MEDICAL TUESDAY . NET
Community For Better Health Care
Vol VI, No 14, Oct 23, 2007
In This Issue:
MOVIE EXPLAINING SOCIALIZED MEDICINE TO COUNTER MICHAEL MOORE's SiCKO
a pro-liberty filmmaker in Los Angeles, seeks funding for a movie exposing the truth
about socialized medicine. This movie can only be made if Clements finds 200
doctors willing to make a tax-deductible donation of $5K. Clements is also
seeking American doctors willing to perform operations for Canadians on wait
lists. Clements is the former publisher of "American Venture"
magazine who made news in 2005 for a property rights project against eminent
domain called the "Lost Liberty Hotel."
For more information visit www.sickandsickermovie.com or email email@example.com.
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1. Featured Article: Be Healthy or Else! By Yaron Brook and Don Watkins
As part of his universal healthcare proposal, John Edwards would make doctor visits and other forms of preventive care mandatory. In a similar proposal in England, a Tory panel suggested that Britons should be forced to adopt a government-prescribed "healthy lifestyle." Britons who "cooperate" by quitting smoking or losing weight would receive Health Miles that could be used to purchase vegetables or gym memberships; those who don't would be denied certain medical treatments.
These paternalistic proposals are offered as solutions to the spiraling costs that plague our respective healthcare systems. It is unrealistic, states the Tory report, for British citizens "to expect that the state will underwrite the health implications of any lifestyle decision they choose to make."
But any proposal that expands the government's power to control our lives--to dictate to us when to go to the doctor or how many helpings of veggies we must eat--cannot be a solution to anything. Instead of debating what coercive measures we should be taking to lower "social costs," we should be questioning the healthcare systems that make our lifestyles other people's business in the first place.
Both the American and British systems, despite their differences, are fundamentally collectivist: they exist on the premise that the individual's health is not his own responsibility, but "society's." Both Britain's outright socialized medicine and America's semi-socialized blend of Medicare, Medicaid, and government-controlled, employer-sponsored health plans aim to relieve the individual of the burden of paying for his own healthcare by coercively imposing those costs on his neighbors.
When the government introduces force into the
healthcare system to relieve the individual of responsibility for his own
health, it is inevitably led to progressively expand its control over that
system and every citizen's life.
To read more,
please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/index.asp .
For example, in a system in which medical care is "free" or artificially inexpensive, with someone else paying for one's healthcare, medical costs spiral out of control because individuals are encouraged to demand medical services without having to consider their real costs. When "society" foots the bill for one's health, it also encourages the unhealthy lifestyles of the short-range mentalities who don't care to think beyond the next plate of French fries. The astronomical tab that results from all of this causes collectivist politicians to condemn various easy targets (e.g., doctors, insurance companies, smokers, the obese) for taking too much of the "people's money," and then to enact a host of coercive measures to control expenses: price controls on medical services, cuts to medical benefits--or, as with the current proposals, attempts to reduce demand for medical services by forcing a "healthy lifestyle" on individuals.
Properly, your healthcare decisions and expenditures are not anyone's business but your own--any more than how much you spend on food, cars, or movies is. But under collectivized healthcare, every Twinkie you eat, doctor's visit you cancel, or lab test you wish to have run, becomes other people's right to question, regulate, and prohibit--because they are paying for it. When "society" collectively bears the costs of healthcare, the government will inevitably seek to dictate every detail of medical care and, ultimately, every detail of how you live your life.
To protect our health and our freedom, we must reject collectivized healthcare, and put an end to a system that forces us to pay for other people's medical care. We must remove government from the system and demand a free market in medicine--one in which the government's only role is to protect the individual rights of doctors, patients, hospitals, and insurance companies to deal with one another voluntarily, and where each person is responsible for his own healthcare.
Let's not allow the land of the free and the home of the brave to become a nation of dependents looking to the nanny-state to take care of us and following passively its dictates as to how we should live our lives.
Yaron Brook is the president of the Ayn Rand Institute (ARI) in Irvine, CA. Don Watkins is a writer and research coordinator at ARI. The Institute promotes Objectivism, the philosophy of Ayn Rand--author of "Atlas Shrugged" and "The Fountainhead."
Copyright ฉ 2007 Ayn Randฎ Institute. All rights reserved.
To review other articles, go to www.aynrand.org/.
To correspond, click on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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We all know government is plagued by red tape, isn't efficient and doesn't work as it should, say Amanda Kathryn Hydro, Director of Policy Development for the Reason Foundation, and Jason Mercier, Director of the Center for Government Reform for the Washington Policy Center. Increasing transparency and accountability is a huge first step. But that is only half the equation. We also need policymakers to make significant changes after we all get to see the horror and reckless spending that will be revealed by shining the light on government spending and earmarks.
Enter presidential candidates Sen. Barack Obama, Rep.
