FAT TAX ? New health care bill will focus on "CHANGES IN LIFESTYLE"

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 25, 2009 4:27 PM GMT
    I have been against government run health care cus i knew it had to lead to government intervention . How exactly is this "change in lifestyle" going to be implemented? Sounds potentially scary to me for to allow the Government to dictate lifestyle to lower health care costs since gay men have high risk lifestyles, in more ways then one. Just think of all the money to be saved by a quarantine on POZ guys! Just think of all the new levels of discrimination that can be justified on saving health care costs.

    SEn. Tom Hankin.
    "As the lead Senator in drafting the Prevention and Public Health section of the bill, I view this legislation as our opportunity to recreate America as a genuine wellness society – a society that is focused on prevention, good nutrition, fitness, and public health. The problem is that this is all about patching things up after people develop serious illnesses and chronic conditions.
    "Consider this: Right now, some 75 percent of health care costs are accounted for by heart disease, diabetes, prostate cancer, breast cancer, and obesity. What these five diseases and conditions have in common is that they are largely preventable and even reversible by changes in nutrition, physical activity, and lifestyle.'


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    Jun 25, 2009 4:40 PM GMT
    Well, if you give more people more access to doctors the focus shifts from fixing problems to preventing problems. You could see your doctor regularly to keep track of your weight, or you could go see them every few years when you have become obese, which can lead to diabetes, heart disease, joint problems, etc. It is way cheaper to let someone go to the doctors to monitor their weight than it is to put them on insulin for life and replace a knee.

    Or we can do food subsidies. Corn is the most heavily subsidized food. Most of that corn is turned into cow feed and high fructose corn syrup. Cheap beef and cheap sugar makes the two way more affordable than good leafy greens or leaner fish and poultry.

    Or we can talk about pre-natal/early childhood programs. Giving parents more access to doctors and nutrition programs can prevent a plethora of childhood illness and even learning disabilities. No need for ridiculously expensive Occupational therapy, Physical therapy, and Speech therapy if your kids don't need them (those are the three most expensive services provided to children with disabilities by volume. 30% of students receive at least one of those services at some point nationwide with some school districts upwards to 50% receive them.)

    Why would you think that would imply we quarantine people? Every other nation with a sensible health care system does not quarantine people. In fact, their out reach programs for safe sex is so wildly successful that rates are way down in most of Europe. And having government help with STI screenings and treatment costs can only cut down the number of infected people.
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    Jun 25, 2009 4:49 PM GMT
    We have to change our view on personal health from the ground up.

    The number one killer, by far, is being fat. Not tobacco. Not asprin. Not hormones. It's being to fat.

    That's directly attributable to lifestyle.

    We need to promote health, instead of treat disease, whenever possible.

    In this country Big Pharm, and the medical community, regard medicine as a license to get rich. That's completely the wrong approach, and why, ultimately, we have to end up on a single payor system.

    E.g. flex89's Humalog U-100 insulin from Canada is $38.00 USD and is over the counter. Here in the States, it's $118.50 for the same thing, and it's by prescription.

    Recently, I got Logan into the Lilly Cares program to get him Humalog free for one year. The paperwork required a doctor's signature. Doctor Steven Pounders of Dallas refused to sign the paperwork for Lilly for less than $55.00, even though Logan has been his patient had recent tests and so on. I pleaded with them (his staff) but they refused to budge. I even sent several faxes down. It was clearly about the doctor making $55.00 for signing the document.

    We took Logan to a different doctor, here in Lewisville, who, can now do the same EXACT tests ($450 in Idaho, vs. $380 in Dallas, vs. $80 in Lewisville). That's obscene. He gave Logan a full physical, signed the paper work, and renewed Logan's scripts for $50. Total. Interestingly, the doctor is from Nigeria and explained to Logan and me that we should NEVER be concerned about not having the cash on hand for a signature.

    Being unhealthy has a number of factors, but, the number one factor is lifestyle. At some point, folks SHOULD be responsible if they're breaking the back of the system.

