“The David Goldstein Show” tonight on Newsradio 710-KIRO

Tonight on “The David Goldstein Show”, 7PM to 10PM on Newsradio 710-KIRO:

7PM: The Stranger Hour: Will Josh kick Will’s rhetorical ass?
The Stranger’s Josh Feit argues that “anyone who fills in the bubble for 50 new miles of light rail … is also filling in the bubble for sprawl and environmental degradation.” Fellow HA blogger Will thinks that makes Josh an uppity urbanite with “too much passion.” Josh joins me for the hour to talk roads, transit, and the local political races.

8PM: Are the righties gonna get sick over Sicko?
I had the privilege of watching a preview of “Sicko” this week, and when I posted some brief observations of Michael Moore’s new documentary (shorter, shorter Goldy: the film is funny, touching and infuriating,) I got just the sort of bile-spewing, anti-reform comment thread I expected. Why does the thought of universal health care make righties so angry? Does wanting the same sort of health care security available in the rest of the industrialized world really make me a dirty, America-hating commie?

9PM: TBA.

Tune in tonight (or listen to the live stream) and give me a call: 1-877-710-KIRO (5476).

Comments

  1. 1

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “Why does the thought of universal health care make righties so angry?”

    What do you expect from people who left sick 9/11 rescue volunteers in the lurch?

  2. 2

    RightEqualsStupid spews:

    Righties want to keep you from aborting your baby so they can enjoy watching it die when you can’t afford to give it health care.

  3. 3

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Speaking of Michael Moore, in case you haven’t heard this story yet …

    “Fans and detractors of Moore know the most popular anti-Michael Moore website on the internet is a site called MooreWatch. … Webmaster Jim Kenefick recently wrote about the difficulty he was having paying his wife’s medical bills. His conservative readership guided him to a cheaper heath plan but that wasn’t enough. ‘After I posted …, someone emailed me and asked if an ‘anonymous’ benefactor could offer to pay my first year’s premiums. … I was skeptical of course, but since I’m not an idiot, I accepted,’ wrote Kenefick. ‘$12,000 was like manna from heaven at that time. … That money made it possible for us to begin to turn our lives around.’ But who and where did the check come from? …

    “The NY Daily News has confirmed that the check was indeed from Kenefick’s nemesis, Michael Moore. A man that Kenefick had attacked for years on end. ‘I knew he was using me,’ Kenefick now writes on his blog ….

    “I tend to believe that Mike is a good guy, who has helped a lot of people with his films. Does he have an agenda? Who doesn’t. Kenefick certainly does ….”

    Quoted under fair use; for complete story and/or copyright info see http://www.slashfilm.com/2007/.....t-nemesis/

    Roger Rabbit Commentary: What can you say about a guy who helps out his most vehement critic with a big fat check when the guy is done? It speaks for itself. As for Kenefick, he forgot to say “thanks” … he must be a Republican.

  4. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    One thing to keep in mind about suburban sprawl: It means a permanent increase in demand for gasoline.

    Something else to keep in mind about all the megahouses being built: They’ll have to be heated for 100 years.

    Where is the oil and gas coming from? Do the people who buy these houses think it’ll last forever?

  5. 6

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    What’s going to happen to people who stretched to buy McMansions when heating bills are 5 times more than now? But not to worry, Roger Rabbit owns stock in gas E & P companies! Thanks for your business, suckers! I appreciate it.

  6. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    There’s plenty of oil for the foreseeable future, as long as people are willing to pay $60 to $100 a barrel for it. Venezuela, alone, has three times as much oil as the entire middle east. This means Hugo Chavez, not Saudi Arabia, will control the world’s economy. Suck on it, rightys!!! It also means Venezuela will become the world’s largest strip mine.

  7. 8

    me spews:

    There is something seriously wrong with our health care system when an uninsured person goes to the emergency room for a problem and is charged a price that is two times higher that what a medical insurance company would be charged. Why should the poor and uninsured be charged that way? Every person should have the same equal charge otherwise you are seeing discrimination on an extreme scale.

    Yes the United States should have a Universal Health Care System to ensure that everyone in our country has equal access to keeping their life’s healthy.

    On another note – ‘Why are medical costs so high?’ Last year I had A Flexible Spending Account for $1040. The amount I selected was based on dental care and the cost of several crowns for my wife and myself. My total costs were approximately $1300. I sent in my initial request with receipts on Jan 2, 2007. It was denied! So I had to specifically request request new receipts from Washington Dental. That took tow different efforts. I submitted all the receipts in response to the initial reply showing what I had spent with a formal letter (not email) signed by me and sent by certified email. The company only accepted approximately $940 out of the $1300 because my initial input on January 2, 2007 did not include all of the input provided later under my signature. So I had to pull down a new form from their web site, fill it out, and resubmit it (certified mail) to get my final ~$130 dollars.

