A 24-year-old Cincinnati father died from a tooth infection this week because he couldn’t afford his medication, offering a sobering reminder of the importance of oral health and the number of people without access to dental or health care.
According to NBC affiliate WLWT, Kyle Willis’ wisdom tooth started hurting two weeks ago. When dentists told him it needed to be pulled, he decided to forgo the procedure, because he was unemployed and had no health insurance.
When his face started swelling and his head began to ache, Willis went to the emergency room, where he received prescriptions for antibiotics and pain medications. Willis couldn’t afford both, so he chose the pain medications.
The tooth infection spread, causing his brain to swell. He died Tuesday.
Before anyone criticizes this man for choosing pain medication over antibiotics (as I’ve seen some people do), let’s think about two things:
- If you were in severe pain, and probably not thinking clearly, what would you do?
- Why should we live in a society where this is a choice someone must make?
How is this just? Health care is not a luxury, nor should dental care be a luxury. People do not deserve to die because they cannot afford an antibiotic prescription.
First Responder - 11 Sep 2011
Sadly, this is completely true for the Republican Party.
Ten years ago, they claimed that they would never forget their acts of heroism.
Now, in 2011, they have a chance to show the same act of selflessness that the first responders on 9/11 showed ten years ago, and the only thing that they do is go against the very people that helped them win reelections.
Helping a fellow man SHOULD NEVER be about how a person is going to look the next day on the news, or how many votes someone is going to receive in an election.
By voting against the 9/11 first responders, the Republican Party has sent a strong, clear, and resounding message that they used the people and the tragedy of that day for their own political gain.
In that effect, the Republicans are no better than the terrorists who caused paranoia and fear in our everyday lives since 9/11.
We now look out our windows, sitting with worried anticipation, wondering if another attack such as the one on that fateful Tuesday will happen again.
By pitting us against ourselves, the terrorists have accomplished their main goal: to divide us as a country and to cause a war within and outside of ourselves.
By using 9/11 as a trademark of sorts, the Republican Party has forgotten what happened on 9/11: people lost their lives, due to the actions of fringe radical terrorists, who were practicing a fringe sect of Islam.
They’ve forgotten what brought us together, but most importantly, what can drive us apart.
Let’s just hope that it’s not too late to fix what’s already been broken by them!
-Drew, Concerned American
Pro-life is OFFICALLY over. The meaningless political stance [who isn’t pro-life?] is now a front for pro-suffering and pro-indifference, matched by their previous pro-torture policies.
The GOP, the supposed party of life, cheers affirmative when countered, “should society let this man die” after being asked who hypothetically should help an uninsured man with cancer.
A for-profit health care system championed by the Republicans is the worst case of hypocrisy you can imagine. Every life is precious? My ass. If you don’t have money, then you’re on your own.
Ron Paul, a doctor, says “freedom is your own risk?” What a vacuous shitty thing to say about a very specific situation. His sage medical wisdom and years of public service comes down to “sucks to be you”.
Countries on our level like Japan, Germany, France, England, and even Iraq take care of their own through socialized health care, regardless of money.
America is the ONLY country in the world where you go bankrupt due to medical costs.
The GOP/Tea Party/Libertarian fish rotted from the head down. Last night, we got a whiff of the smell.
Even Rick Perry was shocked: “I was a bit taken aback by that myself. We’re the party of life. We ought to be coming up with ways to save lives.”
Nurses Say Letting Uninsured Patients Die Is No Laughing Matter Following Abhorrent Audience Cheers at CNN-Tea Party-Republican Debate
The nation’s largest representative of registered nurses today expressed revulsion at the cheering by some audience members in the CNN-Tea Party Republican debate Monday night at the prospect of letting a sick person die just because they do not have health insurance.
Prompting the outburst was a question from CNN’s Wolf Blitzer to Rep. Ron Paul about whether medical care should be provided to a hypothetical, uninsured 30-year-old man who lapsed into a coma, to which Paul responded, “that’s what freedom is all about, taking your own risks.” When Blitzer then asked, “Are you saying that society should just let him die?” a number of audience members erupted into loud cheers of “Yeah!” and laughter.