    In a 1999 study from UNT (University of North Texas) the mortality of competitive and pro bodybuilders was compared to that of other folks. Guess what? Even the pro muscle heads had a much better quality of life, and lived longer than the control group. (Not a single person has EVER died from AAS use...EVER.)

    It's seems reasonable that if a smoker misses twice as many days from work, and is 10 times more likely to have a disease costing over 100K, that they should pay for their bad behavior. Obesity is more willful than anything. It also seems reasonable that fat folks, who are WAY, WAY, more likely to have catastrophic disease contribute their share. It seems very logical to say, "You've chosen to neglect your health. You've chosen to be a burden on your employer, loved ones, and the health care system. You should be asked to contribute more because of your choices."

    We waste $TRILLIONS in "The War on Drugs" which is a huge failure, but, nonetheless a growth industry. That money would better be spent getting America more healthy and on treatment programs for those who want it.

    Our approach to public health is NOT preventative. Our approach is treatment of illness and is punitive, rather than rehabilitative.

    We cannot continue to bleed money on prisons and health care.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 25, 2009 4:57 PM GMT
    Let me give you another example why deadly foods should be taxed.

    Right below us lives a man, and his wife. He's a retired Black man who was a policeman in LA. He has three daughters. None of the daughters is married, and, each has children (typical of 75% of Black households). One daughter has three children, each by a different father.

    Now, of course, Medicaid from Texas, supports the children, and one can make a strong argument that no matter how irresponsible the parent, the children should have health care. But, three times; three different fathers?

    Anyway, the older man weighed 375 pounds last year. The government paid $41,000 to get him a lap band. He WAS down to 185 (he's around 6'1"), but, because he has NOT changed his lifestyle, and still gobbled down the wrong food, at the wrong time of the day, and sits on his ass, despite our offers to walk with him, he's gaining the weight back.

    That's ridiculous.

    Here in Texas, the illegals regard the emergency room as free health care. Federal law says they can't be turned away (sidenote: AZ and NM), and the Lewisville Medical Center, has a line of illegals around the door at the ER every day. How fucked up is that?

    We have to become intolerant of obesity. It needs to be unacceptable.

    We need a single payor health care system.

    Folks in medicine need to make a decent living, but, not live like kings.

    Big Pharm needs to be put in its place.
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    Jun 25, 2009 5:02 PM GMT
    With regard to synthetic insulin: it costs next to nothing to make, and it's infuriating that it's $118.50 here (at the lowest price) and requires a prescription, while in Canada it's $38 and over the counter. That's about greed, and some deplorable folks lining their pockets.
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    Jun 25, 2009 5:12 PM GMT
    Having gotten control over malaria, leprosy and worm infestations, well-to-do people should have found themselves in a health paradise. But instead, they face more lifestyle-related diseases than anybody else. It’s true that something should be done. But whatever that something is, it should be done very carefully -- each situation, case and person is unique.

    I’ve come across revolutionary medical schemes (well, they’re revolutionary where I am) that pay your gym fees condition that you meet fitness targets; that give massive discounts on what is designated as “health food” in shopping centers that have decided to play along… basically, they’re working with the premise that prevention is cheaper and better than cure. They’re literally putting money on it
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    Jun 25, 2009 6:48 PM GMT
    Oh for fuck´s sake. The OP is typical right wing paranoia. Look at countries which have national health services. They are normally the ones who are pro gay.

    Look at the lifestyles that cause illness: it´s the fat, self indulgent, give the doctors more $$$ so they can have another house USA.


    Chucky is right (did I just say that?)

