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How to Draw an Ugly Health Plan and Make it Pretty

I know how you all like to see my sketches and I get lots of requests to explain my cartoons, so here is the latest one.

The goal with this one was to comment on the speculation that the Democrats would use sentiment about Teddy Kennedy’s death to push health care legislation, possibly by attaching Kennedy’s name to the bill.  I started by making the health care character a generic ugly creature, but it occurred to me that a warthog is a better choice, because a warthog is understood to be ugly and it has the aspect of being a pig, to signify waste. Making the health plan a female is a little sexist, I suppose.  I think of a woman wanting her photo to look pretty, so making the wart hog a female made the gag work a little better for me.

Next I had to deal with the mask that actually makes the warthog pretty, and I thought that using a photo of Kennedy rather than drawing his face made the cartoon more interesting.  The mask was a little tricky because it had to have some perspective and Kennedy’s face is defined by its width, so squishing it makes it look less Kennedylike.  I found this photo that seems to be everywhere, and it looks pretty good, even squished, so that was the first hurdle to cross.  Nice photo, I like his eyes.

I did my usual quick pencil sketch.  The donkey didn’t look good so I drew a new one on top with a Sharpie marker.  That usually works for me; if I don’t like what I do after a Sharpie marker I’ll start over.  Here’s the sketch:

After that, I drew the finished line art on a vellum overlay.  In Photoshop I squashed the Kennedy photo into the sign, and drew outlines around it with a wider facing edge to make it look more two dimensional.  And I added gray tone to the rest of the drawing, so it would live in the same world as the photo.

That’s how to draw an ugly health plan, and make it pretty.

By Daryl Cagle

Daryl Cagle is the founder and owner of Cagle Cartoons, Inc. He is one of the most widely published editorial cartoonists and is also the editor of The Cagle Post.

96 replies on “How to Draw an Ugly Health Plan and Make it Pretty”

it does this tired old heart good to know that there is still a prductive place for things such as vellum and sharpies in this modern world!

If you think Obama care is that ugly, I can't wait to see what kind of monster you draw to depict our current travesty of a health system.

You a re right the Dems will try to force people to accept this rotten heath care by adding Teddys name
Now low can you get

Daryl , no explanation necessary.. I understad it perfectly. What I dont understand is that in the U.S. I can´t get medicare or anything else but by moving to Mexico and marrying a Mexican wife , I get EVERYTHING FREE!! Hospitalization, Doctors Analysis, Medicine. Guess why I plan on staying in Mexico.

WHAT"S THIS? MSNBC allowed you to print this? Their lips has been glued to Obama's rear-end since the moment he got elected! Is it possible that someone at your Network has finally decided to listen to the 53% of us who are unhappy with Obama's healthcare proposals? Never thought I'd live long enough to see this day arrive.

Pretty tasteless one with the way the head of Ted Kennedy was used…..if you are an artist, you could have done a much better job than this which appears to have the actual head of Kennedy attached….. "bad form Peter"

I think this is the worst and most destructive series of cartoons you have ever posted. You degraded Senator Kennedy and his efforts, and degraded President Obama's efforts to establish universal health care for all Americans, which should be an entitlement.

You ought to be ashamed of drawing these cartoons. The only thing ugly is what you conveyed through your sketches.

Since no healthcare bill has yet been selected, I find it absurd that people are jumping all over "The Plan." How ugly can something be which has yet to become visible? I am beginning to see that many people assume the lies to be true, and so you see financially challenged seniors supporting the side of the medical-pharmaceutical industry, which has screwed them so royally in the past.

And the healthcare plan (?) is ugly because? If you eliminate the blatent lies, what has been discussed so far *(the plan) is a step in the right direction, which is coverage for everyone and measures taken to ensure competition to lower prices. The "cuts" in Medicare are not cuts in services but in subsidies to insurance companies, who are making obscene profits off our pain.

So Does Cagle try to expose the lies and thus reveal the truth? No, he takes the part of the worst propagandists on behalf of the med industry by portraying reform as ugly.

How disappointing. And using Ted Kennedy as the standard bearer for healthcare reform is totally appropriate, as this was his great cause in life. But ASSUMING that the plan that will be adapted is UGLY in order to mock the use of Kennedy as a standard bearer, is to support the status quo, which–without having to speculate or assume anything–is a disaster and disgrace, truly ugly. Why doesn't Cagle get it?

Oh, I think Mr. Cagle "gets it" alright. The problem is that a lot of folks don't get it. Let's face it folks, Universal Health Care is going to become law, in some form or another. If "everything" that "everybody" wants isn't in it this time around, the law will be amended in the years to come.

I also think that "swift" has the right idea. Nothing has, as yet been passed, and that there are ugly rumors and innuendos passing for the truth of what is to happen.

What I don't hear said is that the "folks" need to get off their duffs and get hold of their Congressional Representatives and make, that's right, MAKE them do thier job properly. It is stated "We the People," Not "We the Sheep." I disagree with Cindy Merrill 's cite of "53%" against Obama's "health care proposals," mainly because I haven't heard him make any specific proposals. And I have seen figures that state that the majority of Americans want to see some kind of Health Care bill passed.

Let's NOT do one for the "Gipper." A bad idea does not become a good idea just because one of the proponents dies.

Not a nice cartoon! My mother died because we could not get health insurance for her as insurance companies refused to insure her due to pre-condition. Senator Kennedy was able to take advantage of a public health care plan, which is offered to Congress. Admittedly, he could pay for it with his wealth and maybe he did. But the point is, Congress has a good health plan covered by the goverment and yet many of them want to deny the American public the same concession. Shame on you and your nasty cartoon!

As a person who subscribes to Cagle's Web Blog only because he has an interest, and little more than that in trying my own hand at drawn caricaturations, I have always thought there were possibilities for using a mix of real life photos with political cartoon art.

Besides some of my own experimental musings, which incorporated photo-real with software drawn images, I've yet to see anything until now like Daryl has drawn. I'm unsure of its appeal. I only know it works for me.

For all of you wwho lionize the late Senator Kennedy remember a very important name….Mary Jo Kopekne. She beat him to the final destination, not by her choice but by a disservice of Senator Kennedy. He was, to say the the very least, a very complicated individual with questionable morals. Lionize him if you wish but the truth will out.

I tend to agree with Guy Slater. I believe that a health care plan is in the offing. If the Congress spent as much time hammering out an initial plan to start the ball rolling, as they do pointing fingers and seeing who can tell the biggest lie, it might actually get done. They need to start acting in the best interests of the people they represent instead of their own selfish partisan/re-election interests. Everyone agrees there is a problem, lets fix it.

Daryl – I have always appreciated your work -for both artistic and editorial expression. I do find fault with some of your columnists, although today's will do.

My idea of a cartoon for this subject (my drawing ability is limited to smiley faces,) would have a WWJD theme. I'd have a leper looking into the eyes of Jesus as he awaits to be saved, but sees a blue shield reflected from one eye and a blue cross in the other eye, both with their thumbs down. The caption would read – " Cursed are the frail, for they shall not be healed without insurance." For more political clout, the scene could be in the C Street Chapel.