Ron Paul, Sen. Mike Gravel, Rep. Dennis Kucinch and John Cox. Each has
embraced the concept of "Google government," by signing the Oath of
Presidential Transparency to help taxpayers see where their money is spent.
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/news.asp .
ท By signing the oath, the candidates are promising, should they win the presidency in 2008, that they will issue an executive order instructing the entire executive branch to put into practice the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006.
ท That act includes a Google-like search tool that will allow taxpayers to go online and see exactly how their tax dollars are being spent on federal contracts, grants and earmarks.
State and local governments are being pushed as well, say Hydro and Mercier:
ท The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) recently adopted model legislation to implement state versions of the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act.
ท ALEC also adopted a model bill to require that the public have at least 72 hours to review tax and spending bills before they are voted on.
ท Several states have already moved forward with some form of transparency reforms, including Missouri, Texas, Kansas, Virginia, Minnesota, Hawaii, South Carolina, Nebraska and Oklahoma.
Source: Amanda Kathryn Hydro and Jason Mercier, "Time to Shine Light on Government Spending," Foxnews.com, October 23, 2007.
For more on Federal Spending & Budget Issues: www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_Category=25
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National Obesity Forum (NOF) chairman Dr Colin Waine has warned that the financial cost of obesity could "bankrupt the NHS".
Speaking at the NOF's fifth annual conference in London, he talked about the challenges posed by obesity and what needs to be done to overcome them.
Dr Waine said: "Even with the very
generous funding that we have had, the problem is escalating so quickly we are
not just going to get an epidemic of obesity, we are going to have an epidemic
of Type 2 diabetes."
To read more,
please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/intlnews.asp .
On Sunday, new research by the Foresight Tackling Obesities: Future Choices project warned that half the population will be obese within 25 years if trends continue.
Simon O'Neill, Director of Care, Information and Advocacy at Diabetes UK, said:
"Dr Waine is right to focus on the soaring rates of Type 2 diabetes. The worry is that it's not just adults who are affected.
estimated that there are around 1,000 children with Type 2 diabetes in the UK,
all of whom are clinically obese. This means that there is a generation of
overweight youngsters facing potential blindness, heart disease and
"In a time where we enjoy much-increased life expectancy in comparison to previous generations, chronic conditions such as Type 2 diabetes could lead to thousands of needless deaths in years to come.
"We need to take action now. Finland has the first example of a large scale prevention programme, based on studies which have shown that changes to diet and levels of exercise can reduce new cases of Type 2 diabetes by 58 per cent. Children need to eat a healthier diet and take more physical activity to reduce their chances of developing the condition.
"As the Foresight project highlighted, the potential long term impact of obesity and Type 2 diabetes in children is frightening - both in terms of impact on our youngsters and the cost of dealing with the crisis.
"The NHS already spends ฃ13.7 million a day dealing with diabetes and its complications. This figure will rise rapidly as our children grow to be adults facing a lifetime of ill health."
Is Government medicine so tenuous that one disease could bankrupt it? It's time to get medicine on a rational footing with the doctor and patient in charge. It can only be done by getting government out of it.
The NHS does not give timely access to health care; it only gives access to a waiting lista waiting list ready to implode!
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The medical uninformed who are managing Medicare are continuing in their widespread disregard of physicians. St. George Medical Office Building was sold in April 2007, and new owners took over in May. The building had been in disrepair for well over two decades. Several times patients were trapped between floors on the elevator and it took several hours for firemen to rescue them. Hence, the doctors never took the elevators. How could our offices survive for two hours in the middle of the morning or afternoon without our seeing patients? We had not had adequate air conditioning for more than a decade. But we got use to having office fans on for six months of the year. The lights went out periodically but we had backups on our computers and never lost any patient data.
The new owners increased the rent about 80 percent and the entire building, except those holding favorable long-term leases, moved out within two months. Most of the doctors found a place at half the rent within thirty days and gave Medicare, Medicaid, and all the insurance carriers our change of street address status. The insurance companies began sending their payment to the new addresses the physicians sent.
Medicare and Medicaid quit paying altogether.
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/medicare.asp . They
indicated a website to complete renewal applications which were about 27 pages
long. These were completed post haste. About 30 days later, the doctors
received a notice that the renewal applications were incomplete and to please
complete a new application and include some new pages which was promptly done.
The doctors received another notice about 30 days later indicating that the new
application contained errors and would need to be corrected. DO NOT MAKE
CORRECTIONS on the previous forms but complete new forms. This was dutifully
The doctors are now five months since receiving any Medicare reimbursement. Some of the doctors report an income cut in half, and payroll and tax deposits in arrears. The same government that controls Medicare has no problem in adding 10 percent penalties for late deposits on payroll that has not yet cleared. Wal-Mart was fined millions for paying employees one month late for extra work during breaks and overtime. The government finds no inconsistency in paying moneys owed five and now nearly six months late.
