What does it matter if I am nothing?

| November 24, 2019

This article is to inform you all on how socialized medicine really works these days. It is almost this bad in the UK, but there is private insurance available for those who can afford to pay for it. At the same time, in the UK, you frequently have no choice about treatment for you or your family.

From the article:  CARACAS, Venezuela – Of all the woes bought upon us by Venezuela’s “Socialism of the XXI Century,” this is the one where my life took the heaviest blow, and the one where the government’s hypocrisy and indolence shine the most.

Venezuela used to boast a dual public and private health system, neither of which were close to perfect, but you always had the choice.

My parents were doctors that worked in both sectors in tandem. My grandmother was a humble nurse that retired before I was born. My mother, an anesthesiologist (with five extra medical specialties) was the head of the reference Pain Management and Palliative Care Unit in the Miguel Perez Carreño Hospital in Caracas, Venezuela, for sixteen years. So I was very familiar with the limitations and hardships of the public health system before socialism. I’ve lived in three different cities in Venezuela and I often walked through the corridors of hospitals as a child.

Still, despite all the shortcomings that the public sector has had, it always functioned as best as possible in my youth. That is not the case anymore. Our health crisis has claimed the lives of so many. I will always have the utmost respect for our doctors and health professionals because, despite all of the hardships they face – even having to perform surgery without power – they still work tirelessly and save lives.

The continued collapse of the country has affected the private sector as well. You have to bring your own supplies to surgeries, from gauze to bandages or antiseptic products — that’s how bad it’s gotten.

The rest of the article is here:  https://www.breitbart.com/latin-america/2019/11/24/my-socialist-hell-mourning-the-victims-of-venezuelas-healthcare-miracle/

Before any of the unbelievers try to excuse Maduro’s incompetence, he’s getting plenty of money from the sale of Venezuela’s only product, crude oil, but nothing works any more in Venezuela, including getting water. That has to be carried by hand to wherever people live. The entire infrastructure of that country – what we take for granted here – is broken.  It’s likely that Maduro won’t be out of office unless he’s dead. It may be a long wait. Meanwhile, what was once a thriving country with a thriving economy is well on its way to hitting bottom.

Lest you think it is peculiar to Venezuela – well, it is not. Russia’s antiquated and incompetent medical system and hospitals are more of a threat to a patient’s health and well-being than a Siberian winter. What was never admitted to or visible before the USSR ceased to exist is now plain to see. While the article below was published in 2016, it appears that not much has improved.


From the article:  Russia placed last out of 55 developed nations in this year’s Bloomberg report on the efficiency of the national health care systems. Things are unlikely to get better anytime soon: Russia’s government recently announced plans to cut the budget for healthcare by 33 per cent next year, bringing annual spending down to just £4.6bn. That’s a level of funding equivalent to spending on health in Latin American or developing Asian countries, according to a recent report by Natalia Akindinova, director at the Center of Development Institute of Moscow’s Higher School of Economics.

For some critics, this inability, or unwillingness, to alleviate suffering is the logical consequence of decades of authoritarian rule. “Russians don’t want to relieve their suffering and the suffering of those close to them for the simple reason they have been taught to view themselves as replaceable, insignificant screws in the system, whose personal feelings are meaningless,” says Alexey Kascheev, a Moscow-based spine surgeon with a large social media following. “Both doctors and patients are willing to put up with physical and psychological torment. People think, “What does it matter if I am in pain, if I am nothing?” – article

Indeed, what does it matter?

Has the Russian health care problem/crisis been resolved? Not yet; according to the following article from 2018, the drop in oil prices has had an negative economic effect on everything, including medical care.  https://www.borgenmagazine.com/russian-healthcare-crisis/

From the article:  Russia’s economic recession and its regional governments’ $100 billion in debt has caused Russia to run higher budget deficits and to increase borrowing. The economic instability of Russia has contributed to increased poverty, major cuts to the healthcare system, and a Russian healthcare crisis.

