Community For Affordable Health Care
Vol XI, No 3, Oct, 2012
Transforming the $3 Trillion HealthCare Industry into Affordable HealthCare
By Utilizing the $2 Trillion Information Technology Industry
Through innovation by moving from a Vertical to a Horizontal industry
Thus eliminating $1 Trillion wasted
Insuring every American without spending the Extra $1Trillion Projected.
To purchase a copy of
the business plan, become an entrepreneur,
and changed the course of history, go to the bookstore at
In This Issue:
1. Featured Article: 2012: THE MAKE OR BREAK FOR AMERICA
2. In the News: '2016: Obama’s America'
3. International Healthcare: Putin, Chavez and Castro come out for Obama.
4. Government Healthcare: Greek Jobless Lose Health Benefits
5. Lean HealthCare: A Medical Correlative
6. Misdirection in Healthcare: Atlas Shrugged Part II
7. Overheard on Capitol Hill: Is America Exceptional?
8. Innovations in Healthcare: A Parable of Health-Care Rationing
9. The Health Plan for the USA: Deferred to the Book.
10. Restoring Accountability in Medical Practice by Moving from a Vertical to a Horizontal Industry:
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1. Feature Article: 2012: The Make or Break for America
AGENDA GAMES: How Today’s High-Stakes Political Combat Works.
EPILOGUE: THE “IT” YEAR OF 2012
First, the “It” girl—a concept that means more than mere “perfection.” The “It” factor captures that certain “something” one can’t quite define, but that redirects the attention from anything else whenever “It” appears.
Professional entertainers and those celebrity-centric people who follow this sort of thing attribute the term to Elinor Glyn, who wrote the magazine article that inspired the It film in 1927 starring Clara Bow—although the honors for this particular perception of “It” actually go to Rudyard Kipling.
But no matter. In frenzied succession, there followed a series of “Its”: female celebrities, “It” hairdos, “It” fashions, “It” songs, foods, and even exercise regimens. All seemed to define their era, the prevailing mentality, or even an entire generation.
By extension, the “It” phenomenon took on another meaning, as in “This is ‘it’!” Whenever “It” appeared, everyone was to understand that “It” was irreplaceable; that “It” would never be—
and could never be—superseded. So, “It” also took on yet another connotation: “The End,” or “The Defining Moment.”
In American politics, the “It” moments came with the close of World War II (“happy days” were here again), with the Communist takeover Saigon (the first “war” America ever “lost”)—and in 2012, the first time the Republic had ever been thought of as “threatened.” The “It” years—the years everything changed, up close and visible.
Since the 1970s, traditionalists and patriots have seen “It” coming, and dreaded that there would come a time when American ideals would not just be ridiculed in the media, but dismantled by the courts. They worried that elections would eventually be manipulated to such a degree that American values and ethics could no longer be sustained. In the year 2012, the crossroads became clear.
But for this author, it happened in a most unexpected way.
The following is a true story:
I was sitting with a neighbor in a café over lunch. It was the week before Christmas, 2011. Though this neighbor had never been a particularly close friend (given our wildly divergent political views), we had lived in the same community for so many years, and even helped each other out on so many occasions, that we were, one could say, on very good terms as long-time acquaintances, if not exactly confidantes.
Many of my other neighbors jokingly called this woman the “resident Commie” behind her back, mostly because she proudly and openly admitted to being a Marxist in the hippie-dippy days of our 1960s youth. She had participated in protests and demonstrations, somehow managing to squeeze them in amongst her college studies and various doctoral degrees.
But on this particular day, she was protesting something altogether different. She confided, to my astonishment, that she was leaving the Washington area—this place where everything is vital and “happening”: the museums, the Kennedy Center, the Fireworks over the Capital on the Fourth of July, the plentiful ethnic restaurants, and Capitol Hill. She was headed for fairer fields in the Great Southwest, of all places—home to the same Confederacy and “rednecks” she had often denigrated.
“But why?” I asked, perplexed. “I mean, you just revamped your entire house two years ago!”
Because, she said, “I don’t like the turn the lifestyle has taken here.” What’s more, she saw “no change in sight, regardless of who’s elected.”
My neighbor was blissfully unaware, apparently, that the District of Columbia and its surrounding bedroom communities exemplified the very lifestyle for which she had once demonstrated, marched and chanted slogans during our coming-of-age years—the only era, we both once thought, that really mattered.
Regardless of our politics (we didn’t even know each other then), we imagined ourselves on the cusp. We were first-wave Baby Boomers, born immediately after the War. The “times, they were achangin’,” and lucky us, we were part of “It”! We were the “It Generation,” the Ones Who’d Change the World.
The disappointed, graying visage looking at me from across the table came as something of a shock. Instead of being a smug representative of our “It” generation—her side had “won,” after all—there was only “Me.”
Despite her multiple Ph.D.’s in cutting-edge disciplines such as women’s studies, political “science” and environmentalism, in my neighbor’s mind, the “Its” had accomplished next to nothing, leaving the “Me Generation” in charge.
Like most young people our age, I was never part of the “It” crowd, having stupidly declared a major in a financially responsible (if not particularly emotionally satisfying) career. I’d looked around for (and gratefully found) Mr. Right, rewarded my parents with respectable, if not exactly stellar, grades, and “ate my peas” (to use a quip from President Obama).
So, I was mightily disturbed to hear that now, nearing retirement age, anybody at all was actually in charge, much less this “Me Generation.”
“It” was all very confusing… When did “It” turn into “Me”?
Was it merely “all so simple then,” as per the song from the tear-jerker film, The Way We Were, starring Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford?
Well, from the way my neighbor was now shaking her gray locks, things certainly hadn’t turned out as expected.
“Too many rules…,” she complained. “And surveillance cameras—can you believe it, @#$% surveillance EVERYWHERE?” In cathartic-like fashion, she elaborated:
… Can’t even take your dog for a romp in the woods without some @#$% lazy pig snooping around making sure you have a baggie clipped to your belt! And no trash cans! All these taxes, and not a single @#$% garbage bin to dump your baggie full of droppings! Do they really think people want to walk for an hour in the great, green outdoors with a bag full of p_ _p in their hands?
And speaking of TAXES! For what? The lights go out every time we have a little rain! In the Capital of the Nation, for God’s sakes! I mean, this isn’t 1950! Aren’t we due a few upgrades for all this money we’re shelling out? And my prescriptions….”
By now my neighbor’s voice had reached enough pitch to draw attention:
“Do you believe,” she continued, “that just two weeks after being hospitalized for a hysterectomy, my pharmacy gets grief from the frigging government over a two-bit bottle of pain medication! I mean, you’d think I was asking for crack, when all I wanted was a refill that my doctor had already approved!”
