Political and Social Issues in
Healthcare, Bailouts and Becoming an American
The current economic crisis in America and around the world has been in all the prophesies from the
Mayans, Nostradamus and the Bible, but do we have to accept our presumed fate, or can we become
the creators of the solution?
The prophesies point to a calendar time that coincides with our present year and depicts the years
2009 through 2012 as being times of major transformation. If we haven’t listened and learned from
our mistakes; If we have moved away from God and toward greed, war, and hatred, then we can
expect major catastrophes and probably a nuclear holocaust. As 2008 and a presidency winds down, we
are seeing the initial smoke to this inevitable firestorm. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
America has been the land of the free and the home of the brave. We fought a revolution to free
ourselves from a king’s bondage and mustered our strength to help friendly nations defeat
pathological aggressors. We were, at one time, the champions of Liberty with the greatest economy
and the highest hopes of achieving what many called the American Dream. That was before the failed
conflict of Korea, and the larger failed conflict of Viet Nam.
World War II put Americans to work making airplanes. At the end of World War II, we greeted our
heroes, rebuilt our families, painted our houses and woodwork white, got the newest Chevy, bought a
television, and went back to work for corporate America. Our healthcare was taken care of by our
employers, our pension plans formed with an assumption that a government plan, Social Security,
would take care of us in our retirement, and our kids could go to college, learn how to pay back
student loans, and become upwardly mobile in a career. We were strong and powerful, the greatest
country in the world. We went to church. And we thanked God.
When North and South Korea began their war, benevolent America, who had sold planes and artillery
to the Chinese, went to help South Korea fight China and the North. It was a fight against
Communism. It was a conflict between socializing a country to dependence, and freeing a people to
strive for excellence. No one won. A line was drawn and the conflict continued. America began to
change. Those in power found ways to capitalize on conflict, making money, brokering deals, and
maintaining a façade of high ideals and Western culture. The American people lost touch with politics
and immersed themselves in I love Lucy and the Honeymooners.
Viet Nam was also a conflict between North and South, freedom and Communism. America sent
advisors to both sides, and then sent sons and daughters to fight. Those who stayed behind rioted in
our streets and grassroots movements were formed from the chaos; The women’s movement, the
Black movement, the Gay movement, and the Anti-war movement were all symbols of our internal
struggle for identity and personal freedom. When our heroes came home, we spat on them and called
them names. We painted our houses colors once seen in an LSD dream, traded television for heavy
metal, and tried to lose ourselves in a marijuana cloud of detachment. Many stopped going to church.
Many stopped tanking God.
The Women’s movement became a struggle for equal pay, the Black movement a struggle for slave
reparations, the Gay movement a struggle between the working and middle class, and the Anti-war
movement a consistent belief. Corporate America stopped paying for all healthcare and offered co-pay
plans. Pensions became less lucrative and transformed to individual retirement accounts to boost
Wall Street and provide a false sense of security. Those in power, once again, capitalized on the
dichotomy in America and abroad by brokering deals and aiding the pharmaceutical and oil companies
so they could make more money. Americans, after all, were getting sick more often, driving more
miles to find work, heating larger homes, and losing more of their paychecks to the government.
Television and radio became propaganda machines for anything and everything considered decadent,
and American dealmakers began importing more products to feed the masses while discovering they
could make more money by exporting jobs to other countries. Over the counter drugs manufactured
here and abroad began filling the grocery shelves as Americans suffered from stress, headaches,
backaches and the Asian flu. Health care costs began a steady climb as technology became the main
instrument of diagnosis and treatment.
Oil and drug companies were producing at record rates, and dumping their leftovers into lakes,
streams and buried fields. Nuclear energy was more developed, and the waste from new plants was
buried beneath new housing projects and schools. Americans were getting sicker and their children
were dying. Those in power capitalized on this trend once again by allowing drug lobbyists in
Washington to dictate policy. Congressmen and women followed the lobbyists, and then left to work
for the corporations and to garner extraordinary paychecks. Senators and congressmen made sure
they had special health care plans, affordable and inclusive, while the average American struggled to
put food on the table after paying medical bills. The water used for bathing and drinking was now
filled with more than seven hundred different chemicals, most of them toxic and carcinogenic, and
Americans were getting sicker.
By 1979, brokered deals, weapons, and secrets had been shared with enough countries to allow
fanatics to begin a different kind of war against Christian and powerful America. And by 2001, these
same fanatics found a way to use American airplanes, the technology of a forgotten war, to begin the
final destruction of a God-chosen superpower. The USA was ready to fight back, to once again take on
evil for their country, and many heeded the call. But fear and distrust, a media machine bent on anti-
American messages for personal gain, and corporate greed that reached into every pocket, became a
dominant theme. Anti-depressants were the new drug, television sex the new past time, and music
filled with hate the constant hypnotic.
America is undergoing a dramatic shift in healthcare. The cost of going to a regular MD or hospital is
getting more and more expensive. Greed is not the only reason for these expenses. Medical
malpractice lawsuits, medical insurance for risky procedures, pharmaceutical drug reactions, deaths
with accompanying lawsuits, and expensive diagnostic equipment, are all escalating the cost of health
care to the consumer.