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 25, 2009 8:57 PM GMT
    I think by force changes they mean

    Print Calories on Fast food menus
    Take vending machines out of school and healthier school lunches
    Give kids more PE and nutrition class requirements
    Increase the tax and make warning labels on tobacco bigger and more graphic
    Provide better sidewalks and more public transport options
    Take junkfood advertising out of kids prime time TV

    etc
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    Jun 25, 2009 10:08 PM GMT

    Or we can talk about pre-natal/early childhood programs. Giving parents more access to doctors and nutrition programs can prevent a plethora of childhood illness and even learning disabilities. No need for ridiculously expensive Occupational therapy, Physical therapy, and Speech therapy if your kids don't need them (those are the three most expensive services provided to children with disabilities by volume. 30% of students receive at least one of those services at some point nationwide with some school districts upwards to 50% receive them.)


    Why do people immediately skip the subject when it comes to health care?
    Health care costs are not about children. If I had any health care coverage right now it would cost me $574 /month. The same policy for a child is $80. It is all about high risk groups driving costs up. How the governmnet plans to curtail the behavior of high risks groups is of big concern if the entire program hinges on it. I don't see how you can "passively" change the behavior of high risk groups.

    Right now an insurance company can not legally ask if you are gay or Poz.
    If the new health care system is based on "behavior modification" then the government is going to track risks aggressively. Of course fat people are going to be the first targets of the new health based discrimination.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 25, 2009 10:11 PM GMT
    Good stuff.

    It's time for a change with the medical system in The United States.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 25, 2009 10:13 PM GMT
    With regard to health insurance, Logan, a type 1 diabetic, who lives with me, cannot get insurance in Texas except via the Texas High Risk Pool. Pre-existing condition. Now, arguably he did nothing wrong in his behavior to become a type 1 diabetic.
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    Jun 25, 2009 11:10 PM GMT
    Alpha13 saidWhy do people immediately skip the subject when it comes to health care?


    You asked how it would be implemented and I gave you an example. Did I change the subject because I answered your question with some possibilities rather than indulge in your bat shit insane fear that universal health care means putting gays and people with AIDS in concentration camps?

    You know who you remind me of here?

    bachmann-comic-cover3.jpg

    Yup, Michelle Bachman who today warned that the US census is linked to Japanese internment camps.
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    Jun 25, 2009 11:15 PM GMT
    Just for this...Iam going to eat a whole tube of cookie dough and ENJOY the hell outta it! WHY?
    CAUSE it was my choice!
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    Jun 25, 2009 11:40 PM GMT
    dtothes84 saidJust for this...Iam going to eat a whole tube of cookie dough and ENJOY the hell outta it! WHY?
    CAUSE it was my choice!


    Then don't choose the government health care plan and continue on your merry way to an early grave. icon_rolleyes.gif



    Also, saying "gay" men have risk lifestyles is an inaccurate statement. It's behaviors (say, behaviors) common to some gay men that contribute to high risk.

    I'm not complaining...
  • DiverScience

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    Jun 25, 2009 11:55 PM GMT
    Like it's any different than the fact that insurance companies drop you from coverage if you're not perfectly healthy. They're doing this so they can say they're making "changes" while keeping the good old "guess what, the insurance companies are going to fuck you over" plan of yesteryear.

    If they wanted a real change, they'd go with a single payer. But they won't even consider it, because the insurance lobby is one of the largest and most powerful.
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    Jun 26, 2009 12:01 AM GMT
    dtothes84 saidJust for this...Iam going to eat a whole tube of cookie dough and ENJOY the hell outta it! WHY?
    CAUSE it was my choice!


    Very early grave

    You...ought to watch the news

    All the Nestle Cookie dough was recalled for being tainted with E. coli

  • gym_rat_7

    Posts: 25

    Jun 26, 2009 12:08 AM GMT
    Libraries became supported by the government because there was a need to improve literacy in our country.

    Maybe someday gyms will be supported because there is a need for US citizens to exercise and control their weight.

    I find it amazing that insurance companies don't offer lower rates or incentives for folks that workout and watch their weight to stay healthy.
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Jun 26, 2009 12:35 AM GMT
    "I find it amazing that insurance companies don't offer lower rates or incentives for folks that workout and watch their weight to stay healthy."



