amount of auto insurance coverage!

How will I ever learn the valuable lessons of life until I smash my uninsured car into someone else and stick them with the bill!

Oh sure, some say that driving is a privilege and not a right so it's different than health insurance, but it's not about that.

It's about my right to learn life lessons by behaving irresponsibly! Isn't it?

What a stupid, stupid argument, Jay Tea.


It cultivates a person i... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:

It cultivates a person into being dependent on others -- why bother trying to smarten up, when nothing bad is going to happen anyway?

OR it helps to FREE people from the fear of the unexpected illness or accident so they are encouraged pursue their dreams instead of taking the first shitty job they can find out of school just because it offers health insurance.

What a tortured analogy, fa... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

What a tortured analogy, fafaroo.

What a tortured an... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
What a tortured analogy, fafaroo.

Wait, what?

Jay Tea compared mandatory health care to the military draft and that makes perfect sense to you.

I compare mandatory health insurance to mandatory auto insurance and that's some kind of insane stretch?

Really, Jay Tea, I understand why you couldn't hack it at Commentary. Clearly you had been promoted above your level. It must be nice to be back with a readership that expects so little from you.

fafaroo, watch M*A*S*H s... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:

fafaroo, watch M*A*S*H some time. I caught some excellent reruns over the weekend.

So you were really talking about the Korean War?

It's called "personal gr... (Below threshold)
John:

It's called "personal growth." Your way is to protect everyone from the consequences of making bad decisions.

You completely don't understand the point of having mandatory insurance. It's not to protect the individual from their bad decisions. It's to protect the rest of us from your stupid friend's bad decision. If society were so callous as to turn away people from the E.R., then your notion against an insurance requirement would make complete sense. You want to gamble and not get insurance? Then when your appendix bursts and you can't pay the hospital bills, no surgery for you! You'll have learned from your lesson and achieved "personal growth". Hope it comes in handy once you're dead, Mr. Healthy-And-Irresponsible. Society says, you chose poorly.

But as long there are uninsured lining up for "free" medical care at hospitals, it's unclear why your pseudo-libertarian views aren't demanding that they pay their fair share.

Your friend didn't gamble and nearly lost. He gambled and nearly lost YOUR money. You ought to make him pay for a change.

But as long there are un... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:

But as long there are uninsured lining up for "free" medical care at hospitals, it's unclear why your pseudo-libertarian views aren't demanding that they pay their fair share.

Funny you should bring this up ... Isn't it, Jay Tea?

fafaroo - "I compare ma... (Below threshold)
Marc:

fafaroo - "I compare mandatory health insurance to mandatory auto insurance and that's some kind of insane stretch?"

Now that you mention it, yes it is a stretch.

It's not mandatory to own and drive a car (last I noted it was mandatory to own your body whether sick or not), not to mention Liability is only mandatory not the full monty when it comes to auto insurance.

Nice playing, don't forget your parting gifts as you leave.

fafaroo - "How dare the... (Below threshold)
Marc:

fafaroo - "How dare the state of California rob me of my right to make bad decisions by requiring me to have a minimum amount of auto insurance coverage!"

No, how dare the congress asshole, and obama, not allow "minimum amount of" health insurance you kn0ow like catastrophic insurance that cover accidents and the like.

Instead nitwits like them and apparently you want to turn the whole system topsy-turvy in the grandest power-grab of the last 100 years.

No, Tina, a draft is a B... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

No, Tina, a draft is a BAD THING.

We currently have a tremendously capable, professional military. It is filled with people who WANT to be there, who are willing to struggle to prove their fitness, and are tremendously proud of their service.

With a draft, we end up with a whole bunch of troops who don't want to be there and are just counting the days until they get out.

Jay,

How can that be? I showed the draft was similar to winning the lottery. Are you saying that 2 things can have someting in common and yet be so different that any attempt to compare them is illogical. Wow. What a concept. I wonder what else that applies to?

Jay,My brother was... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Jay,

My brother was drafted in Vietnam. He said if anyone told him that what he went through, is like getting mandatory coverage he would kick there ass.

