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Healthcare Protests

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One of the things that’s struck me as interesting with all these town hall meetings where people get *extremely* upset about the “socialization of healthcare” are the people that are complaining.

It’s a known fact that America has one of the unhealthiest populations in the world, with a population that is 33% overweight and 34% obese (yes, nearly 70% of the population is overweight), and that this is the one of the many causes of why healthcare is so expensive in this country.  Therefore, assuming everyone paid the same taxes for national healthcare, you would think that unhealthy people would be glad to let the healthy take on the burden of paying for healthcare that they don’t really use, while the unhealthy would pay less than they pay now.  Yet the states complaining the most about national healthcare are the ones that have the least healthy citizens.

I guess they could argue on principle that they do not believe in national healthcare, which I could at least understand from an objective point of view, but they definitely have no right to present the argument that it will cost them more money.

However, the real problem I have with the entire situation is that no one is presenting facts anymore.  Rachel Maddow sums it up great with this piece:

Why can’t people just *talk* anymore?  I would love to see a spirited debate on the topic with people from both sides that have actually done their homework.  But I have yet to actually *see* that.  Perhaps if the people with different perspectives presented their points in a logical and rational way, I would be more apt to side with them.

In fact, there has only been one article that I’ve seen so far that’s done that.  John Mackey, the CEO of Whole Foods, wrote an op-ed piece for the New York Times last week that decried Obama’s healthcare plan as socialism that will bankrupt the country.  While I don’t necessarily agree with his conclusion, I think several of the reforms that he outlines would be great things to enact, as it will reduce healthcare costs for everyone, regardless of whether the individual or the government is fitting the bill.

Really, when it comes down to it, reducing the cost of healthcare for the average American is a common goal that both parties can agree on.  Now they just have to agree on how to actually *do* that.

Written by Curtis Chambers

August 17, 2009 at 9:00 am

The Cause of Liberal Thinking

with 6 comments

I was driving around the other day and started thinking about politics for some reason.  I think it was perhaps because of all the talk of presidential candidates recently in the news and possibly because I bought both of Barack Obama’s books to read.  My mind tends to wander a lot when I drive and that’s when the best ideas and theories come to me.

Anyway, I realized that the most liberal states in the union are also the richest states, while the most conservative states tend to be the poorest states.  However, the stereotype of rich people is that they’re very conservative.  How is it possible that the rich states are liberal?

Red Blue States

Perhaps it’s not people with lots of money that make California the 5th biggest economy in the world, but the sheer population of it?  However, if that was the case then Texas would be liberal since it has the 2nd largest population of the states and it’s known as one of the most conservative states.

Population doesn’t directly correlate to wealth either.  If that was the case then India would be the second richest country in the world, but that’s not the case.  It does have the 12th biggest GDP in the world, but ranks 132nd in terms of GDP per capita.  Compare that to the United States, which has the biggest GDP in the world and ranks 4th in GDP per capita.  Our wealth is definitely more spread out among the people than in India due to our large middle class, but that still doesn’t seem to answer my question.

Perhaps maybe it is population density that leads to a more liberal state of mind?  Here are the population densities of some of the most liberal cities in America:

  • New York City:  27,083/sq mi
  • San Francisco:  15,834/sq mi
  • Chicago:  12,470/sq mi
  • Boston:  12,327/sq mi
  • Berkeley:  9,823.3/sq mi
  • Seattle:  6,901/sq mi

Major areas that are more conservative like San Diego and Orange County fall way under this mark with population densities of 3,871.5/sq mi and 3,606/sq mi, respectively.  I’m sure there are exceptions to this rule as there are lots of hippie communes in the middle of Oregon, but for the most part I think that a higher population density leads to more liberal thinking.

I’d love to hear other thoughts or ideas on this matter.

Written by Curtis Chambers

September 28, 2007 at 12:43 am

Posted in Politics, Society

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