Some of the doctors received their first Medicaid checks this week. But it was for only one week's work. The doctors were expecting after 16 weeks, that this first check should have been about 16 times that.
This brought back memories of the California legislature, which never has a state budget ready on July 1 and usually a few weeks later quit paying Medicaid to doctors. When the state has a budget a month or three later, one would expect a slip increased blip in income, but we have never seen that. It is simply a way to harass physicians whom they despise. We have personally observed this in consultant work for the state when employees, and especially their managers, spew forth insults about those wealthy doctors who never have enough. We'd be very surprised if we ever see those other 15 weeks of work get paid. The payment process is so convoluted that it is difficult to figure out which claim was not paid.
There seems to be a push for government to take over health care or extend Medicare to all Americans. Will this abuse get better as government has all of us in a vice? Will the government's hatred of physicians get less as competition vanishes and patients have no alternatives?
Health care in our country will just get worse as government encroachment increases. We need a ten-year moratorium on health care reform and allow current remedies to mature and solve the problem. But it will be nigh near impossible to prevent the medical uninformed that are running for president and Congress not to out do each other in promising Americans free health care which will destroy what has evolved.
Government is not the solution to our problems, government is the problem.
- Ronald Reagan
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Ms Adams injured her shoulder. The pain was improving over a month or so but she still went to see a surgeon. He obtained an MRI and told her she had a rotator cuff tear. It was probably healing but he could go in arthroscopically and trim it so that the pain would resolve much faster. She signed the permit and had the arthroscopy.
When seen three months later, she wasn't sure if the
pain really was less. She went back and the surgeon said that maybe he didn't
remove all the rough stuff and he would make sure the second time. Three months
later, he said the same thing. She signed the permit and had the second
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/gluttony.asp .
When seen three months later, she wasn't sure if the pain really was less. After a year, she was convinced that the pain was not better and looked up her friendly surgeon again. He obtained another MRI, saw an additional tear and suggested that he fix that. After discussing her pain with her husband, mother and other friends and relatives, she took their advice. She signed the permit and had her third arthroscopy.
This time the surgeon said he put in a screw and it
should hold well. The x-ray revealed sever
e metallic screws
in her shoulder. After three months, the pain was excruciating and she was
given narcotics. After another three months with persistent pain, she was
referred to a pain specialist to manage her narcotic regimen and consider
implanting a narcotic pump in her abdomen. She stated that the pain was at
least ten times as bad as before the first surgery.
When seen later, she was very depressed and crying. She said that life wasn't worth living. She was sent to a psychiatrist for management of her depression and suicidal ideation.
The biggest cost savings in health care frequently is the ability to say NO. One could make a case that all three operations, in this instance, were unnecessary and, therefore, excessive. It's hard to understand a 100 percent cost savings from three operations to none. Certainly the medical illiterates in Congress and those running for president are unable to make this calculation. When Congress gets involved in national health care and people wait years for an operation, the wrong operations will still get done. The selection process requires the freedom to choose, not government distortion and coercion. When your number on the waiting list comes up, you will be so exhausted that an operation can no longer be objectively evaluated. You will sign the permit. You will experience another government disaster. You will find out what real pain is.
* * * * *
Drug makers pulled cold medicines targeted for babies and toddlers off the market Thursday, leaving parents to find alternatives for hacking coughs and runny little noses just as fall sniffles get in full swing.
The move represented a pre-emptive strike by
over-the-counter drug manufacturers - a week before government advisers were to
debate the medicines' fate. But it doesn't end concern about the safety of
these remedies for
youngsters. . . To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/myths.asp .
Baltimore city officials filed a petition with the FDA - joined by the Maryland chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and prominent pediatricians around the country - arguing that oral cough and cold medicines don't work in children so young, and pose health risks not just for babies but for preschoolers, too. . .
"It's important to point out that these medicines are safe and effective when used as directed, and most parents are using them appropriately," said Linda Suydam, president of the industry trade group.
What many Americans don't realize is that, rather than have the coercive arm of the government involved in our daily lives, public disclosure and friendly discussions would bring about the same thing and amicably. In other words, the articles explaining the scientific data and the possible harm to those under age 2, would be just as effective in parents avoiding them as the government police with handcuffs in their back pocket . . .
To read the entire article, go to www.sacbee.com/830/v-print/story/426786.html.
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Dr. Dave: Did you see in today's paper that Jim Press, the irrepressible 37-year Toyota veteran, now on the Chrysler all-start executive team, is closing Chrysler's private executive dining rooms?
Dr. Edward: Remember when Southwestern Bell bought Pacific Bell, they closed the executive lunchroom here at PacBell in Sacramento?
Dr. Milton: That was to prevent high-level junior executives from planning with each other and possibly putting drag into the merger or complaining about the cost-cutting austerity program that was augmented.