I smiled. In commiseration…among other things….
As my neighbor carried on with her laundry list of grievances, my mind wandered: For some reason, I fancied how she might have looked as a 10-year-old, riding a bike and thrilling to the feel of the wind blowing through her hair. I imagined her frolicking into the school building in the morning, flagging down a friend in the hallway—no gauntlet of metal detectors and pat-downs standing in her way. No concerns that some monster would jump out of nowhere and start shooting.
I imagined her laughter and delight as she and her siblings lighted “sparklers” on the Fourth of July. She might have caught me smiling, but it was not at her rant. Rather, it was at the image of her enjoying buying a gooey ice-cream sandwich from a machine at the local theater on a Saturday afternoon, with no notion of some entity called the “food police.” Or as a teenager, with a bunch of other kids at Tops Drive-in, ordering a burger—and the best, thickest milkshake in town.
I pictured her…or maybe I was picturing us—or maybe the little girl in my mind’s eye was…me…?
The 1960s Boomers. The “Me Generation.”
Whatever became of those of us who were hopelessly…well, “nerdy” in today’s lingo? Never “brave” enough, or “popular” enough, or self-serving enough to qualify for the “It” crowd. All those “Me’s” who didn’t have the leisure (much less the parental support) to demonstrate against anything! We didn’t know it then, but We were still in the majority—on our way to independence, selfsufficiency and self-reliance. Unfortunately, press accounts of the 60s pretended otherwise, so we had no idea. “Changes … they were a-comin’,” the pundits said. And the world would belong to the counterculture radicals. It would be the “It” kids—like my nowgrown neighbor—the “radicals” and the “counterculture” fighting against the Establishment—who would rule America.
Yet, somehow “We, the People” had found each other and reconnected, in cities all around the country via the Internet. We may not have been actual classmates, but we had similar stories, and deep down each of us knew an “It” day is a-comin’.
And now, apparently, so did my left-leaning neighbor.
So, she had decided to run, to run away—down to “Dixie,” of all places.
I wondered if she realized that the great liberal activist folk singer we all loved, Joan Baez—even with her astonishing voice and range—today would never make it past the stage door with her signature piece, “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.” The word “Dixie,” in any context, is so politically incorrect that it cannot be uttered in public. Like the old Christmas standby, “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus,” Baez’s “Dixie” song is a relic of the past, when terms like “husband,” “wife” and “fiancé” were not referred to as “partners” in TV ads.
What a difference a few years makes! I mused.
My neighbor, unfortunately, will not escape the rules she helped precipitate—and now despises—in the Great Southwest. So, who, will stand as the “resisters” now? Which side will throw in the towel—or maybe throw down the gauntlet? “It” was kind of hard to say.
The world’s billionaires and the “mainstream” media work long and hard to narrow America’s choice of candidates, be it national, state or local races—and no matter who, technically, sits atop the heap with the most endorsements from average Americans. Yet, both the media and the political parties tell us, over and over, that “every vote counts.” Most people think it doesn’t.
What if “We, the People” did the unexpected? What if a candidate played the game and tricked the pollsters? Polls, after all, are mostly extrapolations from a sampling of a few hundred individuals. The media pays attention to them? Should we?
With a start, my attention returned to my grumbling neighbor. Just how “radical” was she? Would someone like her—a member of the “It” 60s-counterculture—be a help or a hindrance now?
Maybe my neighbor’s frame of mind was merely signaling a “fight or flight” response—like before the Nazis invaded Poland in the 1930s, or before the tanks rolled into Hungary in the 50s, or ahead of the Rwandan genocide in the 1990s… Maybe she’d go to the polls at election time and vote the way she always had—Left.
In any case, my neighbor’s angst made me think: Maybe this was really “It”!
* * * * *
2. In the News: '2016: Obama’s America'
Get the real unvarnished truth about what 2016 will look like if Obama gets re-elected. You may not recognize the Home of the Free. There may not be any home of the free left on the earth if he wins. Some Freedom of Speech has been compromised. Some Freedom of Religion has vanished. This has been playing throughout our country this month. The DVD is now available. If you missed the widescreen, watch it on your PC by ordering it from Amazon and other outlets. It’s worth the price. It may save our country.
'2016 -- Obama's America' -- why is the media so afraid of this movie
If you thought being one of the producers of one of the greatest anti-hate films in history, one that exposed hatred, bigotry and anti-semitism would make you immune from being labeled a hate monger, think again. "Schindlers List" left its mark on the world and did so by telling the truth about man’s inhumanity to men. Yet the slings and arrows came at me to impinge my credibility, the work of Dinesh D’Souza and to once again use hate as their passport to the dark side.
Is there anyone else out there who sometimes finds movie reviews lacking in substance and objectivity? How about a film “review” written by an online journal prior to them even viewing the film? Does that sound like the classic cart before the horse scenario? Anyone else smell something dishonest, partisan and maybe even cynical? That kind of effort can only be suspect in its mission and intent.
I speak of an online journal writing an attack piece on my latest film, ‘2016 – Obama’s America’. It labeled the film, “Feature Length Obama Hate.” Nice. And they hadn’t even seen the film.
That kind of action has to come from pure chutzpah, ideology or just plain stupidity, you can pick.
It seems the left in America can only define something they don’t understand, something that frightens them, something so truthful it hurts or something they have no real response to that leaves them grasping for any kind of answer that comes with the hope that maybe it will just go away…and if it doesn’t, do all possible to destroy it.
That won’t happen. The film is complete, it’s scheduled for release and it stands on it’s own as a well thought out visual documentary based on two books written by author Dinesh D’Souza, “The Roots of Obama’s Rage’ and the soon to be released “Obama’s America.”
A dear friend reminded me to not take the attack(s) personally and remember what a true hero of American liberalism, Nat Hentoff, wrote in his aptly titled book, “Free Speech For Me But Not For Thee: How The American Left and Right Relentlessly Censor Each Other.” Mr. Hentoff reminds all of us that the "right" and the "left" have both made blunders in their zeal to shut down the other side. But this attempt at fairness in reviewing a new film goes the extra mile in incredulity when the review comes EVEN BEFORE the film’s release.
This effort to de-legitimize the film is nothing less than “high-tech censorship,” since the first attack was trying to impugn the motives of the filmmakers and questioning how the project was funded and by whom, all in an attempt to dissuade people from watching it.
