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Old 10-24-2007, 03:19 PM   #61
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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Originally Posted by FRPLG View Post
I agree with much of your analysis. Where I take issue is with raising taxes.

For sure I believe that something like this should be paid with taxes but our government already takes a ridiculous amount of our money for so many things that they run very poorly. I'd love to see the taxes I ALREADY pay be used for this.

The answer is not always raising taxes. When are we going to straighten up as a country and tell our politicians to spend our money more wisely rather than just taking more to pay for things that need to be paid for?

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Old 10-24-2007, 04:43 PM   #62
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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Originally Posted by FRPLG View Post
I agree with much of your analysis. Where I take issue is with raising taxes.

For sure I believe that something like this should be paid with taxes but our government already takes a ridiculous amount of our money for so many things that they run very poorly. I'd love to see the taxes I ALREADY pay be used for this.

The answer is not always raising taxes. When are we going to straighten up as a country and tell our politicians to spend our money more wisely rather than just taking more to pay for things that need to be paid for?
First this would be the biggest program that the goverment ever took over and taxes would go up atleast as much is now being spent on health ins now. Then the next year taxes would go up some more because its not enough then more & more & more. 50% tax rates for anyone making over 45,000.
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:20 PM   #63
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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That doesn't answer the fundamental question. Why is healthcare a right?

I've never heard someone come up with a logical answer. The only response is emotional in nature; something along the lines of because in this day in age, we just should. It's just wrong not to.

If that's the way people feel, let me ask you this: is it fair for us Americans to provide universal healthcare, in which some of you may be the recipient of hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of chemotherapy or surgical care, while people in Africa are starving to death? Isn't food a more immediate need than healthcare? Without food, you die in weeks. Why are we more deserving of healthcare than they're deserving of food? Because we're Americans??

No. None of it is a right. It's all a privelege. It's a privelege to live in the United States of America, where you have ample opportunity to earn enough money to put a roof over your head, give you clean drinking water, pay for your food, and pay for your healthcare. Do it your damn self, and stop whining about having it tough.

Amen to that.

My line of work (street cop) obviously dictates that I interact with a number of poor people, ranging from the homeless, people in government subsidized housing (projects) to just your run-of-the-mill poor people living in trailers or run down houses.

The interesting thing that I've noticed, to an almost overwhelming degree, is that alot of this poverty is quite honestly a choice. How do I know it's a choice? The sheer number of big screen TVs, satellite dishes and other expensive toys that you find in the projects, in low-income neigborhoods, etc. Some of the shittiest houses I've been in have huge flat screen TVs, and the number of DirecTV and DISH Network dishes hanging on the side of tax-payer subsidized housing it's just apalling.

I don't make much money as a cop, and consequently I rent an apartment and I don't even have cable TV. I made the choice to pay my bills, pay my taxes and support my wife and daughter rather than let some other hard working tax payer pick up the slack or go into debt so I can afford a luxury item.

Now I'm not arguing that 100% of the poor choose to be that way, absolutely not. I'm certain that there are people who because of circumstance simply can't get on their feet. I will say that in my experience those people are VERY few and far between.

In my interaction with the homeless I always ask them two questions: 1) Do you have a job? 2) Why not? The answer to the first is, obviously, always "no." The answer to the second is quite often "I don't want to work." They'll flat out tell you most of the time that they just don't want to work. The others will claim it's a disability of some sort.

Bringing this back to healthcare, I personally have a really hard time coughing up more of my hard earned dollars to fund healthcare for people who choose to sit on their ass and watch TV all day long while someone else pays for their needs.

I'm all for helping those who are willing to do a bit for themselves. I think a lot of people, with probably very good intentions, want universal, tax-payer funded healthcare because they're out of touch with the world. I have personally walked the projects, walked the shithole neighborhoods, talked to these people on a daily basis. I suppose all of this can be dismissed as purely anecdotal, but I put a lot more stock in my personal experiences than pure conjecture from an ivory tower. I honestly think sometimes that the people proposing half this stuff must hop in their nice car every day, drive to the office and probably don't have a clue as to what actually goes on out on the street. I don't begrudge that comfortable lifestyle one bit, but let's not pretend that they have any real feel for how most poor people really are. It's not bad intentions, just ignorance.
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:20 PM   #64
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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Originally Posted by FRPLG View Post
I agree with much of your analysis. Where I take issue is with raising taxes.

