SmithCommaJohn's forum posts

#1 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

So where do I check the box for Half-Life 3, or some new information about Half-Life 3? I'll also settle for the vaguest hint that Half-Life 3 is still a thing that exists.

I love you, Valve, but seriously. That's the only box I want to check.

#2 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

He's a great actor. But he also made me feel completely inadequate while watching Shame with my girlfriend.

#3 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

You going to be visiting San Francisco soon? If so, what kind of food are you into?

If you like Mexican, go to pretty much any dingy hole-in-the-wall taqueria in the Mission District. My favorite is El Farolito on 24th and Mission (particularly their al pastor), but there are a wide range of opinions on this.

For seafood, I'd check out Swan Oyster Depot in Nob Hill. Great sushi places are also a dime a dozen in this town. Really, name a type of food, and you'll probably find at least one place in San Francisco that does it amazingly well.

#4 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

I'm aware that the law has its problems, and the concerns you raised are valid. It's not secret that this plan does a decent job of expanding coverage, but doesn't do much to control costs. There's also the possibility that insurers will simply jack up their deductibles and copays to the point that everybody is covered by insurance that they can't afford to use. That would make the numbers look good on paper. Politicians could say "Look - 95% (or whatever) of Americans now have health insurance! The law is a success!" - conveniently forgetting that health insurance and healthcare are not the same thing.

#5 Edited by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

@BoFooQ said:

@Dad_Is_A_Zombie: this is a great point. I was just thinking, if you are poor and don't have health insurance than you are going to get taxed. well how do you tax someone who has nothing? Most of my life when I made very little money I was always given a tax refund. So the big question is how are you going to generate the money need to pay for the whole program? taxing people without healthcare will get you nothing.

1. The law provides subsidies - on an income-based sliding scale - to pay at least a portion of the insurance premiums for people who wouldn't be able to afford them otherwise.

2. The very, very poor should qualify for Medicaid, which I would assume counts as having insurance for the purposes of this law.

3. For the (relatively few) people who wouldn't be able to afford insurance OR the tax penalty, there's a financial hardship exemption. I think it's pretty difficult to qualify for, but if you're truly destitute, don't qualify for Medicaid for some reason, and can't afford even the subsidized insurance premiums or the financial penalty, you're exempt. The idea, however, is that by expanding the risk pool to cover a large number of relatively healthy people, insurance costs will go down for everyone, thereby lowering the number of people who actually need the hardship exemption. Who knows how well that will work out, but that's the plan.

#6 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

@SathingtonWaltz said:

@Kazona said:

@SathingtonWaltz

@Kazona said:

Anyone who is against universal health care is either rich enough to pay for whatever ailment they might get, or they're morons.

I'm against universal health care and I currently can't afford insurance. There are legitimate and logical arguments (mostly on an ideological level) for both a single payer system and a private system. I would have preferred some form of voluntary public option myself.

So even though this will ensure you coverage despite not being able to afford it on your own, you are still against it? I guess you don't really value your health much

Sorry but I don't like the idea of being forced to buy something from a private corporation, that's the opposite of a single payer system. This whole fucking bill was just a massive handout to the private insurance industry and I'm not okay with that.

It's pretty similar to the system that Switzerland set up in the early 90s to create universal coverage (though their law went a lot farther to control costs, by barring private insurers from making a profit on covering medically-necessary treatments, while allowing them to profit on elective treatments). While their healthcare is more expensive than many other countries that have obtained universal coverage by other means, it's cheaper than in the U.S., the quality is very good, and there's still a large, competitive private insurance market.

Is the ACA a perfect solution? No, definitely not. But guess what: there is no perfect solution to the healthcare issue. Any healthcare system or funding model you can imagine is going to have pros and cons.

#7 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

Superfluous U's all over the place.

#8 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

@Jay444111 said:

@SmithCommaJohn said:

My cousin is in an interesting, but very messed-up, situation.

