A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

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MajorMitchell
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A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#1 Post by MajorMitchell » Wed Apr 29, 2020 4:38 am

The policy is a core Socialist principle.. that government should provide universal public health care for it's citizens.

I've just been watching the USA TV PBS news hour and was pleased to see a segment about the success in fighting CV19 in New Zealand and Australia. The success in fighting CV19 in those nations is based on both having well funded & well run public health services, they put health needs ahead of economy and have gone into shutdowns.

One feature of Australia's public health system not loved by global pharmaceutical companies is the way they purchase medicines so that medicines are often subsidised to be more affordable and global pharmaceutical companies are denied the opportunity to engage in price manipulation to extract greater profits.

New Zealand PM Jacinta Arden (described as progressive on PBS) & Australia's PM Scott Morrison/Scomo (described as conservative on PBS) were said to have both shown much better leadership than Trumptoad ( not a high bar to jump imho)

I'm confident that those nations that have the best publicly funded and run public health services based on a core Socialist principle will be best equipped to respond to CV19.
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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#2 Post by orathaic » Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:49 am

This is just normal nearly everywhere outside the US.

You have a capitalist economy built around a healthy population. You can pay for healthcare system because your capitalist economy is profitable and thus able to generate a lot of tax revenue. And healthcare system makes sure the workers are able to work (because when they can't work, like during a pandemic, the economy collapses).

This isn't Socialism. But then maybe no-one knows what that word means anymore...

Good discussion of it by Freakonomics Radio podcast here: https://freakonomics.com/podcast/socialism/
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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#3 Post by Octavious » Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:23 am

Yeah... It's only socialist in the same sense that national militaries are socialist. You don't get any significant voices on the right advocating a return to the days of private armies like that of the East India Company.

The Yanks are very odd when it comes to health care.
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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#4 Post by orathaic » Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:17 am

I think I'm in agreement with Octavious on something - except I would advocate moving towards a more socialist society because.

The same reasons absolute monarch is bad, the existence of billionaires is bad, ie too much power concentrated in too few hands is unhealthy for any system, sure some will give away so much wealth that they are no longer Billionaires, looking at JK Rowling here, and others may invest responcible in the health of other, looking specifically at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (not that either of those examples are perfect) but even if 9 in 10 Billionaires gave away their wealth - and they don't - that would still leaves only the ones who hoard wealth as the existant Billionaires.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#5 Post by Octavious » Wed Apr 29, 2020 12:29 pm

You say that as if it's unusual ;) .

In all honesty I think we're in broad agreement over most things, albeit generally viewed from a different angle. Most of our discussion involves the details on the edges... and one or two fundamentals :razz: .
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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#6 Post by Randomizer » Wed Apr 29, 2020 4:23 pm

Trump's the most socialistic president in US history with his continual policies of redistribution of wealth to gain political support. From using tariffs to take money from consumers to giving it to farmers and other industries he wanted. The main difference is he doesn't believe in equitable redistribution and wanting to gather money to himself and cronies like in Communist Russia.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#7 Post by flash2015 » Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:24 pm

You know what they will argue though? They will claim since the US has done better (in deaths per million) that France, Italy, Spain and UK therefore socialised medicine is bad.

This argument effectively has already been made in the daily press briefings where Birx showed a chart with these countries ahead of the US in deaths per million and China/Iran behind. Since China/Iran must be lying therefore the US response is one of the best in the world.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#8 Post by flash2015 » Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:29 pm

A big problem in the US is that you can't have a nuanced discussion about issues. Issues either go in one bucket or the other. Universal health care has been put in the "left" bucket and since "left" means "socialist" and "socialist == bad" therefore "universal health care == bad". QED.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#9 Post by peterlund » Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:43 pm

There is no use to spend time commenting that circus with a clown in charge.

Let's talk about real issues and problems facing the rest of us living in the sane part of the world.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#10 Post by Octavious » Thu Apr 30, 2020 9:15 am

peterlund wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:43 pm
There is no use to spend time commenting that circus with a clown in charge.

Let's talk about real issues and problems facing the rest of us living in the sane part of the world.
You say that, but if Trump had adopted Sweden's approach to the virus I imagine the criticism would be even stronger.

As things stand the impact on the US in terms of health seems no worse and perhaps slightly better than the EU. The impact on the US in terms of the economy seems considerably better. Very early days yet, but initial signs look ok for the Yanks.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#11 Post by orathaic » Thu Apr 30, 2020 12:31 pm

Octavious, I haven't been keeping track of the numbers, but didn't NY exceed either Spain or Italy?
https://www.axios.com/coronavirus-new-y ... 2d405.html

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#12 Post by Octavious » Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:14 pm

I don't think so. New York are still under 20,000 deaths and now seem to be posting daily death figures similar to Spain and Italy. Seems unlikely they will catch them.

It's also worth noting that New York seems relatively unique in its ability to count coronavirus deaths so that their figures nearly match the increase in deaths over background. The Economist published some figures on excess mortality after the first 50 cases and compared it to reported numbers. I can't find the article now but here are a few highlights

New York (Mar 15th to April 4th) 4,981 reported Covid deaths, 5,099 above background (98%)
Spain (Mar 11th to Apr 7th) 13,763 Covid Deaths, 21,119 above background (65%)
England & Wales (Mar 14th to April 10th) 10,330 Covid, 15,175 above bg (68%)
Netherlands (Mar 16th April 12th) 2,717 Covid deaths, 6,169 above bg (44%)

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#13 Post by flash2015 » Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:39 pm

Octavious wrote:
Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:14 pm
I don't think so. New York are still under 20,000 deaths and now seem to be posting daily death figures similar to Spain and Italy. Seems unlikely they will catch them.