I don’t remember anyone in the mainstream press questioning Michael Moore about his motives (he wore them on his sleeve) or where the funding came from (deep pockets of those sharing his ideology). No questions asked….
The American way has always been to present ideas and new opinions, then through reason, logic, debate and even personalities, continue to expose as many points of view as possible. It makes the country a better one and stronger one for all of us.
“2016 – Obama’s America” presents a picture of an America changed through the passion of one man and his determination to turn America into ‘just another country.’ The movie should be required viewing by all Americans. Then you can do your own homework and make up your own mind.
But there are forces out there who don’t want you to view this movie and will try desperately to keep you away from the theater by impugning the character of people like me who created the work, hoping it’ll scare you away.
That’s not the American way.
I hope you’ll ignore these voices of fear and enjoy the show. And to these true forces of hate, who would seek to bully people into not seeing a movie they themselves haven’t even seen yet, let me remind them: it’s just a movie. Right?
Gerald R. Molen is the Academy award winning producer of films such as "Schindler's List," "Jurassic Park," "Minority Report" and others. His film "2016: Obama's America" will be released in theaters on August 10 and 17.
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3. International Healthcare: Putin, Chavez and Castro come out for Obama.
Three world leaders known for their
anti-American views are endorsing President Barack Obama’s re-election, Fox News reports.
Venezuela President Hugo Chavez, the socialist-leaning leader who won a fourth term this month, reportedly said that Obama was a “good guy.”
Meanwhile, the daughter of Cuban President Raul Castro, Mariela Castro, in June told CNN that, “As a citizen of the world, I would like (Obama) to win.”
She had been speaking in Spanish. The Castro family has ruled Cuba under Communism for over 50 years.
And in Russia, President Vladimir Putin has said Obama’s re-election could improve relations between the nations.
Putin, the former prime minister, also reportedly said the president was a “genuine person" who "really wants to change much for the better."
But Putin did tell The Wall Street Journal that he could work with Republican challenger Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts governor had said Russia was the “No. 1 geopolitical foe” of the US.
Putin called the remark "pre-election rhetoric," Fox reports.
© 2012 Newsmax.
All rights reserved
Read more on Newsmax.com: Report: Obama Backed By World Leaders With Anti-American Views
Important: Do You Support Pres. Obama's Re-Election? Vote Here Now!
Why does American Exceptionalism Threaten the Rest of the World?
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4. Government Healthcare: Greek Jobless Lose Health Benefits
NYT: ATHENS — As the head of Greece’s largest oncology department, Dr. Kostas Syrigos thought he had seen everything. But nothing prepared him for Elena, an unemployed woman whose breast cancer had been diagnosed a year before she came to him.
By that time, her cancer had grown to the size of an orange and broken through the skin, leaving a wound that she was draining with paper napkins. “When we saw her we were speechless,” said Dr. Syrigos, the chief of oncology at Sotiria General Hospital in central Athens. “Everyone was crying. Things like that are described in textbooks, but you never see them because until now, anybody who got sick in this country could always get help.”
Life in Greece has been turned on its head since the debt crisis took hold. But in few areas has the change been more striking than in health care. Until recently, Greece had a typical European health system, with employers and individuals contributing to a fund that with government assistance financed universal care. People who lost their jobs received health care and unemployment benefits for a year, but were still treated by hospitals if they could not afford to pay even after the benefits expired.
Things changed in July 2011, when Greece signed a supplemental loan agreement with international lenders to ward off financial collapse. Now, as stipulated in the deal, Greeks must pay all costs out of pocket after their benefits expire.
About half of Greece’s 1.2 million long-term unemployed lack health insurance, a number that is expected to rise sharply in a country with an unemployment rate of 25 percent and a moribund economy, said Savas Robolis, director of the Labor Institute of the General Confederation of Greek Workers. A new $17.5 billion austerity package of budget cuts and tax increases, agreed upon Wednesday with Greece’s international lenders, will make matters only worse, most economists say. . .
The change is particularly striking in cancer care, with its lengthy and expensive treatments. When cancer is diagnosed among the uninsured, “the system simply ignores them,” Dr. Syrigos said. He said, “They can’t access chemotherapy, surgery or even simple drugs.”
The health care system itself is increasingly dysfunctional, and may worsen if the government slashes an additional $2 billion in health spending, which it has proposed as part of a new austerity plan aimed to lock down more financing. With the state coffers drained, supplies have gotten so low that some patients have been forced to bring their own supplies, like stents and syringes, for treatments.
Hospitals and pharmacies now demand cash payment for drugs, which for cancer patients can amount to tens of thousands of dollars, money most of them do not have. With the system deteriorating, Dr. Syrigos and several colleagues have decided to take matters into their own hands.
Earlier this year, they set up a surreptitious network to help uninsured cancer patients and other ill people, which operates off the official grid using only spare medicines donated by pharmacies, some pharmaceutical companies and even the families of cancer patients who died. In Greece, doctors found to be helping an uninsured person using hospital medicines must cover the cost from their own pockets.
At the Metropolitan Social Clinic, a makeshift medical center near an abandoned American Air Force base outside Athens, Dr. Giorgos Vichas pointed one recent afternoon to plastic bags crammed with donated medicines lining the dingy floors outside his office.
“We’re a Robin Hood network,” said Dr. Vichas, a cardiologist who founded the underground movement in January. . .
In a supply room, a blue filing cabinet was filled with cancer drugs. But they were not enough to take care of the rising number of cancer patients knocking on his door. Many of the medicines are forwarded to Dr. Syrigos, who set up an off-hours infirmary in the hospital three months ago to treat uninsured cancer patients Dr. Vichas and other doctors in the network send his way.
Dr. Syrigos’s staff members consistently volunteer to work after their official shifts; the number of patients has risen to 35 from 5. “Sometimes I come home tired, exhausted, seeing double,” said Korina Liberopoulou, a pathologist on site one afternoon with five doctors and nurses. “But as long as there are materials to work with, this practice will go on.”
Back at the medical center, Dr. Vichas said he had never imagined being so overwhelmed with people in need. . .
. . . [Elena] was dismayed that the Greek state, as part of the bailout, had pulled back on a pillar of protection for society. But the fact that doctors and ordinary Greeks were organizing to pitch in where the state failed gave her hope in her bleakest hours. “Here, there is somebody who cares,” Elena said.
For Dr. Vichas, the most powerful therapy may not be the medicines, but the optimism that his Robin Hood group brings to those who have almost given up. “What we’ve gained from the crisis is to come closer together,” he said.
“This is resistance,” he added, sweeping his eyes over the volunteers and patients bustling around the clinic. “It is a nation, a people allowed to stand on their own two feet again with the help they give each other.”