National Nurses United said the gruesome reaction from many in the audience is a reminder of the growing collapse of civil society in America, and the need for more humane policies. One such step would be to expand Medicare to cover all Americans so that no one has to be in danger of losing their life because they are uninsured.
Nor is it an academic question. Nearly 45,000 deaths in the U.S. every year are associated with lack of health insurance, according to a study this year by Harvard Medical School and Cambridge Health Alliance published by the American Journal of Public Health.
“It was stunning. My first reaction is how far have we degenerated as a society?” said NNU Co-President Jean Ross, RN who said she was watching the debate.
“Healthcare should be a right for everyone, not just a privilege for the few, a point nurses would debate with anyone,” said Ross.
Strikingly, the audience cheers came just hours before the release Tuesday morning of new Census Bureau data showing the number of uninsured Americans this year rising by another 900,000 to 49.9 million people. Concurrently the Census Bureau reported a huge leap in the poverty rate, one reason so many people are without health coverage as insurance premiums alone have doubled in nine years.
“Most people feel that when someone is hurting or down on their luck, you take care of them,” said Ross. “Many of those I’ve cared for who are in their most dire circumstances have said to me that they feel fortunate because there are some who are worse off than they are. There is still a lot of empathy and sympathy for others in this country.”
“Most of us, other than the most wealthy, are just are one illness away from bankruptcy and lack of health insurance,” said DeMoro. “Nurses do not regard lack of wealth or personal misfortune as a handicap or an excuse to withdraw needed and appropriate medical care. Nor should that ever be acceptable in a just and humane society.”
Has anybody been watching the debates lately? You’ve got a governor whose state is on fire denying climate change. It’s true. You’ve got audiences cheering at the prospect of somebody dying because they don’t have healthcare and booing a service member in Iraq because they’re gay. That’s not reflective of who we are.
“I am confident that the supreme court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress,” Obama said.
The president chided Republicans for making “judicial activism” an election issue, by objecting to rulings ranging from the supreme court’s finding of a right to abortion to the recent striking down by federal judges of a referendum barring gay marriage in California, while pressing the judiciary to overturn the will of Congress.
“I’d just remind conservative commentators that, for years, what we have heard is, the biggest problem on the bench was judicial activism, or a lack of judicial restraint, that an unelected group of people would somehow overturn a duly constituted and passed law,” Obama said. “Well, this is a good example, and I’m pretty confident that this court will recognise that and not take that step.”
While the court is certainly not looking the best today, what with this decision and all, is it really Obama’s spot to say this? Then again, Obama does have a history of criticizing the court when it comes to unpopular cases.
The story of Jesus Navarro, the undocumented immigrant who was initially denied a kidney transplant at UCSF Medical Center, took place a few months ago and fortunately has a happy ending, but it still demonstrates an important link between undocumented persons and access…
Here are eight of the biggest myths that are out there:
2) President Obama raised taxes, which hurt the economy.
Reality: Obama cut taxes. 40% of the “stimulus” was wasted on tax cuts which only create debt, which is why it was so much less effective than it could have been.
3) President Obama bailed out the banks.
Reality: While many people conflate the “stimulus” with the bank bailouts, the bank bailouts were requested by President Bush and his Treasury Secretary, former Goldman Sachs CEO Henry Paulson. (Paulson also wanted the bailouts to be “non-reviewable by any court or any agency.”) The bailouts passed and began before the 2008 election of President Obama.
4) The stimulus didn’t work.
Reality: The stimulus worked, but was not enough. In fact, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the stimulus raised employment by between 1.4 million and 3.3 million jobs.
5) Businesses will hire if they get tax cuts.
Reality: A business hires the right number of employees to meet demand. Having extra cash does not cause a business to hire, but a business that has a demand for what it does will find the money to hire. Businesses want customers, not tax cuts.
6) Health care reform costs $1 trillion.
Reality: The health care reform reduces government deficits by $138 billion.
7) Social Security is a Ponzi scheme, is “going broke,” people live longer, fewer workers per retiree, etc.
