[Originally posted at Corrente]
Surprise! Universal health care really is a matter of life and death.
Single payer, no rickety plans, just do it the Fuck like all the other civilized nations do. Xan nails it in this comment, which ought to be permanently front-paged on every fucking liberal blog in the world forever. Sarah advocates early testing, which in a sane world might make sense, but:
[XAN] I was trying to agree with you. You have "choices" about living longer only if you are worth keeping alive. That means having money, since money = worth.
I have no money. I am not worth keeping alive. Check CD’s post on the story about where the US ranks on rate of death from preventable diseases. Hint: dead last, you should pardon the expression.
Therefore I will not live no matter what stage my (entirely hypothetical) cancer is caught at. Catching it "early" will only make me, or you for that matter, depressed. Why bother?
I am not worth keeping alive, under our system as presently constituted. Anybody who wonders why I support John Edwards as persistently as I do should keep in mind that he is the only fucking candidate who thinks I am worth keeping alive. That kinda means a lot to me.
I feel exactly the same way. I go get tested, and the results are bad. What can I do except go die anyhow? Test or no test, the end result is the same, but if I get the test, I lose happiness, which I do have, but which is all I have. What does the knowledge get me? The time to "settle my affairs"? No thank you.
There's a woman who runs a small store in my town. The store isn't big enough for her to afford health insurance. She has varicose veins, and can't afford treatment. So, when that condition acts up, she walks around with her feet bleeding out.
In America. In the Year of Our Lord 2008.
NOTE As if it ever made sense to voluntarily get your health information into any kind of a record, let alone one that tags you as having a pre-existing condition. Shit, it would make more sense to do whatever it takes to go to jail. Awful though that would be, at least there's a clinic on the inside.
NOTE Oh, and with Xan, I support Edwards. He's the only one who gets it. Fuck "unity" and fuck "experience." How about making sure people don't die when the only medication they need to live is money?