Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Dying in harness

Monday I got a phone call from a good friend of mine. We go way back to middle school. He’s been struggling with an incurable cancer. There are treatments that are supposed to extend his time but they aren’t a cure. 

He called from the hospital. Another good friend was with him and I’m glad he wasn’t alone. He had an episode where he was mentally confused and could not hold down solid foods. The mental fog has cleared up, but he still can’t eat. The guy isn’t doing well.

So my other buddy drops in on him at the hospital and finds our friend in a zoom meeting. He’s working from his hospital bed. That’s just wrong. He claims he has to keep working for the medical insurance. That says so much about work in America and our health care system. The poor guy is supposed to retire next year but I don’t know if he’ll make it. 

I’m beyond disgusted. 



  1. There are no easy pleasant answers to the question of what to do about healthcare. The ugly reality is that healthcare now is EXPENSIVE. Didn't used to be so expensive but it didn't used to be particularly effective either. Today we are so much better at diagnosing things we find your diseases much earlier. We can't keep you from dying from them but we can prolong the great cost. And somebody has to pay for all the newfangled expensive technology that has come to healthcare in the past half century. It's either going to be via insurance...or via taxes. Either way the working man pays for it. It would help if we could kick all the free loading illegal aliens out of the country. They utilize at least 20% of America's healthcare system and pay virtually nothing into it. One of the few things Reagan did that was vastly hugely wrong...signing EMTALA.

    1. Dan you had me right up to the get rid of the aliens thing. Many illegal aliens work and pay just like most of us, and many citizen feed off the system just as much as some of the illegals do. There is no easy solution. Having a disabled wife at home who worked very hard most of her life then found herself in the position of not being able to contribute effects the whole as much as the immediate brings this subject very close to the core. I work and use my personal insurance, which sucks at best, But if I didn't work to do more important things like take care of home, there would be no insurance. I feel for Ray and his friends dire situation. It's all to sad and true for many Americans, and makes me Damn mad as well.
      Peace and Balance,

    2. You haven't spent 4+ decades in healthcare, most of it dealing with ER watching a conga line of wetbacks lined up at the ER door demanding their free doctor visit. A small percentage of illegals pull their weight and pay taxes. The VAST majority work for cash, send much of that back across the border and rely on public handouts to live. Many Hispanics are honest and hardworking....and they came here legally. The majority are not. And the ones who did it by the book hate the illegals more than anyone else does. I know a bit about first wife is one, born in East LA.

    3. Well as far as I know, there are more Spanish speaking people in the United States than English speaking people, and from my perspective, you're all illegals, but I do understand your frustration.

  2. Yep, healthcare is big business. I just got my new insurance card at the beginning of this month. One of my daily meds used to cost $45 for 90 day supply. Now - $248. It seems insurance not only raised price by nearly 50%, the company also reduced the medications they would accept. Nice swift kick to the palapas. So today, I will ask my doctor to find an alternative medication that is less expensive. This medication is only one of five I take daily.

    Working to support the health care just isn't as fun as it used to be.

    Oh - illegal aliens. A large part of population seeks medical care at hospital emergency rooms. There are real emergencies, but a lot of cases there are simple head colds.

  3. Sadly, a generation ago he wouldn't have lived this long to be near retirement. Just this morning while watching the Weather Channel at breakfast I saw several ads for life extending medicines that a few decades ago was a DONOT Get to Adulthood situation.

    The lack of transparency in medical pricing and the massive insurance-government bureaucracy (did I repeat myself here?) has added to that Muddy Clearness and added plenty of bottom feeders to pay that have NOTHING to add value to Medical Services rendered.

    That has Nothing (mild sarc) to affect the ever-rising prices of medicine.

    As for "Oh - illegal aliens. A large part of population seeks medical care at hospital emergency rooms. There are real emergencies, but a lot of cases there are simple head colds."

    It happens in every Free Medicine situation. When I did a stint in the VA system, I was appalled at how many well-off Veterans would clog the ER system for essentially a "free" bottle of cough syrup. I never worked the inner cities but coworkers of mine tell me it's the same there for welfare moms and such.

    I suppose we should be grateful we're not in Canada where the MAID legislation allows offering assisted death to folks. Even just depressed ones.