Archive for Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Letter: Health police

December 4, 2012

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To the editor:

Since our state and federal tax dollars — through Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act — will now be used to maintain the national health (and security) of our country, I would urge all of you to become proactive in promoting healthy lifestyles. Write your congressmen and senators. Ask — no, DEMAND — that they sponsor legislation to mandate that when someone buys groceries or gas, they input their Social Security number. In doing so, we can build a database of those who are either purchasing sugars and fats beyond a healthy BMI, or befouling our air with carbon dioxide (a known, and well-documented, killer). 

Furthermore, Facebook should avail itself to the federal government with its facial recognition software. That way, when one citizen sees another citizen exhibiting a behavior that is costly to society, then he can take a picture of the offender with his smart phone and upload it to a national database. By doing this, federal officials could take action to prevent or intervene in some way to stop such anti-social, and costly, behavior.

Comments

Liberty_One 2 years, 6 months ago

Though meant to be sarcastic, this letter describes our future with all too much accuracy....

Jon Jambor 2 years, 6 months ago

It's gonna happen. Deep down, you all know it. I would add that food stores should be made to install weight scales at the payment terminals so that a person's general health can be monitored. If one's weight trend goes up, so does the amount of tax he pays on the purchase.

Liberty275 2 years, 6 months ago

That's too costly. It would be easier for the government to send you an ID card listing the taxes you must pay for every item, with those tax amounts deduced from the medical bill for listed services your/their doctor sends them.

Using special scales will require retrofitting a lot of stores and does not address the other risky behaviors committed by citizens that we must blackmail into stopping with additional taxation.

Ron Holzwarth 2 years, 6 months ago

No, no, no, just a chip such as is now installed in pets can be advanced to do data collection. That would work much better than scales, and besides, then your GPS coordinates could also be monitored by the Powers That Be.

Actually, in some ways, that would not be a bad idea, because among other things, it's not at all impossible that advances could be made so that cancer could be detected when it had no symptoms and the tumor was smaller than the head of a pin. At that point, a complete cure could be expected almost all of the time.

SnakeFist 2 years, 6 months ago

Its ironic that regressives reject allowing sick people to end their own lives, but insist on everyone being able to make themselves as unhealthy as possible and not have health insurance. Its no different than rejecting abortion while defunding education and programs for children and families - i.e., insist on people's right to get into trouble but not their right to get out of it.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 2 years, 6 months ago

It was a very poor attempt at sarcasm (a lot of that going around today,) but was instead an argument of the form reductio ad absurdum.

beatrice 2 years, 6 months ago

Jon, I'm sure you can become as unhealthy as you wish and the government won't stop you. You can be part of a movement, where you identify with other right-leaning out of shape men with poor diets. You can call yourselves "Limbaughs."

Get enough to become Limbaughs, and the Social Security problem might just take care of itself.

Liberty275 2 years, 6 months ago

"Jon, I'm sure you can become as unhealthy as you wish and the government won't stop you. "

Is it unsafe to drive a car without a seatbelt? Is it unsafe to sit next to a smoker in a bar? How about dropping some LSD?

beatrice 2 years, 6 months ago

You are mixing safety with unhealthy. Safety concerns (seatbelts, smoking in public places) have ramifications in greater society through costs for care and, with smoking, harming others with the individual's actions. However, someone can still be unhealthy and smoke in their own home if they so choose.

Drug laws are in place largely due to continued efforts of alcohol lobbying along with lobbying from private, for-profit jails. You won't get an argument from me on that.

Liberty275 2 years, 6 months ago

America has been a nanny state for decades, it's nice of you to finally notice.

Alyosha 2 years, 6 months ago

Certainly you mean centuries, not decades. The first insurance mandate was passed by Congress and signed by President Washington in 1792. http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/United_States_Statutes_at_Large/Volume_1/2nd_Congress/1st_Session/Chapter_33

Centerville 2 years, 6 months ago

Funny, and illustrates the uncomfortable fact of fascism: when government pays, the people in charge of government can control.

Centerville 2 years, 6 months ago

And the responses illustrate the uncomfortable fact of policitcal cowardice: people are mad at Jon Jambor because he implies that he will eat what he damn well pleases. And Lawrence used to think of itself as a "Truth to Power" sort of place.

