Friday, October 1, 2010

How Sick Am I?

Not sick enough to worry about it, but sick enough that the "medical underwriters" will likely consider me to have a pre-existing condition and not give me any health insurance after I move. I had an accident, right? I sat too long in my car and got a clot which traveled to my lungs. So the docs prescribed Warfarin - rat poison - but people on Warfarin are not considered good risks. Should I be worried? I thought the medicine was supposed to make me all better. Catch-22, right?

Plus I seem to have had another clot, on the completely other side of my circulatory system where it passed through my brain to produce symptoms of a TIA. And then there's my genetic condition which got uncovered. That super-secret private aspect of myself which only I should be allowed to know. Now it's hanging all out in public like my credit score. I tell you I can't for the life of me figure out what was so great about the health care reform I heard all about. But what I really can't tell is why anyone wants to turn it back to what was still worse before it. Weird.

So now what do I do? Should I negotiate the TIA down to a migraine? It might have been an ocular migraine, but you can't be too careful.  Maybe I should sue them for a needless diagnosis which now becomes a part of my permanent record. How dare you overdiagnose!!

At least someone's not holding out against life-saving procedures until I show proof of ability to pay. Not yet anyhow. I've had a lot of tests, and they all come up clean, but not clean enough to be insurable? Can I trade my genetic inclination for clotting for their genetic idiocy on the open market, or can we share? Don't they want payback on the tests? These things might be remediable, you know? I'll teach you how to reason, and you pay for my rat poison. I've been tested clean, I tell you!

It's kind of like if you make a claim on your homeowners' anymore, then your rates go up and so most of the time, according to what people I know say they do, you still have to decide if it's "worth" making that claim. If it's really catastrophic, you have no choice, and then you end up paying for it on into the future. Same with car insurance.

Maybe instead of a credit score, we should all get a morality and decency score, you know, the way they give buyers and sellers ratings on eBay. Then you could get insurance if everyone you deal with likes you, or if you're the head of eBay you can follow the body builder into office, who followed the Hollywood actor who followed the son of the former guy who lived in the house that Jack built. I'm telling you, there's no conspiracy! This is the way God meant for things to be.

They say there's a lot of insurance fraud. People wanting and getting more than they need or what about being careless driving or playing with matches or with the deadbolts? We could just have a sliding scale, or wait, isn't that exactly what we do have? Just try being poor and see how easy it is to get what you need, and nevermind healthcare. Ands it's always your own damn fault for not knowing how to behave yourself, you genetic deviant you!

In my case, there was never any choice on offer. There was no-one giving me some assessment of my odds, and so I got the same set of tests as if I were mortally ill and on death's door. Which I was, of course, but once they knew what it was that nearly killed me, the actual treatment could have been really cheap. But really cheap was never on offer. And now I apparently have to run around hoping nothing else happens since I can't get any insurance I can afford unless I stay put. Well, that horse already left the barn. But looking ahead with hindsight, I can see what more sensible people would do.

This is really really weird in a country which doesn't like to restrain trade. At least that's the story. Restraining the movement of workers is apparently not a restraint of trade? The "system" ought to prefer unafraid nimble workers who are willing to take risks. But to risk going commando - without health insurance - is to risk not death exactly but financial ruination because the healthcare system doesn't have any reasonable options. You're either all in or you're all out, and how many people forgo sensible healthcare for the same reasons and in the same fashion that they don't bother to make claims against homeowners' policies?

Everyone knows that the political system is controlled not by "the system" but rather by that subset of huge corporations or interest groups which can tilt the research and the flow of information and the fear mongering and even the electorate against our general interests. What's good for the health insurance industry is hardly ever what's good for you and me, but somehow they've got an entire Tea Party thinking that it actually is. Weird!

I'd like to be a tea partier myself, since it's obviously time for another revolution. But I'd like to be part of a positive revolution which looks forward instead of a scared revolution that thinks you can turn back time. Don't they get that you can't go backwards in time, Humpty Dumpty??? And I surely don't want to have the flames of my emotions fanned by interested parties who know exactly how to push my buttons.

I just don't think it's all that mysterious what's going on here. You might suppose that it is all some kind of grand conspiracy concocted by the MSM, or the Richie Riches or the fat cats at the top of some empire, and that would all be true. But in the end, each of these powerhouses is composed of people so glad to have a job that they all say Yes Sir! about the company program. Reporters just want to get their writing sold, and editors pick among stuff for what will be the most eye grabbing, and folksy folks like Glenn Beck just know how to get your attention and keep it, pushing buttons including their own.

And in the end all the different ways that have been invented to check on our health and to find serious conditions which might be latent and all the profits to be made on all those ways - all these things pretty much do compose a grand conspiracy. If you're scared, you want to know, right? I mean, who among us is willing to say aw shucks go ahead and take care of the next bloke and let me go. I'll take my chances against the odds and against the laws of nature.

And if you're in a car accident, you don't want them checking your wallet before they save your life. But on the other hand you don't necessarily want to be stuck with the bill either, considering that there aren't really any boy scout first aid options on the menu, even though that might be all you need.

So we're all in this grand conspiracy against each other, but the ones that have the resources keep getting more of them, and you and I keep getting stuck in a kind of state of perpetual terror, not exactly about the monsters and the dread diseases and the slings and arrows of outrageous ghosts since life has never in the history of mankind been more mild-mannered as it is in these United States; but it's like we can't ever get ahead and enjoy a minute of Mom and Apple Pie anymore.

We live in terror of being stuck without health insurance, or stuck with a house underwater or stuck without the ability to pay for the car insurance, and then we end up just plain stuck in jobs that we might hate, except we can't leave them because our pre-existing condition might prevent us from getting covered elsewhere. This is no way to live.

How is this good for the economy?? I know it's good for a few sociopathic aggrandizers of  epic portionsof wealth who can use and abuse and take full advantage of our slave labor, when they can't for whatever reason take the work offshore where there really is real terror. But how is it good for the whole?

I'm just asking . . . I'm a reasonably intelligent person, but damned if I can figure it out. And damned if I can figure out why people want to give back any gains we've gotten.

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