Thursday, September 24, 2009

Let Us Eat Cake

Two articles among the very many on health care happened to catch my attention.

Dr. David Gratzer, a frequent and outspoken critic of Obama's plan to socialize our health care system, always offers a perspective that makes a lot of sense to me except for
this article in which he berates us for eating too much junk food, smoking too much, fueling a diabetes epidemic, being obese and generally acting like fools when it comes to our health. Now even the good Dr. Gratzer has stooped to lecturing and finger-wagging!

Dr. Gratzer enjoins us to promote the sort of health insurance reform that the Safeway supermarket chain has initiated where healthy choices are rewarded. Not really a bad idea, but why the need to denigrate Americans and their health habits. You will most likely remember the hubbub over Whole Foods CEO John Mackey's article on health care. If you'd like, you can read his

original and unexpurgated version direct from his blog. But, even he proffers advice on how we should all be eating.

In a different vein,
'The Pharmaceutical Umbrella,' explains how good health care around the world depends on American innovation and research in the pharmaceutical field. Two quotes should give an idea of the theme:
One reason for America’s drug dominance (though far from the only one) is America’s unsocialized medicine. Here, with the exception of a few programs like Medicaid and the VA system, the government doesn’t regulate the price of drugs, so when a company invents something big—the latest miracle cancer drug, say—it strikes it rich, making its executives hunger for more. Take away the profit motive, as government-run medicine often does by forcing drug companies to sell at discounted prices, and innovation will dry up.
But the lesson here isn’t that America should be stingy about subsidizing French health care. If American consumers and drug companies play a disproportionate role in protecting the world from dangerous microbes—just as America did in protecting it from Soviet missiles—we should be proud. (It would be too much to hope that this good deed will go unpunished among European elites.) No, the lesson is to be skeptical of reports speaking glowingly of socialized health-care systems, because those systems wouldn’t work nearly as well as they do without unsocialized American medicine.
In short, a 'nay' to Obamacare (and a request to leave us all alone to eat what we want).

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