With all of the cartoonists losing their jobs I would assume they will lose any insurance they had. If that should happen to you please do not ask for any of those nasty government run programs to help the poor.

What a pathetic little jerk you are. Sooooooo typical of all Republicowards. Be careful where your ignorance and hatred take you.

Whoops! Ted Kennedy is/was a very handsome man. Something VERY lacking in you – and most other hate-filled Repugs as well. It's part of the reason for the intrinsic lifetime of bitterness and self-failure so prevalent amonf Repugs. Proof?? Look about you. Everywhere. Duh.

What a disgusting cartoon. Every other industialized country in the world has taken profit out of health care. Now that the bastard Health Insurance Companies have won the battle you might as well bring out the bottle of vasline and bend over. We are going to get screwed with higher premiums, more preexisting condition denials and many many more bankruptcies. Is what we have any uglier than a Canadian or English Health Care Sytem?

Shame on you for your cartoon. Shame on you for your views and shame on you for buying that cow crap being fed to you and yours.

Following the 2/8/90% plan we know that 2% of the people know what is going on, run for political office and are elected. 8% of the people couldn't win an election if their lives depend on it so they work for the elected 2%. 90% of the people are sheep who are fed by the 8% whatever crap the 2% want them to hear.

Thank you for letting me know that you are part of the 8%. I'll be on the lookout for your lying crap next time I open a cartoon on your web site.

Gloria Nelson

Not to fret good people of conscious, morals and selflessness. This kind of trivial ignorance will not only be seen by very few, but serves only to further steel the resolve of all of us committed to realizing the worthy progress of our people and society. When you hear ignorant selfishness shriek, or, reveal itself on display as we see here, you need only remember Ted's clarion call that the Dream lives on. We will get there.

The pity is that our current system is SOOO BAD, that it makes the wart hog seem moderately attractive. Almost any change would be an improvement. Also, almost any change with much of a chance of getting done would be a rather small improvement…like maybe we should have been working on illegal immigration, or sterilizing Republicans, all this time.

Daryl- The only thing that's ugly is the current status quo. You should be drawing a whole herd of warthogs to represent all the insurance company executives wallowing in the pit of money they have taken from hard working citizens annd then refused to use to pay their needed medical expenses.

I once told an insurance agent that his business was a big racket and all he did was laugh. No denial, no apology, just laughter … that's what I call ugly!

Around 240 years ago, doctors took care of anyone who needed it and took all manner of items of barter as the means of payment. If our forefathers could have envisioned the for-profit-industry that medical care has become, they would have probably written universal health care into the constitution.

Daryl,
That warthog has such a long face, tusks, and an odd nose, I thought it was an elephant! (Tee hee!)
E.B.

Comment to Dann (11:13 PM)
240 years ago? My great-great-grandfather was still doing so 125 years ago.

Pork? Inefficiency? Then WHY is the insurance industry (in one prong of its attack) squealing that health reform will put them out of business? Sounds as though they fear transparent, fair, moral competition.

OK you liberals, Name one goverment program that has ever worked effeciently?
600$ Hammer
1200$ toilet seat
program studies
the list goes on and on

Donna, I looked at your link and its a good story, but doesnt explain a thing, How could you wait 9 hours to report a tragic event like that, with homes nearby. Something still smells down by the water.

@ chukel: So, because of one ugly situation which the Senator took responsibility for, i.e. M.J. Kopekne, we are expected to throw out his 'lion's share' (pun intended) of incredibly positive and wondrous contributions to the American people? When did the exception become the rule? As a society and culture North America continues to erode solid ethics. It used to be majority rule. Now, we can have 99% for and 1% against, but if that 1% makes a big enough stink about being offended, the other 99% get tossed out. Think it not so? What happened to 'Merry Christmas' instead of 'Happy Holidays' or 'The Festive Season'? But I digress. The Health Plan has yet to be revealed therefore the cartoon is reactionary propaganda, not proactive satire. Disappointing by its very nature. The tutorial however? Great to see and my thanks Daryl. You work is hit and miss for me so far. This was a massive miss, but well drawn.

@ Bill – I was making reference to the time period just before the drafting of the constitution when the founding fathers were thinking of what should be in it. They surely didn't think it would be necessary to include anything about medical care since it was common practice at that time for anyone to receive care whenever they needed it. As you pointed out, the practice continued that way for at least 125 years before it changed to the system of making a profit from the misfortunes of others, probably around the same time that the stock market was invented by Dow Jones in the late 1800's.

@Ernie – Have you never heard of people being so traumatized by a tragic event that they don't even recall the details for hours, days.or even years later? It has been referred to as selective amnesia. No one else was there and no one can know how any one person (including themselves) would react or behave in a simular situation. There is a phrase that comes to mind: Judge not lest ye be judged.

"Lion of the Senate"? More like LIAR of the US Senate.
Edward Moore Kennedy lied about getting Mary Jo Kopechne DIE, by leaving her to spend 3-4 hours slowly dying while trapped in his car while he went back to the cottage and then to Edgartown to cover his butt.
He testified at her Inquest that he made ONE phone call that night, yet did not call anyone to help save her.
He lied at the inquest, since he made 17 phone calls which he charged to his DC Office.. 12 were detailed. The first was to Theodore Sorensen at 11.57 PM, less than 1/2 hour after the crash at 11:30 PM (even though he testified at the Inquest that he tried to save Mary Jo for 40 minutes and then spent 15 minutes walking back to the cottage, yet his companions said he came back about midnight). He spoke to Ted for 2 minutes. The second was 7 min later at 12:04 AM to the Hyannisport family offices.. It lasted 4 min. 8 min later another Hyannisport number was called and lasted 18 min. At this point, Kennedy claimed to have swum to Edgartown from Chappaquiddick Island, despite there being a 24 hour a day ferry available, At the same time a motorboat was stolen from the island and found the next day 200 yards from Kennedy's hotel in Edgartown, (two of his companions told the girls at the cottage they were out after midnight "looking for a boat"). Kennedy then appeared in Edgartown about 2 AM. The phone calls resumed, now from Edgartown, also charged to Kennedy's phone account. The 4th was to his lawyer's office (Marshall & Hamilton) at 2:54 AM lasting 4 min. The 5th was again to his lawyer's office at 5:04 AM for 3 min. The 6th was to Ted Sorensen again at 5:28 AM and he spoke to him for 21 min. The 7th was to his Brother-in-Law, Stephen Smith at 5:54 Am and lasted 27 min. The 8th was probably made by one of Kennedy's companions since it was at 6:04 AM while Kennedy was talking to Smith. That one was also to Sorensen and lasted 7 min. The 9th was at 6:56 again to his Lawyer and lasted 1 min. The 10th was to at 7:19 Am also to his lawyer's office and lasted 2 min. The 11th was at 8:14 AM to Sorensen again and lasted 42 min. The 12th documented call was at 9:01 AM again to his Brother-in-Law Smith and lasted 11 min.
So of the documented 12 calls, the 11 that were probably made by Kennedy himself lasted a total of TWO HOURS and 15 minutes. The other 5 calls are not documented as to number called and time spent.
But while making at least 17 calls that night after the accident, NOT ONE was to the POLICE, Coast Guard or Fire Department to try to save Mary JO. They were all to save TED KENNEDY's career!
Sorensen also lied, stating that he didn't receive ONE SINGLE CALL that night even though the phone company documents that he received at least FOUR calls to his PRIVATE, UNLISTED phone number lasting a total of one HOUR and 12 minutes