Dr. Dave: But Chrysler, after a pitiful marriage with Mercedes and now a welcomed divorce, has all the workers on Cerberus Capital Management's side. That's why Press goes into the employee dining room and mixes with the workers.
Dr. Milton: The Medical Staff Lounge is something like an executive dining room where all of us doctors eat a quick buffet and soup lunch and get back to work. It also provides a place to quickly do a Medline search or to discuss a case with a consultant.
Dr. Rosen: With
all the emphases on employee and patient satisfaction, wouldn't it be better
for us physicians to go through the cafeteria line and mix with the nurses and
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/lounge.asp .
Dr. Edward: Part of the history of the Doctors Lounge was to give the doctors a place where patients in the cafeteria would not be able to curbstone their medical care.
Dr. Rosen: Even that is going by the board. All the insurance carriers are rating us on patient satisfaction and being available to the patient at any time they feel they need us.
Dr. Michelle: Well, I don't want to be available at all times. I want an undisturbed lunch and go home at 5 to be with my children and take care of my house and get the dinner on. That's why I have partners.
Dr. Milton: But you are expected to be available during the day and the staff lounge is used primarily during the daytime.
Dr. Michelle: But I need a reprieve from clinical medicine during my lunch. And maybe even from my office staff next door.
Dr. Ruth: I agree with Michelle. I need this room as a retreat when my patient load downstairs is overwhelming. The cafeteria does not give any privacy. And there's constant intrusion from the families of my patients in the hospital. It would be a totally uncontrolled family interface.
Dr. Edward: I think Ruth has hit on a very important patient management issue. We can't have different members of the family talk with the doctor about the patient individually. They all have to be together or they have to have one spokesman.
Dr. Rosen: I remember one case in the early years of my practice when I was so willing to talk to any member of the family that interrupted me that I spent an inordinate amount of time with them, explaining the same thing numerous times.
Dr. Milton: Yes, that can be very time consuming. And medical novices always hear different things depending on their medical sophistication.
Dr. Rosen: You got that right, Milton. Not only time consuming while in the hospital, but also later at home. I remember once, I got a very irate call from a family member after visiting hours who accused me of lying to her since she said I had said something very different to her brothers and sister about their mother than what I told her when it was essentially the same thing. That's when I started, especially after an ICU admission, to tell the family to decide who would be the spokesperson and I would see them at the appointed time once or even twice a day at their mother's bedside. I even welcomed all family members to be present at this discussion. But at all other times, that designated person could keep all the others informed.
Dr. Yancy: If you close the Doctor's Lounge, I'll start taking my surgery cases to another hospital.
Dr. Michelle: I vote with Yancy. Close the lounge, which is also our dining room, and I might just move my office next door to another hospital.
Dr. Rosen: But don't forget. Doctors are paying for much of this buffet with dues, half of which goes for this project. The hospitals on either side of us don't provide the food, just a small TV room. Who needs that?
Dr. Michelle: Rosen, you better never make the matter of closure a formal recommendation to administration!
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SONOMA MEDICINE, the Magazine of the Sonoma County Medical Association
The wholesale exodus of physicians from private practice in Sonoma County, along with the hospital struggles, are signs that the health-care system is broken here. Reimbursements are too low, too many patients are uninsured or stuck with no choices, and the insurance companies abuse the rules. On the flip side, health-care insurance costs too muchwhich only increases the number of uninsured.
When Gov. Schwarzenegger gave an impassioned speech at
the CMA Legislative Day describing these woes, and how the system needs to be
fixed, I doubt any Sonoma County doctors would have disagreed with his
sentiments. Health-care reform seems like an issue that should unite
physicians, but the "devil is in the details.
. . "
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/voicesofmedicine.asp .
A recent survey by the Public Policy Institute of California shows general public support for many elements of the health-care reform proposals. Eight-five percent of respondents say they are concerned about providing health care to all residents. Seventy-one percent think the state's health care system is in need of major changes. Sixty-five percent say they would favor a plan that requires all Californians to have health insurance, with the costs shared by employers, individuals, and providers.
Despite all of the above, after listening to the experts speak about the prospects of health-care reform in California at CMA's Leadership Academy and Legislative Day, I was frankly discouraged. The problem is that everyone wants someone else to pay the bill. . .
As doctors, our voices carry weight. These issues make it all the more important for physicians to band together and stay involved with SCMA.
My only other concern? Well, one speaker at the Leadership Academy told the story of a writer who got lost in the Irish countryside on the way to a speaking engagement. When he finally asked a local farmer how to get to the venue, the response began, "Well, I wouldn't start from here."
To read the entire article, go to www.scma.org/magazine/scp/sm07/drexler.html.
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Capitalist Heroes By DAVID KELLEY, WSJ, October 10, 2007
Fifty years ago today [October 10] Ayn Rand published her magnum opus, "Atlas Shrugged." It's an enduringly popular novel -- all 1,168 pages of it -- with some 150,000 new copies still sold each year in bookstores alone. And it's always had a special appeal for people in business. The reasons, at least on the surface, are obvious enough.
