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12-02-2007 06:17 PM  9 years agoPost 41
bagobitz

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saddleworth,lancs,UK

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Another UK poster here!
The nationalised system STINKS!...As Wlfk, Mattjen and others have posted,the Gov't spends BILLIONS for fat-cat "administrators" to give jobs to their fat-cat cronies......hopeless, red-tape beurocracies,bungling incompetence.....

Back in the day('67-ish ) I worked as a mobile service-engineer,for an American medical -equipment company. I saw at first-hand ,the waste, abuse of equipment, inept and incompetent management....
Had a motor -accident early 70's, (night-time) was left unattended and unconcious.....came -to and, due to previous job,I knew where I was...pushed the bell and puked blood all over the floor ,before the nurse got there. Assessed their level of incompetence and discharged myself 4 days later
Subsequently discovered a split upper-jawbone and a broken nose(which had now ,apparently, healed together.) my second hospitalisation was to get my nose "bored-out" so I could breathe through that nostril again.
After the first time, you'd think they would be up to speed,that I'd seen life from "their" side of the counter.....not likely.....went to theatre without a premed...so I told the techie to shut-up and get on with the pre-op procedures ,at least I was alert enough to make sure the correct bit was done....30 years later, it's STILL got a dangly bit in there
I might attack it with a soldering-iron someday

In the 70's I had similar problems with 2 sons ....by the time the Hospital Secretary had 2 letters of complaint AND my then-partner left Ante-natal clinic after a "-hour wait.....I vowed if I couldn't pay privately, I'd forgo treatment.
Been to Doc's once in 20-odd years and hope it stays that way

JIMCO...SUE THE BA5'tards If their insurance gets hit hard enough, they'll kick hospital's ass to clean their act up.
sounds pretty clear-cut malpractice to me (being charitable,it would be incompetence) The "Doc" didn't have Organ customers waiting, did he?

In any event, he nearly committed manslaughter..your heartache saved your wife...you both deserve recompense for that harrowing ordeal, and the fact that immediate and proper treatment would have had your wife well much sooner. Hit them where they CAN'T ignore their failings!

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12-02-2007 06:38 PM  9 years agoPost 42
wlfk

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uk

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There are too many people running to the doctor for every little thing, basically abusing the system. Why don't have a system to eliminate this? Why can't people pay out of pocket for these minor issues?
One person's minor issue is another person's major panic. First time mothers understandably come in about relatively trivial matters, for example. And as my mother was a nurse (a little knowledge being a dangerous thing) my siblings and I missed going to see the doctor on several occasions when we clearly should have. Education is probably as important a part of healthcare as treatment. In the UK I sometimes think people should be charged for missing appointments though.
Lawsuits, whats the data on this and what is the percentage rate of mistakes. Then break it down into fixable mistakes and irreversible mistakes. I bet the percentage is relatively low considering how many people are treated every day. Would it be out of the question to stop the lawsuits and hold the doctors license at stake if he/she has made to many gross errors. I know some people would get screwed but thats the chance you take just like when you go out on the roads. I would be willing to take those chances if I had the option of affordable treatment.
I don't know the figures, though I'm sure Google does. In the UK they're not huge, but they're growing. And the costs of litigation are significant in comparison with the compensation. There are moves to bring in 'no fault' compensation to sidestep the lawyers and the blame games.
Drugs, before we had these extremely expensive drugs people lived long lives. How did they manage to do that without these drugs? Are they really worth it?
The only medical intervention that has ever made a perceptible increase in life expectancy was the invention of antibiotics. This isn't to say that all other treatments have made no impact, just that in general life-expectancy has more to do with lifestyle and choosing your parents carefully, than it has to do with medical care.

A lot of medicine is about quality of life rather than length of life (and arguably that's how it should be - 'adding life to years, not years to life'. Cardiac bypass operations do not increase life expectancy much, but do allow people to live active lives for several years longer. Another example would be treatments for rheumatoid arthritis. They probably do increase life-expectancy by a few years - but more to the point there are people walking about and cooking dinner, who would otherwise be wheelchair bound.
Last, people die. I know its sounds harsh but at what point to deny treatment. We do it with our pets and we did it before we had these extremely expensive treatments. In other words how much would you be willing to pay out of your own pocket to keep a loved one alive assuming you had the option? Remember, everyone dies someday anyways.
There's no such thing as 'saving' a life - only prolonging one.