He lied about being against the Vietnam War that his own brother started by sending 1,364 American soldiers there in 1961, increasing that to 9,865 in 1962 and finally 15,599 soldiers in 1963 before being assassinated. Teddy continued supporting the war in Vietnam including voting in favor of the "Gulf of Tonkin" resolution which led to the US expanding troops to 26,500 and daily bombing of North Vietnam.
He only turned against it at the end, the withdrawal of which caused FIVE MILLION Vietnamese, Cambodians and Laotians to be slaughtered.

Yes, a real "Lion"… when you consider that Lions slaughter up to 400,000 herbivores such as hippos, elephants, giraffes, water buffalo, gazelles and other species each year.

Well, at least he will have the company of his father and brothers in Hades for eternity.

Ernie – A government program that works? How about the National Highway System?

Dan and Bill _ Medicine, as practiced in the 18th and 19th Centuries, was brutal, why do you think that a common nick-name for a doctor was "Sawbones?" There was very little to prevent a person from moving into town and setting up shop, proclaiming himself to be a "doctor," and there was very litlle to no education involved until the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. Interesting exhibit at the Medical Museum at Walter Reed Army Medical Center (if it is still called that), Institute of Pathology (if I have that name right) in the form of a diary of a Civil War soldier whose leg was amputated, and he was left in a warehouse setting hospital to die of gangrreen. In his delerious state he awoke one night to the sound of gnawing, and saw a rat chewing on his stump. It was the rat, and not the doctors of that time that saved this mans life. We see too many movies and TV shows (Doc Milburne Stone of "Gunsmoke" comes to mind) depicting a kindly frontier doctor, that we have come to see this as true of all of them from that time. "Taint so. Take no offense, Dan, about your G-grand father. He was doing the best he could for the times. As for accepting whatever was offered as payment in exchange, "barter" is used when people lack the coinage of the area. Cash was not abundant or practical until the early 20th Century, and trading a chicken (or a warthog) for medical care is not that unreasonalbe.

It's tragic (for America) that there is still so much ignorance about the health care plan, and it shows us much about either the illiteracy rates in the US, or something about the American character that is very disturbing. Sure, one can read the plan for himself, and turn to legitimate (gov) sources to find the facts, but it's obvious from certain comments that they're either too lazy to do so, or illiterate to a degree that they really can't read and understand it. The level of gullibility — the bizarre blind trust in the infotainment characters of choice — ensures the continued deterioration of the US.

This plan does require people to have some form of health insurance, just like we're required to have insurance to drive. YOU pick your own plan. Period. You can keep your current coverage. You are NOT required to drop your private insurance, and if you can afford it it, the government does NOT want you to drop it. This plan simply covers those who are too poor to afford private insurance, or are denied coverage due to a pre-existing health condition. Should we simply let them suffer and die? If you believe this, you would be welcomed to join Al Qaiddah.

We have fallen so far behind the more modern nations, perhaps most strikingly in the area of health care. The lack of routine health care means that millions can't obtain treatment until a condition reaches a wildly expensive critical stage, at which point they can run up hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt that they simply can't pay.

Can America do better than this? For the first time in my life, I have my doubts.

Daryl,
That warthog has such a long face, tusks, and an odd nose, I thought it was an elephant! (Tee hee!)
E.B.

Ernie: Government programs that work: Social Security (threatened only when government "borrows" money out of it without paying it back) and Medicare. For better or worse, we have the military, police and fire protection, park services (including fighting wildfires), library system, education (highly flawed, but not beyond repair), weather services/emergency weather alerts (very important in places like here, where we can have tornados), a highway system that links the entire nation, emergency response teams, care and housing for the developmentally disabled, a vast prison system, and numerous other services that we take for granted. When there is bad leadership, these government programs work poorly. Under good leadership, they work very well.

I see an awful lot of angry, vengeful "leftist" commentary here, but not a lot of thoughtful consideration for the other half of the country. Can people not see that Universal Healthcare is nothing more than Welfare with a medical industry twist? Welfare…I thought we did away with that when it was shown to enable generations of people to avoid becoming productive members of society…Hmmm

You need only to look at the government's management of the Veterans' Administration healtcare system to get a glimpse of what is to come…and these are our heroes, our verterans! Tell me again why we should be happy about this?

Has Obama explained how private insurer's will compete with the government alternative when employer's find it more cost effective to only offer the government option, poor as it may be? I haven't really heard any discussion from anyone on the left how that's supposed to work. Why is that?

And just exactly how do you plan to pay for a universal system, with the benificiary pool at least doubling, without breaking the backs of working Americans and reducing the benefits they have through their own insurance?

Let's be fair and honest…this is Socialism…we are going to force the working half of America to give up some of their hard earned medical care so that non-working Americans (and illegal aliens?) can have health care options they can't and won't pay for themselves. If you think that's good, then you win. If you think that's not good…it's just your tough luck.

Welcome to the New America… Bob in Exile may have the right idea…What a shame!

Shy Guy – I hope the future is kinder to you than the past, which obviously contains horrid memories.

You have such intense hatred towards this family, it may well be in your best interests to get some help. Your recollection of Vietnam is a bit short-sighted. You have to go back to the Eisenhower Administration for the initial troops sent there. JFK's interview with Walter Cronkite also shows his interest in pulling back, not increasing our commitment there, before he was killed.

Ted Kennedy made a serious error, which may have been responsible for a death. I know in those days I drank and drove too often, often with repercussions, although never anything as serious as what happened to Kennedy. I have other friends, however, who were responsible for the deaths of others while driving under the influence. Most tried to turn things around and lead productive lives. None succeeded nearly as much as Ted Kennedy did.

Don't forget, this was a wealthy young man. He could easily have dropped out of sight, continuing to help out his other family members, if he chose, or just have lived a life of ease. He did not do this, and even if you disagree with causes which help the poor and downtrodden, you must accept that he dedicated his life to these causes. By not accepting this, you are causing yourself far more harm than you choose to inflict on the Kennedy name…

Call me conservative – I'm not asking you to give up your insured health care, if you're so happy with it and the rapidly increasing premiums that go with it. I am self employed and my premiums are increasing at a rate I can no longer afford, while my coverage has decreased significantly the past five years. I now have a borderline sugar problem, so switching may not be an option.