Well, fafaroo, it's good to... (Below threshold)
matt621:

Well, fafaroo, it's good to see that some things never change.

You are still dumb on purpose.

I see someone has already b... (Below threshold)

I see someone has already beaten me to debunking faf's flawed auto insurance analogy... thanks, Marc.

If I don't want auto insurance, then I won't buy a car and I'll stay off the roads. Will the cops start accosting pedestrians and demanding proof of health insurance for the "privilege" of walking on the public streets?

J.

Well, the only problem with... (Below threshold)
epador:

Well, the only problem with the draft analogy, and a weak one, is that once you got drafted you served your time and got out (unless you were re-upped). With NHI, your bank account gets drafted every month forever and you never get out of the obligation.

If I don't want au... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
If I don't want auto insurance, then I won't buy a car and I'll stay off the roads.

And if I don't want health insurance I just won't get sick! It's simple see?

The whole point of mandatory auto insurance is to reduce the costs of uninsured motorists to the state and other people as they can then be kept off the roads by tickets, fines and prison.

But you can't keep someone from living in their body and people can't decide, well, I just won't get sick. So if they don't have a minimum of health insurance and they do get seriously ill or just ill enough that they can't pay their bills, what they can't pay at the emergency room or hospital will get passed on to tax payers.

Jay Tea knows all about how that works. He himself once passed a portion of his ER bill on to taxpayers when he, of all people, apparently, took the gamble of walking around without health insurance. Well guess who picked up a portion of Jay tea's tab when he got sick and ended up in the hospital? You and I did, Marc. If you have a problem with that, take it up with Jay Tea.

No, how dare the congress asshole, and obama, not allow "minimum amount of" health insurance you kn0ow like catastrophic insurance that cover accidents and the like.

Marc, you do understand that in Jay Tea's own example the friend he mentioned came to the conclusion that having only catastrophic coverage was bad idea right?

You do read these things before charging off on your rants, don't you?

You are still dumb... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
You are still dumb on purpose.

You know what Matt? Ask Jay Tea if it's possible to sue the NHS and see what he tells you.

If his answer is anything along the lines of "Look up 'sovereign immunity'" you'll know what "dumb on purpose" really means.

http://wizbangblog.com/content/2009/10/19/another-face-of-singlepayer.php#comments

Oh, faf... so adorable.... (Below threshold)

Oh, faf... so adorable.

You got it wrong. My friend didn't DECIDE "catastrophic only" was insufficient, he LEARNED. He took a chance, and it paid off -- but it was a very, very near thing.

As for my own circumstances, I've said it repeatedly: the current system worked for me and saved my life. I know you'd prefer I had died that spring 15 years ago, but what I survived -- and have continued to survive to this day. I came to terms and settled my debt (which wasn't easy, but I did it), and have been much more careful since.

Because I LEARNED.

Asshats like you simply can't stand the thought of people making mistakes and learning from them -- because you apparently don't want people to grow independent and learn to make their own right decisions and fend for themselves.

I understand why you fear that so much, faf -- those are the types of people that are the least likely to vote for Democrats. You're happier with everyone letting Big Government make all the important decisions so they don't make the "wrong" ones.

You must hate Michael Jordan, who famously said:

"I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."

Success without the risk of failure is meaningless. Failure teaches us how to succeed.

If we are willing to risk it, and willing to learn.

J.

Asshats like you s... (Below threshold)
fafaroof:
Asshats like you simply can't stand the thought of people making mistakes and learning from them ...

at tax payer expense. There, I fixed that for you Jay Tea.

How independent were you from the government, Jay Tea, when it was the government that made it possible for you to fob off a part of your bill? Do you think the hospital would have been so agreeable if they couldn't pass the cost off to the government?

How independent of the government would your friend have been if he didn't have Swine Flu and his catastrophic policy didn't cover his sizable hospital bill? If he couldn't pay the tab in full, who would have picked up the unpaid portion? Taxpayers, that's who.