Dimitris Bounias contributed reporting.
The “tax, spend, & enslave your children” parties around the world do not understand that there are limits on everything. The United States is falling into the same trap. By putting health care into the government “fiascos” it will only be time before we experience Greece where government health care is not free anymore and human suffering prevails.
Government is not the solution to our problems, government is the problem.
- Ronald Reagan
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5. Lean HealthCare: A Medical Correlative
Many patients never learn or even suspect that the CT examination, the echocardiogram, or the magnetic resonance imaging study that they underwent was neither necessary nor indicated.
Chaos in the Cockpit
Herbert L. Fred, MD, MACP
Tex Heart Inst J. 2012; 39(5): 614. PMCID: PMC3461665
On 1 June 2009, Air France Flight 447, an Airbus A330 en route to Paris from Rio de Janeiro, plunged into the south Atlantic, killing all 228 people aboard. French authorities finally concluded that the plane's 3 pilots had not been trained adequately to fly the aircraft manually in the event of equipment failure or a stall at high altitude.
According to a report issued on 5 July 2012,1 the Bureau of Investigation and Analysis found that ice crystals had misled the plane's airspeed sensors and that the autopilot had disconnected. Confusion heightened when faulty instructions emerged from an automated navigational aid called the “flight director.” Amid a barrage of alarms, the crew struggled to control the plane manually, but they never understood that the aircraft was in a stall and never undertook the appropriate recovery maneuvers. In fact, they followed the flight director's instructions and went into a climb instead of into a dive, as they should have to correct a stall.
William Voss, president of the Flight Safety Foundation in Alexandria, Virginia, offered the following comment on the accident: “We are seeing a situation where we have pilots that can't understand what the airplane is doing unless a computer interprets it for them. This isn't a problem that is unique to Airbus or unique to Air France. It's a new training challenge that the whole industry has to face.”
The whole healthcare industry faces training challenges that are eerily similar to those now evident in the airline industry. Indeed, we continue to graduate physicians who lack sufficient clinical skills to render good patient care without routinely reverting to and relying upon computers and other technologically advanced devices.2 In contrast to commercial aircraft accidents that typically injure or kill many people at once—and in spectacular fashion—medical misfortunes rarely make headlines. No one, for example, ever hears about the absolute halting of patient-care activities when the hospital's computed tomographic (CT) scanner breaks down.3,4 And many patients never learn or even suspect that the CT examination, the echocardiogram, or the magnetic resonance imaging study that they underwent was neither necessary nor indicated.
Although computers and like devices offer tremendous advantages, they have important drawbacks as well. They occasionally malfunction, are not always available, and produce findings that can be misinterpreted. They have no judgment, common sense, or understanding. And they cannot reason, overcome their deficiencies, or show concern for the welfare of human beings. A well-trained doctor—or a well-trained pilot—can.5
Address for reprints: Herbert L. Fred, MD, MACP, 8181 Fannin St., Suite 316, Houston, TX 77054
1. Clark N. Report on '09 Air France crash cites conflicting data in cockpit [Internet]
4. Fred HL. C.T. scanner dies. Hosp Pract (Minneap) 2001;36(1):23. [PubMed]
5. Fred HL. Gimmicks. South Med J 1983;76(8):953.
The Future of Health Care Has to Be Lean, Efficient and Personal.
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6. Misdirection in Healthcare: Atlas Shrugged Part II
Atlas Shrugged' Film Banks on Election Fever
By DON STEINBERG, WSJ
To a strict bottom-line capitalist, the new movie "Atlas Shrugged Part II" might not look like a model enterprise. "Atlas Shrugged Part I," released last year, cost businessman John Aglialoro about $25 million (and 19 years) to bring to the screen. Its domestic box-office take was a tepid $4.6 million. Critics' reviews, arguably, were worse.
Few flops earn sequels. But Mr. Aglialoro, chief executive of exercise-equipment maker Cybex International CYBI 0.00%and a longtime disciple of "Atlas Shrugged" author Ayn Rand, thinks the timing is right. Rebuffed by Hollywood, he and fellow producer Harmon Kaslow, whose horror credits include "Cemetery Gates" and "Boo," have built their own studio, hopeful that a nation embroiled in debate over the distribution of wealth will put "Part II" in the black. The urgency quickened when Mitt Romney named as his running mate another Rand acolyte, Rep. Paul Ryan (though he has soft-pedaled his enthusiasm for her in the campaign). The movie hits theaters Oct. 12.
"Atlas Shrugged," published in 1957, was the last novel by the Russian-born Ms. Rand, who at age 12 saw her father's business confiscated in the Bolshevik Revolution. The 1,100-page book, written in three parts, is a futuristic fable about the dangers of collectivist government. Call it poli-sci-fi. It's set in an America with a faltering economy, misled by bureaucrats who keep devising ways to take money from successful innovators in the name of public good.
Business leaders, meanwhile, are mysteriously vanishing. It turns out they're going on strike, fed up with supporting the world—hence the title. They decamp to a hidden gulch and pledge to "never live for the sake of another man." The heroine, Dagny Taggart, is desperately trying to save her family's railroad company and discovers possible salvation in a motor that could generate limitless energy by capturing static electricity from the air. But its inventor, John Galt, already has taken his leave.
The polarizing book has been labeled the Bible of Selfishness. It also has inspired millions. Mr. Aglialoro says he was "zapped" when he read "Atlas" in his 20s.
"I thought, 'Wow, gee, you're entitled without guilt to your own life,' " he says. "Benevolence and charity are wonderful things, when they're voluntary and on your terms. But what arrogance to have an entitlement society that expects it. Or to feel that you've got to 'give back.' I don't know what the hell you took in the first place that you feel you have to give back."
The film adaptation became its own saga. The mercurial Ms. Rand adapted her novel "The Fountainhead" for a King Vidor film starring Gary Cooper in 1949 and hated much of the movie, according to a 2004 biography by Jeffrey Britting. After her death in 1982, repeated efforts to turn her "Atlas" into cinema fizzled. Angelina Jolie was attached; Philadelphia Flyers owner Ed Snider optioned the rights; Randall Wallace ("Braveheart," "Pearl Harbor") wrote a script that covered the opus in a single film. In 1992, Mr. Aglialoro paid $1 million for a 15-year lease on the film rights, a duration he had to extend.
"I thought it would be a short period of time for investors to come in," he says. "But all these entities couldn't get it done. Ultimately, it's not a movie Hollywood wants to embrace."