Explaining the Russian Healthcare Crisis

The Russian Federation has free and universal state healthcare, but in name only. Changes to Russian’s national healthcare system since the fall of the Soviet Union have attempted to provide Russians with an acceptable level of healthcare services. However, a continued lack of funds, a lack of medical and technical equipment and supplies and an outdated approach to medical training present major obstacles to alleviating the Russian healthcare crisis.

Throughout Russia, there is extreme regional variation regarding access to healthcare institutions. Wealthier regions were found to be more effective in implementing healthcare system reforms, according to a study conducted by Virginia Commonwealth University professor Judyth Twigg.

In rural areas, 17,500 towns and villages have no medical infrastructure whatsoever. According to the State Statistics Service, the number of health facilities in rural areas fell 75 percent between 2005 and 2013. This number includes a 95 percent drop in the number of district hospitals, and a 65 percent drop in the number of local health clinics. – article

This is what happens with socialized medicine, period. I believe Putin is trying to make things better, but he is too dependent on oil and gas production and has nothing else to export. Unlike the USA, where independence from the British crown meant the freedom to find your own way and become a success, and where the doors have always been open to innovation and bright ideas, under socialism, independent thought and innovation still require the approval of The State. Russia has had a boot on the necks of its own people since the days of Ivan the Terrible. China is not much better, but Mr. Xi does at least understand the economic benefits of manufacturing all that electronic junk that people love so much. Medical care is not and never has been a freebie – ever.

Just giving you all a heads up on what to expect from people who think socialism is the answer to everything.

Category: Economy, Health Care debate

Comments (31)

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  1. AW1Ed says:

    Where did Bernie go for treating his recent heart condition? The Desert Springs Hospital in Las Vegas.

    And he didn’t have to provide his own surgical supplies.

    Desert Springs Hospital and Medical Center

  2. Cameron Kingsley says:

    And people wonder why we in the US are so cynical about “Universal Healthcare.” I absolutely love it when we get criticized for our military budget when they say we should spend it on health care (here’s the reason why you idiots that do this, military funding actually falls under Section 8 of the US Constitution while health care does not which would mean that health care is really left up to the states). There have to be trade offs somewhere and when the government is paying, you get quite a few. And I have come to realize it’s not just for fair compensation for those who took the expensive path through medical school to become doctors and surgeons (with extra long hours thrown in). The hospital also needs working electricity for all that equipment which also requires maintenance (both the electrical systems and the equipment itself) with a backup generator available in case of a power outage, necessary supplies for treatment and pain management, medicine has to be researched, developed, and properly tested (And many idiots think it can be developed for free. No, it doesn’t work like that. Some people would like to benefit financially from their work which I firmly believe they have every right to do since they put their blood, sweat, tears, and most likely their own money into it.), staff have to be paid, a legal team is needed in case of a lawsuit, technicians are needed to run the labs, the hospital must be kept clean for the safety of the patients. Yeah, there’s a reason why I am not convinced that the European system or the Canadian system is truly all it’s cracked up to be. Life is not always going to be sunshine and lollipops. Plus, some of them label this type of health care as being free when it isn’t, you pay for it through your taxes. So it’s hardly free.

    • Inbred Redneck says:

      While hospitals might have back up generators, here in Kommiefornia I bet that most doctors offices and walk-in type clinics are lacking them. Not too prepared for the frequent “planned outages” now being seen. Lot of good it does to have clinics, dialysis centers and other medical establishments that would otherwise be providing exemplary care, if there’s no electricity available.

  3. chooee lee says:

    Ah but our socialism will be different, it will be better. It will be regulated by the folks who implamented gun control in Chicago.

  4. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    And yet the socialist idiots continue their charge over the side of a cliff like the proverbial lemmings that they are. “Orange Man bad, Orange Man bad,…”. Interesting how the ones who howl the most for socialism are often the ones who contribute the least!