Liberty275 2 years, 6 months ago

"Truth to Power"

Sounds more like parrots.

SnakeFist 2 years, 6 months ago

And conservatives used to think they were the party of personal responsibility. These days, they just want the right to do dumb things - destroy themselves, destroy their neighbors, and destroy the environment. The fact that conservatives are fighting for the right to not have health insurance (which would be irresponsible) shows they gave up on personal responsibility a long time ago.

Capitalism provides freedom to succeed (and fail), communism provide freedom from failure (and success), and conservatism provides freedom to do dumb things. And you wonder why conservatism only appeals to dumb people.

beatrice 2 years, 6 months ago

Incorrect Centerville. People are not upset at Jon for suggesting he won't live a healthy lifestyle. Instead, people are calling him on his b.s., because he is still allowed to be as unhealthy as he wishes. He is basing his argument on a strawman that does not exist. With national healthcare, nobody is making anyone take better care of themselves, although we have wised up enough to not allow others to make bad health choices that harm others (Jon, or anyone, can't smoke in a bar now because doing so harms more than Jon, for example). However, Jon is allowed to make those choices for himself in his own home.

bearded_gnome 2 years, 6 months ago

the generation and their offspring who marched against the vietnam war, burned their draft cards, now insists that the government run healthcare.

having the government run healthcare means that the government essentially owns your body.

a short draft in the military looks pretty good compared to lifetime under obamacare, a far shortened lifetime.

having the government thus deciding how long you shall live. the Independent Advisory Board does exist under obamacare, despite the lies of the left, and they are unelected and unaccountable and do not have to be doctors.

already you cannot by a soda larger than 16-ounce in new york, and they're trying to regulate babies' formula in a similar way. they've focused on fats, and salt.

you cannot have the freedom to eat goose liver in california (pardon my french patte de fau grau).

yet california taxpayers have been paying for aroma therapy for maximum security prisoners.

obamacare supposedly makes healthcare more affordable by taxing and hiking up the pices of medical devices. that means wheelchairs, iron lungs, tungue depressors, and thousands of other things.
it's coming? really? much of it is already here.

funkdog1 2 years, 6 months ago

"having the government run healthcare means that the government essentially owns your body."

Really? Is that true in all of Europe? Canada? Australia? All of those governments own those peoples' bodies? Those governments tell people what they can and can't eat? Or what they can and can't smoke? Don't think so. Are they clamoring to get out of their countries and come here? Not so much anymore. You regressives are laughable. We're the only so-called modern first-world nation that doesn't have a national healthcare system. Why don't you try visiting other places?

Katara 2 years, 6 months ago

There are no death panels.

Bloomberg is a Republican.

The ban on goose liver is due to the inhumane treatment of the animals. It has nothing to do with the healthiness or unhealthiness of foie gras.

The only claims to aromatherapy in California prisons are a Fox News video and some rightwing blogs. Personally, if aromatherapy helps keep the prisoners in a maximum security prison calmer and helps reduce violence on guards and other inmates, it is a good thing and saves taxpayers money from injuries.

Iron lungs? Really? If you have a doctor that thinks you should be in an iron lung, your worry is not about the cost of the medical device but about the incompetency of your doctor.

Tongue depressors are not considered medical devices.

Please stop posting nonsense and misinformation. It makes you look like a nutjob.

Betty Bartholomew 2 years, 6 months ago

"...purchasing sugars and fats beyond a healthy BMI..."

Because skinny people never purchase mass quantities of junk food... Though how one would know somebody's BMI based solely on their purchases I do not know since it's not measured in cups of sugar or grams of fat.

beatrice 2 years, 6 months ago

No, but as this letter demonstrates, umbrage is measured in hyperbole.

somedude20 2 years, 6 months ago

Oh Jon Bon Jambor....

This should go well with your "Bad Medicine"

Jon Jambor 2 years, 6 months ago

It's Jonathan Jean. I'm not sure I get the joke... but I am not plugged into the popular culture. Sorry.

Jon Jambor 2 years, 6 months ago

This was not satire! I honestly believe we can use technology and data acquisition to make our health care system the best, most cost efficient system in the world. Sorry, I'm not very technologically savvy, but there has to be a way to make sure people are guided to make healthy decisions.

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