Businessmen are favorite villains in popular media, routinely featured as polluters, crooks and murderers in network TV dramas and first-run movies, not to mention novels. Oil company CEOs are hauled before congressional committees whenever fuel prices rise, to be harangued and publicly shamed for the sin of high profits. Genuine cases of wrongdoing like Enron set off witch hunts that drag in prominent achievers like Frank Quattrone and Martha Stewart.
By contrast, the heroes in "Atlas Shrugged"
are businessmen -- and women. Rand imbues them with heroic, larger-than-life
stature in the Romantic mold, for their courage, integrity and ability to
create wealth. They are not the exploiters but the exploited: victims of
parasites and predators who want to wrap the producers in regulatory chains and
expropriate their wealth.
To read more,
please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/bookreviews.asp .
Rand's perspective is a welcome relief to people who more often see themselves portrayed as the bad guys, and so it is no wonder it has such enthusiastic fans in the upper echelons of business as Ed Snider (Comcast Spectacor, Philadelphia Flyers and 76ers), Fred Smith (Federal Express), John Mackey (Whole Foods), John A. Allison (BB&T), and Kevin O'Connor (DoubleClick) -- not to mention thousands of others who pursue careers at every level in the private sector.
Yet the deeper reasons why the novel has proved so enduringly popular have to do with Rand's moral defense of business and capitalism. Rejecting the centuries-old, and still conventional, piety that production and trade are just "materialistic," she eloquently portrayed the spiritual heart of wealth creation through the lives of the characters now well known to many millions of readers. . .
At a crucial point in the novel, the industrialist Hank Rearden is on trial for violating an arbitrary economic regulation. Instead of apologizing for his pursuit of profit or seeking mercy on the basis of philanthropy, he says, "I work for nothing but my own profit -- which I make by selling a product they need to men who are willing and able to buy it. I do not produce it for their benefit at the expense of mine, and they do not buy it for my benefit at the expense of theirs; I do not sacrifice my interests to them nor do they sacrifice theirs to me; we deal as equals by mutual consent to mutual advantage -- and I am proud of every penny that I have earned in this manner "
We will know the lesson of "Atlas Shrugged" has been learned when business people, facing accusers in Congress or the media, stand up like Rearden for their right to produce and trade freely, when they take pride in their profits and stop apologizing for creating wealth.
To read the entire article (subscription required), go to http://online.wsj.com/article_print/SB119197701548454197.html. To read another review, continue below:
Because of her opposition to New Deal government controls, novelist and philosopher Ayn Rand started off thinking of herself as a conservative. By the time her blockbuster novel, "Atlas Shrugged," was published 50 years ago this week, she'd changed her mind. She decided she was a radical -- a "radical for capitalism," that is.
Conservatives, she'd come to believe, were insufficiently principled in their defense of a free society and once the novel was out, the official conservative movement turned its back on her.
While "Atlas Shrugged" was a ferocious defense of certain values shared by many conservatives, then and now -- limited government, economic liberty and the primacy of individual rights over perceived collective needs -- National Review's editor and conservative movement leader William Buckley found the novel's intransigence and Godlessness, alarming. He assigned communist-turned-conservative Whittaker Chambers to review it. . .
And Rand was, despite her exile from the conservative movement, a fan of Barry Goldwater, the modern Right's first serious presidential candidate. She told him "I regard you as the only hope of the anti-collectivist side on today's political scene, and I have defended your position at every opportunity." For his part, Goldwater said that "I have enjoyed very few books in my life as much as . . . 'Atlas Shrugged.'". . .
Even when reinforcing her exile from respectable conservatism in a 1967 National Review feature story, M. Stanton Evans recognized that "there are a number of subjects on which Miss Rand is right . . . Foremost among these is that class of issues having to do with the secular conditions of freedom." He notes her "excellent grasp of the way capitalism is supposed to work" and her "powerful" critique of "bureaucrats, planners, and social engineers." Also, her "effective" satire of "the intellectual flux and slither in which modern relativism seeks to bury moral issues."
That's a great list of virtues, and exactly what modern conservatism needs, in the political and cultural wars of today. Rand's virtues as a political thinker and polemicist touch on the most important matters of modern politics.
She recognized, not merely that government shouldn't take as much from us as it does, but also that it can't justly and pragmatically do as much as it currently tries to do. As government spending, even under Republican rule, grows faster than ever before; as new plans to further bureaucratize American health care arise; as the benefits of free trade and free movement of capital and labor are under continued assault -- Rand's consistent, passionate and even heroic defense of American freedom is sorely needed. . .
