[extropy-chat] Health data

KAZ kazvorpal at yahoo.com
Sat Jun 17 00:30:38 UTC 2006

----- Original Message ----

> We're at the bottom, and just looking at whites doesn't improve that (see
> below).  There's a wider range for females than males, and interesting
> variation in the F-M difference.  If you're male, you want to be
> Swedish (and moving to Britain might have cut Anders's life expectancy.
> So, tell me again how socialized medicine doesn't work.  Seems to work
> as well or better than ours for half as much money.

Socialism kicks our butts at using simplistic, inductive reasoning to fool people in their propoganda.
In this case, for example, you're not showing any causal relationship whatsoever.
Perhaps longer lifespans cause socialism.
Perhaps living near American Indians causes both liberty and shorter lifespans.
Perhaps it's proximity to Elvis' corpse.
Or, to be more seriously, perhaps it's distance from the equator. Which, by the way, is a serious statistical effect recognized by the scientific establishment worldwide. 
Sweden is farther from the equator than Sweden, Canada than the US.
And, in fact, if you compare states of the same latitude, the US compares favorably to Europe.
If you live in northern Russia, you have among the longest life expectancies on earth, longer than your southern Russian comrades, though you're a peasant with no indoor plumbing OR hospitals.
What's more, there's no solid evidence that anyone's health care system is what causes their given life expectancy at all.
Note that, for example, the reason Canadians and Europeans frequently come to the US if they are suffering from a life-threatening diseases is not simply that it's legal to buy health care without an 18 month waiting list. It's also because if you DO have a life-threatening disease, you're most likely to survive, statistically, in the US.
This whole nonsense of taking life expectancy and pretending that's some kind of measure SOLELY of health care system, not a million other factors, reminds me of the nonsense about infant mortality, where because the US has the /highest/ chance of saving a sick or premature infant, it ends up with an abnormally high infant mortality /statistic/.
See, if you're more than X weeks premature in, say, France, you're simply counted as stillborn. You're not an infant mortality statistic. But in the US, if you are born alive, or even in a state where they think maybe they can recessitate you, then they TRY, and if they fail you're a mortality.
Thus America's superior health care system /produces/ a higher infant mortality statistic, though you're more likely to survive as an infant here than anywhere else.
Words of the Sentient:
Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.  --Oscar Wilde
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