Finally made on a modest budget (after huge start-up expenses, production was around $5.5 million), "Part I" was pounded by critics, who rated it at 11% "fresh," lower than "Showgirls" and "Ishtar," according to RottenTomatoes.com. Viewers, however, scored it at 74%.
"Part II" faced a new setback when Cybex lost a liability lawsuit in 2010 alleging that one of its weight machines had tipped over on a woman, leaving her paralyzed.
"I feel so sorry for her," Mr. Aglialoro says. "She jumped up on there and pulled the machine back on herself while she was stretching." The parties settled for $19.5 million in February. Cybex stock dropped so low the company faced delisting.
"The lawsuit was crippling," Mr. Aglialoro says. He put just $5 million into "Part II" but recruited additional investors, allowing Atlas Productions to spend $10 million on production and $10 million more on marketing. The new film will open on three times as many screens as the first installment. It's slicker and faster-paced, with a train crash and a jet-plane chase. The lead roles have all been filled by different actors, with Samantha Mathis replacing Taylor Schilling as Taggart. Cameos include Sean Hannity, Grover Norquist and Teller of Penn & Teller (Teller speaks). And in inspired casting, the two top government officials are played by Ray Wise and Paul McCrane, who were murderous hoods together in "RoboCop" and have spent careers portraying creepy villains with oversize foreheads.
The producers showed snippets to supporters of presidential candidate and fervent libertarian Ron Paul at the Republican convention and held screenings at the Heritage Foundation and Cato Institute in Washington.
"I'm making this as a warning," says Mr. Aglialoro. "It's about what happens when heroic producers disappear, and they leave the job of creating prosperity to the moochers and, God forbid, the politicians."
Mr. Kaslow admits that after all their effort, one hurdle remains: "The challenge is that our audience doesn't go to the movies that often."
Well-Meaning Regulations Worsen Quality of Care.
* * * * *
7. Overheard on Capitol Hill: American Exceptionalism
Is America Exceptional?
The following is adapted from a speech delivered on September 20, 2012, in Washington, D.C., at Hillsdale College’s third annual Constitution Day Dinner.
ONCE UPON A TIME, hardly anyone dissented from the idea that, for better or worse, the United States of America was different from all other nations. This is not surprising, since the attributes that made it different were vividly evident from the day of its birth. Let me say a few words about three of them in particular.
First of all, unlike all other nations past or present, this one accepted as a self-evident truth that all men are created equal. What this meant was that its Founders aimed to create a society in which, for the first time in the history of the world, the individual’s fate would be determined not by who his father was, but by his own freely chosen pursuit of his own ambitions. In other words, America was to be something new under the sun: a society in which hereditary status and class distinctions would be erased, leaving individuals free to act and to be judged on their merits alone. There remained, of course, the two atavistic contradictions of slavery and the position of women; but so intolerable did these contradictions ultimately prove that they had to be resolved—even if, as in the case of the former, it took the bloodiest war the nation has ever fought.
Secondly, in all other countries membership or citizenship was a matter of birth, of blood, of lineage, of rootedness in the soil. Thus, foreigners who were admitted for one reason or another could never become full-fledged members of the society. But America was the incarnation of an idea, and therefore no such factors came into play. To become a full-fledged American, it was only necessary to pledge allegiance to the new Republic and to the principles for which it stood.
Thirdly, in all other nations, the rights, if any, enjoyed by their citizens were conferred by human agencies: kings and princes and occasionally parliaments. As such, these rights amounted to privileges that could be revoked at will by the same human agencies. In America, by contrast, the citizen’s rights were declared from the beginning to have come from God and to be “inalienable”—that is, immune to legitimate revocation.
As time went on, other characteristics that were unique to America gradually manifested themselves. For instance, in the 20th century, social scientists began speculating as to why America was the only country in the developed world where socialism had failed to take root. As it happens, I myself first came upon the term “American exceptionalism” not in Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America, where it has mistakenly been thought to have originated, but in a book by the sociologist Seymour Martin Lipset, who used it in connection with the absence in America of a strong socialist party. More recently I have discovered that the term may actually have originated with Joseph Stalin, of all people, who coined the term in the same connection but only in order to dismiss it. Thus, when an American Communist leader informed him that American workers had no intention of playing the role Marx had assigned to the worldwide proletariat as the vanguard of the coming socialist revolution, Stalin reputedly shouted something like, “Away with this heresy of American exceptionalism!” And yet Stalin and his followers were themselves exceptional in denying that America was exceptional in the plainly observable ways I have mentioned. If, however, almost everyone agreed that America was different, there was a great deal of disagreement over whether its exceptionalism made it into a force for good or a force for evil. This too went back to the beginning, when the denigrators outnumbered the enthusiasts.
At first, anti-American passions were understandably fuelled by the dangerous political challenge posed to the monarchies of Europe by the republican ideas of the American Revolution. But the political side of anti-Americanism was soon joined to a cultural indictment that proved to have more staying power. Here is how the brilliant but volatile historian Henry Adams—the descendent of two American presidents—described the cultural indictment as it was framed in the earliest days of the Republic:
In the foreigner’s range of observation, love of money was the most conspicuous and most common trait of the American character . . . . No foreigner of that day—neither poet, painter, or philosopher—could detect in American life anything higher than vulgarity . . . . Englishmen especially indulged in unbounded invective against the sordid character of American society . . . . Contemporary critics could see neither generosity, economy, honor, nor ideas of any kind in the American breast.
In his younger days, Adams defended America against these foreign critics; but in later life, snobbishly recoiling from the changes wrought by rapid industrialization following the Civil War, he would hurl the same charge at the America of the so-called Gilded Age.
We see a similar conflict in Tocqueville. Democracy in America was mainly a defense of the country’s political system and many of its egalitarian habits and mores. But where its cultural and spiritual life was concerned, Tocqueville expressed much the same contempt as the critics cited by Henry Adams. The Americans, he wrote, with “their exclusively commercial habits,” were so fixated “upon purely practical objects” that they neglected “the pursuit of science, literature, and the arts,” and it was only their proximity to Europe that allowed them “to neglect these pursuits without lapsing into barbarism.” Many years later, another Frenchman, Georges Clemenceau, went Tocqueville one better: “America,” he quipped, “is the only nation in history which miraculously has gone from barbarism to decadence without the usual interval of civilization.”. . .
Like Tocqueville and the foreigners cited by Henry Adams, moreover, these more recent works attribute this crassly philistine attitude to the love of money and “the exclusively commercial habits” that went with it—in other words, to the species of freedom that has done more than anything else ever invented to lift masses of people out of poverty and that would later be known as capitalism. America, these critics were declaring, was exceptional all right—exceptionally bad, or even downright evil.
