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This post seems to acquiring an “America bashing” tone and I'm not sure why. I still struggle to understand why the Canadians are so interested in what happens in regard to health insurance reform in the United States. You have your universal health insurance system, you seem to like it, and that is just fine. Enough said. Apparently, at the moment at least, we don't think such a system is necessarily the solution of choice for the United States.
I don't disagree with your statement that “capitalism is not the belief in the way a country is run”. Capitalism is akin to a free market. However, once you introduce any restrictions or regulation, you really don't have a free market. You have quasi-capitalism. I had to do some digging to refresh my knowledge I might of once possessed regarding corporatism. This quote has led me to believe that this is similar to what the current administration in the United States is pursuing.
Quote: Thus corporatism was formulated as a system that emphasized the positive role of the state in guaranteeing social justice and suppressing the moral and social chaos of the population pursuing their own individual self-interests.
Also, Canada may be a good example of where capitalism works well in a Social Democratic, but we (the United States) have a Republic. It works fairly well here too. Just because we don't have universal health insurance is not indicative of whether capitalism works well or not. I think a large part of the problem here is pure greed (capitalist greed if you will) and lack of morals, conscience, etc. There is nothing wrong, in my opinion, with the concept of capitalism.
Have to agree with Dow on this one. If you pay taxes, your health care is not free. You are paying for it. The government (I imagine) just allocates/distributes the funds to cover the bill. Also, I don't think I ever paid anywhere close to 50% of my income in federal taxes. I'm assuming that the 22% does not include any provincial or local taxes. I typically fell in the 25% - 28% percent bracket regarding federal taxes. Of course, there were state taxes and local taxes, but I think my total tax burden was still less than 35%. Also, it is easy to take potshots at how our taxes are allocated, but you are comparing apples and oranges when comparing the financial burdens/obligations of both the United States and Canada.
Americans, at least the ones that are paying attention, do routinely question where our tax dollars are going. Why do you think there was such a ruckus this summer regarding this proposed health insurance reform and it is still a very “hot” topic. Part of the issue has to do with individuals having to undergo radical changes to their current health insurance and benefits, but another huge issue is how this proposal will be financed.
Also, the notion of free has to do more with the freedoms guaranteed to citizens via the Bill of Rights. Associating freedom with free market is a bit of a misnomer. Freedom is freedom of the press, freedom of speech, freedom to peaceably assemble, etc., although one could easily make a case that these no longer exist as intentioned.
Yes, defining free is very relative to what people were raised, or conditioned by the state, to believe.
Kind Regards, Jay
Almost all of us long for peace and freedom; but very few of us have much enthusiasm for the thoughts, feelings, and actions that make for peace and freedom. - Aldous Huxley
Was the government to prescribe to us our medicine and diet, our bodies would be in such keeping as our souls are now. - Thomas Jefferson