    I probably spent about 10 hours of my time, several hours of my dental insurance’s time, and another 10 hours of the spending account company’s time to get a reimbursement of $1040 dollars that just happened to be tax free. So overall, to save $200 in taxes, the system spent ~$5000 (estimated)in costs!! Does anyone wonder why our medical costs are so high an rising?

    It is time fore Universal Health Care!

  8. 9

    My Left Foot spews:

    Roger:

    To be fair: Kenewick did update his reply and posted an apology for his skeptical attitude and he posted what looks like a genuine thank you. He has been on talk radio and a couple of the morning shows too.

    He said his first reaction was wrong.

    Jim is a blowhard with an ax to grind no doubt. He confuses facts with his own wildly imaginative machinations. But on this issue involving his wife, I think deserves a pass on this one.

  9. 10

    Lab Guy spews:

    Regarding medical costs I want to add a bit of clarification. Most medical facilities sign contracts with insurance companies which specify costs for specific care. The contracted cost is usually well below the list cost – but who pays list for most major ticket items like cars? It certainly is not fraud, just business. The comment about the rising cost of healthcare being due to paperwork, however, is partly correct. These insurance contracts include lists of specific diagnoses which will allow charging for specific tests. Without a proper diagnosis (an ICD9 code) a charge is considered illegitimate and won’t be paid. For my lab of 160 employees we must have 6 lab billing staff and more in the finance group. That means about 4-5% of staff are working on billing. Not very efficient and largely due to the wide variety of contracts with insurance companies. A good argument for universal coverage.

  10. 11

    michael spews:

    Add up what I paid in Health Insurance premiums, my employer paid in premiums and I paid in co-pays and my total heath care costs for last year were around 4 grand.

    All my doctors bills added up to about $800.

    Nice, huh.

  11. 12

    michael spews:

    The drive till you can afford it thing isn’t completely true. I’m paying $250 a month on a 10K car loan right now. My insurance is around another $90 and I’m running through about $50-60 a month in gas. So, lets call that $390.00 a month in fixed costs that could be avoided by a young couple choosing to live in the city, or in a condo on the Green River Trail if one of them works in the near by offices and bikes to work. Or where ever you can live where 2 people only need 1 car. You don’t need to live in the city for this to work, Josh! Anyway, that’s $390 saved right off the top. I’m betting my $390 is cheaper than what most people are paying and I didn’t include oil changes new tires Etc.

    If I did my math right (and that’s a big if so please double check it) that $390 is equal to around 70K worth of mortgage. So, really all that driving is doing is shifting mortgage costs to transportation costs. Why not just spend the extra 70K and get a place near where you work?

  12. 13

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    michael@11 Don’t get me wrong. I am in favor of Universal Health Care. To finance this will entail. . .perhaps some form of universal taxation/contribution scheme.
    But the concept behind any kind of insurance is to spread out the cost/risk of the insured’s misfortune. If you by the grace of God are never sick, your contribution/taxes for health care will seem excessive. If you need a transplant, you will never repay the cost.
    What seems to be wrong with our present situation is what appears to be a disproportionate amount of money devoted to profit, and to overhead. How much of your four grand is excessive is something I cannot say, since I don’t know your level of risk is. . .
    What I do know is that a larger pool, even a universal pool, of risk, lowers the individual cost. I also have a political opinion that a single payer system will be more cost effective in administering this risk pool.

  13. 15

    michael spews:

    @13

    The thing that gets me is I paid 5 times in heath insurance costs what I actually used in services. 5 times!

    I support universal health care of some form or another. I’d like to see a cheapo catastrophic care plan thrown in the mix for us healthy folks. I’m one bicycle wreck away from needing that kind of care. Maybe, I could use the insurance savings for my condo in the city when Josh force marches me out of the ‘burbs (hey I’m a 2 mile bike ride to work!) and makes us all live in cities.

  14. 16

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    Me@14 Give me a few minutes to examine your link.
    Michael@14 Please don’t let a Universal Health Care Scheme obscure the cost of such a scheme from you.
    My intuition is that you would pay less, but no guarantee.
    Further, today you are healthy, but tomorrow. . .who knows.

  15. 17

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @13 Health Care Math

    1. 25% of our health care dollars go to insurance companies whose only function is to deny claims.

    2. The government-run Medicare program’s administrative costs are less than 1%, compared to 25% in the private sector.

    3. 17% of the American people are uninsured.

    4. If we took the 25% away from the insurance companies and spent it on providing health care to the 17%, there would be enough money left over to give everyone a 7 1/2% price cut.