K

A bit like a kite, but 500 times more expensive

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12-02-2007 07:15 PM  9 years agoPost 43
jimco

rrApprentice

east texas

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Wildcat: Really glad that your wife is doing better, Damned shame that we have to second guess the care givers, in order find a cure. Sad but true, more and more people are refusing to take the gloom and doom news and live with it. Seen it happen here, just too many times.
Bagobits: I have considered the lawsuit deal, but have a real problem suing the hospital. The doctor, no problem.
Problem is, that once she got Lufkin, you really could not have asked for better care, even though, the first week, I was continually bombarded with, have you considered the option, have you talked to the family, etc. As far as care and treatment, once she opened her eyes, on the Wednesday, following the Sunday admission, things went really well.
All and I mean All of her doctors, were East Indian. Believe me, these folks new their business and took excellent care of her. I have vowed, when I need a Dr. again, my wifes Dr. is the only one that I care to go see. His wife is the one that admitted her. Even though she was declared Brain Dead , in Livingston. She is the one that actually saved her. When she saw that no detox had been administered, she started immediately and had given her 16 treatments by Monday at 4:00 PM.
The EEG was taken on Monday, while she was still comatose, showed excellent brain wave activity, on all lines. Nothing broken or eratic. Well, after pneumonia, 26 days on respirator,26 more days in recovery, gallons of IVs', we finally got her home. Thank goodness. Never want that ballgame again.

Honey, where's the check book, it's Fedex again

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12-02-2007 07:23 PM  9 years agoPost 44
MasterCrasher

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Not sure.

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There's no such thing as 'saving' a life - only prolonging one
Yes, but at what cost? I guess as long as someone else is footing the bill then so be it. Health insurance premiums are proof of that, now that we ran that bill up its time to have the gov pay for it. Once that fails we die and have our quality of life go down significantly.

I know this sounds harsh but why do we all feel entitaled to the best possible care money can buy? Its like everyone everyone deserves to drive a ferrari. Why should a person who doesn't educate them self and doesn't take care of their health deserve the best treatment available when other people sacrifice their time and money for and education and say no to fast food everyday, and exercise on a regular basis?

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12-02-2007 07:30 PM  9 years agoPost 45
MasterCrasher

rrApprentice

Not sure.

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There is without a doubt some lousy doctors out there but you can say the same about any profession or job position. Once again too many people feel entitaled to a large paycheck but put very little effort into their profession.

How many of you go into your job saying to yourself "I'm going to be the best blank I can be"? How many of you spend your own time and money trying to achieve that.

How many of you blame your lack of success on something else?

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12-02-2007 07:37 PM  9 years agoPost 46
wlfk

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uk

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There's no such thing as 'saving' a life - only prolonging one
Yes, but at what cost?
Hey, I wasn't disagreeing.
I know this sounds harsh but why do we all feel entitaled to the best possible care money can buy? Its like everyone everyone deserves to drive a ferrari. Why should a person who doesn't educate them self and doesn't take care of their health deserve the best treatment available when other people sacrifice their time and money for and education and say no to fast food everyday, and exercise on a regular basis?
If I were to decide where my tax ££ went, I would spend less on healthcare and give all schoolkids free and healthy school dinners. A few decades down the line you'd find it was far better value for money too.

I'm a bit wary of dividing people into 'deserving' and 'underserving' though. As an example, I go hang-gliding which I figure is roughly as dangerous as smoking. Most of you probably eat meat - so perhaps you should pay more for your healthcare than smug vegetarians like me (at least those of you that both eat meat and go hang-gliding).

Firstly, the idea seems bureaucratic and open to abuse - how do you prove that someone's a non-smoking vegetarian. Secondly, I don't like the idea of insurance companies, or the government deciding how I should live my life. I don't mind the idea that they should persuade me to live healthily (free school meals; safe routes for kids to walk to school) but I don't like the idea of them having an effective sanction over what I can or can't do.

K

A bit like a kite, but 500 times more expensive

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12-02-2007 07:54 PM  9 years agoPost 47
MasterCrasher

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Not sure.

