Am I missing something or is the US really that far behind and isolated from the rest of the world? Two cases for the somewhat provocative question come to mind: healthcare and education. Some might regard these two services as essential to the long-term success of a country. Why then does the United States seem to be so entrenched in archaic notions of doing business?
OK, enough with the rhetorical questions…
I want to only briefly touch on healthcare because it has received much debate. I will point to the picture below and simply postulate that with a bit more education, such protesters may be spending their day in a place of work, earning money and contributing to society. It seems the lawyers (and some doctors) are really the ones who win.
Now you probably have an idea of my political leanings, but recent articles on education spending got me frustrated enough to write this… The idea of the proposal in the article was that students pay a percentage of their future salary instead of up-front fees for uni. To me, this is a similar issue to the Obamacare/Medicaid arguments. Really, it boils down to capitalism, pure and simple. The status quo seems to be a society whereby if you have, you win and if you don’t have, you pay those who have. What I mean by that is, save for a few organisations with inspiring initiatives, if you can’t afford healthcare/insurance or college, you don’t get treated/educated.
What the recent “fixUC” proposal is akin to is what many countries offer – student loans. The government pays tuition and then taxes the graduates to pay it off. What a novel idea! This enables universities to concentrate on education, admitting people based on academic merit, and research while allowing the government to focus on revenue collection. The fixUC proposal has realised this in admitting that the IRD will need to be involved.
Why can’t Americans wake up to the benifits of a tiny amount of liberalist communism? I’m not advocating an all-the-way approach at all, let’s be clear. I’m not a total hippie, really! But if everyone is out for themselves then the majority will lose – the lawyers will be laughing and those with established infrastructure and resources will capitalise even more.
I don’t think the States is that far behind or isolated. I just think the popular mentality is so consumer-oriented and selfish-driven that social myopia is pathologically entrenched in the psyche. We need only look at the GFC with its mind-blowing executive bonuses, forced bailouts, and return to quasi-status quo without far-reaching criminal actions. Isn’t it time to wake up and smell the benifits of a little care?