For sure I believe that something like this should be paid with taxes but our government already takes a ridiculous amount of our money for so many things that they run very poorly. I'd love to see the taxes I ALREADY pay be used for this.

The answer is not always raising taxes. When are we going to straighten up as a country and tell our politicians to spend our money more wisely rather than just taking more to pay for things that need to be paid for?
Yeah--no doubt there's tons of pork in the budget already--it's frightening to think about. I'm all for using that, but it would require congress to do something they do not usually do--take money from their pet re-election projects and use it for something for everyone.
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:25 PM   #65
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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Originally Posted by mheisig View Post
Amen to that.

My line of work (street cop) obviously dictates that I interact with a number of poor people, ranging from the homeless, people in government subsidized housing (projects) to just your run-of-the-mill poor people living in trailers or run down houses.

The interesting thing that I've noticed, to an almost overwhelming degree, is that alot of this poverty is quite honestly a choice. How do I know it's a choice? The sheer number of big screen TVs, satellite dishes and other expensive toys that you find in the projects, in low-income neigborhoods, etc. Some of the shittiest houses I've been in have huge flat screen TVs, and the number of DirecTV and DISH Network dishes hanging on the side of tax-payer subsidized housing it's just apalling.

I don't make much money as a cop, and consequently I rent an apartment and I don't even have cable TV. I made the choice to pay my bills, pay my taxes and support my wife and daughter rather than let some other hard working tax payer pick up the slack or go into debt so I can afford a luxury item.

Now I'm not arguing that 100% of the poor choose to be that way, absolutely not. I'm certain that there are people who because of circumstance simply can't get on their feet. I will say that in my experience those people are VERY few and far between.

In my interaction with the homeless I always ask them two questions: 1) Do you have a job? 2) Why not? The answer to the first is, obviously, always "no." The answer to the second is quite often "I don't want to work." They'll flat out tell you most of the time that they just don't want to work. The others will claim it's a disability of some sort.

Bringing this back to healthcare, I personally have a really hard time coughing up more of my hard earned dollars to fund healthcare for people who choose to sit on their ass and watch TV all day long while someone else pays for their needs.

I'm all for helping those who are willing to do a bit for themselves. I think a lot of people, with probably very good intentions, want universal, tax-payer funded healthcare because they're out of touch with the world. I have personally walked the projects, walked the shithole neighborhoods, talked to these people on a daily basis. I suppose all of this can be dismissed as purely anecdotal, but I put a lot more stock in my personal experiences than pure conjecture from an ivory tower. I honestly think sometimes that the people proposing half this stuff must hop in their nice car every day, drive to the office and probably don't have a clue as to what actually goes on out on the street. I don't begrudge that comfortable lifestyle one bit, but let's not pretend that they have any real feel for how most poor people really are. It's not bad intentions, just ignorance.
It's true for some, no doubt--I lived in NYC for 20 years, so I've seen lots of crap there too. But not everyone is like this, and it's not their kids' fault that their parents are doing this--so I think we need to find a way to insure them.

Also, don't think you don't pay for this stuff already--when those people you speak of do get sick, they go the emergency rooms of big, public hospitals. You know who pays for that? We do. One thing to do is find a way to get some preventative medicine going, so people don't wind up in the system when they're already sick and it costs a ton more. Because, as I said, we're already paying for it.
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:30 PM   #66
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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Originally Posted by JWsleep View Post
It's true for some, no doubt--I lived in NYC for 20 years, so I've seen lots of crap there too. But not everyone is like this, and it's not their kids' fault that their parents are doing this--so I think we need to find a way to insure them.

Also, don't think you don't pay for this stuff already--when those people you speak of do get sick, they go the emergency rooms of big, public hospitals. You know who pays for that? We do. One thing to do is find a way to get some preventative medicine going, so people don't wind up in the system when they're already sick and it costs a ton more. Because, as I said, we're already paying for it.
Oh, I know we already pay for it bigtime. We pay for every lousy drunk I put in jail too. I guess it's the price of "law and order."

The kids are a really sad aspect of this entire thing - breaks my heart some days when I have to see them. It seems like by the age of about 12-14 most of them already don't give a crap and are just fine following in their parent's footsteps. They also are almost beyond intervention or help at that age - not without exception, but I'd argue as a general rule.

The worst part of all of this is watching so many of these screwed up druggies, homeless, poor, whatever the class may be - and they're all having kids. Watching some uneducated, illiterate, strunk out crackhead carrying around a baby is about the worst sight you'll see.
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Old 10-24-2007, 10:57 PM   #67
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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Originally Posted by mheisig View Post
Amen to that.