So please, just stop pretending that walking around without insurance might only costs you something. It doesn't. It costs all of something if you get sick and you don't have health insurance.

That's the whole reason why people are required to have auto insurance in California. Because uninsured motorists costs the state money. Clearly, the state decided that the incredible importance of "people learning from their mistakes" did not outweigh the costs of the those mistakes to the state.

But since you think it's such a value to society, perhaps you could subsidize my medical costs after I cancel my insurance and take up skateboarding on the freeway. I mean, I'll never really know for sure that that's a bad idea until I try right?

Think of the valuable life lesson I will have learned as I lay in traction in the hospital bed to the tune of several thousand dollars a day, knowing that tax payers will be picking up most of the bill. It'll so be worth it!

fafaroo, You've gi... (Below threshold)
matt621:

fafaroo,

You've given me ample proof of concept in the past.

And you know what? You can fish for your own red herrings and burn down your own strawmen.

faparoo, I've explained it ... (Below threshold)

faparoo, I've explained it too many times. This is the last one.

15 years ago, I fell victim to an incurable genetic ailment. I had to choose between going to the hospital with no insurance, or dying.

I went to the hospital, where they saved my life.

After the fact, I was presented with a bill well beyond my ability to repay. I negotiated with the hospital, and we came to terms -- which I paid off.

Since then, I have paid at least the difference between the initial charges and the final amount every single year in income taxes.

Further, as a bit of payback for the karmic debt, I have been a regular blood donor. I recently was awarded my eight gallon pin -- that's 56 one-pint donations.

At no point did I ever consider completely blowing off my debt. I never asked for the circumstances that invoked it, did nothing to trigger my condition, but the debt was my responsibility -- and I settled it.

I've had enough of your constantly rehashing your wildly inaccurate version of those events, harping on "your" share of my medical bills. So here's my offer:

The difference between my initial bill and the final settlement, divided by the rough population of the US at the time, works out to considerably less than one penny. In fact, it works out to about half of one ten-thousandth of a cent.

Your choice: you can shut the fuck up about the subject around here, or you can shut the fuck up about everything around here.

J.

fafafoo - "Marc, you do... (Below threshold)
Marc:

fafafoo - "Marc, you do understand that in Jay Tea's own example the friend he mentioned came to the conclusion that having only catastrophic coverage was bad idea right?"

You DO KNOW I wasn't referring to anything Jay wrote or his friend?

Me thinks so and it was a "nice" diversion on your part.

fafaroo - "The whole point of mandatory auto insurance is to reduce the costs of uninsured motorists to the state and other people as they can then be kept off the roads by tickets, fines and prison."
More horseshjit on your part.

Some states, to aid the poor, allow residents to purchase "state" auto insurance at very low prices. Last I noticed it was less than fifty bucks per year. I suspect it's over a hundred bucks now.
How do those programs keep them off the road?

At no point did I ever c... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:

At no point did I ever consider completely blowing off my debt.

And yet you did not pay all of it. You've already admitted this. You've already admitted that taxpayers had to help you with your bill. Are you denying this now? (Remember, Jay Tea, you admitted it at Oliver's blog, so there's a ready link.)

Of course you weren't responsible for the condition that sent you to the ER. But you were responsible for not having health insurance. That was a choice you made. And when the time came to live up to the consequences of that choice -- a huge medical bill you could not afford -- you decided to pass some of that debt on to taxpayers.

As for this:

Your choice: you can shut the fuck up about the subject around here, or you can shut the fuck up about everything around here.

You aren't talking about banning me are you? Not just for pointing out your own hypocrisy, surely!

Why over at Oliver's you wrote this:

And if any of the customary fuckwits and fuckwads want to test my patience over at Wizbang and see what is considered "tolerable," I can assure you that we put up with a lot of assholes being assholes -- unlike Oliver's new bestest bud at LGF. You gotta really, really work at it to get banned at Wizbang -- I believe that commenters' words reflect on them far more than on the host.