All I want is to be able to buy into medicare five years earlier than I can legally obtain it. I will accept the drawbacks, I just want the assurance that I will not lose the little I have, my house, car and family keepsakes, if I get a serious illness. Is that too much to hope for, in this , the wealthiest nation in the world?

KCChandler – You should speak with folks in other countries if you think they have a problem with their care. In fact, both of our neighboring countries rank ahead of us in overall care. I have not spoken with one person yet from Canada or Great Britain who would switch to our system. I hope you're not getting your information solely from Fox News…

As I read the postings I see that public option for payment of health is being espoused by those who want more government control over our lives. Certainly one can come up with anecdotal evidence of someone who was denied coverage for one reason or another. I can come up with anecdotal evidence that shows that neither I, nor anyone in my family has ever been denied coverage. I have the same type of plan that Senator Kennedy had. Senator Ron Wyden has suggested a plan in which the uninsured could also enroll in such a plan. The government employee plans are operated by private insurers or employee unions. Government pays part of the premium but that's because it is the employer.

There are many things that only the government can do and they are generally done well. I don't think running health care is one of them.

By the way, what is an obscene profit? I think it's the profit someone else is making.

How disrespectful of you. The man was jsut buried on Saturday!!! If you will rememeber, Ted Kennedy has been fighting for health care for a very long time. Did you think about that before you made this awful cartoon? It is fitting memorial that his name be on the bill DUH!
I'm glad all of you people who are opposed to universal health care really believe that your current policy will see you through a catastophic illness. Good Luck! Have a bought with cancer and find out how under insured you really are. We are all just one diagnosis away from bankruptcy.

Hey Tim Shocken:

I hear you man, and I feel your pain. As a former self employed GC, I struggled under the rediculous burdens that you have…I opted out and got into a different employment situation. As for your personal need/desire to buy into medicare five years earlier…I have no objection to that. In fact, that is the kind of out of the box thinking we need to resolve the issue without tearing our country apart. Well done for stating your case in a non-offensive way. You have my vote! Hey OBAMA ~ Give Tim an early buy in!

Jim – An obscene profit is one where a patient is denied coverage for a life saving procedure in lieu of profit for a shareholder…

Maybe you should read TR Reid's book. I've lived in European countries with excellent medical care (and no, they are not really socialized medicine). The ugly thing in this cartoon is the disrespect for the late Senator Kennedy and, even worse, the disrespect for the roughly 20,000 Americans who die each year because they could not get medical care. This should not happen in a country that espouses the ideal of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Health care should not be a privilege for the rich alone. Health care for all citizens should be a moral imperative in a rich country that NOW spends a greater portion of its GNP on healthcare than all the other industrialized nations with poorer results. We rank 37th in quality, much lower than the British system, often demonized as the worst example of 'socialized' medicine. I don't hear my British friends complaining, and I don't hear my Canadian friends, who get better care than most of my family, complaining.

I am not conservative or liberal. I am an independent voter. I do have decent insurance through my employer, which really saved us during our Summer of Throat Cancer Hell this Summer. The co-pays are killing us, as we have lost my husband's income for the time being. My questions on national health insurance is how will it be paid for? The government doesn't have a good track record – see Medicare, Social Security, etc., not to mention Cash for Clunkers, which ran out of money, and where did that money come from? Us, of course. Our current system stinks. That is a given. However, I am not sure that the best way is a national health run by the government. There are many thousands of people like myself, with autoimmune thyroid disease and who cannot take synthetic thyroid meds. In GB you cannot get anything BUT synthetics, and in Canada many have a hard time getting them prescribed. Those of us who need bio-identical hormones because we react badly to synthetics, would be left out in the cold, as are those in GB. I feel that the insurance companies have run things for too long, Profit should not be the driving force in health care. Insurance people should not be making decisions about tests and medicines. Doctors should, in conjunction with patients. Alternatives to drugs should be widely available and covered by insurance for those who prefer natural alternatives to drugs with nasty side effects. I ditched Advair, which has a side effect of death, for the P5P version of B6, which is controlling my Asthma quite nicely, but of course is not covered by insurance. However, it is MUCH cheaper to use than Advair. Coverage should be for all, with no exclusions, period, and pre-existing conditions should not be a reason to deny insurance. In fact, insurance companies should NOT be able to deny coverage, period. This way all would be covered. Premiums should be charged on a sliding scale according to income and ability to pay. For those that are here illegally, well, they knew they were coming here illegally. When you do things illegally, you are taking a very serious risk. They should not be automatically covered. They should be charged by a sliding scale taking into account the ability to pay. Hospitals should not be making profits. Pharmceutical companies need to stop funding medical schools with the underhanded motive of influencing doctors. There should be NO advertising for drugs. Our society is way to drugged as it is. Common sense should be ruling here, not quickly thrown out bills for national health insurance! If we have a national health insurance, it should be very carefully crafted and well thought out as to funding sources for the long term. We need to take politics out of medicine and take pharmaceutical companies out of medical influence and out of the FDA. I am not against insurance companies making a decent profit, but I am against profit at the expense of the populace. There needs to be a balance.

Those who oppose healthcare reform are still spreading lies and fear. All developed nations (plus many many poor countries) have universal coverage with mix of different plans, hybrids, etc. They spend half of what the US spends on healthcare and rank higher than the US in healthcare. How can conservatives deny this?

No nation has overturned universal health care, as it is seen as a right. While there are problems and critics, the objective FACT is that universal coverage works better and costs far less than our for-profit non-system.

Why can't anti healthcare advocates look at the facts and quit spreading lies about the failure of universal coverage in scores of nations.? Because they are not interested in facts but rather their ideology of the Free Market and their All government is bad.

At bottom, universal healthcare is a primary foundation for the social contract which all other wealthy nations (and many poor) provide their citizens. The US social contract is shattered by dividing people into haves and have-nots. The have-nots suffer more, die younger, lack normal healthcare.

Universal healthcare would help mend our social contract, and it is this mending that threatens the med-pharma industry and wingnut ideologues, as they thrive on division.

Ellen Killelea, Swift, Pete, etc… the only UGLY thing here are you LAZY libs DEMANDING FREE healthcare as an entitlement!!!!! IT IS NOT AN ENTITLEMENT. If YOU want to help the poor, then YOU do it YOURSELF!!! DO NOT demand tax money from ME to help everyone because NOT EVERYONE DESERVES help!!! There are those who do fall on hard times that may need help, so provide them with a TEMPORARY access to healthcare until they get on their feet(i.e. PRIVATE CHARITIES!). But we should NOT have to provide FREE healthcare to LIFER WELFARE recipients, nor ILLEGAL ALIENS, nor DRUG ADDICTS, nor HOMOSEXUALS that contract AIDS due to their OWN CHOICE of lifestyle, etc… ! I am also sick of hearing this "WWJD" CRAP!!! You seem to fogert the part where it also says "God helps those who HELP THEMSELVES" and "seek and ye shall find". This means people need to try to help themselves FIRST then seek aid if they cannot. This does not mean that we have to INDEFINITELY provide for someone who REFUSES to provide for themselves. If free healthcare is passed and my wife and my own salaries are cut because of it, then you can expect the QUALITY of healthcare to go to CRAP!! Because if you expect me to give you LAZY LIBS the same quality of care on LESS money, then your are OUT OF YOUR DAMN MINDS!!!!!!!
Swift needs to change his name to SWIFTLESS!