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I'm a bit wary of dividing people into 'deserving' and 'underserving' though.
I know what your saying and there will never be an agreement on this for the reasons you stated. In your case it wouldn't really matter because you'll just splat and not cost a dime, LOL.

I wonder what the percentage of people are in the hospital or constantly getting treated for issues caused by poor diet, smoking and lack of exercise? I bet its pretty high and the incentive to avoid that lifestyle is not high enough.

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12-02-2007 08:38 PM  9 years agoPost 48
wlfk

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uk

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I'm a medical student and a very high proportion of the consultants I meet are either overweight or smokers, or have something else you could admonish them for. Oh sorry, we were talking about patients...

In all seriousness, if I see a patient under 60 then the chances are pretty high that he or she will be an overweight smoker from a lower socioeconomic group. If I see a patient over 80 the chances are pretty good they'll be middle-class ex-professional who has come in to get their blood pressure checked and ask whether they should be on Aspirin to prevent a stroke.

On the other hand, if you have arthritis (an inherited disease) you're probably more likely to be obese, because exercise is painful.

In some respects this is already reflected in the way the NHS works. If you're a young mum with breast cancer, or a kid with leukaemia, you're likely to get a much better deal than you will if you're a 60 year old smoker with lung cancer.

~~~~~~~~~~

The evidence base for childhood obesity is that it's almost impossible to get kids to regain a healthy weight purely by limiting food intake or playing sport as 'add-ons' - the only thing that works is to live an active life and to avoid really unhealthy foods. Sanctions don't really work.

I assume the same is likely to be true for adults though I don't know what the evidence is. I've tried dieting (I'm not overweight but I don't want to go in that direction) and it's very hard. Likewise, lots of people buy expensive gym memberships, but the majority don't go on a regular basis.

Kids need to be able to walk and cycle places safely. Adults need to drive less and walk or cycle short journeys... It's more about enablement and education than enforcement. A few decades back, people dieted less but were still thinner...

K

A bit like a kite, but 500 times more expensive

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12-02-2007 08:47 PM  9 years agoPost 49
jimco

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east texas

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Ron: This is really ironic, your first link, concerns the same hospital that my wife was in for emergency treatment. Livingston Memorial. Camilla, which is where this guy was from, is less then 10 miles from me,.
http://www.democracynow.org/2007/3/...fuses_treatment
I also had an issue with the Houston VA, back in 1993. I had contracted Guillian Beret Syndrom, which is a killer disease,. Was about 72 hours from checking out, according to my Livingston Doctor. He called the VA, to get me admitted, sorry sport, be 2 weeks fore we can see him. And that was it. No way to get in, even though you are dying.
Well, after a call to my then Congressman, Charles Wilson, Talking with his aide, Payton Walters, who just happened to be from Livingston, I got a call, at home, from the VA Admissions Officer.
Was told to get there now, and be quick about it.
Well, after getting admitted, had some of the best med care you could ask for. All Doctors were Baylor Med Center Interns.
Spent 2 weeks in there, and they actually wanted me to stay for 3 months for therapy, but told em no way. Before they release me, had a conference with 7 doctors, all at the same time. Thought it was kinda strange. I asked em what the deal was with all the questions about what I was doing in Florida at the time, diet, drinking habits, eating habits, etc.
Got told point blank that they were curious as to why I was still alive. Turns out, that I had the worse case, and the longest time before getting treatment, of any case they had seen. Couldn't figure out why I didn't die. Walked into my Doctors office here, bout a year later, for some minor cold or something, can't remember what. He nearly fell over. Thought I was dead. Could not believe that I had recovered and was back to work.
So, guess luck just runs with me, sometimes.

Honey, where's the check book, it's Fedex again

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12-02-2007 08:58 PM  9 years agoPost 50
Dragon2115

rrKey Veteran

New England

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So folks want universal health care run by the politicians huh? Well, why not go to a VA hospital then. But wait, everybody complains that those suck. Well what makes anyone think that another health care system run by the government is going to be any better?

Jimco, glad your wife is ok. But I have to say this. If I lived in a place where I knew that if I had an accident or illness I would be taken to a hospital that I'd be lucky to survive in, I'd move. Seriously, I'd sell my home and find another one somewhere else that had a reputable hospital nearby.

As for the UK, Canadian, and European socialized health care systems... There's a reason why people in those places that can afford it come to the U.S. for treatment while at the same time people in the U.S. that can afford it don't go there.

