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Ralph Klein has gone and it is time to retire Ralph's World. Thanks to all of you who have supported this venture by contributing material and through your comments. It has been fun.

Should we get another blog underway? Let me know your thoughts by e-mailing me at johnnyslow@gmail.com.

John Slow
January 1, 2007

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

SENSIBLE HEALTHCARE #4 

The “THIRD WAY” is NONSENSE
By far the most socially sensible thing Canada has ever done was when the Federal Government finally legislated the only possible way for all citizens to share equally in the benefits of modern medicine was that those services be paid for by the whole of society.

Socially and morally and, likely illegally, the most insensitive and irrational thing a province of Canada can do today is what Alberta’s Klein government (a.k.a. the PC party) is now proposing.

In 2002 the Senate committee, chaired by Michael Kirby, had as its goal “ To ensure that all Canadians have timely access to medically necessary health services regardless of their ability to pay for these services.”

The principles of universality, comprehensiveness, accessibility and portability were also upheld as equally essential with timely access.

What the Klein government now proposes is that “TIMELY” access be translated as “INSTANT” access for those who have the most money.

Ever since the Klein government centralized power and authority in the Premier’s office a determined, politically connected and financially powerful lobby has been pushing the Premier to use his propaganda power to sell the idea that you can get a quicker and cheaper deal by buying your health care in some privately operated facility designed for paying dividends to elite investors.

That sales pitch, used during his whole rise to power, has promoted irrational fears that some colossal disaster will happen unless the public falls into line and, denying their own perceptions of reality, allow him to turn government responsibility over to opportunists whose merchandising skill are only surpassed by his own.

Like a man, so obsessed with having his own way that he will distort and manipulate facts, our Premier has been shouting “unsustainability” as if Alberta’s health system were a house on fire when, in fact, there is only a small blaze in the basement and the firemen are already on the way.

I’m making this up? Well read what our Premier is telling the Legislature. (cross reference) . Or read Mark Lisac’s book “ALBERTA POLITICS UNCOVERED” page. 51 where it tells of how Klein’s revolution cut the health budget down from $4.3 billion in 1992-93 to $3.77 billion in 1995-96 and ever since has been shouting about health costs ‘spiraling out of control’ .

The Premier’s most recent sales pitch for the third way includes keeping health costs in line with inflation. Was he doing that when comparing rising costs with the all time low budget for health in 1995-96. Inflation doesn’t even come near accounting for the massive increase in population, especially that of aging boomers, now does it?

Our Premier, using his most Churchillian public voice, solemnly pronounces health care must change and that that this proposed change is so we can pass healthcare on to our children.

Whose children is he talking about? Those of an elite few or every citizen’s child?

Could it be that it’s this government that needs changing into one that sees money as the servant of people and their needs? Right now they obviously see people as the servant of the Klein government’s obsession with money.

Blair McPherson

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