Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Mmmm Koolaid

Today my copy of Snow Leopard showed up in the mail! Shiny! New! Operating system!

But back to what everyone likes to read about: CANCER!!!

Last Tuesday I was in a FOUL mood because for the first time in many moons I was kept waiting unnecessarily (for a fucking hour and a half) for oncological med professionals with no respect for patient schedules ("oh... I guess we didn't really need to see you... nope, nothing really to talk about... sorry about the wait!") As it stands Alta Bates is getting a big fat FAIL from Jessie. There's no way in hell I'm going doctor shopping at the moment because I don't have time. And I don't have time to get treatment anywhere but RIGHT next to campus (Alta Bates' only plus thus far) so I'm gonna make due for the next 6 months, but dammit, I'm going to be a bitch about it. If I were to detect something actually wrong, I'll just head back up to Swedish and Dr K.

You probably also want to hear my wisdom on Healthcare Reform on the eve of Obama's speech? Of course! Thanks, Facebook for the inspirational quote!

"No one should die because they can't afford health insurance, no one should go broke because they get sick."

Just to be clear: I'm in favor of a single payer, public option. I want to pay for health insurance, but no one will sell it to me. My personal drama is summarized here, but in re reading that post, what I thought was more interesting was not that I'm in deep shit if things don't change (ubiquitous) but the more interesting question of what it means to deny people care/treatment and the will of the patient to fight.

The will to live. On one hand, it's like, "duh, " but on the other hand, I'm continuously humbled by my instinct to do whatever it took to save my life. Not that it was a particularly impressive action--it's more that when my well being was threatened in such a way (cancer) I did things to save myself that strayed from my general principles about The Way the World Should Work. And let's be Real, I wasn't even that threatened!

Philosophically, I am not a fan of intervention. I mean, antibiotics, sure, but I have kind of deep rooted, ass hole-y, Darwin-y, cave man-y instinct that says "when your number's up, it's up." Despite that feeling, when I got sick I was like "Drugs. Now." and I was thrilled to stick it to my insurance company. Finally! Those ass holes paid out about $500K last year. And they gave it to good things like my doctor and my hospital and more evil things like the pharma companies and all those other capitalist pigs who get rich on people suffering...

So anyway, in one of my classes we were talking about how if we give everyone access to the kind of research and treatment that comes with Good Insurance it really is going to be freaking expensive, but you just can't tell people that they can't have something that could save them. People will do outrageous things for themselves and people they love to save them. It's amazing.

Assuming that what we're trying to do is the MOST good for the MOST people, do we spend a shit ton on healthcare and lower spending in other areas? Do we raise everyone's taxes? Do we raise some peoples' taxes? Does the government nationalize the pharma industry? Dude, someone has to pay for this.

When I really think about that Facebook statement what it's saying is that people shouldn't have to bear the costs of their own healthcare which is kind of ridiculous. I mean, we've developed really expensive technology and while there are a bunch of people getting outrageously wealthy because of it even if we were to confiscate their bajillions, Healthcare would STILL be expensive. So someone still has to pay... and if it's not the patients it's... someone else? Other, non-sick people? Which brings me to the part that seems to make everyone really uncomfortable about all angles of this: it's not Fair.

It's Not Fair how some people get sick and some people are healthy and some people treat their bodies like crap and We have to pay for it and some people are soooo healthy and they get some tragic chronic illness and bottom line, it's Not Fair.

So without thinking too hard about who should pay for healthcare and how much they should pay and how much people should REALLY be charging, I think the first thing people need to let go of (on either side) is that life is Fair or that somehow things should be Fair.

Sick people need to get over the fact that it's Not Fair that they got sick and will have to bear not just financial pains, but fucking huge life disruptions, ignorance, inconvenience, TRAGEDY etc. It's also not fair that some people are born in abject poverty in war torn countries. There are 8 year old prostitutes! Horrible things happen to wonderful people every day. And it SUCKS.

But moreover, not sick/rich/insured/conservative ass hole republican people need to get over that it's Not Fair that they're being asked to contribute to a system that will make everyone better off. It's not really fair that they're rich, insured, or healthy. Most of them have done little in their lives to deserve their situation relative to their inherited privilege (genes, family situation, country of birth, childhood health habits, exposure to toxins) so screw them and their entitled belief in "fairness."

I realize this is not the most air tight, coherent, or even logical thing I've ever written but I really need to work on my micro econ homework.


Nathalie said...

I wish when people say Republican, the word asshole doesn't automatically follow it. I am a Republican, but I love my family, help my friends, donate to good causes, pay my taxes, and am generally not an asshole. Except on that day of the month; don't cross me! I love the lively debate I can have with my many democratic friends, but we respect each other. I don't call them dickheads, assholes, or anything else. I've been following your blog for over a year, I applaud your perseverence and how you've grown during your journey, but open your mind already!!

fafryn said...

wooohoooo! yeah jessie ogelthoperheymeerman! you said it. i asked this uber cranky nurse i work with the other day if she had seen obama's health care speech in congress and she said, "i don't like obama. i mean, i think people should all get health care, but we shouldn't have increased taxes.". jesus christ lady, you don't get something for nothing. but i just kept my piehole shut and decided to vent on your blog comment area.