Monday, March 22, 2010

Health (but for a change, not mine)

On Saturday I attended the monthly social group at Autism NZ. About 25 people turned up, some for the first time, and as always it was a pleasure to meet them. I was unable to get round everybody of course, but I did my best. I wish I could have been a bit more helpful. Emma was very noticeable in her absence; that was obviously rather sad. Without her smiling and giggling, taking photos and even locking herself in the loo, things weren't quite the same. She will be sorely missed. It is of some consolation that when she passed away, a month ago now, she was extremely happy.

As I write this, the House of Representatives in Washington is voting on the health care reform bill. I'll admit that I'm very hazy on the nuts and bolts of the proposed new legislation, but I really hope it goes through. Some extreme right-wing Americans have described the bill as "the death of freedom", even using Britain's NHS as an example of "how not to do it". The NHS isn't perfect, but I'd take that over the American system any day. In America of course, there are a number of very powerful bazillion-dollar insurance corporations, all with a vested interest in keeping the status quo. As I see the current situation, there's a huge underclass of Americans who can't afford health insurance, and if any of these people become seriously ill, they're pretty much screwed. That's some freedom.

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