Spending on Healthcare

Regarding healthcare, another argument that I find bizarre is “other developed nations spend a lot less on healthcare and get better results.” This statement doesn’t even attempt to take into account the differences in lifestyle that have an enormous impact on health.

How much physical activity do people in those countries get? How much time do they spend in their cars? What do they eat? What are the portion sizes? How high do they turn up the thermostat in winter? I just saw a photo of a thermostat in a Norwegian family’s home. It’s at 15°C. That’s 59°F. In Norway. In January. My thermostat is at 71°C, even though I know that I should go way down for health reasons.

If you want to have the unhealthiest lifestyle known to humanity and live as long or almost as long as people who have a much healthier diet and habits, then of course you will pay a lot more for healthcare.


The Why

So I’m sure everyone has heard about The Why. It’s a project where you look at the hidden motivations of what you do in life.

As an example, let’s take my research interests. I found it hard to grow up and become an adult for reasons that are of interest to no one but my analyst. So I wrote a doctoral dissertation on female Bildungsroman and its fixation on female resistance to growth. And then I grew up and loved it. I’m doing middle-aged adulthood a lot better than I did youth or early adulthood. So I lost all interest in the Bildungsroman genre.

Then the Recession came. My husband lost his job and immigration status. So I became interested in literature of the crisis. Then we figured out that situation, and I’m no longer interested in literature of the crisis.

Now I’m interested in the collapse of popular liberation movements and their transformation by forces of neoliberalism because, in a very tiny way, my worldview followed a similar trajectory.

It works in sciences, too. N is extremely preoccupied by the randomness of existence. So he’s a statistician who builds statistical models that try to bring order to chaos.

It’s just something that’s very interesting to think about.

What’s your why?

Kamala and Medicare

So folks, here is a question. Let’s say Kamala Harris (or whoever, it doesn’t matter) manages to do the Medicare for all / no private insurance system thing. Where do you think the very rich Kamala will get her medical care? Within the Medicare system or with a bunch of expensive private doctors her rich husband can hire by the boatload?

What I anticipate is that I’ll be stuck paying more taxes and getting crappier care (like in Canada) while the rich lady Kamala won’t experience any negative consequences of this. I mean we’ve all seen her. Can anybody honestly imagine her sitting in line for 6 hours at a state hospital (like I did in Canada) or being told by a state doctor that he doesn’t have time to look at her test results (like my sister was in Canada)?

It’s Just Small Talk

What I really hate is those people who react to my comment that it’s -10°F here with pursed lips and an aggressively delivered, “This is all global warming!” I have never denied global warming and am in no need of an angry lecture about it. I’m just making small talk about the weather, thank you.

Not everything is an excuse for showing off your progressive credentials.