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12-02-2007 09:31 PM  9 years agoPost 51
jimco

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east texas

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Dragon: Sad fact of life, in most small US towns. If I cared to live in the Sodom and Gomorrah, of Houston, We would be close to good health facilities, but, all over Houston, you have the same problem with the small , regional hospitals. End up with the same poor care as we get here.
As far as trauma centers go, Ben Taub, in Houston, the county hospital, is probably the foremost trauma center in the Southwest.
And you should know the reputation of the major Houston hospitals. Finest in the world.
So, from a move standpoint,. Its a toss up. Quality of life in the community, or good medical care in the jungle of Houston.
Forget Houston.

Honey, where's the check book, it's Fedex again

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12-02-2007 11:43 PM  9 years agoPost 52
Brovic777

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Los Angeles, CA

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Just because other countries might have crappy universal health care, does not mean the United States has to have a crappy one too.

If we all still together we can make our system a good one. We have free public education, why can't we have free public healthcare too but that works good.

Killer Beam E4 450
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12-03-2007 12:02 AM  9 years agoPost 53
jimco

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east texas

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Brovic:As far as federal health care. No way. Any system administered by the Govenment Directly, would crater for sure.
What we need is the current system but with Federal Subsidised Health Insurance. That is the big one for the average American. Just for my wife, a policy , that would not break us with deductibles and limits on care, would be the equivilent of a new home, as far as payments are concerned.
About the minimum, just for her, at age 54 would exceed 600.00 a month. Throw me into it, and more like 8 to 900.00 a month. We are not poor people, but that is out of the question. Can't afford it.
And, you have the downside of the personal health policies.
Back in 87, My wife at the time, and I had a policy that was really fantastic. Right up till we used it. $189.00 a month for about anything that happened. In case of accident, no deductible. In all other cases, 20% deduct.
Wife was in auto accident, broadsided at main intersection in town.
Totaled the Mark 6 she was driving. Disc damage to her neck, etc. Under insured motorist deal. My policy paid for the $27000.00 neck surgery, without deductible. Great policy. Now comes the problem.
As soon as they paid the hospitals and doctors, the rate went to $450.00 a month. Needless to say, priced us right out of the market.
In todays world, that same policy would probably exceed 1000.00 a month, and here again, out of the question,
I would think that if, Saudi, Kuwait, Iran, Dubai, UAE, and all the other major countries around the world can provide health care, Whats wrong with the US, other than greed.

Honey, where's the check book, it's Fedex again

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12-03-2007 12:14 AM  9 years agoPost 54
wlfk

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uk

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As for the UK, Canadian, and European socialized health care systems... There's a reason why people in those places that can afford it come to the U.S. for treatment while at the same time people in the U.S. that can afford it don't go there.
A Google search finds that "The Medical Tourism Survey 2007 reveals that India, Hungary and Turkey are amongst the most popular medical tourism destinations for UK patients."

I don't know who conducted the survey, or whether they might have any ulterior motives, but the fact is that I don't often hear of Brits going to the USA for healthcare. The exception might be experimental or very specialist treatments that are simply not available elsewhere. But that's a slightly different matter.

Can you find any evidence that significant numbers of Europeans come to the US for healthcare?

It may be that the few people who can afford US medical care do travel there, but frankly I doubt it. For the vast majority of conventional treatments they could get what they wanted back home. There are private hospitals here, which takes care of comfort and privacy. And if you have the money you can pay for the consultant of your choice.

The US medical system is not the envy of the world - I've no doubt you can purchase any treatment under the sun, but as a whole it's expensive and inefficient. For 99% of us, affordability is important.

K

A bit like a kite, but 500 times more expensive

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12-03-2007 12:27 AM  9 years agoPost 55
Brovic777

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Los Angeles, CA

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Why do people fear so much a system run the the government? If you fear that it will crappy, then its because we let it become like that.

We as voter's have the power to change what we have today. If we keep private healthcare going in our country, millions of American's are gonna continue to be screwed. And those without any insurance, will go bankcrupt, end up on the streets, and even die.