OH look, if it isn't super-lib Tim Stocken kissing the ass of Ted Kennedy, the biggest piece of trash to have wasted 40 years in the senate and a man who got away with manslaughter because he was a Kennedy! I know, he wasn't convicted, but according to your mentality Oliver North wasn't either but he is still guilty in your mind(typical lib double standard). I am glad that fat old worthless drunk is gone! And I did not fly my flag at half-staff either, I got a bigger pole and flew it even HIGHER!!!!!!

"like maybe we should have been working on illegal immigration, or sterilizing Republicans, all this time."

If you want bi-partisanship support, then put in a clause that as soon as the bill passes the all liberals MUST be sterilized IMMEDIATELY, starting with Glen first!

Hardcore one…………..until you intervened with your screaming capitals, your curses, your bigotry and selfishness, differences of opinion on this forum were fairly rational and civil.
Screaming does not make for a good argument, as no one listens to the content.

We all agree people should try to help themselves first, but what would you do with children or disabled adults or elderly people? Would you deny they have a right to healthcare?

You say not everyone deserves help….so you would let a gay person, or migrant worker, or his children die?

Please explain why universal healthcare works for every other developed nation with higher health ratings and much cheaper cost than in the USA.

Screaming, personal attacks, stereotypes, brutal ignorance, selfishness–its's toxic brew. It spoils the civil discourse on which democracy based.

By the way, thanks for coming out as a gay Canadian. It must be hell with all that free healthcare and lower taxes than the US. But I applaud you for your coming out. I had suspected you were a gay Canadian all along. Using a pseudonym which evokes the penis, now makes sense. We love your satire. Keep the faith.

"so you would let a gay person, or migrant worker, or his children die"
The gay person, DEFINITELY, if the migrant and his children are illegal, then yes, that is what they DESERVE when they break the law. And I neither GAY nor CANADIAN as I DID NOT post that. Bit I don't expect any less out of a little liberal FAGGOT such as yourself, and I you EVER called me a homosexual to my face, it would be the LAST thing you would ever say!!!!

Hardcore…..you say: I GOT A BIGGER POLE AND FLEW IT HIGHER. Have you read Freud on the psychopathology of slips of the tongue?

By the way, Oliver North, who gave guns to the Iranian terrorists and guns to the murderous Contra, was tried and convicted.

If you get an even bigger Pole, let us know.

You are very brave….behind your phallic nom de plume.

I like your logic: you would actually let a child die rather than provide medical treatment, but you would assault anyone who called you homo, altho you do the same regularly as an argument against liberal causes. I take up your challenge: I am 68 but I will defend to my death your right to be gay. And if you wish to assault me, let's get it on. After all, anonymous threats are very easy to make. You are so brave……in the face of the obvious fact that your flipflop on being gay is a matter of public record.

Hardone…it's ok to be gay, altho being Canadian is harder to swallow. You can call me FAGGOT…..I don't have the insecurity issues you do, and perhaps I am gay. Is that a crime? After all, you outed yourself as gay. Taunting someone for being gay is a hate crime. But oh, you hide behind your homoerotic pen name allowing you to spew hatred, threaten gays, threaten me…………we love you, Hardscore, for you reveal the contradictions of a gay male who hates gays, just like many of the Nazi crusaders against homosexuality were themselves closet gays.

Hardon…………..as a matter of free speech, I honor you decision to out yourself as gay AND to attack liberals as faggots and threaten them with physical harm. anonymously. I also applaud your willingness to let children of illegal migrants die for lack of medical care. Thank God you are Canadian and not American. No real American would allow an innocent child to die. But I understand that Canadians, being subject to brainfreeze, sometimes get confused. We cherish you for your painful honesty.

Just a note to Hardcore One,
I am also a gay Canadian and I take offense to your words. I am proud to be a homosexual and have had many homosexual encounters.

Don't let these faggoty liberals get to you………….I agree: children of undocumented migrants do not deserve healthcare, as they have the choice of running away from home and returning to Mexico for their coverage.(unless they are too sick to run, or too young, or, if born in the USA, too ignorant to know they are citizens with rights). You say an infant cannot protect itself: you should have thought of that when you swam across the Rio Grande. And by the way, keep ;your hands off my lettuce.

If you want to assault someone for calling you gay (based on a previous post), then you need to punch yourself hard enough in the mouth to prevent any further speech, as you are the prime exemplar of calling people you disagree with Faggots. If it boomrangs, that is karma. I call on you to be Proud and Gay. Hopefully, you will not get aids, as you would then have to turn down treatment to be true to your beliefs..That takes balls. And it fits your premise that it is better to be ideologically pure than to live. I admire your spirit of jihad.

Be comforted to know you are not the only gay bigot in Canada. And by the way, if the liberals seize all power, you can always move to Iran where they hate liberals and have no gays. You can go as a closet gay. May your hardone never wilt; may your tax money never be used to help someone else, may your selfishness never be diluted with compassion, for compassion is the attitude of the softcore.

I see no one has addressed my comments at all. It is much easier to be inflammatory, I have observed, by both sides of this thorny question. I am not interested in imflammatory commentary, I am only interested in reasonable solutions, with long term provisions for how a program is funded. European countries have a good health system on paper, but it is still hard for those who need bio-identical hormones to obtain them. How are these programs funded, and are their governments going broke funding them? These are questions that need to be addressed. And yes, GB citizens ARE complaining about their care – especially if they are hypothyroid. It is extremely difficult to get proper testing and proper treatment for this in GB, and also in Canada. I belong to a global forum and those from Europe, Australia, Canada, and the USA, not to mention Scandanavia and other areas, all have trouble getting their needs met by the current system. I am not sure that national health insurance would address this, except in a manner that would exclude those who either need bio-identicals because of reactions or prefer them because of the nasty side effects of synthetics. None of this is adressed in any way, shape or form. Intelligent discussion is needed here, not threats, and certainly not inflammatory commentary.

With all the pseudonyms and who is Canadian and who is gay, I can't tell who's who anymore. We need some Iranian posters since I remember the president of Iran saying there are no gays in Iran.

PS: Do they have healthcare? If so there must not be much money in it since all their doctors are over here making "obscene profits".

So now Hardon steals Swift's name and pretend to out him as a gay Canadian. That is argument enough against healthcare reform. I think we might conclude that this misguided caracature, by an anonymous writer, is symptomatic of gay denial, wherein the gay party takes on someone else's identity and then outs them….it is a classic example of shadow projection: projecting the loathed identity onto someone else and then attacking them for their revelations. This is how the Nazis operated. They had the same sickness as the obsessed Hardcrow has. Do you have mental health insurance, Hardguy?

