Tag Archives: health care

2013: Year of Sustainability

I’ve been naming my years lately. 2009 was my Year of Hesed (lovingkindness). 2010 was my Year of the Tao. 2011, my Year of Living Simply. 2012, my Year of Forgiveness. I did a lot of forgiving this past year, both of myself for my gaffes, stupid comments/acts and poking my nose into other peoples’ business, and for others who did the same to me or in my presence. I have a long way to go toward being the type of loving, non-judgmental human being I aspire to be, but a healthy dose of forgiveness goes a long way toward achieving that goal.

In 2013, I want the focus to be on sustainability.  I want to think “Sustainability!” in every area of my life, with the hope that the things that I do and say prompt others to start thinking in channels of sustainability. I’ve already begun eating a plant-based diet, as our meat and dairy production facilities are unsustainable for the world.

Theologian Matthew Fox, in his amazing book A New Reformation wrote: “Sustainability is another word for justice, for what is just is sustainable, and what is unjust is not.”

This is as good a definition of justice as I have ever heard. As “Social Justice” is one of the new buzzwords these days, I’m not sure those who promote it can define it. This is a good definition, and I hope all will eventually adopt it.

This year I will be mindful about my consumption. I will work for sustainable causes, whether it be in education, in social reform, health care, politics, or self-expression. I believe that the planet teeters on the brink of a sustainability revolution, and if I can help to push awareness over the brink, I will.

Happy New Year, everyone!

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Filed under Uncategorized

Consider Congress

This holiday season when so many are traveling to visit loved ones and there is such a hue and cry about airport security, consider that many congressional members–who oversee the TSA–don’t have to be screened before getting on an airplane. These same congressional members don’t have to purchase their own health insurance through the same expensive, convoluted system they’ve set up for us to try to negotiate and afford. They also set their own salaries, determine their own raises, and their own (non)term limits. They don’t need to try to make ends meet on unemployment, because they can become lobbyists when they lose their jobs, which is why we don’t have laws against those deep-pocketed special interests, either. And they declare wars in which their children don’t fight and die.

Worst of all, every election season, they come to us, pleading with us to help them fix the system, when they are the system. They are the very ones who make the laws they so convincingly want us to fix.

I like our system. I like the three branches of government. I like the two-party system. But two hundred and thirty-four years into this experiment of democracy has pointed out a few bugs that need to be addressed, and they will not be addressed in any significant way by those who benefit from them.

There is a movement afoot to stage a new Constitutional Convention, but I also know there’s a book in the works about how that can go horribly wrong, too.

What’s the answer?

You tell me. I’m not a political person, but I will work tirelessly to fix these wrongs.

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Filed under Social Consciousness

About the Health Care Mess

I read this piece by John Stossel from the New York Sun in the 9/29/08 issue of Forbes Magazine.

“Imagine if your car insurance covered oil changes and gasoline. You wouldn’t care how much gas you used, and you wouldn’t care what it cost. Mechanics would sell you $100 oil changes. Prices would skyrocket. That’s how it works in health care. Patients don’t ask how much a test or treatment will cost. They ask if their insurance covers it. They don’t compare prices from different doctors and hospitals. Prices do vary. Why should they? They’re not paying. Although they do in hidden, indirect ways.

“In the end, we all pay more because no one seems to pay anything. It’s why health insurance is not a good idea for anything but serious illnesses and accidents that could bankrupt you. For the rest, we should pay out of our savings.”

A problem can never be fixed until it is defined, and I think Stossel has just put his finger on it.

Just because we can do something (like perform a hip replacement on an 87-year-old woman dying of stomach cancer) doesn’t mean we should.

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Filed under politics