Why does she matter to modern politics? It's not like she is around for conservatives to seek her endorsement. But it is worthwhile for political activists to remember that Ayn Rand was utterly uncompromising on how government needed to respect the inalienable right of Americans to live their own lives, and of American business to grow, thrive, innovate and improve our lives without niggling interference.
Her message of political freedom was enthusiastic, and optimistic, and immensely popular. No major American political party has embraced her message in full. But millions of Americans have voted for her with their pocket books, and hundreds of thousands continue to do so every year.
On the 50th anniversary of her greatest novel, her advocacy of the still "unknown ideal" of truly free market capitalism is something that America, and the conservative movement, needs to reconsider.
To read the entire article, go to (Subscription required) http://online.wsj.com/article/SB119223551942158017.html?mod=todays_us_opinion.
Mr. Doherty is a senior editor at Reason magazine and author of "Radicals for Capitalism: A Freewheeling History of the Modern American Libertarian Movement" (PublicAffairs, 2007).
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Amish farmers in increasing numbers are agreeing to sell development rights to their farms - as long as the government isn't involved.
An excellent lesson for physicians, nurses and health care planners.
Climate Change Causes Conflict: Green Peace By Stephan Faris, Slate.com
When Al Gore on Friday, it was the
second time in four years that the prize for peace had gone green. In 2004, its
recipient was , a Kenyan politician
responsible for planting millions of trees to combat soil erosion. The day after
she was recognized, I asked Maathai what reforestation had to do with ending
conflict. "What the Nobel committee is doing is going beyond war and
looking at what humanity can do to prevent war," she answered.
"Sustainable management of our natural resources will promote peace."
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/hhk.asp .
The idea of a connection between conflict and climate change is fairly new, and one that had been mostly relegated to academic journals until . Then, in June, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon went on record to suggest global warming as .
Now that should keep the researchers busy for a few decades.
Over 92 percent of people who own exercise equipment and 88 percent of people who have health club membership, do not exercise.
We've always known that health club membership was a status symbol and not related to health. We know people that have membership in two health clubs and don't go to either to exercise. They like the juice bar better. One of them even has valet parking.
It is estimated that over 99 percent of people who walk around carrying a water bottle have access to the purest drinking tap water found anywhere in the world.
Having a plastic bottle in your hand is a status symbol that you're living a healthy life style. They eat their Big Macs and drink their COKE wearing sunglasses so they aren't recognized.
* * * * *
John and Alieta Eck, MDs, for their first-century solution to twenty-first century needs. With 46 million people in this country uninsured, we need an innovative solution apart from the place of employment and apart from the government. To read the rest of the story, go to www.zhcenter.org and check out their history, mission statement, newsletter, and a host of other information. For their article, "Are you really insured?," go to www.healthplanusa.net/AE-AreYouReallyInsured.htm.
PATMOS EmergiClinic - where Robert Berry, MD, an emergency physician and internist practices. To read his story and the background for naming his clinic PATMOS EmergiClinic - the island where John was exiled and an acronym for "payment at time of service," go to www.emergiclinic.com. To read more on Dr Berry, please click on the various topics at his website.
PRIVATE NEUROLOGY is a Third-Party-Free Practice in Derby, NY with Larry Huntoon, MD, PhD, FANN. http://home.earthlink.net/~doctorlrhuntoon/. Dr Huntoon does not allow any HMO or government interference in your medical care. "Since I am not forced to use CPT codes and ICD-9 codes (coding numbers required on claim forms) in our practice, I have been able to keep our fee structure very simple." I have no interest in "playing games" so as to "run up the bill." My goal is to provide competent, compassionate, ethical care at a price that patients can afford. I also believe in an honest day's pay for an honest day's work. Please Note that PAYMENT IS EXPECTED AT THE TIME OF SERVICE. Private Neurology also guarantees that medical records in our office are kept totally private and confidential - in accordance with the Oath of Hippocrates. Since I am a non-covered entity under HIPAA, your medical records are safe from the increased risk of disclosure under HIPAA law.
Michael J. Harris, MD - www.northernurology.com - an active member in the American Urological Association, Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Societe' Internationale D'Urologie, has an active cash'n carry practice in urology in Traverse City, Michigan. He has no contracts, no Medicare, Medicaid, no HIPAA, just patient care. Dr Harris is nationally recognized for his medical care system reform initiatives. To understand that Medical Bureaucrats and Administrators are basically Medical Illiterates telling the experts how to practice medicine, be sure to savor his article on "Administrativectomy: The Cure For Toxic Bureaucratosis" at www.northernurology.com/articles/healthcarereform/administrativectomy.html.
To read the rest of this section, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/org.asp .
Dr Vern Cherewatenko concerning success in restoring private-based medical practice which has grown internationally through the SimpleCare model network. Dr Vern calls his practice PIFATOS Pay In Full At Time Of Service, the "Cash-Based Revolution." The patient pays in full before leaving. Because doctor charges are anywhere from 2550 percent inflated due to administrative costs caused by the health insurance industry, you'll be paying drastically reduced rates for your medical expenses. In conjunction with a regular catastrophic health insurance policy to cover extremely costly procedures, PIFATOS can save the average healthy adult and/or family up to $5000/year! To read the rest of the story, go to www.simplecare.com.