Hardcoreone and Swift whatever…you children ruin the discussion for everyone else. Must be hard to keep any friends around with mouths and minds like that, huh?

The philosophy of the anti-public option reactionaries can be summed up by a paraphrased quote from their spiritual predecessor, Marie Antoinette:

The peasants are hungry? Well, let them eat cake!

Only now the words are hungry and cake are substituted by need medical attention and a slang term for feces. What a wonderful bunch.

Catherine……..I agree with most of your points regarding universal coverage under a system based on health outcomes, not profit.

I did a little checking on bio-identical hormones and found that they are not FDA approved nor is there conclusive proof they are safer than synthetics. I agree that the FDA is biased towards the chemical-based pharmaceutical industry. I would argue for a broader realm of treatment options, but it makes common sense not to provide treatments until they are proven safe and effective.

The Gay Canadian banter is just a case of satirical liberals mocking facist homophobes, which seems a worthy cause. The anti-healthcare people tend to use inflammatory language for lack of rational argument or fact. The pro-healthcare people tend to provide evidence and examples, but they must also be ready to expose the anti people, which is often done with satire.

No healthcare package will be complete or perfect, so we must not let certain deficiencies (lack of support for alternatives) undermine the reform effort. I personally prefer the kind of socialized or hybrid systems in Europe, but Obama has calculated that the exclusive single-payer model is not attainable; so he has promoted the public option. I doubt whether a government program will exclude treatments that private insurance companies exclude. Let's get the Reform in place, then work to improve it over the years.

I don't get satire. I call people I disagree with children. That is my contribution to the conversation.

Oh, and if I disagree with you, you must not have any friends. If you don't agree with that, then you must not have any friends.

Dale…how very telling:

"…we must not let certain deficiencies (lack of support for alternatives) undermine the reform effort. I personally prefer the kind of socialized systems in Europe…"

You make the point better than anyone I've seen due to your non-evasive, plainly stated Socialist Standpoint! The problem is that this is AMERICA! We're not Socialists!

The "certain deficiencies" you refer to are so numerous and so glaringly obvious, it's like referring to a nuclear bomb as little boom boom. No one who actually loves the American experiment can approve of putting a socialist agenda in place while you and your commie buddies try to experiment with our way of life. If you want that kind of life, pick you leftist butts up and MOVE TO FRANCE!

If bio-identicals are not FDA approved, that does not mean that they are not safe and effective; they are. They are not approved because the big pharma companies don't want them approved. This is fact, I am afraid. They can't be patented because they are not created by companies whose sole motive is profit. Being FDA approved is no guarantee of safety! If you look at statistics, and they do exist, drugs that are prescribed and used correctly cause quite a number of deaths, as do doctors, and again, there are statistics to bear this out. The FDA is run by Big Pharma ex-moguls; all you have to do is check their backgrounds to find that out. I agree that no healthcare package will be perfect. However, I want commen sense and careful thought to be the ruling methodology here, not a quick bill thrown together, which this most certainly was. Both the Democrats and Republicans have valid points. I have read a translated version of the bill that was sent, and I didn't really care for a lot of what I saw. As I stated earlier, it needs to be carefully and thoughtfully crafted, not thrown together in a hurry. I do not see this happening, at least not yet. When I see one that has been crafted in true bipartisanship, which BOTH sides do not seem to want to do – both seem to want it their way only – then we may have something that is workable, which we most certainly need. True reform is most certainly needed, but I don't really see reform being suggested. National healthcare is not necessarily reform; it is just a different system. The way insurance is doled out in this country certainly needs reforming!

Catherine Clark – I wish I had the expertise to help you myself, but I am active on the MSNBC.com/ First Read blog and there are several contributors there, Nashville-fan, Anita from Birmingham and Clara from Boston that run healthcare information sites that may be able to help you. Just login and ask your questions on any health care thread and I'm sure one of the aforementioned will get back to you.

You must submit your questions soon after the piece opens on First Read, as after 45 minutes or so, they sometimes close that thread. You may have to stay on to get a response from them on another thread, or wait until the next day. The articles usually begin to appear just after 9:00am, eastern, so have your question ready and post it as soon as you can. Then check there and on new pieces throughout the day. Keep trying and good luck.

Quotes from Hardcore One:

1-DO NOT demand tax money from ME to help everyone because NOT EVERYONE DESERVES help!!!

2- …if you expect me to give you LAZY LIBS the same quality of care on LESS money, then your are OUT OF YOUR DAMN MINDS!!!!!!!

I resent the fact that freedom-loving, caring, socially responsible US working citizens' hard earned tax dollars are spent keeping the street clean in front of homo-hating, democracy-hating, civil-discourse-refusenik Hardcore One's house, protecting his ass from invading armies, and getting mail sent to his doorstep on time. Since he hates taxes and government so much, he does not deserve the social benefits they provide. However, a small problem exists-taxes used for the public good do not discriminate based on social, political, or economic status. Which is a concept HC-1 can't get his little mind around for some reason.

Lazy??? Millions of Americans, liberal, conservative, and middle of the road, work their asses off each day year after year, decade after decade, and have no medical coverage due to changing jobs, jobs or careers with no benefits, and pre-existing conditions through no fault of their own, in many cases just rotten luck. Ever hear of the working poor? Their employers don't want to cover them. They don't make enough to afford private insurance. Get real. Reactionaries like HC-1 live in a right wing fantasy land where all hard-working folks who struggle day after day to make ends meet are deemed lazy, and if they complain about the raw deal they get they are deemed liberal, as if that is a dirty word! I'll tell you what's a dirty word these days– REPUBLICAN.

Nuff said.

So, plantrant is accussing me of stealing someone's identity. I did not steal anyone's identity. But you sure all jumped on the bandwagon when someone stole MY identity and called me a homosexual. Ted Kennedy is NOW the PERFECT example of what a liberal should be!

Where in the Constitution does it state that Americans cannot be socialists? Red-baiting, like calling me a commie, is a toxic hangover from the Cold War days. It is a vicious name-calling in the absence of rational argument.

Do you know that France has a much higher=rated system than ours and it cost about half as much.? If that is socialism, then socialism is obviously better. As far as moving to France, I would not mind that but I do love where I live now…..I live in a part of the country where it is not a crime to favor universal healthcare. By the way….you quoted out of context–I said socialist (like the UK) or hybrid, like Switzerland with private insurers. You forgot the or because it woudn't work with your red-baiting hysteria…Twenty European nations have "experimented" with universal healthcare for like 50 years–what's wrong with looking at their results and choosing the best? Are you for bad healthcare or lack of access?

You say the deficiencies are glaringly obvious but fail to be specific. Here are deficiencies of the present system (do you like it?):

45 million uninsured

if you lose your job, you lose your health insurance if provided

the insurance companies can deny you insurance or, if insured, coverage…with no accountability

no coverage for pre-existing conditions (that's when you need it!)

