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Category: Global issues

Health 101: Myth and Foreign Ideas

Health 101: Myth and Foreign Ideas

It’s been said repeatedly that the healthcare systems used in other nations to provide universal healthcare to all citizens are “too foreign” to work in the United States. In other words: America is unique and, some would argue, superior–in a word, exceptional. This is so, in the sense that every country is unique. And every country probably has some area in which it is (depending on your values) superior to other countries. Alas, in the area of taking care of our…

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A Religious Case for Scientific Literacy

A Religious Case for Scientific Literacy

“I haven’t been in a science class in a long time, but the earth moves closer to the sun every year—you know the rotation of the earth. We’re moving closer to the sun… We have more people. You know, humans have warm bodies. So is heat coming off? Things are changing, but I think we are, as a society, doing the best we can.” This strange case for the insolubility of climate change/global warming was uttered by a state senator…

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Health 101: Myth and Bloated Bureaucracies

Health 101: Myth and Bloated Bureaucracies

Myth #3: other country’s universal healthcare systems require bloated bureaucracies.  This first of two related myths, as summed up by TR Reid, has it that the universal healthcare systems of other wealthy countries are run by bloated bureaucracies. This is simply not true. Every other system Reid cited is less wasteful than ours. This is true whether they are public or private systems. Our for-profit setup has the highest administrative costs in the world. This is a major reason we spend more on healthcare and…

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Health 101: Myth and Waiting

Health 101: Myth and Waiting

Here’s the big scary idea: Care in countries with universal health coverage is rationed with waiting lists and limited choice. Yes, this is a real problem in some countries … including the US. I’ve had to wait for appointments simply because I couldn’t afford the out of pocket expenses or the copay. I’ve considered not renewing a prescription for a medicine I need because of our financial situation at the time. (That’s not rationing?) True, patients in Britain and Canada…

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Health 101: Myth and Socialized Medicine

Health 101: Myth and Socialized Medicine

I’d like to talk about mythology. Not Greek mythology or Norse mythology, but American Healthcare mythology. In his book, The Healing of America, TR Reid listed a number of healthcare myths he had busted in the course of researching his book. Some of these I knew about (because I have friends who are living or have lived in countries with universal healthcare) and some I didn’t. Myth #1: “Universal healthcare is socialized medicine!” (sound of game show buzzer) Wrong. Apparently even Michael Moore got this…

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Media: Mirror of the World

Media: Mirror of the World

“Islamophobia is the accepted form of racism in America. Leaders … show us that you can take a potshot at Muslims and get away with it.” — Arsalan Iftikhar, human rights lawyer. February 4 on Fox News’ The Five, in the aftermath of President Obama’s speech at a Baltimore mosque, three of the show’s five hosts that evening jumped in to interrupt a fourth (Juan Williams) as he was remarking on “the spike in attacks, hate crimes against Muslims in the United States” and on…

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To the World’s Religious Leaders

To the World’s Religious Leaders

In 2005 The Universal House of Justice, the elected body charged with the administration of the Baha’i global community,  wrote in the introduction of the book “One Common Faith”: “At Riḍván 2002, we addressed an open letter to the world’s religious leaders. Our action arose out of awareness that the disease of sectarian hatreds, if not decisively checked, threatens harrowing consequences that will leave few areas of the world unaffected. The letter acknowledged with appreciation the achievements of the interfaith…

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On Every Page: Bill Maher and the Qur’an

On Every Page: Bill Maher and the Qur’an

  I read an article on Thinkprogress.com recently that asked the question “Has Bill Maher Finally Gone Too Far?” with regard to his animosity toward Muslims and Islam. I personally think the answer must be “yes”, if for no other reason than that he is taking significant heat from other self-identifying liberals, progressives and atheists. In the article, Maher is quoted as saying, “The Qur’an absolutely has on every page stuff that’s horrible about how the infidels should be treated.” I’ll cut…

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Invisible Heroes: Seven Imprisoned Bahá’is

Invisible Heroes: Seven Imprisoned Bahá’is

Note from the editor: This is a repost of an article contributor Bahram Nadimi wrote on the five year anniversary of the arrest of the Yaran—the seven person guiding council of the Bahá’ís of Iran. This is now the seventh anniversary of their arrest.  They are still imprisoned with no expectation of release.  oOo I love science fiction. A few friends and I recently finished watching the highly acclaimed Babylon 5 science fiction TV series. I have been thinking about one…

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