Many cite overpopulation as a root cause of pervasive global hunger and widespread poverty. Of course, hunger is directly related to health, poor health. Malnutrition exacerbates local diseases such as AIDS or Malaria. In many places hunger is close to home such as in the Appalachian region of the US. With hunger and poverty comes the lack of access to health care resources. Poverty causes Americans and globally in other countries to forgo important medical treatments until so significant that critical care becomes necessary driving up health care causes for everyone, insured or otherwise. Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834) observed that population grows exponentially, which then, although food and economic growth occurs, overtakes and outstrips societies resources. He and Neo-Malthusians viewed overpopulation as the root cause of scarcity and hunger. Neo-Malthusians cite wealthier nations interjection of resources to prevent pending famines as a stopgap leading to population crashes as a result of this “help”.
Wealthier Nations by preventing the natural decline in population cause profound misery for those whom they are attempting to help they thought, and in the end, one must wonder if this is still the case but unsaid with the privileged classes. What I would now call the House of Lords of this global economy. Many have regarded this issue as a type of lifeboat ethics where to supply everyone’s need on the planet would be to destroy one’s own survival in the processOne only needs to clarifythis with the ethical check of leaving your seat upon the boat for someone in the water to take it, allowing yourself to drown instead.
Even in a city such as New York, 53% of food agencies for the poor have had to cut portion size in 2004, and 48 have closed down for lack of food donations. This lifeboat ethics might be the case with our own refrigerators. In an unbound, unregulated economy, food is give to those who can afford what the market will bear; those who cannot post purchase price starve. One example of this was the horn of Africa’s famine in the 1980’s. Though tankers of grain headed to their European buyers, the purchase price posted by them with the market responding, Africans died of hunger. Land itself for farming is now concentrated with the few. In the U.S 124,000, entities control ½ of our agricultural land. In Guatemala, 2/3 of the agricultural land is controlled by 2% of its population. Finally, 18 transnational corporations own more global farmland than the surface area of the Netherlands, Portugal and Switzerland combined. Without land to grow food, purchasing becomes the only viable option. The most telling remarks came from the Central Intelligence Agency in December of 2000, wherein they cite economic globalization driving inequality and poverty which would stress societies to violence. Those countries and citizens left behind would feel cultural alienation, poverty, hunger, political and economic extremism and violence. Most telling of the CIA’s report in 2000 was a warning that global inequality through globalization, if continued to be pursued would cause global circumstance to deteriorate. Eight years later, those remarks proved prophetic. When the richest three people on the Earth hold more resources than the combined economic production of the least developed 48 countries on the planet economic resources must be skewed. This strategy of economic policy not just the U.S is pursuing but the world must be mediated, otherwise global upheaval will occur unlike what we are seeing today.
We have a case of the iron triangle of the ultra wealthy, where they run multi-national corporations such that they are not beholden to any one national rule of law thus immune to authority infringement. Many finance politicos to win offices that then bend further to the feudal system. These politicos then fund the systems that fuel the ambitions of the company or seek to negate the result. In health care that would be a scenario like this:
A company uses corn for fuel when other secondary bio fuels are better suited for ethanol production, in part because corn is a food source for humans and animals. But because said company owns the land, the facilities and the vertical integration of corn by products production this would drive up the price of corn, allowing them to not only profit from selling all the products they already sold, due to a higher price but the new ethanol as well. Well funded campaigns lead to choice candidates that then pass bills diverting funds and laws to subsidize the company and its ethanol products. These funds could have been used for health care expansion or other such worthy federal expenditures.
Now because corn products in the supermarket are much higher than normal, because of the corn scarcity, instead of cereal for breakfast many seek high calorie, empty nutrition products that are cheap but filling. They consume these products, which lead to diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease. Health care costs go up, so politicians fund new programs to lower the obesity rate keeping the autocracy from contracting (more employment for them) and scoring political points. What we get is less food, more expensive food, more junk food, more health problems, higher gas prices, and higher taxes to pay for a poor choice in biofuels and to pay for more people who have become sick from eating poverty level food stuffs, because they are poor.
What is considered socialism is actually the pendulum swinging back to democracy. Once democracy is re-established and it swings further then we can think about calling it socialism.
The Great Bengal famine, the Ethiopian famine, the Irish famine, and the Bangladesh famine all occurred while there was an adequate or above average supply of food in the region hit by the famine. The root cause of those famines then was the lack of these countries to guarantee minimum entitlements, wherein exacerbated by the purchasing of foodstuffs from some of these countries from outside entities while reducing the food qualities internal to the famine stricken countries at that time. Minimal entitlements mean better health and a better lifestyle for everyone and would, opposite to what the ultra wealth and the multinational companies believe, guarantee a stable world for which they could continue being wealthy and keep their companies from going bankrupt.
Let us tally the list of failed countries because guaranteed minimums were not supplied:
Currently the unemployment rate is 8.9% with a total loss of jobs at 539,000 as of April. Our health care system uses the employer as a sponsor for health insurance between the employee and the health insurance company. The issue is what happens when we lose our jobs? We also lose our health coverage because the employer is the intermediary, without the link are only choices for health coverage are state and federal coverage such as Medicare or Medicaid, or purchasing a private plan. If you suffer from prolonged unemployment you will qualify for Medicare or Medicaid but what if the person is hired again, the employer does not offer insurance and you make too much to qualify for state or federal insurance?
I have been looking lately at medical discount cards. There have been quite a few that are not worth the fees that the companies promoting them charge. Also care must be taken that the card is actually accepted by enough doctors in your area that you can use the card. What good is a medical discount card if no one accepts it? I have found two states which license some companies which offer medical discount cards. Licensing for discount card providers is still in its formulate stage so many states do not offer certification. The good news is that some of these state licensed companies operate in multiple regions, maybe in yours.