We rank 37th in the world, between dirtpoor Costa Rica and Slovenia, in healthcare, based on objective standards. We pay twice as much as the best systems, like France or other European nations.

our system is based on private profit at the expense of healthcare. Tens of thousands die each year based on lack of access–a much worse toll, year after year, than the terrorists have caused. Is that ok?

we have 50 years experience with scores of countries to study the best systems and adopt.

Socialism is not a disease; it is a social contract based on the fact that all wo/men are created equal. Capitalism is a disease, as it is rooted in selfishness and sociopathic lack of concern for others. Its trajectory is boom to bust, boom to bust. When things get really rough, even a moron like Bush calls in socialism to rescue the capitalist system from itself.

I suggest you move to Iran, as there no Liberals allowed.
In America, ;you can be a capitalist, a socialist, a radical, a conservative, a christian, jew, or muslim. Your ignorance of the American Experiment would have you excluding people because they disagree with you. Our heritage is expanding diversity and tolerance. You seem to speak for the old bigot faction of our politics. It's a new day but sadly you cannot see it and so feel compelled to project hatred and bigotry. How unAmerican!!!

I don't necessarily need help, Mr. Stockten. I am just making the point that any national healthcare plan needs to be carefully crafted and well thought out, not just thrown together. My concern is that I do not see this happening. Government run healthcare does not have a good track record. That concerns me quite a lot. Those that deal with Medicare in the private sector tend to do a lot of overcharging for items; not everyone, of course, but it is enough of a problem to cause me concern, as that most certainly will happen with a national healthcare program. Safeguards for this need to be written in to any plan, and should apply to the current government run programs.

Hardcore one – Thank you for the compliment. Super lib, I like the sound of it. The fact is, you righties often call to the founding fathers, while ALL the founding fathers were liberals. The most conservative, Alexander Hamilton founded the national bank so as to regulate the banking industry and John Adams wrote the legal briefs that justified going to war with England – revolutionary acts when you think about it. If you can think about it…

Unfortunately, Dale probably scared you off so you won't even read this. Or Swiftcourage, because he gave his age away. Hardcore isn't going to risk it with a 68 year old, I assure you.

Donna, that faculent fornicator, Teddy K. didn't now anyone was in the back seat!? That is the ultimate liberal whitewash ever expounded. It will never be topped!!!!!!!!!! That calls for another cartoon!!! Donna, do you get your info from MSNBC like Tim Stocken? Bye, bye, Teddy, RIH..Rest in Hell!

Hey folks! And Daryl too! Here's an idea.

Instead of screaming at each other, how about each of us taking the time to describe the major features of our present healthcare insurance policies? Give a few details about whom it covers in your immediate family, and how much the premiums cost out-of-pocket monthly, Also how many pages does the policy have?

Does the policy have prescription benefits as well as hospitalization? Does it cover office visits? Does your plan allow you to choose among most physicians in your area, or does your insurance plan restrict its coverage to a network of preferred providers?

What are your co-pays for each of the above benefits? What are your deductibles? What are the maximum amounts you could be required to pay out-of-pocket annually for the “covered” medical services? How much did you actually pay out of pocket for these services last year (or so far this year)?

I've left out insurance for dental and optical services, but if you have any coverage, please let us know how much it costs monthly and what it covers. ;

Do you get you insurance through a plan administered by your employer? If so, what choices do you have among private insurance providers?

What changes occurred in your premiums, deductibles, services and benefits covered, and choice of insurance providers between 2008 and 2009?

I'll go first:

Mine is a "Cadillac" plan. My wife and I pay monthly premiums of $468. Our deductibles are an additional $500 per person annually. After we pay the deductibles, the out of pocket limit for medical services is $1500 per person with a family limit of $3,000. The coverage includes office visits and hospitalization. The policy covers all pre-existing conditions up to a lifetime limit of $2.5 million. We get to choose almost any primary care physician and virtually any specialist that accepts Medicare payments. (More about that later.)

There’s also prescription drug coverage. The co-pay for each prescription varies from $10 to $50. Generic drugs are on the low end. Proprietary drugs cost more. So far we’ve run into only one prescribed drug that was not covered. The co-pay does not count toward fulfilling the $3,000 family limit. We have a choice of two different insurance providers, each with two different plans, a low premium high deductible and high out of pocket limit or a higher premium lower deductible with the $3,000 out of pocket limit. The rates are adjusted annually. The whole thing takes 85 pages to describe.

Oh, did I mention the medical services plan premiums require that my wife and I have Medicare A and B? Otherwise the monthly premiums would be $1587. (The premiums would be reduced if either of us qualified for Medicare B or if I had worked for my employer for 15 years or more.) The variations are explained at the health plan’s website. As it happens, we simply pay an additional $192.80 monthly for Medicare B.

There’s an optional dental plan. It costs an additional $67.23 per month. It covers 100 percent of routine care: two visits/year, fillings, bite-wing x-rays, cleanings, full mouth x-rays every three years if we see a restricted list of dentists. It covers 80 percent of the cost of these services from most other dentists in our area. It pays a progressively smaller portion of the ordinary and customary fees for all other services, regardless of whether or not we use the restricted list of dentists. The general rule is, the more complicated and costly the work, such as restorative dentistry, the smaller proportion the policy pays. There are also two “Catch 22’s.” We must sign on for a two-year commitment, much like the contracts that many cell phone service providers require, and the insurance company defines “ordinary and customary fees.” The whole thing is explained at the health plan’s website.

Finally, there’s the optional vision plan, a bargain that covers both of us for only $15.22 per month. It covers an annual eye examination and a pair of glasses and frames every two years with a $10 co-pay or medically necessary contact lenses with a $20 co-pay, provided we use one the preferred vision specialists. It pays less for using others not on the list. There are also limits on the cost of frames ($135 currently), like the dental plan we must commit to a two-year contract. The website lists some 20 or so exceptions and exclusions as well as some special discounts.

Okay, let’s add this year’s premiums: $5616 (medical services) + $2313.60 (Medicare B) + $806.76 (Dental) + $182.64 (Vision)= $8,919.00.

Oops! I forgot to mention long term care insurance, which also counts as medical on our federal income tax form. That runs $1,620 annually. It pays a per diem for medically necessary care in an approved assisted living or nursing facility. The coverage is for up to five years, and it has the virtue that unlike the other insurances, you stop paying the premiums once the benefits begin. The catch is that our physician recommends, but the insurance company review (death?) board decides whether long term care really is medically necessary. Anyway, add this set of premiums and we have a guaranteed minimum out of pocket premium cost of $10,539.

It’s hard to determine what our overall out of pocket costs will be for 2009. Suffice it to say that we’re sure to beat last year’s totals. Our insurance premiums were $8,888.00 in 2008, and our total out-of-pocket expenses were $11,724.00.

Your turn.

Yeah, I don't know Donna, that's borderline conspiracy theory stuff to me. To change the players in the car like that after a full inquest was done and those at the party testified as to who was still at the house, etc…too much of a stretch for me.