And here at Wizbang you just wrote this:

I have never ascribed to the "delete disagreeable comments" philosophy. I hold the words of a commenter the responsibility of the commenter alone. If the commenter in question goes beyond what I consider the bounds of propriety or legality (which I define very liberally), I will act, but for the most part I believe that 'if you want to proclaim yourself an ass, I will not protect you from yourself."

I'm fairly certain your readership here will take your side here. I highly doubt they would every expect you to actually live up to the mantle of personal responsibility you like to proclaim so loudly, since I imagine so few of them actually do either.

Case in point, you wrote in another health care piece that the NHS could not be sued because of "sovereign immunity." This is, of course, total hogwash and all anyone would have to do to realize this is google "Sue NHS" and they will find plenty of news articles about people doing just that, suing the NHS and receiving damages.

But neither you nor your readership bothered to verify this bit of information. That just took it for granted.

I wonder now that you've told about your error whether you will have the intellectual honesty to update your post with a correction.

Of course, given the intellectual honesty you've brought to bear in the question of ER bills and personal responsibility, I won't hold my breathe.

At any rate, I don't think you have to worry about your reputation being sullied with your readership. They clearly don't care whether your being honest with them or yourself.

So I'm not quite sure why you felt the need to go with the veiled threat there at the end. Since you got cut loose from Commentary you are clearly back on safe and unchallenging ground.

Some states, to ai... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
Some states, to aid the poor, allow residents to purchase "state" auto insurance at very low prices. Last I noticed it was less than fifty bucks per year. I suspect it's over a hundred bucks now. How do those programs keep them off the road?

Uh, Marc, the concern is to keep uninsured motorists off the road. Not the poor. If the state makes low cost insurance affordable to low income people, in other words, a "public option," those low income people who buy that insurance become "insured motorists" and so can legally drive their car on the road.

Do you have a problem with allowing insured poor people to drive their cars?

The difference bet... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
The difference between my initial bill and the final settlement, divided by the rough population of the US at the time, works out to considerably less than one penny. In fact, it works out to about half of one ten-thousandth of a cent.

Yes, but Jay Tea, have you yourself ever sent a check to the IRS for the total of the difference in addition to what you normally owe?

That's the real question.

If you really wanted to claim personal responsibility for the cost of your ER visit, that's precisely what you would have done or will do.

Have you? Or will you?

faf, the hospital in questi... (Below threshold)

faf, the hospital in question considers my debt settled. I consider it settled. Until you can show a letter from the hospital reneging on our agreement and appointing you their collection agent, it ain't your fucking business.

And note that your comments have not been edited, deleted, or resulted in any banning.

I'm simply not interested in cooperating with your petty vendetta bullshit.

J.

I'm simply not int... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
I'm simply not interested in cooperating with your petty vendetta bullshit.

What vendetta? You were the first person to bring up your ER visit in a post at Oliver's many months ago. You thought your story was evidence of the "system working."

Since that time, you've been unwilling or unable to accept the fact that your story is actually an example of a broken system.

Yeah you got health care and recovered. Great. But a portion of the cost of your care was passed on to the government and taxpayers because you didn't have insurance and you couldn't afford to foot the bill yourself.

In other words, you benefited from a government subsidy of your health care. The system only worked for you because the federal government footed a portion of your bill.

This is part of the problem we face today. The cost of the uninsured is being passed on to others and the government without any means of controlling that cost through preventative medicine like regular check ups or by pooling risk.

Why you can't simply admit all this is beyond me. It only came up because you got back on your "personal responsibility" high horse when the fact is you were not personally responsible for the full cost of your town treatment in this instance.

If you don't like to be reminded of it, stay off the high horse.

Now Jay Tea, would you care to address the question of suing the NHS?

And note that your... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
And note that your comments have not been edited, deleted, or resulted in any banning.

No, they've just been met with veiled threats and whining.

I can handle the threats, but for godssakes, could you stop the whining? Please?

faf, I'm alive. I settled t... (Below threshold)

faf, I'm alive. I settled the debt. Case was closed well over a decade ago.

This discussion is over.

