In general, the perspective most Germans thought of Obama’s plans to change the US health system was rather positive, as far as I saw. Maybe thats because we have a health-care reform which made the situation a lot worse for many people, which went – roughly speaking – in the other direction to what I expect Obama’s reform to achieve.
I can remember a speech of Obama where he was asking the audience who knows a person who couldnt afford proper medication, and almost all people lifted their hands. At least to me, this was a sufficient argument for a reform of health-care, which gives anybody the opportunity of proper medication without having to think about the costs.
However, there seem to be many citizens of the USA who dont think so. One of them runs the Blog Classicaly Liberal.
Normally, the articles on this blog are interesting and mostly I can agree with the things stated there, or at least not disagree, at least as far as I understand the situation of the USA from here. But the last one seems a bit … strange.
Quote: “I called one of my readers here, who is in Mexico, and he arranged a dental visit for me. The next day I flew down. I was in to see the dentist that afternoon. He did all the analysis on the spot and began the root canal. It would take 24 hours for the crown to be prepared so I had to come back the next day to finish up. And he was happy to prescribe a good pain killer which allowed me to eat for the first time in days.“
This reminds me of something. In Germany, dental protheses are not payed by the public health insurances anymore. Since then, more people are walking around with tooth gaps (I know at least 2 persons who cant afford dental protheses). So some people just go away to other countries and have their protheses made there cheaper – and then run into problems and have to pay the full cost of aftercare – in Germany.
Glasses are also not payed anymore – even I pay at least 100€ for new glasses – and the only special thing about my glasses is that they have to be coated since I get headaches from wearing non-coated glasses (which is a common problem, and which is why most opticians recommend coated glasses). Some people pay more than 300€, and some people need new glasses every year (already this is stupid, since in many cases, a laser surgery would be the better choice, but is even more expensive, especially for a single person). Add this to tuition fees and other side-costs of being a university student. In fact, glasses are expensive, but they are simply something people need, regardless to their financial circumstances, and something they should be given.
In my opinion, health-care is a right, and therefore must be given to everyone. Capitalism may be a good system to get things more efficient. But in the end, this means nothing else than outsorcing costs to the things that dont defend themselves – and I dont want to have this in health-care.
I dont really understand the huge fear of socialism the americans have. Having a capitalist system is good for luxury goods, and can lead to innovation, but can also block innovation – same for socialism. One has to find the proper ballance.
For example, the agricultural subsidies in europe which sort of produce a planned economy have brought us a lot of welfare, but nowadays, they are simply outdated and blocking innovation. So quite a lot of people (including me) consider abrogating these – I dont believe that they are a good way of producing food nowadays. So well, here a bit of capitalism could be a good thing. While telecommunications, health-care and the system of educations suffer from capitalism and should be put back into the people’s power.