Dr David MacDonald started Liberty Health Group. To compare the traditional health insurance model with the Liberty high-deductible model, go to www.libertyhealthgroup.com/Liberty_Solutions.htm. There is extensive data available for your study. Dr Dave is available to speak to your group on a consultative basis.
Madeleine Pelner Cosman, JD, PhD, Esq, who has made important efforts in restoring accountability in health care, has died (1937-2006). Her obituary is at www.signonsandiego.com/news/obituaries/20060311-9999-1m11cosman.html. She will be remembered for her important work, Who Owns Your Body, which is reviewed at www.delmeyer.net/bkrev_WhoOwnsYourBody.htm. Please go to www.healthplanusa.net/MPCosman.htm to view some of her articles that highlight the government's efforts in criminalizing medicine. For other OpEd articles that are important to the practice of medicine and health care in general, click on her name at www.healthcarecom.net/OpEd.htm.
David J Gibson, MD, Consulting Partner of Illumination Medical, Inc. has made important contributions to the free Medical MarketPlace in speeches and writings. His series of articles in Sacramento Medicine can be found at www.ssvms.org. To read his "Lessons from the Past," go to www.ssvms.org/articles/0403gibson.asp. For additional articles, such as the cost of Single Payer, go to www.healthplanusa.net/DGSinglePayer.htm; for Health Care Inflation, go to www.healthplanusa.net/DGHealthCareInflation.htm. To read his latest OpEd, Physicians Make Lousy Advocates, go to www.healthplanusa.net/DGPhysicianAdvocate.htm.
Richard B Willner,
President, Center Peer Review Justice Inc, states: We are a group of
healthcare doctors -- physicians, podiatrists, dentists, osteopaths -- who have
experienced and/or witnessed the tragedy of the perversion of medical peer
review by malice and bad faith. We have seen the statutory immunity, which is
provided to our "peers" for the purposes of quality assurance and
credentialing, used as cover to allow those "peers" to ruin careers
and reputations to further their own, usually monetary agenda of destroying the
competition. We are dedicated to the exposure, conviction, and sanction of any
and all doctors, and affiliated hospitals, HMOs, medical boards, and other such
institutions, who would use peer review as a weapon to unfairly destroy other
professionals. Read the rest of the story, as well as a wealth of information,
Having met Dr. Willner several times, I can personally attest to his
selflessness and dedication in the cause of protecting doctors from abusive
physicians, medical groups, hospitals, and medical boards. He is making great
sacrifices on our behalf. If he saves your medical license,
be sure you pay him well. He
deserves to be
compensated well .
Semmelweis Society International, Verner S. Waite MD, FACS, Founder; Henry Butler MD, FACS, President; Ralph Bard MD, JD, Vice President; W. Hinnant MD, JD, Secretary-Treasurer; is named after Ignaz Philipp Semmelweis, MD (1818-1865), an obstetrician who has been hailed as the savior of mothers. He noted maternal mortality of 25-30 percent in the obstetrical clinic in Vienna. He also noted that the first division of the clinic run by medical students had a death rate 2-3 times as high as the second division run by midwives. He also noticed that medical students came from the dissecting room to the maternity ward. He ordered the students to wash their hands in a solution of chlorinated lime before each examination. The maternal mortality dropped, and by 1848 no women died in childbirth in his division. He lost his appointment the following year and was unable to obtain a teaching appointment Although ahead of his peers, he was not accepted by them. When Dr Verner Waite received similar treatment from a hospital, he organized the Semmelweis Society with his own funds using Dr Semmelweis as a model: To read the article he wrote at my request for Sacramento Medicine when I was editor in 1994, see www.delmeyer.net/HMCPeerRev.htm. To see Attorney Sharon Kime's response, as well as the California Medical Board response, see www.delmeyer.net/HMCPeerRev.htm. Scroll down to read some very interesting letters to the editor from the Medical Board of California, from a member of the MBC, and from Deane Hillsman, MD.
To view some horror stories of atrocities against physicians and how organized medicine still treats this problem, please go to www.semmelweissociety.net.
Dennis Gabos, MD, President of the Society for the Education of Physicians and Patients (SEPP), is making efforts in Protecting, Preserving, and Promoting the Rights, Freedoms and Responsibilities of Patients and Health Care Professionals. For more information, go to www.sepp.net.
Robert J Cihak, MD, former president of the AAPS, and Michael Arnold Glueck, M.D, write an informative Medicine Men column at NewsMax. Please log on to review the last five weeks' topics or click on archives to see the last two years' topics at www.newsmax.com/pundits/Medicine_Men.shtml. Americans have a curious notion: Everything that's good should be a right; everything that's bad should be a crime. Read this week's column: Is Socialized Legalcare Next?.