    It's not surprising when you realize that the insurance comany's number one priority isn't improved health practices, but about profit margins.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 26, 2009 12:49 AM GMT
    what about a too-thin tax? that's no more healthy.... bulimia (by way of exercising furiously after you eat) and anorexia are just the opposite sides of the coin.
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    Jun 26, 2009 3:16 AM GMT
    In "for profit" medical care, as we have here, insurance companies are about maximizing value and revenue to THE SHAREHOLDERS. They are NOT about healthcare. They are FOR PROFIT corporations.

    In "for profit" medical care, many providers also are in it for the material payoffs.
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    Jun 26, 2009 3:18 AM GMT
    MsclDrew said
    dtothes84 saidJust for this...Iam going to eat a whole tube of cookie dough and ENJOY the hell outta it! WHY?
    CAUSE it was my choice!


    Very early grave

    You...ought to watch the news

    All the Nestle Cookie dough was recalled for being tainted with E. coli



    The FDA has advised ALL folks with the cookie dough to throw it away, as of last week.
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    Jun 26, 2009 3:46 AM GMT
    Speaking of eating unhealthy. The other day I was eating ice cream. Low fat yogurt so it wasn't too bad... yet. So there I am eating my vanilla yogurt ice cream and thought. 'Humm... I do have a bottle of root beer in the fridge.' So I was there having a nice refreshing root beer float and I thought. 'Humm... I do have some fudge brownies.' So there I was having a root beer float and since the ice cream had melted making it a shake I ended up dunking the fudge brownies in it. It was really good until I was finished. Then I just felt bloated and gross.
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    Jun 26, 2009 3:53 AM GMT
    growingbig saidSpeaking of eating unhealthy. The other day I was eating ice cream. Low fat yogurt so it wasn't too bad... yet. So there I am eating my vanilla yogurt ice cream and thought. 'Humm... I do have a bottle of root beer in the fridge.' So I was there having a nice refreshing root beer float and I thought. 'Humm... I do have some fudge brownies.' So there I was having a root beer float and since the ice cream had melted making it a shake I ended up dunking the fudge brownies in it. It was really good until I was finished. Then I just felt bloated and gross.


    So, what's your point?
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    Jun 26, 2009 3:54 AM GMT


    OK Alpha13,

    we're in Canada where we've had the healthcare system you're angst-ing about since 1963.

    ALL AIDS patients get treated with respect and meds.

    No matter your vices or risk takings, you're treated for any resulting illnesses.

    We use education to change behaviours.
    Now look at your current system where it's not only unaffordable (a family of 4 in Canada pays about $125.00 per month - singles pay about $56.00) but your people are refused treatments etc for any number of foul and petty reasons.

    We're a bit in shock over flex89's situation.


    -us guys
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 26, 2009 4:31 AM GMT
    [quote][cite]MunchingZombie said[/cite]
    Alpha13 saidWhy do people immediately skip the subject when it comes to health care?


    You asked how it would be implemented and I gave you an example. Did I change the subject because I answered your question with some possibilities rather than indulge in your bat shit insane fear that universal health care means putting gays and people with AIDS in concentration camps?


    To sidestep, the issue that some entity will actually be required to pay for all of this "free" health care people always pull the kid card.
    The fallacy in using kids as an "example" is that children don't work
    ( can't pay for health care) and are of low risk anyway. They really don't heavily factor into the economics but people immediately use them to hide there own agenda which is to obtain health care without paying for it.
    The issue has always been who is going to pay for unhealthy people. Unhealthy people by the way can't work....double whammy.

    The government's idea this week, which is according to the senator, is the only way government health care is going to work is to eliminate unhealthy people by modifying their behavior. My question was to ask, "How far are you willing to let a senator from the mid west dictate your lifestyle." I have read about "Prohibition" in the 1930's. What is being proposed is exactly the same thing....just a whole lot more comprehensive.