On the other hand, there have always been defenders of American exceptionalism as a vital force for good. Thus, several decades before switching sides, Henry Adams charged America’s foreign critics with blindness to the country’s amazing virtues. Whereas, Adams wrote, European philosophers and poets could see only rapacity and vulgarity here, the poorest European peasants could discern that “the hard, practical money-getting American democrat was in truth living in a world of dream” and was “already guiding Nature with a kinder and wiser hand than had ever yet been felt in human history.” It was this dream, Adams went on to say, that beckoned to the poor of the old world, calling upon them to come and share in the limitless opportunities it offered—opportunities unimaginable anywhere else.
For a long time now, to speak personally, I have taken my stand with the young Adams, to whom America was exceptionally good, against his embittered older self, to whom it had become exceptionally bad. In my own younger days, I was on the Left, and from the utopian vantage point to which leftism invariably transports its adherents, it was the flaws in American society—the radical 1960s trinity of war, racism, and poverty—that stood out most vividly. It rarely occurred to me or my fellow leftists to ask a simple question: Compared to what is America so bad?
From our modern perspective, much more was wrong with Periclean Athens, or the Italy of the Medicis, or England under the first Queen Elizabeth, or 19th-century Russia under the Romanovs. But this has not disqualified them from being universally ranked among the highest points of human civilization and achievement. After more than 40 years of pondering the question “Compared to what?” I have come to believe with all my heart that the United States belongs on that exalted list. It is true that we have not earned a place on it, as the others mainly did, by our contribution to the arts. Yet it is worth pointing out that even in the sphere of the arts, we have not done too badly. To speak only of literature, names like Walt Whitman, Mark Twain, Edith Wharton, Robert Frost, and many others attest that we have, in fact, done far better than might generally have been expected of a nation conceived primarily to achieve other ends. These ends were social, political, and economic, and it is in them that we have indeed excelled the most.
We have excelled by following our Founding Fathers in directing our energies, as our Constitution exhorts us to do, to the preservation of the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, as well as to the pursuit of happiness tacitly understood by the Declaration of Independence to require prosperity as a precondition. (In his original draft of the Declaration, of course, Jefferson used the word “property” instead of “pursuit of happiness.”) By remaining faithful in principle—and to a considerable extent in practice—to the ideas by which the Founders hoped to accomplish these ends, we and our forebears have fashioned a country in which more liberty and more prosperity are more widely shared than among any other people in human history. Yes, even today that holds true, despite policies unfaithful both to the letter and to the spirit of the traditional American system that have resulted in a series of political and economic setbacks.
So far as liberty is concerned, until recently no one but libertarians have been arguing that we were insufficiently free in the United States. If anything, some conservatives, dismayed by such phenomena as the spread of pornography and sexual license, thought that we had too much freedom for our own good. But thanks to modern liberalism’s barely concealed hostility to the free market, not to mention the threat posed by Obamacare to religious and economic freedom, many conservatives are now echoing these libertarian arguments, if in a milder form.
Judging by what they say and the policies they pursue, modern liberals are not all that concerned about liberty. What they really care about, and what they assign a higher value to, is economic equality (as reflected in the now famous phrase, “spread the wealth around”). Yet here is what the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote in 1976 about this very issue in connection with the redistributionist ideology then regnant at the United Nations:
And equality . . . what is the record? The record was stated most succinctly by an Israeli socialist who told William F. Buckley, Jr. that those nations which have put liberty ahead of equality have ended up doing better by equality than those with the reverse priority . . . . This is our case. We are of the liberty party, and it might surprise us what energies might be released were we to unfurl those banners.
Four years later, Ronald Reagan came along to unfurl those banners. And just as Moynihan predicted, the result was the release of new political and economic energies that reversed the political and economic decline of the Carter years and that led to our victory in the Cold War.
Of course, the party of liberty Moynihan was talking about was the United States of America and the party of economic equality was the socialist countries of what was then called the Third World. But within America today, an analogous split has opened up, with the Republicans constituting the party of liberty and the Democrats more and more becoming the party of redistribution. Hence the Democrats never stop claiming that the rich are failing to pay their fair share of taxes. Yet after surveying the numbers, the economist Walter Williams of George Mason University asks an excellent question: “What standard of fairness dictates that the top ten percent of income earners pay 71 percent of the federal income tax burden while 47 percent of Americans pay absolutely nothing?” To which an editorial in the Wall Street Journal replies: “There is nothing fair about confiscatory tax policy that reduces growth, denies opportunity, and keeps more people in poverty.”
Then too there is the assumption, blithely accepted by the party of economic equality, that the gap between rich and poor—or even between the rich and the middle class—self-evidently amounts to a violation of social justice. Yet far from being self-evident, this assumption stems from a highly questionable concept of social justice—one that rules out or minimizes the role played by talent, character, ambition, initiative, daring, work, and spirit in producing unequal outcomes in “the pursuit of happiness.”
Furthermore, both the assumption and its correlative concept of social justice run counter to the American grain. As study after study has shown, and as the petering out of the Occupy Wall Street movement has recently confirmed, what Tocqueville observed on this point in the 1830s remains true today: Americans, unlike Europeans, he wrote, “do not hate the higher classes of society” even if “they are not favorably inclined toward them . . . .” Which is to say that most Americans are not prone to the envy of the rich that eats away at their self-appointed spokesmen on the Left.
Nor are most Americans subject to the accompanying passion for economic egalitarianism that made for the spread of socialism in other countries. What explains the absence of that levelling passion is that it has been starved by the opportunities America has afforded millions upon millions to better their lot and the advantage they have been free to take of those opportunities—which in turn explains how unprecedented and unmatched levels of prosperity have been created here and how they have come to be shared more widely here than anywhere else.
Tocqueville also put his finger on a second and related reason for the persistence of this particular feature of American exceptionalism: “The word poor is used here in a relative, not an absolute sense. Poor men in America would often appear rich in comparison with the poor of Europe.” A story I was once told by a Soviet dissident provides an amusing illustration. It seems that the Soviet authorities used to encourage the repeated screening of The Grapes of Wrath, a movie about the Great Depression-era migration of starving farmers from the Dust Bowl to California in their broken-down pickups. But contrary to expectation, what Soviet audiences got from this film was not an impression of how wretched was the plight of the poor in America. Instead they came away marvelling that in America, “even the peasants own trucks.”
Tocqueville further observed that in America, “the poor, instead of forming the immense majority of the nation, as is always the case in aristocratic communities, are comparatively few in number, and the laws do not bind them together by the ties of irremediable and hereditary penury.”