J.

faf, I'm alive. I ... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
faf, I'm alive. I settled the debt. Case was closed well over a decade ago.

You settled the debt with taxpayer assistance but the hypocrisy lives on. I'm happy to leave it there.

So, Jay Tea, would you like to move on to the subject of suing the NHS?

And you know what?... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
And you know what? You can fish for your own red herrings and burn down your own strawmen.

This is just too awesome. Matt, you accused me of being dumb on purpose but your response to my challenge is the very epitome of "dumb on purpose."

Jay Tea clearly misstated the facts in a recent post on health care in which he insisted that British citizens cannot sue the NHS.

They can.

Do you care that Jay Tea fed you misinformation? Do you care that he hasn't corrected this misinformation yet?

Apparently you don't.

Dumb on purpose, indeed.

B-b-but I thought socialize... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

B-b-but I thought socialized medicine was the answer to our 'problem':

"THE National Health Service has spent £1.5m paying for hundreds of its staff to have private health treatment so they can leapfrog their own waiting lists. More than 3,000 staff, including doctors and nurses, have gone private at the taxpayers' expense in the past three years because the queues at the clinics and hospitals where they work are too long."

via TimesOnline via Instapundit

I settled the debt. Case... (Below threshold)
John:

I settled the debt. Case was closed well over a decade ago.

But Jay, how did you learn anything from that? They negotiated the bill down for you. So you didn't learn personal responsibility. Real responsibility would be if they held you to the full debt and garnished your wages for the next 10 years. Or they refused to treat you. All you learned was how to offload your debt onto society.

You repeatedly refuse to acknowledge the obvious. Personal responsibility is, if you don't buy health insurance, and you get sick or injured, then you die. I have no problem letting people make that choice. But personal responsibility is not, if you get sick, then go to a hospital and have them treat you for free, and stick society with the bill. ERs don't turn away people who can't pay, and nor (I suspect) do you want them to.

You settled the debt that was lowered because you couldn't pay it in full. Where do you think the difference went? Did it just vanish into thin air? Either the hospital ate the cost, or they passed it onto someone else (or everyone else). I grant you that your legal debt obligation is settled, but it's freaky that you view this as a sustainable business practice.

How about, let's allow poor people to forgo auto insurance. When they injure someone, they can just say they don't have any money, settle the claim for pennies on the dollar, and drive off again. Hey, they settled the debt, so case closed, right? Who cares if taxpayers foot the bill for the injured party?

The difference between my initial bill and the final settlement, divided by the rough population of the US at the time, works out to considerably less than one penny.

How is this a useful calculation? Were you the only person in the country that had medical care paid for by society that year?

If I don't want auto insurance, then I won't buy a car and I'll stay off the roads.

I'll be more than happy to let you decline health insurance. You just need to agree to stay away from doctors.

This is just too a... (Below threshold)
matt621:
This is just too awesome. Matt, you accused me of being dumb on purpose but your response to my challenge is the very epitome of "dumb on purpose."

And you, trying to take Jay Tea's position and argue that it's my position also, then trying to tar me with it not once but twice, is the textbook definition of a straw man.

But you knew that, didn't you. Like when you said at that bigot Olive Oil Whale Ass' blog,

Buy a guy some chemotherapy and he gets better for a day, teach him how to give himself chemotherapy and he's better for the rest of his life.

and when you also tried to ascribe the Oregon State Health Plan's decision to offer assisted suicide rather than cancer drug therapy as a treatment to a conservative attitude rather than the statist policies of one of America's bluest of blue states.

I agree with you on one thing, fafaroo...

Your purposeful stupidity is just too awesome.

And you, trying to... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
And you, trying to take Jay Tea's position and argue that it's my position also, then trying to tar me with it not once but twice, is the textbook definition of a straw man.

No actually Matt. Since you hadn't given any actual examples of what you considered being "dumb on purpose" I thought I'd present you with a pretty clear cut case of it and see how you'd respond.

You chose to ignore it, hence, remain dumb on purpose.