It's also worth noting that New York seems relatively unique in its ability to count coronavirus deaths so that their figures nearly match the increase in deaths over background. The Economist published some figures on excess mortality after the first 50 cases and compared it to reported numbers. I can't find the article now but here are a few highlights

New York (Mar 15th to April 4th) 4,981 reported Covid deaths, 5,099 above background (98%)
Spain (Mar 11th to Apr 7th) 13,763 Covid Deaths, 21,119 above background (65%)
England & Wales (Mar 14th to April 10th) 10,330 Covid, 15,175 above bg (68%)
Netherlands (Mar 16th April 12th) 2,717 Covid deaths, 6,169 above bg (44%)
Do you have a link to that article? I saw the one in the FT a couple of weeks ago saying something similar. I am interested in finding out how much countries may be undercounting. The NY death number depends on whether you include the probable cases or not (I don't know whether the economist was including those in its reported Covid deaths). If you include the probable cases it is 23,474 as of today:

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/us/

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#14 Post by Octavious » Thu Apr 30, 2020 4:46 pm

Ah, here we go. It's been updated since I last looked at it, but the figures are broadly similar.

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detai ... -countries

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#15 Post by peterlund » Thu Apr 30, 2020 8:39 pm

Octavious wrote:
Thu Apr 30, 2020 4:46 pm
Ah, here we go. It's been updated since I last looked at it, but the figures are broadly similar.

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detai ... -countries
That was an interesting article in the Econonmist. I noted that that most European countries seem to have reached or even in some cases even passed the peak. But New York and the UK still seemed to be growing in number of deaths per day. How it will continue there is still very much uncertain. And looking at those hard-lock-down countries like Austria, the infection was very tiny. Those countries are only delaying the problem and they will have very big problems getting out of their hard lock-down policies. This will also cause them long and enormous economical costs in the long run. Will they even be able to support the hospitals economically in the long run? Will doctors and nurses get their pay checks?

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#16 Post by peterlund » Thu Apr 30, 2020 8:51 pm

The so called "Swedish strategy" of relying on personal responsibility without lock-down laws and having the authorities policing every individual may only work in countries like Sweden, that has a strong welfare state. When they ask us to stay at home when we feel the slightest sick, we can also do so, since we get partially reimbursed for lost income the days we are sick.

In countries where you loose all income when you are sick and where you may not even be wanted back to the workplace at all any longer if you do not appear every day, the "Swedish strategy" will not work. Lower income people living from pay-check to pay-check can not be expected to stay at home just because of some slight symptoms. It will NOT work in the US, sorry to say. It would however work very well in our neighbouring countries like Finland, Norway and Denmark that have had hard lock-down laws.

I also note that in Sweden we have a male prime minister while our neighbours all have female prime ministers. Is this is factor perhaps? Governing by logic/science instead of governing on feelings/instinct?

That aside. We do here in Sweden have a stronger tradition of letting people with expertise knowledge lead what we do more than they have.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#17 Post by peterlund » Thu Apr 30, 2020 9:06 pm

In the opion poll 80% of the people thought that our government was doing a good or very good job handling the virus.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#18 Post by MajorMitchell » Fri May 01, 2020 5:43 am

I want to make an expression of respect and admiration for Captain(ret) Tom Moore, the 100year old British WW2 veteran who raised an astonishing amount of money for the UK's NHS by walking laps of his garden. There's a chap who would have experienced life before and after the establishment of the NHS and going on the medals he was wearing in his interview shown on the TV PBS segment on his fund raising it's reasonable to assume that his military service was meritorious.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#19 Post by MajorMitchell » Fri May 01, 2020 6:06 am

The principle that government should provide universal public health services is a socialist one, the fact that it helps a capitalist based economy achieve greater national wealth/productivity is simply additional evidence of the merit of the principle.
Similar evidence of the economic merits of socialist principles exists, such as government providing universal public education services having definite economic merits.
What is interesting in the various national responses to CV19 is the range of nations where political divisiveness changes, in some nations it's decreased, in others become worse. In some nations there's been new cooperation across political divides and a significant decoupling of political ideology from policy responses, and logic would lead to the conclusion that these nations will cope better with CV19 than those nations where politicians continue to encourage ideological and political divisiveness.

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Re: A Core Socialist policy vindicated by CV19

#20 Post by Octavious » Fri May 01, 2020 9:11 am

MajorMitchell wrote:
Fri May 01, 2020 5:43 am
I want to make an expression of respect and admiration for Captain(ret) Tom Moore, the 100year old British WW2 veteran who raised an astonishing amount of money for the UK's NHS by walking laps of his garden. There's a chap who would have experienced life before and after the establishment of the NHS and going on the medals he was wearing in his interview shown on the TV PBS segment on his fund raising it's reasonable to assume that his military service was meritorious.
From the medals? Was the system in Australia different to ours? I'm afraid you can't assume anything of the sort. Virtually everyone got the 39-45 Star, the War Medal, and the Defence Medal. You also got medals for where you served, and a quick look on Google identifies the unusual looking one as the Burma Star. I've no doubt he served with honour, but all the medals tell you is that he was there. My grandad got the Italy Star because he stopped there for a few days on the way back to Blighty from North Africa :razz:. That's why the older royals had enough medals to make a bloody suit of armour. Whenever they went visiting the troops as a moral booster they met the medal criteria for another theatre.

As for experiencing life before the NHS, his pre-NHS life was childhood followed by military service. He was either too young to care or being looked after by the army for most all of it. So I'm guessing it depends largely on the health of his wider family at the time. Knowing someone who died young of TB or some such nastiness would have focused the mind, but for many it was a less pressing issue than you'd be forgiven for thinking.

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