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Russia, how it could all work out

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First of all, let me stipulate... Russia is a big-ass country. In fact it is the largest nation in the world by landmass. Take a look at this map. The country stretches west to east from the Baltic Sea near Scandinavia to the Bearing Strait, virtually touching Alaska. It is almost double the size of the United States including Alaska but it has less than half the population of the US.



To me, Russia is a bit like the school bully who no one really likes but everyone puts up with their crap because, well, they are a bully. But, like most bullies, there are usually extenuating circumstances. Why is Russia like they are?

Hundreds of books have been written and thousands of folks in and out of government are employed just to figure out the answer to that question. I will not attempt to explain all of that in this little ol' blog, but here is a very short bit of history to explain how I think we got to where we are.

Russia was a monarchy for a very long time and like most nations prior…

Health Care or Health Insurance... What are we debating?

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I think that we Americans are in the middle of a HUGE kerfuffle, arguing and wasting massive amounts of time and emotional capital when we haven't even truly defined the debate. Hear me out on this.

No more than 60 years ago, "all-you-can-eat" health insurance was practically unheard of. In fact, very few Americans had any form of comprehensive health insurance. There were various insurance and hospitalization plans available through work and kids could get some insurance for a few dollars while enrolled at school but most families "winged it" with medical expenses. During the 50s, 60s and early 70s going to the doctor was affordable. Most of us early baby boomers were born in hospitals and the payments came from our parent's pockets.

During the 70s and beyond, more expensive medical procedures involving sophisticated surgeries, treatments and medicines evolved. Suddenly, the cost of health care ballooned. Instead of curing common diseases and treating mal…

How The Asterisk would replace Obamacare and fix our health care nightmare

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There are two major schools of thought when it comes to providing and paying for medical care in the United States. The first is single payer where one entity, most likely the Federal Government, pays for all medical care; basically acting as the universal health insurance provider for all citizens. Many countries use this model. We will not discuss the efficacy and economics of these single payer plans in this posting. The second school of thought is to keep medical insurance in private hands and allow individuals or employers to purchase care as they deem most effective and most affordable, and oftentimes these two schools are in total conflict.
Over the years I have promoted a bifurcated health provider scheme where all citizens have access to basic day-to-day health care through a network of government and government-sponsored facilities. Those who want more customized, personal, comfortable and immediate health care can pay out of pocket or through supplemental insurance for “bo…