Now, Matt, the two comments of mine you've linked are clearly my responses to what I considered very, very, very stupid arguments put forth by conservative trolls. In the first instance, of course, I was making fun of you for your completely nonsensical application of the cliche "teach a man to fish, etc." to someone not having health insurance. I guess that really stuck in your craw.

You wrote:

What kind of parents would have children and not make the necessary lifestyle choices to protect their health and welfare?

in response to the case of a man who had a family but no health insurance because it wasn't offered to him through his job and because he couldn't afford it otherwise.

Someone, not me, noted that this was a pretty insensitive response to what had to be a difficult and frustrating circumstance and you replied:

You want to hand out fish, I want to give fishing lessons.

I can only gather now, in retrospect, that you were trying to articulate the argument that Jay Tea makes above that getting sick and almost dying without insurance is a valuable life lesson that the poor and uninsured need to be allowed to learn themselves. As if they don't already know that because every time one of their kids sniffle they could find themselves having to choose between food and medicine, or rent and a hospital stay.

"Teaching" someone the need for health insurance is meaningless if they cannot afford it in the first place. Do you understand now why yours was a ridiculous comment?

You can teach some guy to fish, but if he can't also afford the pole and the bait, and you don't make them available to him in some way, all your lessons won't mean shit. Of course, you could give him a loan and he could buy a pole and pay you back gradually with interest which is just like buying someone health insurance because with the money they make from that they can ... oh wait

Get it now, Matt? Yours was a ridiculously canned conservative response that had nothing whatsoever to do with the situation. You just regurgitated it without thought.

As for the other comment, you have to be kidding me.

You criticized someone for not having health insurance for himself and his family but you are at the same time opposed to allowing the government to provide it for them through a program such as the Oregon State Health Plan.

Then you want to turn around and claim the moral high ground over limits in the Oregon State Health Plan?

The woman in Orgeon was demanding better benefits from a state program YOU OPPOSE IN THE FIRST PLACE.

You think it was wrong for the Oregon State Health Plan to alert her to the fact that it covers physician assisted suicide, which is legal in Oregon, among many other options it also covers (physician assisted suicide was not the only option mentioned in the letter)?

But Matt, you don't think she should have been getting coverage from the State at all, period. If she didn't have the medications provided by her state plan she would have died from her illness well before the was denied access to a more experimental drug.

And that would have been okay with you because, you know, she really should have learned how to fish, or something.

The hypocrisy is so obvious, the insincerity is so plain.

The dumb is so very much on purpose.

faf, it took me a while to ... (Below threshold)

faf, it took me a while to recognize it, but thanks for the textbook lesson in Alinsky's Rule 13:

"13. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it and polarize it."

I was not the topic at hand. I never was. I took your obsession with turning the topic to me as some sort of sad little crush, but I was mistaken.

I'm not the subject here. Attempting to discredit me does not in the least affect the points I raise. And I'm not playing along any more.

J.

Attempting to disc... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
Attempting to discredit me does not in the least affect the points I raise. And I'm not playing along any more.

So you won't be correcting your egregious and obvious error about the NHS?

British citizens can sue the NHS, Jay Tea. You've told your readership they can't.

What kind of respect do you have for your readers if you don't make that correction?

What kind of ethics as a blogger/writer can you lay claim to?

The answer to both questions is "none."


fafaroo, don't mak... (Below threshold)
matt621:

fafaroo,

don't make the mistake of thinking that having the last word makes you the winner.

In cyberspace, you have to be told your argument is too foolish to merit a response. Otherwise, your purposeful idiocy would cause you to claim some sort of victory, when in fact the opposite is the case.

Consider yourself notified.

Attempting to disc... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
Attempting to discredit me does not in the least affect the points I raise.

Clearly in the case of your own ER visit, Jay Tea, you don't seem to think that the points you raise, should apply to you.

Hell, you can't even take personal responsibility for fact checking your own work.

don't make the mis... (Below threshold)
fafaroo:
don't make the mistake of thinking that having the last word makes you the winner.

ROFLMAO.

Matt, please, please, please reply to this comment!




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