We can create a free sytem that works, and works well, but we must be ready to do all we can to ensure it will work effectively.

Killer Beam E4 450
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12-03-2007 12:50 AM  9 years agoPost 56
drdot

rrElite Veteran

So. California, Orange County.

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fwiw..

Yessss..

CIA,FBI...The public educational system...Can't wait to see the national healthcare system...Bound to be a crowd pleaser..See where Castro got help from?? sure as hell not his own system!

B.C.

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12-03-2007 01:03 AM  9 years agoPost 57
jimco

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east texas

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Not to worry: Drdot: With the policies and actions of the US government, under the current administration, we will be receiving aid and medical care from Somalia, within 5 years.

Honey, where's the check book, it's Fedex again

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12-03-2007 02:46 AM  9 years agoPost 58
Wildcat Fuels

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Lexington, Ky

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Brovic,

Please, ya can't really believe all that Socialist propaganda. FREE, to whom.....who do you think pays for your so called FREE health care. We do, the tax payer. With what will amount to a tax rate of over 60%. Your probably to young to remeber it but it has ben that high before, Kennedy brought it down. Your quote that "WE must be ready to do all that is necessary to make it work" sounds just like a good little socialist or facist....what if I am not, will the party eliminate me? Sounds like it to me by your rhetoric. Remember the current system RELYS on premiums to function, you must by definition TAKE that same money from the people that are paying it now and put into the new GOVERNMENT single payer system, you then will have to add to it hundreds of billions of dollars more to make up the difference. Now, when it is FREE and anyone can go at any time...and they will...go to an emergency room and look around, three quarters of the people are in the ER for a cold or a headache...then the GOVERNMENT system will be so overdrawn, as is the UK system, that rationing will be mandatory. HILLARY has already said if you smoke or have "OTHER" habits she dissagrees since you are not taking care of yourself the government will not be obliged to do so....ie...the government will tell you what you can eat..how much...your weight...your habits.......ect ...ect...ect... And if you think the GOVERNMENT that can't buy a $5.00 hammer can manage the fraud that will be rampant (look at the current Medicare system) then go for it then. If you have never travelled out of the country, and it appears many have not, then you have no idea how good we have it here. I have travelled to MANY foriegn countries and before you say we have more homeless here than anywhere, which is insane, go to India, Africa, Hati, Russia, China, Indonesia, Cuba.......you pick. My gosh man read something other than the crazy let web sites.

General statement: I try and not let myself get sucked into these blackhole discussion where thought and reason hardly see the light of day but when I ready all this nonsense I feel You Chavez and Putin would be proud of the level of indoctrination. I will probably be back off here after this one for a while.

Jimco,

We agree on a lot of things, the Gov is a mess. Democrats and Republicans alike act like spoiled little kids. We should fire most of them, there should be term limits, no "paid" lobyists. We should actually support gruops like the Boys Scouts instead of trying to destroy these organizations. We should make Tort reform one of the Top priorities in the country...PS my wife says thanks for the well wishes.

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12-03-2007 03:04 AM  9 years agoPost 59
drdot

rrElite Veteran

So. California, Orange County.

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fwiw...

Tijuana...Only place you need to see to disprove the idea that the US is a horrible place for the poor....Cairo...recent article in the LA Times about the GENERATIONS of the homeless living on rooftops in Cairo...
The US sucks, but much less than anywhere else...

B.C.

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12-03-2007 03:11 AM  9 years agoPost 60
Wildcat Fuels

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Lexington, Ky

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Drdot,

See here is where you lose me, when you say it sucks here. The poor in America are descrided in the census as people having one car, strereo, TV, Air Conditioning, ect.. In most countries they would be considered rich. No one breaks down their doors at night because one of the people in the family said something about the government or has a Bible, as in China. People aren't rapped in front of their children to keep them in line and punish the parents. Genocide against Christians in Africa goes on and the UN and the rest of the world says nothing, I guess Christians are expendable. Terrorists blow innocent men, women, and children up on a daily basis. Could we do better, always, but sucks...I don't get it.
As far as possesions, I dive in Bonaire, a Dutch island off the coast of Venezula. For most of the people there it is a poor country, but they play soccer on dirt fields, laugh, fish, and are generally happy. Material possesions are the last thing I would asses a people for as far as happiness and well being.

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