  5. Club Manager, USA ret. says:

    I witnessed socialized medicine as an international election observer in Northern Moldova. I accompanied a voting team to a hospital. The surgery recovery room had patients stacked 10 or more to a room. They were looked after by relatives and I observed a tea pot plugged in in the hall sitting on a chair. The intensive care recovery room was better, only 4 or 6 to a room and also cared for by relatives. To describe conditions as dismal would be kind. Has anyone other than me noticed the huge number of doctors from socialist medicine countries in the US?

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      Yes, they are quite visible in my area.

    • rgr769 says:

      Socialized medicine is always a failure. Death by medical mishap is also high because the government does not allow itself to be sued for medical malpractice.

      • timactual says:

        ” the government does not allow itself to be sued for medical malpractice.”

        True also for the VA, by the way. And if I remember correctly VA personnel do not have to have state licenses.

  6. Fyrfighter says:

    Is your last name Cryer by chance?

  7. SFC D says:

    Venezuela is merely the most current and convenient failure of socialism. The USSR already collapsed, China has been a failure for decades, and Cuba is not quite the worker’s paradise it wants to be. I know, I know, they’re doing it wrong, and you know how to do it correctly. Fine. Go fix them, then come back and dazzle me with your brilliance.

    I hear paint chips taste sweet, is it true?

  8. Berliner says:

    The Premier of British Columbia and the Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador both skipped the waiting list for Canadian socialized medicine and came to the US for surgery in the past decade.

  9. 11B-Mailclerk says:

    There are no prosperous socialist countries if they stay that way. None.

    If you cite the Nordic nations, they will correct you that they are not socialist. They have stupid large welfare states, which is eroding “prosperous”. But they have been lessening government meddling since the 80s. Every turn away prospers. Every return to mental control fails.

    China? Hardly. Most folks still live well below our standards, and their economic numbers are as false as they feel necessary. They are about one big calamity away from an un-hideable collapse. Absent Hong Kong, they are in big trouble. What is it about Hong Kong that makes it so much more prosperous than central planning? Hm. Odd that.

    Venezuela trades with most countries, including lots of folks who don’t like us who buy oil. Socialist China, for example. Are you saying Venezuela can only prosper selling oil to the free market USA? Being in our free market banking system? Isn’t that kinda a refutation of socialism as a viable way?

    Their oil production is failing. (Crashed and continuing to crash) That is their doing. All the oilmen were run off, and replaced with socialist cronies. The money was looted for vote buying and thug buying. They did that all themselves.

    So socialism can only live with access to free markets. Fascinating. Parasites do need healthy hosts.

    Argentina was once rich, hugely so. They had the world’s largest gold reserves, by far. The phrase “rich as an Argentine” was common. Then they went Socialist-Peronista. Disaster. Poof. The gold was spent propping up socialism, and looted by socialists. Gone like it ever will be under that idiot philosophy of something for nothing.

    Again, you demonstrate your membership in that class of helpers named by Lenin: Useful Idiots.

    • chooee lee says:

      What you said.

      • Fyrfighter says:

        Interesting how you can see the beginnings of this stupidity in the John Wayne movie “Hellfighters”.. good movie overall, but it does also show the beginnings of these idiots taking over Venezuela…

  10. RetiredDevilDoc8404 says:

    Anyone who thinks that putting the government in charge of healthcare is a good idea that makes the monumental error of saying that in my presence gets a dose of the reality of government healthcare from me and some of my experiences with the VA and it’s system. It is after all the closest thing we have to socialized medicine, so far it seems like an effective tool – most respond with, “Oh, I didn’t know it was like that…”

  11. SFC D says:

    On Jan 19, 1983, former Secretary of the Interior, James G. Watt stated that ”If you want an example of the failure of socialism, don’t go to Russia, come to America and go to the Indian reservations.” It was an offhand statement, considered to be insensitive and derogatory. One of many that shortened his tenure.

    The problem is, he was absolutely correct. Anyone who ever lived on or near a reservation knows this. Even Russell Means agrees.


    Socialism. Fails. Every. Time.

  12. 5th/77th FA says:


  13. Slow Joe says:

    Excellent work, Ex-PH2.

  14. timactual says:

    Shucks. Looks like I missed all the fun.