My line of work (street cop) obviously dictates that I interact with a number of poor people, ranging from the homeless, people in government subsidized housing (projects) to just your run-of-the-mill poor people living in trailers or run down houses.

The interesting thing that I've noticed, to an almost overwhelming degree, is that alot of this poverty is quite honestly a choice. How do I know it's a choice? The sheer number of big screen TVs, satellite dishes and other expensive toys that you find in the projects, in low-income neigborhoods, etc. Some of the shittiest houses I've been in have huge flat screen TVs, and the number of DirecTV and DISH Network dishes hanging on the side of tax-payer subsidized housing it's just apalling.

I don't make much money as a cop, and consequently I rent an apartment and I don't even have cable TV. I made the choice to pay my bills, pay my taxes and support my wife and daughter rather than let some other hard working tax payer pick up the slack or go into debt so I can afford a luxury item.

Now I'm not arguing that 100% of the poor choose to be that way, absolutely not. I'm certain that there are people who because of circumstance simply can't get on their feet. I will say that in my experience those people are VERY few and far between.

In my interaction with the homeless I always ask them two questions: 1) Do you have a job? 2) Why not? The answer to the first is, obviously, always "no." The answer to the second is quite often "I don't want to work." They'll flat out tell you most of the time that they just don't want to work. The others will claim it's a disability of some sort.

Bringing this back to healthcare, I personally have a really hard time coughing up more of my hard earned dollars to fund healthcare for people who choose to sit on their ass and watch TV all day long while someone else pays for their needs.

I'm all for helping those who are willing to do a bit for themselves. I think a lot of people, with probably very good intentions, want universal, tax-payer funded healthcare because they're out of touch with the world. I have personally walked the projects, walked the shithole neighborhoods, talked to these people on a daily basis. I suppose all of this can be dismissed as purely anecdotal, but I put a lot more stock in my personal experiences than pure conjecture from an ivory tower. I honestly think sometimes that the people proposing half this stuff must hop in their nice car every day, drive to the office and probably don't have a clue as to what actually goes on out on the street. I don't begrudge that comfortable lifestyle one bit, but let's not pretend that they have any real feel for how most poor people really are. It's not bad intentions, just ignorance.
You are conflating the destitute with the uninsured which is a big mistake. The fact that some irresponsible poor people waste money on luxury items has nothing to do with the failures of health care in this country.
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Old 10-24-2007, 11:13 PM   #68
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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You are conflating the destitute with the uninsured which is a big mistake. The fact that some irresponsible poor people waste money on luxury items has nothing to do with the failures of health care in this country.
I'm not mixing the two - a substantial number of the uninsured ARE destitute. I simply said that in my experience, MANY of the poor people waste money on luxury items.

If you're too poor to afford health insurance but you can manage to get a $2500 TV and $100/month for satellite TV, something seems awry. It's not the cause of the "failed" health insurance, but it's one hell of an argument against socialized medicine for the poor, funded by the tax payers.
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Old 10-25-2007, 01:44 AM   #69
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

A couple of relevant points:

1.)

One of my teachers once told me, "everything any person does is their first choice." This means that people do what they want to do, and they never settle for less.

Take for example the homeless: they are homeless because they are jobless, and they are jobless because they want to be (assuming there are jobs to be had). So, if there are jobs to be had, and somebody is jobless, it's because they'd rather deal with the consequences of being jobless, than deal with the consequences of having a job. They prefer the stress of not having a job over the stress of having one. Therefore, being jobless is their first choice. I think this applies to almost every decision anybody makes.

2.)

I took an Ethics class in college, and I had to give a presentation about Human Rights. I had prepared well, and I was ready to talk about rights which all humans are entitled to. During my presentation I became aware that many people disagreed about what rights are universal and inalienable. So, I threw my presentation out the window and decided to just make a list with the class of universal inalienable rights. Sadly, nobody could agree on a SINGLE one! The class decided there are no Human Rights. They couldn't even agree that the right to live should be universal and inalienable! They kept saying that a murderer doesn't deserve to live, so therefore life itself is not inalienable. It was a sad day for me, because I realized how little people respect other humans. I seriously wanted to cry. I was so disappointed.
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Old 10-25-2007, 02:07 AM   #70
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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A couple of relevant points:

2.)

