Chelsey bravely opened a real can of worms with her post about health care. I had prepared a long response for the comments section, but I figured it would be easier to put it all here in a blog post.
Here’s the basic scoop: Anything from Michael Moore is to be taken with an extremely large grain of salt. The man is an inveterate propagandist and liar. His films Bowling for Columbine and Fahrenheit 911 were full of easily provable lies and distortions.
When he premiered Sicko at the Cannes Film Festival he got mad when challenged by Canadian journalists on the film’s inaccuracies about the Canadian health care system. Even Canadians themselves realize that theirs is not the best system, and those with the connections travel to the States for their health care, justifying it thus: “This is my heart. It’s my health and it’s my choice.” Too bad for all the Canadians who can’t afford to pay for a flight to Miami and are stuck with their own plan.
Even liberal parliamentarians who insist that all Canadians be on the national health plan then turn around and fly to the States for their own cancer treatment.
Moore was equally wrong about the British NHS. If you need to see a doctor for a sprain or a cold, it’s not so bad. Otherwise, get ready for rationing and denial of life-saving drugs. Or simply a denial of pain medicine.
Indeed, the British NHS was forced to admit that it had inflicted “cruel and negligent care” on millions on the NHS. That’s why those who can afford it buy private insurance, even though their taxes still pay into the NHS.
The U.S. health care system is far from perfect, but simply by the evidence it is the overall best in the world. (Why do so many travel here for their healthcare otherwise?) It has the best outcomes for prostate cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer and heart disease. The system needs to be improved, particularly for those who have trouble affording insurance and basic care, but to go towards a Canadian or British system would be a step in the wrong direction.