Reality: Social Security has run a surplus since it began, has a trust fund in the trillions, is completely sound for at least 25 more years and cannot legally borrow so cannot contribute to the deficit (compare that to the military budget!) Life expectancy is only longer because fewer babies die; people who reach 65 live about the same number of years as they used to.
8) Government spending takes money out of the economy.
Reality: Government is We, the People and the money it spends is on We, the People. Many people do not know that it is government that builds the roads, airports, ports, courts, schools and other things that are the soil in which business thrives. Many people think that all government spending is on “welfare” and “foreign aid” when that is only a small part of the government’s budget.
Shepard Smith reacts to Mitt Romney’s reaction to Newt Gingrich dropping out.
“…Mitt Romney has released a statement on the departure of Newt Gingrich from the campaign. It reads in part, ‘Ann and I are proud to call Newt and Calista friends. We look forward to working with them in the months and years ahead.’ That from Mitt Romney.
“Politics is weird. And creepy. And now I know lacks even the loosest attachment to anything like reality.”
It’s hilarious, and sad. You can see him pause and almost not continue with the press release to just go back to the teleprompter instead, but he continues on, a moment of catharsis for a man who is slowly dying inside. For god’s sake leave FOX Shep. He’s basically the closest thing FOX has to an actual journalist, here’s some other great Shep moments:
Arguing specifically for a public option as the sane thing to do against the evils of the insurance industry
Arguing with Rick Santorum that gays have rights and being gay isn’t a choice
Pounding his hands and shouting at another anchor anchor “I DONT GIVE A RATS ASS IF IT HELPS, WE ARE AMERICA, WE DO NOT FUCKING TORTURE
Or Shep cutting into a White House briefing to blast his own network’s coverage of the Shirley Sherrod affair for being completely out of context and overblown.
Let’s also not forget Shep destroying “Joe the Plumber”
So, Richard Mourdock, Indiana's state treasurer and a GOP Senate candidate, just sent out a note (and video) of congratulations after the Supreme Court struck down Obama's Affordable Care Act. Hey! Wait a second …
“Well, we’ve had our brief moment of celebration, because the Supreme Court ruled that Obamacare is, in fact, unconstitutional. It’s what many of us argued all along,” Mourdock begins. “But don’t sit back and think the fight is over because it isn’t. Barack Obama and Congressman Joe Donnelly are already putting Obamacare 2.0 together and they’re going to try and pass it once again. We cannot let that happen.”
He continues: “The answer to America’s health care issues is not going to be big government to any reasonable solution. The answer is not going to come from having individuals lose their personal choice, lose their individual freedom. I’m Richard Mourdock and I’m running for the U.S. Senate to make sure that something like Obamacare does not happen again. If you’d like to help us wage that fight to make sure that Obamacare stays repealed, then please go to tour website, RichardMourdock.com, and contribute generously.”
This of course is awesome and hilarious because the Supreme Court has yet to rule on “Obamacare,” and are likely to do so next week. Well, at least we know what ol’ Rich is likely gonna say ahead of time.
Politwoops, a project by the Sunlight Foundation, has archived the celebratory, now-deleted tweets of Republican politicians who thought the individual mandate had been struck down.
In their dissent, Justices Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas and Alito describe the Affordable Care Act as a “massive state-administered federal welfare program,” and argue that the decision should have been a no-brainer:What is absolutely clear, affirmed by the text of the 1789 Constitution, by the Tenth Amendment ratified in 1791, and by innumerable cases of ours in the 220 years since, is that there are structural limits upon federal power—upon what it can prescribe with respect to private conduct, and upon what it can impose upon the sovereign States. Whatever may be the conceptual limits upon the Commerce Clause and upon the power to tax and spend, they cannot be such as will enable the Federal Government to regulate all private conduct and to compel the States to function as administrators of federal programs.
And they wanted the whole law invalidated — every bit of it.The Act before us here exceeds federal power both in mandating the purchase of health insurance and in denying nonconsenting States all Medicaid funding. These parts of the Act are central to its design and operation, and all the Act’s other provisions would not have been enacted without them. In our view it must follow that the entire statute is inoperative.
— Dan Froomkin