I took an Ethics class in college, and I had to give a presentation about Human Rights. I had prepared well, and I was ready to talk about rights which all humans are entitled to. During my presentation I became aware that many people disagreed about what rights are universal and inalienable. So, I threw my presentation out the window and decided to just make a list with the class of universal inalienable rights. Sadly, nobody could agree on a SINGLE one! The class decided there are no Human Rights. They couldn't even agree that the right to live should be universal and inalienable! They kept saying that a murderer doesn't deserve to live, so therefore life itself is not inalienable. It was a sad day for me, because I realized how little people respect other humans. I seriously wanted to cry. I was so disappointed.
I agree that it's hard to agree on the rights people have, and how to justify those rights. But even if there are rights, you can forfeit your rights in some situations. A murderer, by their choice, forfeits their rights. That may not entail the death penalty--that's a question of appropriate punishment--but it might. With rights come responsibilities. If you don't fulfill those responsibilities, you can lose your rights.

About which rights are basic--as the Declaration of Independence says, "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." That works for me. From there it's a matter of debate, though I'm partial to much of the Bill of Rights. But there's no easy answers in these things--don't get discouraged!
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Old 10-25-2007, 02:45 AM   #71
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

A billionaire is a person who has more than one billion US dollars. But in order to be on the American business and financial magazine Forbes' annual list of the world's billionaires, a billionaire not only has to make a billion dollars but also maintain it.

Over time, the number of billionaires in the world has been steadily increasing. In the United States, this number had increased from a couple to a couple hundred in just twenty years or so. Worldwide, this number had increased by a couple hundred in just a few years. There are billionaires from approximately 47 countries in the world. Now, the United States has the most number of billionaires, followed by Asia, Europe, and Latin America. These billionaires are usually people, or tycoons, from big businesses and industries such as technology, steel, gas, retail, and finance like Microsoft's William Gates who has held 1st place in Forbes' annual list of the world's billionaires 11 years in a row. Some people inherit a large fortune from their family like the Waltons from the death of Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart.

In 2005, the 691 billionaires in the world is approximately 0.00001% of the world population. The total net worth of these 691 billionaires is $2.2 trillion, which increased from last year's $300 billion, and is approximately 21% of the United States' GDP. In the future, this trend of increasing numbers of billionaires and increasing wealth of these billionaires will continue through advanced technology and communications.

Michelle Lee -- 2005

Number of Billionaires


Fucked up when you think about it. less than 1 percent of the population has most of the money. More than they will ever need in 10 life times.

It is cool to make something of yourself and be rich, don't get me wrong. But damn, how much is enough? When do you reach out to your fellow man and pitch in when he is struggling? Starvation and Health care issues could be entirely eliminated if the less than 1% would part ways with a portion of their Kingdom for the greater good. It was the way of the Aristocrat to believe that he was entitled to his wealth, but he had a responsibility to man kind as a rich man (Great power=Great responsibility). That responsibility flew out the window a century ago. They cannot take it with them, but they can sure as hell change the world and live on forever.

I once observed a rations drop in a 3rd world country where all of the able bodied men rushed in and gathered more of the food than they needed. Meanwhile, they prevented the women and children from getting anywhere near the food until they (the men) had grabbed more than they can use. Once the women and children were able to gather their own rations there was not nearly enough left, but there would have been if it wasn't for the greed of the men. This was the behavior of animals, I thought that our superior intelligence was supposed to separate us from them, but apparently it does not when overwhelmed with greed.

Once again this is not a shot at all of the rich, nor do I think that it is a bad thing to be rich. I also do not think that we should adopt socialism. I am saying that to have an abundance is good, but to have too much deprives the majority.
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Old 10-25-2007, 05:07 AM   #72
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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I'm not mixing the two - a substantial number of the uninsured ARE destitute. I simply said that in my experience, MANY of the poor people waste money on luxury items.

If you're too poor to afford health insurance but you can manage to get a $2500 TV and $100/month for satellite TV, something seems awry. It's not the cause of the "failed" health insurance, but it's one hell of an argument against socialized medicine for the poor, funded by the tax payers.
Yeah but what's your argument? That because some people are irresponsible we should maintain the current system? That makes no sense. What about the people who do everything right and don't qualify for insurance, or choose to invest in their kid's education instead, or whatever. Read the article I posted for one possible example. I agree with you that there are some people who probably don't deserve help, but I fail to see the cogency of that relative to this discussion.

