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#421308 08/08/21 07:56 PM
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Christ is in our midst!!

I received a link from Life News, a pro-life group that exposed the harvesting of livers from aborted babies who survive an abortion, are still living, but are not wanted by their parent(s) at the University of Pittsburgh. It reminded me of an article I had read in the past few years by a medical ethicist who argued that people on hospice with a DNR should be able to have their organs harvested ahead of time if they are are also organ donors. This is not only evil, but should sound the alarm for all of us. If this is the Brave New World we are now living in or which we may be entering, no one may be safe as time goes on.

https://www.lifenews.com/2021/08/06...-organs-from-babies-who-are-still-alive/

https://www.lifenews.com/2021/08/06...t-using-body-parts-of-babies-born-alive/

There are calls for limiting health care treatment for the elderly with the same utilitarian arguments. There are calls for limiting health care on the basis of the utility of the person needing care, e.g., for two people of the same age who have similar prognoses, care would be given to the one that was deemed more valuable because of age, education, or other measures. Thinking ahead, it might even come down to the arguments over equity that are creeping into our cultural and political lives: maybe too many people of one race are deemed to have had too much healthcare in the past and can now be sent to the end of the line. Substitute any other politically correct measure and see where this could be going if the people in charge of paying buy into these arguments.

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See the movie "Soylant green"
Charlton Heston, Edward G Robiison/ 1970's

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We are just useless breathers to them, beings that are taking up space and wasting oxygen. We contribute nothing and use up valuable resources. This is the world without Christ, a return to the pagan societies which Christianity changed. It is rule by power and importance.

My question is this: why has the Gospel so miserably failed? Or to ask in another, and perhaps more pointed way, how have WE failed the Gospel? Our command, given in Matthew 28, was to go forth and to convert the world, making disciples of all. It seems to me that somehow, the pagans got into the church and the church, rather than being the evidence of God's love, slowly over the centuries, became just another political model inhabited by men driven by what Augustine called "libido dominandi" the lust to dominate others.

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Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
We are just useless breathers to them, beings that are taking up space and wasting oxygen. We contribute nothing and use up valuable resources. This is the world without Christ, a return to the pagan societies which Christianity changed. It is rule by power and importance.

My question is this: why has the Gospel so miserably failed? Or to ask in another, and perhaps more pointed way, how have WE failed the Gospel? Our command, given in Matthew 28, was to go forth and to convert the world, making disciples of all. It seems to me that somehow, the pagans got into the church and the church, rather than being the evidence of God's love, slowly over the centuries, became just another political model inhabited by men driven by what Augustine called "libido dominandi" the lust to dominate others.

Your post is not related to the original post. Later today I will split it from this thread and move it to a new thread (if one of the moderators does not do it first).

I respectfully request that your future posts discuss the topic of the thread and not wander to new topics.

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Originally Posted by Administrator
Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
We are just useless breathers to them, beings that are taking up space and wasting oxygen. We contribute nothing and use up valuable resources. This is the world without Christ, a return to the pagan societies which Christianity changed. It is rule by power and importance.

My question is this: why has the Gospel so miserably failed? Or to ask in another, and perhaps more pointed way, how have WE failed the Gospel? Our command, given in Matthew 28, was to go forth and to convert the world, making disciples of all. It seems to me that somehow, the pagans got into the church and the church, rather than being the evidence of God's love, slowly over the centuries, became just another political model inhabited by men driven by what Augustine called "libido dominandi" the lust to dominate others.

Your post is not related to the original post. Later today I will split it from this thread and move it to a new thread (if one of the moderators does not do it first).

I respectfully request that your future posts discuss the topic of the thread and not wander to new topics.

I respectully disagree. The issue here, which I spoke of in my response, was the overall inhumane manner in which these children are being treated. My statement was to show that this "slippery slope" is quickly involving adult human beings as well, especially the elderly.

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You changed the topic from a medical one to a discussion of the Gospel having failed (or we having failed the Gospel). That is not germane to the original discussion.

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The gravamen of the original argument is making medical decisions based on one's utility to society. At least that is the way I understood it. But this is hardly a new idea. Let's be honest. Anyone's access to healthcare is based on one's ability to pay for it, either personally or through some sort of insurance. My use of insurance would include programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. The idea that 99% of everyone pays their way is a myth. There is a large group of workers that fall out of all insurance schemes. This has been true for all of our lifetimes. The group of uninsured workers is growing.

The fact that people are uninsured comes down to a very basic utilitarian reason. The employers have decided that they are not worth expending money for health insurance. These worker are essentially disposable. Now, it is true that the ER cannot turn one away based on lack of insurance. But their only obligation is to stabilize the patient, not provide follow on care.

I just point this out because there are some that act like this is some sort of new, liberal idea in our society. Actually, it is a very old one. It has been practiced from one end of the political spectrum to the other. Humans have done this since forever. If you don't believe it, go back and look at how your ancestors were treated before workman's compensation was a thing. The good old days were not as rosy as people think. I just bring this up because people act like we were once this happy, Christian civilization. We weren't. The sooner we realize that, the sooner we can grapple with living and preaching the Gospel and divorce ourselves from the political hacks that do more to pollute the Church than to advance Her cause.