The Association of American Physicians & Surgeons (www.AAPSonline.org), The Voice for Private Physicians Since 1943, representing physicians in their struggles against bureaucratic medicine, loss of medical privacy, and intrusion by the government into the personal and confidential relationship between patients and their physicians. Be sure to scroll down on the left to departments and click on News of the Day in Perspective: Senator Clinton Says Country is Now Ready for Universal Coverage: $110 billion plan is her highest priority or go directly to www.aapsonline.org/nod/newsofday468.php. Don't miss the "AAPS News," written by Jane Orient, MD, and archived on this site which provides valuable information on a monthly basis. This month, be sure to read: The flawed assumptions underlying most "health care reform" are plainest in the plan put forth by John Edwards. www.aapsonline.org/newsletters/oct07.php Scroll further to the official organ, the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, with Larry Huntoon, MD, PhD, a neurologist in New York, as the Editor-in-Chief. www.jpands.org/. There are a number of important articles that can be accessed from the Table of Contents page of the current issue www.jpands.org/jpands1203.htm. Dr. David Gratzer spoke at the annual scientific meeting of the AAPS last week. Be sure to read a review of his book, The Cure: How Capitalism Can Save American Health Care as well as other books in the review section at www.jpands.org/vol12no3/bookreviews.pdf.
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Del Meyer, MD, Editor & Founder
6945 Fair Oaks Blvd, Ste A-2, Carmichael, CA 95608
Words of Wisdom
not go where the Path may lead. Go instead where there is NO path and leave a
"Our attitude towards others determines their attitude towards us." -Earl Nightingale
"What this country needs are more unemployed politicians." -Edward Langley, Artist 1928-1995
Some Recent or Relevant Postings
Physicians Make Lousy Advocates, by David Gibson, MD, www.healthplanusa.net/DGPhysicianAdvocate.htm
Jim Michaels, transformer of business journalism, died on October 2nd, age 86, The Economist
HE WAS used to ordure, because at school (Culver Military Academy,
Indiana), they had made him shovel it, "wet manure, which is not like
dried manure. It's very heavy." He knew about sludge, because as an ambulance-driver
in Burma in the war he had spent long hours in it. So when Jim Michaels came to
Forbes in 1954, charged with shaking things up, it was second nature to
take the hacks' copy and wring it through his typewriter, digging out the
buried leads and the smothered conclusions, cutting the waffle, and
transforming "oatmeal" into lean, tight prose. He did this for 38
years of editing the magazine, from 1961 to 1999. Circulation rose sixfold
while he was there.
To read more, please go to www.medicaltuesday.net/org.asp .
Tiny though he was, he was terrifying. Business journalism, for him, was a tough trade. When writers joined they were given a tape recorder for phone calls, to give them crucial backing when they were hauled into court. They were hustled to get better stories than the competition, different ones, and sooner; covers were scrapped and copies pulped if a piece had appeared elsewhere. "No guts, no story", ran a Forbes ad in his time. His journalists had to be brave, and one way to show their pluck was to survive working with Jim. . .
Mr Michaels was not a tyrant by nature. He had a streak of tenderness in him. A book of favourite poems was often in his pocket, and he once told a journalist, reporting for work the day after his first child was born, to "Go home and be a father." (The same journalist, caught leaving the building with a dozen copies of the magazine, was told, with a smile, that he had excellent taste in reading.) He skewered stories, and people, because he wanted the copy in Forbes to be provocative, sceptical and dramatic. Each story was pushed to the edge, and the fact-checkers, legions of them, were made to justify the claims or get them taken out. If they let an error through (whisper had it), they were fired. . .
Where he never wavered was over the importance of straight, short and timely reporting. He had learned that lesson young. On his first posting as a newsman, with United Press in India in 1948, he had managed a world scoop by witnessing the death of Mahatma Gandhi. It was a story that caused him agony to write. Gandhi was someone he revered. With not a word spare, and without sentimentality, he described the emaciated figure crumpling under the assassin's bullets, the last gesture of forgiveness and, the next day, the burning of the body on the banks of the Jumna. After that, perhaps, the pretensions of corporate America could never have had much hold on him.
To read the entire obituary, go to www.economist.com/obituary/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9941801#top.
On This Date in History - October 23
On this date, according to legend, the swallows leave Capistrano. Nature's creatures operate on a calendar just as rigid as that which we have created for ourselves. The birds don't seem to have any difficulty with the schedule when they fly away from the Mission of San Juan Capistrano in California. No one has ever seen a bird argue that they didn't want to leave. It is still a mystery why birds of a feather stick together, and we human beings have great difficulty in doing so. Perhaps we should take a lesson from the birds.
After Leonard and Thelma Spinrad