Health insurance, once a perk offered by small and large businesses and
corporations, is becoming a thing of the past. Large corporations such as General Motors complain
that health insurance for employees cost them more per year than steel does for the cars they make.
American unions drive up the cost of making cars, and American carmakers end up on the brink of
bankruptcy, flying to Washington, D.C. in expensive corporate jets and asking for hand-outs.
Consumers are being forced into providing their own, expensive health insurance, and have not yet
gotten away from the mindset that health insurance should cover everything. Car insurance doesn’t
pay for cigarette burns on the upholstery or spilled chocolate shakes on the floor mats, but
consumers have been used to employers picking up the tab for health insurance and expecting that
insurance to cover every hangnail or headache. Those changes and the increased costs have moved
consumers to seek more preventive care and alternatives to traditional, expensive procedures.
Alternative medicine is often less expensive, equally or more effective, and produces less harmful
side effects, as was evidenced by the flurry of pharmaceutical drugs the last few years that were
finally removed or banned after being prescribed to hundreds of thousands of patients. People's trust
in Western medicine is diminishing, and their relief in finding alternatives is rising.
Major institutions are now doing large numbers of studies on alternative medicines, including herbal
remedies, bodywork, meditation, dietary changes, and many others. Randomized, controlled studies
are available on almost every type of alternative healing practice, and they typically show good
results. High-deductible policies and Health Savings Accounts allow people to have Western medicine
waiting in the wings when they have serious health problems that require expensive drugs, tests, and
surgery. But until then, they are able to use alternative medicine as the best service for prevention
and smaller day-to-day health problems. Alternative medicine provides a “first line of defense,” while
Western medicine provides the expensive, dangerous, but necessary backup. We will always need the
surgeon. It is the physician that we seek.
The internet and World Wide Web have become the main resource for consumers searching for
health answers, but there is a tremendous amount of misinformation about healthcare on the
Internet. Much of it comes from well-meaning entrepreneurs duped into a multi-level marketing
(MLM) scheme who try to pitch some health elixir or treatment.
A second source of health misinformation comes from the Western medical establishment seeking to
discredit alternative medical therapies that could take significant revenues away from their invested
A third source of misinformation comes from the anecdotes of individuals who experienced relief
from one therapy or another, but who do not (and cannot) actually represent a proven cure to a
particular health problem
The reason people are turning to the Internet in such numbers is due to a lack of trust in existing
medical institutions. Doctors are viewed with suspicion. Will my doctor let me die by not revealing an
alternative therapy that could help me? Does my doctor even understand what alternative therapies
are? Is my doctor truly holistic, or is he just saying that to keep me as a patient? Is my doctor getting
kickbacks from the cute, young, female pharmaceutical rep who visits him twice a month? Big
medicine has become big business, and the number one concern is no longer the patient, it's dollars
and cents. But hospitals and doctors are not the only things that Americans distrust.
People in government and in society seem to feel that some brand of socialized medicine will be the
magic solution for America's healthcare problems. Socialized, universal healthcare will not work in
America, and Americans know it. America needs to find a way to insure every single person in this
country, but socialized medicine is not the cure for this illness. Forget the cures. Find the cause.
All of the problems mentioned here are symptoms. The cause of the crisis in health care lies in the
disempowerment of the people and the failure of people to take responsibility for their health.
Alternative and holistic health options have been feared and denied, but doctors will soon have no
choice. Consumers are demanding prevention and alternatives, and western medicine is slowly
integrating these therapies. Health insurance will eventually be a thing of the past as people stay well
or discover alternatives to illnesses. Hospital costs will be forced lower as only surgical emergencies
and back-up therapies will be incorporated. Pharmaceutical companies and their related agencies will
no longer drive Congress to do their will as people realize pills are not the answer.
The changes will be uniquely American, but only if Americans claim their heritage and begin acting
like Americans. We need to remember that we are what make America the land of the free. The
Declaration of Independence was never intended to make us dependent on the government. The free
enterprise system was never intended to keep everyone poor, but equal. We have the freedom to
choose, but are we still the land of the brave? Do we have the courage to truly change what we have
helped to create? Do we need to be reminded that we are one nation, under God?
Becoming an American can stop the crisis, the bail outs, the hope of hand outs. Changing the health
care system can be one of the biggest steps to renewed freedom
My confession by Bill Stein: >
I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little
bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees, Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I
don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are: Christmas trees. It doesn't bother me a bit
when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put
me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this
happy time of year. It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key
intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a crèche, it's just as fine with me as is the
Menorah a few hundred yards away.
> I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed
around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed
around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from that America is an explicitly atheist
country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.
Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities
and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that I'm getting
old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where the
America we knew went to.
In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not
intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.
Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her 'How could
God let something like this happen?' (regarding Katrina) Anne Graham gave an extremely profound
and insightful response. She said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for
years we've been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of
our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God
to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?'
In light of recent events... terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine
Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn't want
prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school. The
Bible says thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said