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Replying to Andy Makar -- So many doctors who were previously independent have be coerced into selling their practice to a hospital and become employees. As employees they cannot be "unmercenary" and give free service. The ACA has done nothing to return this charitable practice. We have incorrectly pigeonholed "healthcare" to mean visits to formal doctors and hospitals; that is misleading. Midwifes, natural remedies are still available at a much lower cost. We also forget that there are practically unlimited resources available on the internet, WebMD being one of the most informative. Certainly there are times when we have to depend on formal healthcare but we don't have to become wards of the state or file for bankruptcy to live healthy lives.
I was recently informed by Allegheny Healthcare that if a patient dies and there is no formal estate that the hospital bill will be cancelled with a notarized statement stating same.
Obviously this is also a detour from the original post. Please delete if you see fit.

Last edited by Paul B; 10/15/21 05:27 PM. Reason: post justification
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Christ is in our midst!!

Replying to Andy Makar and Paul B:

The reason that health insurance came along is that during WW2 companies were forbidden to give employees raises in their pay. To get around that, companies began to give additional benefits in lieu of pay. The first insurance programs only covered stays in a hospital--stays which were usually much longer than we are used to today. Fast forward to the late 1960s when unions began to demand additional benefits to be added to health insurance policies for the benefit of their members. That caused many non-union companies to follow suit in order to keep employees.

Then along came Medicare to help the elderly and disabled about 1965. Again, basic coverage that has continually been expanded.

The whole idea that one pays his own way was lost along the way. Once the government became involved, cost shifting began because government could demand reduced charges for the same services. Big players and big payers can and do that.

When government gets a reduced rate, the actual cost of the service provided is shifted to private insurance companies and to individuals who have no insurance. That's the economics of the situation.

When people paid their own way, physicians could bill and offer reductions as their own economic situation would allow. However, with the advent of insurance and other third party payers, charges went up because of delays in reimbursements and demands for reduced rates; again, physicians had to cost shift.

None of this even begins to touch another MAJOR factor in healthcare costs: the costs of malpractice insurance brought on by endless suits against physicians.

So there are many reasons that physicians are forced into becoming hospital employees and being unable to act independently.

Bob

PS: I apologize for taking this thread on a tangent.

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I agree with the moderator that we are getting into a tangent, although perhaps a good one. I agree with points made by Paul B and Theophan. I would note that the economic trends in healthcare did not start with the ACA. My late uncle was an private accountant whose only clients were hospitals. I had these conversations with him back in the 90's. The trends were underway then. We didn't notice it as much because healthcare was gobbling up less of the GDP.

My opinion is that there can be no free market in healthcare. It has long since transitioned from a commodity to a utility and simply needs to be regulated as such. A lot of it comes down to the fact that medical care make a lot more difference that it used to. 100 years ago, if you had a "hardening of the arteries" there was no bypass surgery. The difference between having a doctor and not having a doctor was that the doctor could tell you what you were going to die of. Now they can do something about it and that something can extend your life, and quality of life, by significant amounts.

But I will go back to my original point. A market economy will always measure the value of individual in terms of money and money alone. That is the danger of capitalism as a theory. It will make everything a commodity i you let it. And that is precisely why I am very uncomfortable with Christians of any stripe associating the system as being particularly Judeo-Christian in nature. It isn't. It simply has the benefit of being closely aligned with the way humans will operate when left to their own devices.

To the Moderator: If I am too far off topic you may feel free to omit this post.

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Christ is in our midst!!

Going back to the original post and links, in light of Andy Makar's last post:

There have been arguments made for a totally utilitarian view of human beings as they relate to healthcare. I have seen articles arguing that people in a coma with DNR orders should be allowed to be "harvested" for their organs if they have documents indicating their willingness to be donors. What troubles me is that people who have been in that state and had their machinery disconnected have occasionally come out of the coma. They describe hearing everything being said around and about them. There have been arguments that it should be illegal to refuse to be an organ donor because society needs the organs and they should not be allowed to go to waste. To my way of thinking, we are more than material for experiments or transplants.

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Off-topic, but ...

Originally Posted by Paul B
I was recently informed by Allegheny Healthcare that if a patient dies and there is no formal estate that the hospital bill will be cancelled with a notarized statement stating same.

Deacon Paul,

This is not a particularly magnaminious approach on the health system's part. Reality is that when someone dies with an unpaid liability and there is no estate - no assets - from which to collect such debt, cancellation of the debt is the only practical recourse That they would require a notarized statement is ludicrous. In the circumstances described, absent receipt of such a statement, they could keep the bill active till the cows come home but with no one to bill, that statement is going to be stale in short order and ultimately written off - which is what they'd have done with it after someone went to the bother of making a statement and having it notarized.

The same situation changes though, when there is another name attached, offering a billing opportunity. The health system's response might be (almost certainly will be) different if you asked them about the situation in which a patient dies with an unpaid bill and no estate/assets, but a family member signed as guarantor (perhaps the patient was comatose on admission). In those circumstances, it is most unlikely that they will cancel the bill; rather, they may - and legally could - pursue the guarantor.

(It happens likewise with credit card accounts that are in a single name and on which there are no other 'authorized users')

Many years,

Neil


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
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Christ is in our midst!!

Neil,

No problem being off topic.

I have to agree that healthcare systems will go after anyone they can for an unpaid bill. They have to be mercenary in order to stay afloat with so much cost shifting in their world.

Bob

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Originally Posted by theophan
Christ is in our midst!!

Neil,

No problem being off topic.

I have to agree that healthcare systems will go after anyone they can for an unpaid bill. They have to be mercenary in order to stay afloat with so much cost shifting in their world.

Bob

All the more reason why we honor and revere the Holy Unmercenaries Cosmas and Damian, Panteleimon, Photius...and others.


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