Our pet lizard’s name (Lucky) became ironic the second she died.
We got this particular female anole from the pet store about three weeks ago. Where, by the way, she lived under 24/7 professional care in a double-lit temperature controlled tank with a mister set on a timer and about fifteen of her best sister-friends to play with.
Now THAT actually sounds (Lucky).
But my family put a quick end to that lifestyle. We yanked her from her ideal existence because my daughter wanted the lizard she found in the backyard to have an identical little friend. And for only eight bucks, we bought her one, outright. We basically forced this happy pet store lizard to move, downgraded her tank, took away her friends and caretaker, then gave her a name (Lucky) that was a giant slap to her tiny green face.
Now three weeks later, sadly, she’s dead.
When I saw this morning that DJT is attempting to end the cost-sharing subsidies that make my current healthcare affordable (read: possible), my first thought was great, I’m getting moved from the pet store tank to a questionable one. And the guy doing it is telling me I’m better off this way (Lucky) because the current way isn’t working.
Except for me and millions like me it is.
When you’re a 1099 worker (an independent contractor) like I am, there’s simply no company health insurance. It’s up to me to make it happen, and with Obamacare I could. Before that, I would have needed to use half my month’s paycheck to afford the most basic coverage offered (read: extremely limited), and I felt that that money was better spent on food and rent and clothing.
Then in 2010, Obama said: Mike, that’s unacceptable.
Granted, the ACA (Obamacare) is imperfect, but for the first time as a working man it allows me to afford healthcare instead of living without it. To Co-Pay instead of Self-Pay. To make appointments instead of emergency room visits. To get medicine instead of ‘toughing it out’. To schedule check-ups instead of ignoring my long term health.
It was a start.
In my mind, Obamacare was always the first step towards a solution, not the solution itself. I’m a supporter of Bernie Sander’s assertion that, “Health care must be recognized as a right, not a privilege. Every man, woman, and child in our country should be able to access the health care they need regardless of their income. The only long-term solution to America’s health care crisis is a single-payer national health care program.”
Everyone in this country has a right to be in the pet-store tank.
Most who are against this argument usually counter with, “Who’s going to pay for this?” and never, “You’re right, this is America, and the best country in the world should have the most healthy citizens.”
Funny how money’s never an issue for them with guns and bombs and wars. Hmm.
Our basic healthcare system, the one DJT and anyone making a profit off it believes in, was set up over a hundred years ago. And it’s basically a business model, not a healthcare solution, designed to maximize profits instead of health services. And frankly, it has had a hundred years to prove itself and it has failed.
So who in the world HAS succeeded in this? According to the Legatum Institute, a London based research institute (Link to January 2017 article) the sixteen countries with the world’s best healthcare systems are:
Luxembourg, Singapore, Switzerland, Japan, Netherlands, Sweden, Hong Kong, Australia, Israel, Germany, Belgium, New Zealand, Norway, France, Katar, Canada.
Notice that America is not even on the list. And grab any ‘best healthcare’ list like this – you won’t see the U.S. anywhere near the top twenty.
And somehow we’re okay with this?
Funny how we wouldn’t be if this were a list of countries with the best guns or bombs or wars. Hmm.
I’m certainly not smart enough to solve the problem, no one person is. I do know that as soon as we prioritize the protection of our citizen’s health the same way we do the protection of our military borders, some group of geniuses will figure out how to turn our questionable tank into a pet-store tank that we American lizards can feel pride towards.
Hopefully by then I’m still alive (Lucky) enough to enjoy it.
- Mike Lukas
PLEASE click below \/ to SHARE on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, & WordPress!