Come on, are you are actually saying that because you saw some big screen TV's on your cop beat we shouldn't change our current healthcare system? I'm not saying there aren't interesting arguments to be made for maintaining the status quo, but that's definitely not one of them.
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Old 10-25-2007, 06:45 AM   #73
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

angryssg, great post. it makes you wonder what the super rich really do with their money. i kind of had the same thoughts about Katrina. with people like Oprah, and Michael Jordan, Michael Jackson, and bill gates. a group of these extremely wealthy people could have done a whole lot of good in the gulf region, as far as rebuilding. is it their responsibility? no, but if you have , lets say 100 million, how much does it really hurt to part ways with about 5 million?
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Old 10-25-2007, 09:44 AM   #74
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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A billionaire is a person who has more than one billion US dollars. But in order to be on the American business and financial magazine Forbes' annual list of the world's billionaires, a billionaire not only has to make a billion dollars but also maintain it.

Over time, the number of billionaires in the world has been steadily increasing. In the United States, this number had increased from a couple to a couple hundred in just twenty years or so. Worldwide, this number had increased by a couple hundred in just a few years. There are billionaires from approximately 47 countries in the world. Now, the United States has the most number of billionaires, followed by Asia, Europe, and Latin America. These billionaires are usually people, or tycoons, from big businesses and industries such as technology, steel, gas, retail, and finance like Microsoft's William Gates who has held 1st place in Forbes' annual list of the world's billionaires 11 years in a row. Some people inherit a large fortune from their family like the Waltons from the death of Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart.

In 2005, the 691 billionaires in the world is approximately 0.00001% of the world population. The total net worth of these 691 billionaires is $2.2 trillion, which increased from last year's $300 billion, and is approximately 21% of the United States' GDP. In the future, this trend of increasing numbers of billionaires and increasing wealth of these billionaires will continue through advanced technology and communications.

Michelle Lee -- 2005

Number of Billionaires


Fucked up when you think about it. less than 1 percent of the population has most of the money. More than they will ever need in 10 life times.

It is cool to make something of yourself and be rich, don't get me wrong. But damn, how much is enough? When do you reach out to your fellow man and pitch in when he is struggling? Starvation and Health care issues could be entirely eliminated if the less than 1% would part ways with a portion of their Kingdom for the greater good. It was the way of the Aristocrat to believe that he was entitled to his wealth, but he had a responsibility to man kind as a rich man (Great power=Great responsibility). That responsibility flew out the window a century ago. They cannot take it with them, but they can sure as hell change the world and live on forever.

I once observed a rations drop in a 3rd world country where all of the able bodied men rushed in and gathered more of the food than they needed. Meanwhile, they prevented the women and children from getting anywhere near the food until they (the men) had grabbed more than they can use. Once the women and children were able to gather their own rations there was not nearly enough left, but there would have been if it wasn't for the greed of the men. This was the behavior of animals, I thought that our superior intelligence was supposed to separate us from them, but apparently it does not when overwhelmed with greed.

Once again this is not a shot at all of the rich, nor do I think that it is a bad thing to be rich. I also do not think that we should adopt socialism. I am saying that to have an abundance is good, but to have too much deprives the majority.
Also to enclude in this is all the people these billionaries provide jobs, health care, money they donate, etc... just to post this as they take their money and stick it in a safe and say screw the world is crazy. How much money has Bill Gates given away over the years? Millions and millions which is only possible because of the wealth he has made over the years. These very wealthy people allready pay like 45 to 50% of the taxes raised in the US.
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Old 10-25-2007, 09:48 AM   #75
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Re: Canadian Healthcare from a Canadian...

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I agree that it's hard to agree on the rights people have, and how to justify those rights. But even if there are rights, you can forfeit your rights in some situations. A murderer, by their choice, forfeits their rights. That may not entail the death penalty--that's a question of appropriate punishment--but it might. With rights come responsibilities. If you don't fulfill those responsibilities, you can lose your rights.

About which rights are basic--as the Declaration of Independence says, "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." That works for me. From there it's a matter of debate, though I'm partial to much of the Bill of Rights. But there's no easy answers in these things--don't get discouraged!
Yes, I know exactly what you're saying. That's all well and good for Constitutional Rights. However, Human Rights cannot be forfeited. By definition, they are inalienable, meaning they are not granted to you by another and cannot be taken (or given) away.

I'm sure we could get people to agree on Human Rights, if they think they can take them away for good reasons. What's difficult is getting people to agree on rights which can NEVER be taken away -- for any reason whatsoever.
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