Well, since this just happened to me I thought I would write about it. This effects ever family who has health insurance, including Medicare and Medicaid, or a joint effort when you become disabled and have SSI Medicaid.
Now, most insurances are under the HMO titans these days. Part of the reason why was in the early eighties it was thought that coordinated, cost capped and regulated private insurance would drive costs below the inflation rate. Hospitals and private clinics freaked out and selected what they thought would grantee the best rate of return for a sick child. It has nothing to do with helping people, it has everything to do with upper managements pockets.
Currently, off the top of my head (maybe wrong), but health care costs have been trending double if not up to triple, in some years back since before the early eighties and after HMO's and PPO's became fully vested in American society.
Now flash forward twenty years to today. What is interesting is it has become almost a feudal system, were each private health care clinic or doctor or hospital can select from a wide assortment of insurances they would like to take. Notice, I said like. This is because health insurance has become such a profitable business that everyone is involved.
Gone are the days when there were only a couple in a region. Of course, this is not the case with the small proprietor or the individual working for a MNC right down to the lower fortune 500. We, use regular unleaded insurance for our bodies, not the ultra 102 and only get one or two choices. Usually one or two mega offerings from our employer with a choice between high deductible, which give little until you get hit by a bus in Manhattan or a low deductible, where your premiums per month are sky high.
So what private practices have is many and we have one. Mr. employee has his trusted pocket ID card that has all his life existence information on, including his favorite food and color, that in theory, should allow him to get health care. After all, he or she is paying 500 to 1000 dollars a month on premiums. Not deterred but happy, he goes to a local doctor and the doctor says sorry we don't take that insurance but we take many others. He becomes the disgruntled family guy. I must at he has every right to be....
Like that fictitious person, I did the same thing and got the same results. Notice how fiction all to often becomes fact, or facts are better than fiction.
However, armed with information I asked the simple question as to just why they don't take my insurance. Now I know the answer very well. It was a step by me for them to speak the truth out loud instead of hiding it. I have gotten into a habit of flushing out well concealed truth lately.
Of course the answer was, "We are a private practice so we select from different plans (because its like a buffet line. Why be decent and go for some pizza when you can head over to the corner table for crab legs and roast beef?)."
So then I asked, "Is it because they don't pay well?"
Morgans response, "Well, I know she gets 175 an hour and my insurance will not pay such an exorbitant price for 45 minutes (that is more than many doctors get on salary, not to mention overworked interns)." then pointedly, "Is it because you can get more from other insurances?"
Answer, "Maybe, I really don't know."
In thought: Actually you do....
Now this was not front desk, but in the back office with whom I was talking too.
Morgan: "Listen, I know you are creaming the top of insurances. I know what goes on, I am in health care.
Answer, "Might be."
Morgan's response, "Well, I am an Admin in health care I know what goes on. Listen, cancel both my appointments. It's too bad that you are doing that. I will get a clinic where they are more realistic on such prices."
(175 dollars for 45 minutes and for a non-physician with a masters degree. I got one and I make much less. Hmmm, maybe I should get another masters in something more popular.)
Naw, I would rather advocate for us and grow the non-profit! At least I can sleep sound at night.
It cost us all from those with poor health insurance or excellent insurance because it splits the insurance pool so that those who are in excellent health (and or rich) can get what they need and those (not so rich) to afford the Kings and House of Lords health insurance get shuffled to the bottom. The insurance pool becomes stratified. When everyone is in a large plan with more open enrollment and features, health risk is spread out, which means on average if one person gets catastrophic sick we all pay just a little for her to get healthy again. But if those who are already in good health (and rich) isolate themselves, they won't have to put in, like we all do, for everyones health. They in essence go for the crab legs, eat them all and leave us with the pizza. When we finish the pizza they don't need to give us any crab legs, so we go home hungry.
We get less coverage but still pay more than we have to because we are shifted to a lower tier of the health plan universe, risk is greater because the health pool is less healthy, less able to pay for the premiums, less likely to be able to afford the co-pays and deductibles and so on.
If you take good care of your health like me, but still can't afford the House of Lords Health plan, then when you do need a doctor, your out of luck because those LLC clinics are run by managers that own the place, not the doctors that do the day to day helping of people and getting them better. So they cream and we then dream. Dream of a day when money is not the worship of those stuck in there own castles in the sky.
For all the information and more you can stand on these types of subjects check out the The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation here at this link:
Well, things are slowing down a bit so I can work on the networking and building up the business. I am moving my website the third time because I have maxed out the capabilities of who I have right now. I'm moving to intut which will allow me to coordinate with Quickbooks. A full Wiki will be in the works for the applications, agreements and other service documents for those in need so they can get them quickly and efficiently. PBWiki seems the way to go. Web sites are not designed for such things for small organizations. The Web site will be the focus and hub that will then link to the Wiki for all informational aspects of the agency. An LLC is also perking because Federal grant funding is iffy for many non-profits now. The LLC will partially fund the non-profit. Government bond purchasing is now approved for the corporation which will allow interest on long term holding (when it occurs). A line of children's books will be in the works with proceeds to benefit the fund. Then we can start giving cash out!
In the meantime, I am watching in disdain how so many people are losing their jobs and more likely than not, losing family health care coverage. The only choice then is COBRA but COBRA rates are through the roof. Why? Because COBRA is from your last employer who no longer has you as an employee. They now have to maintain your health care and all residual claims paperwork and that is not much to many employers liking.
Employers premiums, especially for small business are skyrocketing so it is difficult for them as well.
I have a great deal of statistics to back everything and I hope I will sooner rather than later get them to everyone.
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