As the great economist and social critic Thomas Sowell has demonstrated time and again, it is still the case that the poor in America “are comparatively few in number.” And except for the black underclass—whose size is generally estimated at somewhere between two and ten percent of the black community and whose plight has thus far resisted every attempt at alleviation over the past 50 years—it is also true that penury in the United States is neither irremediable nor hereditary. As Sowell shows, of those who live on the next rung of the economic ladder, more of whom are white than black, only three percent get stuck in the bottom fifth of the income distribution for more than eight years.
Elaborating on Sowell’s analyses, the economist Mark Perry writes:
In the discussions on income inequality and wage stagnation, we frequently hear about the “top 1%” or the “top 10%” or the “bottom 99%” and the public has started to believe that those groups operate like closed private clubs that contain the exact same people or households every year. But the empirical evidence . . . tells a much different story of dynamic change in the labor market—people and households move up and down the earnings quintiles throughout their careers and lives. Many of today’s low-income households will rise to become tomorrow’s high-income households, and some will even eventually be in the “top 10%” or “top 1%.” And many of today’s “top 1%” or top income quintile members are tomorrow’s middle or lower class households, reflecting the significant upward and downward mobility in the dynamic U.S. labor market.
No such mobility can be found in any of the member countries of the European Union, or anywhere else for that matter. Even in the dismal economic state our nation has fallen into today, it is still exceptional where the degree and the distribution of prosperity are concerned. But to this, modern liberals are willfully blind.
With all exceptions duly noted, I think it is fair to say that what liberals mainly see when they look at America today is injustice and oppression crying out for redress. By sharp contrast, conservatives see a complex of traditions and institutions built upon the principles that animated the American Revolution and that have made it possible—to say yet again what cannot be said too often—for more freedom and more prosperity to be enjoyed by more of its citizens than in any other society in human history. It follows that what liberals—who concentrate their attention on the relatively little that is wrong with America instead of the enormous good embodied within it—seek to change or discard is precisely what conservatives are dedicated to preserving, reinvigorating, and defending.
A similar divide separates liberals and conservatives as to the role America has played in world affairs. Consider the many apologies President Obama has issued for the misdeeds of which he imagines Americans have been guilty in our relations with other countries in general and the Muslim world in particular. Never mind that the United States has spilled blood and treasure to liberate and protect many millions of people from the totalitarian horrors first of Nazism and then of Communism, and that since 9/11 we have spilled yet more blood and treasure fighting against Islamofascism, the totalitarian successor to Nazism. And as to the Muslim world in particular, never mind that, as the columnist Mona Charen puts it, “of the last six wars in which the United States was involved (Kuwait, Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya), four were undertaken to rescue Muslims and the other two (Afghanistan and Iraq) had the side benefit of liberating Muslims —to what end remains an open question.”
In spite of all this, the liberal community seems to think that the rest of the world would be better off without the United States, or at least with it following the policy of “leading from behind.” Admittedly there are paleoconservatives like Pat Buchanan and libertarians like Ron Paul who agree on this point, but most conservatives do not believe that a radical diminution of American power and influence would be good for us or for the world.
Shortly before the election of 2008, then-candidate Obama declared that his election would usher in “a fundamental transformation of America.” The desirability of such a transformation—which would entail the wiping away of as many more traces of American exceptionalism as it will take to turn this country into a facsimile of the social-democratic regimes of western Europe—is the issue at the heart of our politics today. And in the long run, I hope and trust, Americans will reject such a transformation, and elect instead to return to the principles that have made this nation so exceptional—yes, exceptional—a force for good both at home and abroad.
NORMAN PODHORETZ served as editor-in-chief of Commentary magazine from 1960-1995. He was a Pulitzer Scholar at Columbia University, earning his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1950. He also holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Cambridge University, England, where he was a Fulbright Scholar and a Kellett Fellow. In addition, he has a bachelor’s degree in Hebrew Literature from the Jewish Theological Seminary. He has written for most major American periodicals and is the author of twelve books, including My Love Affair With America and Why Are Jews Liberals?
Copyright © 2012 Hillsdale College. The opinions expressed in Imprimis are not necessarily the views of Hillsdale College. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is hereby granted, provided the following credit line is used: “Reprinted by permission from Imprimis, a publication of Hillsdale College.” SUBSCRIPTION FREE UPON REQUEST. ISSN 0277-8432. Imprimis trademark registered in U.S. Patent and Trade Office #1563325.
What is the Tax, Spend, & Enslave your Children Party Saying?
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8. Innovations in Healthcare: Are Innovations in Healthcare coming to an end in America?
Europeans come here for front-line cancer therapy. Where will they go after ObamaCare?
A Parable of Health-Care Rationing
Imagine you're a Belgian industrialist with an idea for a device that treats certain cancers. You're convinced it would be a huge improvement over the existing standard. But it would also be hideously expensive, at least initially, and your specialized contraption will put your country's public-health accountants in a cold sweat. How to convince investors you're not insane?
"The American dream," says a grinning Olivier Legrain, the CEO of Belgian medical-device firm Ion Beam Applications, which was founded in 1986. "It is probably easier to sell innovative ideas in the U.S. than in the rest of the world."
Ion Beam Applications is now the world’s leading purveyor of equipment for proton therapy, a form of particle radiation designed to treat tumors aggressively while sparing more healthy tissue than in other forms of radiation. The U.S. has 11 such centers in operation—more than any other country. Eight of them were designed, built and installed by IBA.
But Mr. Legrain’s American dream is in doubt, particularly as it relates to high-cost medical innovation. Before meeting him for breakfast last week, I called his biggest customer, a private, Indiana-based firm that runs several proton-treatment centers in the U.S. Asked how the 2010 health-care reform law might affect the market, ProCure CEO Hadley Ford was candid: “My general view is that it’s 900 pages of unintended consequences.” . . .
When the author put that to Mr. Legrain, he shrugged and doubled down. “If you have a good idea, if you have energy, you can make it happen in the States.”
The good idea is zapping localized tumors with charged protons, which scatter less radiation than gamma or x-rays, was born in postwar laboratories of Harvard and Berkeley. The technology was refined by IBA’s engineers, making the technology feasible for market –driven players which made it affordable beyond large research centers. Mr. Ford’s ProCure now runs facilities in Oklahoma, new Jersey and Illinois with another planned for Washington state. IBS also treats patients in Japan, Korea and France. One country notably absent from its client list? Belgium. . .
The result is that the Belgian government ships patients abroad for proton therapy. Most of them go to Massachusetts since the centers in Germany and Switzerland are fully loaded with waiting lists. . .