More plausible, methinks, is that Mary Jo was enamored of Teddy and the Kennedy family as a whole and entertained a bit of an attraction to him even though he was married (her family claimed that politics "was her life" and she had spent all those years working only for Kennedy's and adored them; her short stint on McGoverns campaign was an unhappy one and she was said to have stated that it just wasn't the same without Bobby). Even though she was said to be a nice girl who rarely even drank, I think there was probably a flirty thing going on between them that night and they decided to go for a ride, make-out session, whatever. This would account for why she didn't carry her purse or her hotel key -they weren't actually leaving for the night – just for a good ol snog in the car. This makes sense because supposedly right around the time this accident actually happened, Officer Look saw this black car with 2 people in it pulled over in the cemetery and he thought it strange (they just about positively confirmed by the license, make and model, that it was Teddy's car). So the officer pulled over himself and started to walk towards them to ask if they needed help (I guess his generation never heard of young couples going "parking" in a car at night). When the occupants of the car spotted him, they quickly sped off out of the cemetery and right "onto Dyke road". I believe the accident happened within minutes of this incident because the place where they were spotted in the cemetery, was literally right up the road (less than a mile?) from where they went off. Because Teddy was a married man and a senator and thus could not afford to be caught in an intimate situation with another woman, I have a hunch that he was frazzled and worried that the officer might hop in his car and pursue them and recognize him. This coupled with the alcohol he had consumed, probably caused him to be going a little too fast on a road he was completely unfamiliar with. In the short span of speeding out of the cemetery and off down Dyke road, by the time he realized he was dead-ending into a narrow bridge, it was just too late and he ran right into the water beside the bridge.

As for his delay in reporting it all, yeah, I'd say "Houston, we have a problem". He was married, he was a Senator and he knew he wanted to run for President – no doubt he was completely panicked. That said, 2 of his friends testified at the inquest that after several diving attempts by himself, he came and got them and they went back and took turns diving for her but they could not find her to get her out. I'm sure it was very hard without proper equipment, to go down and get in thru a window, find a body, pull it out of the car and get back up in time to take your next breath – all in the pitch dark – and while you're intoxicated. It is highly unlikely that this woman lived down there in an air bubble for 4 hours, like someone stated earlier…even 2 or 1 hour is ridiculsou. If she had been given even 25 minutes more of life I think she would have held her breath for small moments and ventured out to feel for the openings/windows in the car, knowing her luck would not last forever. As for the blood on her face and dress – that windshield is pretty badly bashed in. Since he broke at the last minute and the car suddenly went down nose first and then flipped over, I'd say she most definitely hit the windshield. As for her being in the back seat from any way other than her body just landing there after the car flopped over and settled, I suppose that it could be possible that after they were spotted by the officer, she might have agreed to hide in the back seat just in case the officer did follow and stop them. Still, she could have just landed there from the impact.

And that's my 2 cents on Chappaquiddick.

Goooooooo ObamaCare! After living in Italy for a year I can seriously say that I lament the peace of mind I had while there, knowing that no matter what unlucky incident might befall me, I would be taken care of to the best of the medical community's ability – sans the dreaded fear of racking up ungodly medical bills that could ruin my future. I am indeed jealous of their and other European countries healthcare systems and just wish we would get ours sooner than later so we can start hammering out all those initial problems and be on our way to walking the walk (not just talking the talk) of the big ole super-power-of-the-world that we claim to be 🙂 [Next up? How about we tackle the fact that this super-power has the poverty level of a third world country- one notch on the list above Mexico to be exact. As someone famously stated – America has the best-dressed poverty the world has ever seen!]

Dear Mr. Cagle,

Thanks so much for the background info on this cartoon. It has been decades since my first PoliSci course taught by a retired AF General. He shared with us his passion for the details in editorial cartoons. Since then, I too have been a afficionado of the genre. I especially enjoyed today's column. Thanks again and keep up the great work!

Nice one Daryl.
As for others supporting public healthcare and those not supporting it, why don't we look at the problem from a different angle?
Instead of floating a public option and increasing the taxes on the hardworking people, why dont we just change the set of laws governing insurance, so that the insurance companies cannot decline insurance to anybody because of existing conditions or other things that they currently use as an excuse.
This way,
1) Everybody LEGAL will have an insurance.
2) No government intrusion, except for making sure nobody is declined an insurance.
3) No tax hikes.
4) No socialized medicine.
Oh and the government can also negotiate directly with the drug manufacturers to find out a way to keep the costs for the people minimum, by negotiating a effective top limit for drug prices.
This way, the government can facilitate low costs, without taking full responsibility to manage health care and increasing tax burden on the people.
(There can be many other good suggestions.)
I definitely am not in the favor of paying more taxes in the name of social responsibility.
I would prefer to use that extra money for charity of my choice for a valid cause rather that let the government pay for lazy food gobblers and illegal aliens. Nothing against any of them, its just that I prefer to help those who really are trying to help themselves, but just fall short because of any reason. It feels good to help people who are responsible. Gives me satisfaction that my money is being used for a real good cause rather than by drunkards, or lazy people.
Well, but then I see most of health care supporters giving examples of europe or canada, and it is a pity that in their quest for free medicine, they do not see the burden it is creating on the resources of those countries.
Guys, if healthcare is your social right, then working hard to be self sufficient is your right as well.
Oh well, but those are not the words you would like to hear.
I know and I have seen in europe, people make sure they dont work hard to earn higher pay. They just work hard to earn minimum income to suffice their lavish lifestyle.
This to ensure, they pay less tax (48% if I remember correctly).
This means, out of 8 hours of work every day, you work for almost 4 hours without pay.
Is this really what we want? I work hard, and I dont think I am ready to work for free even for 15 minutes. Except for helping somebody who really needs help. (Again my choice, no force)
As for those who don't support healthcare, at least provide an alternative. Yes I agree we want minimum government intrusion in our lives, but then we still have a system that has some flaws. Why not provide a solution for it. The reason we have reached a stage where the government is trying to control us is because we allowed these flaws to grow.
We still have time to solve some of these problems and we need to get a solution soon. Else the socialists will find some excuse or some example which will shut our mouths for good. Then we will not be able to resist and they will take over our freedom.
Guys lets stop bickering amongst ourselves and start looking for real solutions.
No point looking towards Europe or Canada. Remember, a good looking wrapper need not necessarily mean a good product. Similarly, a bad advertisement need not necessarily mean a bad product.
Please lets stop this race for world ratings. That is another way of earning free money. Imagine doing nothing but going around giving points to something. What is the guarantee, that I really have the knowledge or understanding of the system I am rating? What stops me from giving higher points to those who pay more? As for explanations, good lord, there are many who will write very good and convincing essays for no money. Again for good ratings.
So lets stop wasting our time on this dumb discussion and start looking for some real solutions and without following Europe or Canada.
Oh and ignore, Dale, Geoff and the kind. They will not understand our problems. They come from europe and are so used to that lifestyle that they cannot see any other way of living.
Cant blame them. But we can definitely take responsibility for our way of living and work harder to enhance it. so guys as Mike above says lets get to work and start understanding our own insurance policies, find where the problem lies and solve it.
Good luck

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