Through absolutely no fault of his own, he tests positive for HIV antibodies, but repeated tests have confirmed that he does not have the HIV virus. At the time his mother was pregnant with him, she was a Sheriff's deputy and worked at a county jail. During that time, she was exposed to hepatitis. I'm not a doctor, and don't pretend to understand exactly what happened, but apparently this can occasionally cause the child to produce antibodies that, for the rest of his life, will deliver a false positive on an HIV test.

And when insurance companies do a medical screening for preexisting conditions, they of course test for HIV. And they only use the antibody test because it's faster and cheaper than the virus test. Guess how easy it is for my cousin to get health insurance now?

I'll give you a clue: it's fucking impossible. So, in your imaginary free-market utopia, what would be the solution to my cousin's predicament?

Wait... if he has anti bodies... doesn't that make him... uh... immune to HIV or am I mistaken on this?

No. As far as I know, everyone who has a functioning immune system and contracts any virus produces antibodies to fight that virus, with the purpose of making you immune to it. But for some reason, the antibodies that the body produces in response to HIV aren't very effective in actually destroying the virus, at least not in large enough numbers to prevent it from reproducing. That's my understanding, anyway. If an expert on the subject happens to read this, please correct me where I'm mistaken.

Anyway, for that reason, testing positive for HIV antibodies almost always means that you also have the HIV virus. And when you get an HIV test, that's usually what they're testing for.

#9 Edited by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

@Commando said:

@SmithCommaJohn said:

@jakob187 said:

100% anti-Obamacare here, and I'm on the end that would benefit most from it. No government should force its people to pay for something.

But hey...everything from the last government intervention seems to be going well...right? Oh wait...

Damn government interventions. I hate roads, schools, potable water, and sewer systems!

There's plenty of room for disagreement over the proper size and scope of the government. But unless you want to completely isolate yourself from civilized society, you're going to have to accept some "government intervention."

The federal government is here to protect the people with a military. That is all.

Everything else should be left to the states. The central government can't decide what is right for everyone. What is right for California is not always right for Alabama.

America was founded based on a weak central government, with most of the powers staying with the local governments. The idea is that the local governments will make laws that allow their area to thrive.

We have become exactly the opposite of that. Our founding fathers are rolling in their graves right now.

Actually, the Articles of Confederation were written with the purpose of having a weak central government. That worked for less than 10 years. The Constitution was written with the purpose of strengthening the central government to the point that it could actually serve a useful purpose, due to the realization that you either needed a central government that could get shit done, or you needed to let the states be their own completely sovereign nations. There's not a huge amount of middle ground (though as our current federal system demonstrates, there's certainly some).

And if the federal government exists only to provide a military, why does the Constitution explicitly empower it to collect taxes, regulate interstate commerce, establish post offices and postal roads, coin money, establish federal courts, and regulate trade with foreign nations, enact patent and copyright law, and set rules for citizenship and naturalization, among many other things? If the founders only wanted the federal government to provide a military, why isn't the Constitution just a couple paragraphs long? Why does the constitution create a process for its own amendment? Why does it establish a legislative body (Congress) to enact laws?

Come on.

#10 Posted by SmithCommaJohn (148 posts) -

My cousin is in an interesting, but very messed-up, situation.

Through absolutely no fault of his own, he tests positive for HIV antibodies, but repeated tests have confirmed that he does not have the HIV virus. At the time his mother was pregnant with him, she was a Sheriff's deputy and worked at a county jail. During that time, she was exposed to hepatitis. I'm not a doctor, and don't pretend to understand exactly what happened, but apparently this can occasionally cause the child to produce antibodies that, for the rest of his life, will deliver a false positive on an HIV test.

And when insurance companies do a medical screening for preexisting conditions, they of course test for HIV. And they only use the antibody test because it's faster and cheaper than the virus test. Guess how easy it is for my cousin to get health insurance now?

I'll give you a clue: it's fucking impossible. So, in your imaginary free-market utopia, what would be the solution to my cousin's predicament?