Archive for the 'politics' Category

Published by Brian Slezak on 11 Nov 2008

Morality FAIL – Health Care

cross 1Is the over-inflated cost of health care in the United States an instance of capitalism gone bad?
Is it the role our government to intercede when anything goes bad?

These were a couple of questions that went through my mind the other night as I was doing a poor job at falling asleep. I think I ended up generating more questions than opinions. 🙂

There is money to be made off the sick. Doctors are highly paid, and hospitals have boards and stake holders that receive compensation in non-profit and for-profit organizations. When the actions of a non-profit hospital become about maximization of surplus, (non-profit lingo for ‘profit’,) and inflated reimbursement to executives rather than providing health care for the community, I think they put their 501(c)(3) status in jeopardy. The government collects taxes, and if your organization’s purpose is to provide charitable services, they can waive those taxes.

The previous paragraph aside, and assuming everyone agrees that all people deserve access to medical care, how do you build a system that allows equal access to that care regardless of a persons station in life? Some may measure equality by the cost of the service. I think we should measure equality by the access to the service. On the surface, it doesn’t seem fair that someone with great wealth should pay more for health care than someone with little wealth. I can see how someone would look at that and say, “That’s clearly not fair,” and I suppose they would be right. It is not equitable in value, but it is honorable. I think it is a morality failure for those with more to not help those with less. It is a morality failure to abuse health care for personal gain rather than using it to care for humanity.

We need more incorrupt people managing health care rather than more legislation attempting to regulate moral behavior. Maybe the former is just a pipe dream?

Published by Brian Slezak on 05 Nov 2008

A Feeling of Pride

Last night I sat up quite late to watch the numbers come in, listened to both speeches, and watched responses on twitter. People were emotional at Obama’s speech; many admitted to tears. I watched it and was simply satisfied without much emotion at all. I wondered last night if I just wasn’t getting what was happening? I wasn’t emotional. I did get one chill, but that was it. I understood the significance of it all, but I must have been tired.

This morning driving in to work the radio announced, “Last night Barak Obama made history and became the first black person to be elected US president.” I immediately got teary eyed, and chills swept over me. :p Today is a new and unique day. Regardless of Obama’s performance over the next four years, I am very proud of my country today. I never thought this day would come so early in my lifetime.

Published by Brian Slezak on 05 Oct 2008

Emergency Economic Stabalization Act of 2008

Well, yesterday the bill poorly, or aptly, dubbed the “bailout bill” was passed and signed into law. You can read the bill in the The Library of Congress. For me, it will be remembed as the bill that got me interested in the legislative process, perhaps for the first time. Throughout the week of Sept 28, 2008, I’ve spent numerous hours on THOMAS browsing bills and reading about what congress was trying to pass with the “bailout bill.”

The hours of research and reading were actually prompted by Scoble’s post, Economic Idiocy, in which he states:

In the past 18 hours I’ve read literally thousands of posts and have done almost nothing but hang out on FriendFeed. I’ve seen a LOT of idiocy.

I have been interested in the recent ecomomic and legislative turmoil for a while but had not researched it. Some of my co-workers started engaging me in conversation, and all I had was unknowledgable opinion on it. Upon reading Scoble’s post, I just got tired of myself and started researching reliable resources. I re-learned a lot on the legislative process itself, having first learned this back in high school when I could have cared less.

I am not going to post all my thoughts about the emergency economic stabalization act of 2008, but only to say after hours of reading, thought, and discussion amoungst friends, I find myself in favor of it … for now. I think the people that cry for justice against these leding institutions should read Devistion A, sections 111 and 302 of the bill. If you are not satisfied there, read bill H.R.7125, initially named Let Wall Street Pay for Wall Street’s Illiquid Assets Act of 2008. Then contact your state house representatvive and senator and tell them they need to support this bill.

Published by Brian Slezak on 11 Feb 2008

Republican Caucuses must be Boring

I was not there, but it appears that the event was utterly boring other than Huckabee and Paul supporters.

I’m sure Clif is just lost in thoughtful prayer and not really sawing logs, right? … Right?