When ObamaCare takes effect in January, IBA will face a fresh challenge: a 2.3% tax on medical device sales. . .
“I sleep well at night knowing protons are fundamentally better to treat cancer than X-rays,” said Mr. Ford . . .
As for whether America will remain the first destination for medical advances in the age of ObamaCare, Mr Ford cautions: “Anything that moves toward one of anything, you’re going to have less innovation—one provider, one payer, one manufacturer.”
But Mr. Legrain’s faith in the American market seems unshakable. “Even though they’re moving toward a more social system,” he says, “the entrepreneurial spirit—it’s almost, to me, part of the DNA of America.”
Miss Jolis is an editorial page writer for The Wall Street Journal Europe.
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This section is temporarily deferred to the Book.
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10. Restoring Accountability in Medical Practice by Non Participation in Government Programs and Understanding the Devastating Force of Government
Medicine and Liberty - Network of Liberty Oriented Doctors, www.MedLib.ch/, Alphonse Crespo, MD, Executive
Director and Founder
Medicine & Liberty (MedLib) is an independent physician network founded in 2007, dedicated to the study and advocacy of liberty, ethics & market in medical services.
- We support professional autonomy for doctors and liberty of choice for patients
- We uphold the Hippocratic covenant that forbids action harmful to the patient
- We defend responsible medical practice and access to therapeutic innovation free from
- We work towards a deeper understanding of the role and importance of liberty & market in
MedLib is part of a wide movement of ideas that defends
- the self-ownership principle & the property rights of individuals on the products of their
physical and intellectual work
- free markets, free enterprise and strict limits to the role of the State
· Authentic Medicine - Douglas Farrago MD, Editor, Creator & Founder
SPEAKING HONESTLY AND OPENLY ABOUT OUR BROKEN HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
The mission of Authentic Medicine is to rediscover how much the art of medicine means and allow us to reconnect to our roots once again. It is about fighting back against those things that are taking us away from the direct care of patients while still pointing out the lunacy and hypocrisy of this job. Be part of the movement that will take back the healthcare system from the idiots who are ruining it.
Why we are moving to an era of Industrialized Medicine
The Quality Movement and why it is a scam
The ever expanding Medical Axis of Evil
Medical Dogma and the Alphabet Soup (JC, HIPAA,etc)
Bureaucratic Drag and the distractions from treating patients
Burnout and depression amongst healthcare professionals
Humor in caring for the patient and the caretaker
Reason Foundation: http://reason.com/about:
Reason and Reason Online are editorially independent
publications of the Reason Foundation, a national, non-profit research and
Reason is the monthly print magazine of "free minds and free markets." It covers politics, culture, and ideas through a provocative mix of news, analysis, commentary, and reviews. Reason provides a refreshing alternative to right-wing and left-wing opinion magazines by making a principled case for liberty and individual choice in all areas of human activity.
Reason Online is updated daily with articles and columns on current development in politics and culture. . It also contains the full text of past issues of the print edition of Reason. Reason Online is entirely free.
· Entrepreneur-Country. Julie Meyer, CEO of Ariadne Capital, (Sorry about the nepotism, but her message is important) recently launched Entrepreneur Country. Read their manifesto for information: 3. The bigger the State grows, the weaker the people become - big government creates dependency . . . 5. No real, sustainable wealth creation through entrepreneurship ever owed its success to government . . . 11. The triple play of the internet, entrepreneurship, and individual capitalism is an unstoppable force around the world, and that Individual Capitalism is the force that will shape the 21st Century . . . Read the entire manifest . . .
· Americans for Tax Reform, www.atr.org/, Grover Norquist, President, keeps us apprised of the Cost of Government Day® Report, Calendar Year 2008. Cost of Government Day (COGD) is the date of the calendar year on which the average American worker has earned enough gross income to pay off his or her share of spending and regulatory burdens imposed by government on the federal, state and local levels. Cost of Government Day for 2008 was July 16th, a four-day increase above last year's revised date of July 10th. With July 16th as the COGD, working people must toil on average 197 days out of the year just to meet all the costs imposed by government. In other words, the cost of government consumes 53.9 percent of national income. If we were to put health care into the public trough, the additional 18 percent would allow the government to control 70 percent or nearly three-fourths of our productivity and destroy our health care in the process. We would have almost no discretionary income.
· National Taxpayer's Union, www.ntu.org/main/, Duane Parde, President, keeps us apprised of all the taxation challenges our elected officials are trying to foist on us throughout the United States. To find the organization in your state that's trying to keep sanity in our taxation system, click on your state at www.ntu.org/main/groups.php. August 13 you can working for yourself. It takes nearly 8 months of hard work for every American to pay for the cost of government.
· Evolving Excellence—Lean Enterprise Leadership. Kevin Meyer, CEO of Superfactory, has a newsletter which impacts health care in many aspects. Join his evolving excellence blog . . . Excellence is every physician’s middle name and thus a natural affiliation for all of us. This month read his The Customer is the Boss at FAVI “I came in the day after I became CEO, and gathered the people. I told them tomorrow when you come to work, you do not work for me or for a boss. You work for your customer. I don’t pay you. They do. . . . You do what is needed for the customer.” And with that single stroke, he eliminated the central control: personnel, product development, purchasing…all gone. Looks like something we should import into our hospitals. I believe every RN, given the opportunity, could manage her ward of patients or customers in similar lean and efficient fashion.
· FIRM: Freedom and Individual Rights in Medicine, www.westandfirm.org, Lin Zinser, JD, Founder, researches and studies the work of scholars and policy experts in the areas of health care, law, philosophy, and economics to inform and to foster public debate on the causes and potential solutions of rising costs of health care and health insurance .
· Ayn Rand, a Philosophy for Living on Earth, www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer, is a veritable storehouse of common sense economics to help us live on earth. To review the current series of Op-Ed articles, some of which you and I may disagree on, go to www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer?pagename=media_opeds
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Be sure to also subscribe to our Medical Practice Newsletter: MedicalTuesday . . .
In The Oct 2011 Issue: (No intervening issues)
We must remember that Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, the father of socialized medicine in Germany, recognized in 1861 that a government gained loyalty by making its citizens dependent on the state by social insurance. Thus socialized medicine, or any single payer initiative, was born for the benefit of the state and of a contemptuous disregard for people’s welfare.
Thus we must also remember that ObamaCare has nothing to do with appropriate healthcare; it was projected to gain loyalty by making citizens depended on the government and eliminating their choice and chance in improving their welfare or healthcare