Monday, July 02, 2007

Because Everyone Else In The Blogosphere Is Doing It

Sigh. I really even hate to bring up the subject of Michael Moore, because, yuck. But I really enjoyed this article by Kurt Loder of MTV. I've always liked Loder, who seems genuinely disgusted at the one-sidedness of the film. An excerpt from the article offers a look at the other side of the universal healthcare coverage argument with examples from a country already so shackled--Canada:

That last statement is even truer than you'd know from watching "Sicko." In the case of Canada — which Moore, like many other political activists, holds up as a utopian ideal of benevolent health-care regulation — a very different picture is conveyed by a short 2005 documentary called "Dead Meat," by Stuart Browning and Blaine Greenberg. These two filmmakers talked to a number of Canadians of a kind that Moore's movie would have you believe don't exist:

A 52-year-old woman in Calgary recalls being in severe need of joint-replacement surgery after the cartilage in her knee wore out. She was put on a wait list and wound up waiting 16 months for the surgery. Her pain was so excruciating, she says, that she was prescribed large doses of Oxycontin, and soon became addicted. After finally getting her operation, she was put on another wait list — this time for drug rehab.

A man tells about his mother waiting two years for life-saving cancer surgery — and then twice having her surgical appointments canceled. She was still waiting when she died.

A man in critical need of neck surgery plays a voicemail message from a doctor he'd contacted: "As of today," she says, "it's a two-year wait-list to see me for an initial consultation." Later, when the man and his wife both needed hip-replacement surgery and grew exasperated after spending two years on a waiting list, they finally mortgaged their home and flew to Belgium to have the operations done there, with no more waiting.

Rick Baker, the owner of a Toronto company called Timely Medical Alternatives, specializes in transporting Canadians who don't want to wait for medical care to Buffalo, New York, two hours away, where they won't have to. Baker's business is apparently thriving.

Medical care, like food, shelter, or clothing, is a human need. It is NOT a right. Big difference. Others have said it more eloquently than I, so I happily refer you to this one and that one.


Darren said...

I don't know much about Kurt Loder, but I have seen a bit of MTV. I'm really surprised to read an article that critical of socialized medicine and Michael Moore on that site!

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