  16. 19

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    me@14 It is heartening to know some physicians support single payer. However, as the saying goes, some very large oxen will have to be gored, and some very gnarly sausage ground to convince all of them. It could take a generation.
    As a throw away thought, part of a Universal Health Care Scheme might have to include heavily subsidized Medical Education. And you had better believe that concept will bring some anguished screams.

  17. 20

    michael spews:

    I’m liking Rogers math.

    One of the services that employer based heath insurance seems to provide is locking people into shitty jobs that they’d rather not have. But, you quit the job and you and your kid are no longer insured.

  18. 21

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Why doesn’t privatized health care work? Because none of the market mechanisms work. There’s no competition — you can’t shop for an ER when you’re being transported in an ambulance. You can’t price-shop for a doctor or a dentist because they all charge the same. No one has the knowledge or the time to unravel the incredibly complex billing statements that providers (or, rather, their computers) whip out. There’s no market mechanism to stop gouging — the $20 aspirin that hospitals sell you, for example. If you suffer a heart attack and are hospitalized overnight the bill will exceed $20,000 — why??? Yet, some hospitals claim they are losing money … if so, obviously there are drastic inefficiencies in the system that the market has failed to correct. Countries much poorer than ours provide better health care to more of their citizens at lower cost … the private market simply isn’t working, and it’s time to replace it with something else.

  19. 22

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @19 You would think that by now ALL the doctors would be fed up with spending 2/3 of their time on insurance paperwork and only 1/3 of their time practicing medicine.

  20. 23

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @20 This won’t be a problem much longer. At the rate employers are exiting from health benefits, the number of employers providing health insurance to employees will reach zero within 5 years.

  21. 24

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Those employers who still provide health benefits have a powerful motivation — runaway costs — to buy their employees cheap insurance riddled with deductibles, co-pays, and non-covereds. And normally the insurance covers only the employee, who has to pay extra to include his/her family. Even for those who still have employer-provided coverage, it gets worse every year.

  22. 25

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    michael@20 At the risk of getting a dose of Roger’s boilerplate about cheap labor conservatives, you bringing up the issue of portability is answered by Universal coverage.
    Roger, I agree about ‘Cheap Labor /conservatives” and understand that Universal Health Care is a lance to the heart of that philosophy.

  23. 26

    Dan Rather spews:

    Countries much poorer than ours provide better health care to more of their citizens at lower cost … the private market simply isn’t working

    Yikess!!! What I cant believe is people actually buy the above BS. It all goes to shit when you actually test the theory out. No county has better healthcare then the US, period. The problem with healthcare is simple, too many lawyers.

  24. 28

    spews:

    Hypothesis

    The wierdest part of the debate about heathcafre is the perception by the right that we now have a free market. We actually do, but the market does not operate to reduce costs or imporve care becasue the competition is completely removed from the customers of the health care.

    Here ae few ideas to chaw on:

    1. While it is true that we can cut costs of healthcare by about 30% if we eliminate the profitts and expenses of the intermediary insurance companies, that is a one time effect and will not address the bugger underlying issue of helath care inflation.

    2. Health care inevitably inflates faster than inflation because ther eis limtied possibilkity for increase in productivity. Doctgors already spend far too little time with their patients and the expanding poiwer of biomerdcine means the scope of services is always growing.

    3. preventitive medicine increases costs. This is uttelry different than the usual blather from the left. The problme is that the longer we live, the more years of poor health we will have JUST because we are living longer. Plus, living longer does not alter the steady state rate at which folks die and terminal care is a huge part of the ehalth care bill. Cigaretted are a good ansert to healthcare bills because they make people die younger.

    SeattleJew

  25. 29

    RightEqualsStupid spews:

    The problem with healthcare is that the doctors and drug companies belong to the Publican party. That means all they care about is money. You can’t heal people when all you really want is their pocketbook.

  26. 30

    spews:

    @29

    And YOU do not care about money??? Mney is not a bad thing. How many selfless entities do yo trust? The Church? Bushies faith based charities???? I would much rather be cared for by someone trying to make a buck then someone trying to please Jesus.

  27. 31

    uptown spews:

    @30

    What’s the matter…English not your language?
    #29 said …”all they care about is money” and “You can’t heal people when all you really want is their pocketbook.”.
    Please try to comprehend before commenting.

  28. 32

    Joe spews:

    I don’t know if Japan Canada UK France Switzerland Sweden Norway Germany Denmark Finland Iceland Australia New Zeland etc. are “poorer” than us or not but they are all vibrant democracies, they all have national health insurance, and they have all for decades ONLY elected social democrats OR CONSERVATIVE party members who pledge to KEEP NATIONAL HEALTH CARE in place. (And their corporations don’t have to pick up these costs so it doesn’t cost Toyota $1500 per car for health care costs like it does GM. Which is going out of business by the way.) There is not one democratic government ever elected on a mandate to dismatle national health care plans.