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Man robs bank for $1 so he could be arrested and sent to jail for free medical health care.


It could have easily come out of a scene from a Franz Kafka novel, but what James Richard Verone did on June 9th 2011 belies more about the peril of the US healthcare system and what people like Mr Verone feel they are compelled to do in order to get what they need when all other routes have been exhausted.

gastongazzette: James Richard Verone woke up June 9 with a sense of anticipation.

He took a shower.

Ironed his shirt.

Hailed a cab.

Then robbed a bank.

He wasn’t especially nervous. If anything, Verone said he was excited to finally execute his plan to gain access to free medical health care.

If you think this is a joke, you should stop laughing now. But then again if you think this approximates the bizarre nature of what it has become to live in America today then feel free to continue ruefully crying smiling.

“I prepared myself for this,” Verone said from behind a thick glass window in the Gaston County Jail Thursday morning.

Verone spoke calmly about the road that led him to a jail cell he shares with a young man arrested for stealing computers.

The 59-year-old man apologized for squinting. He hadn’t gotten his eyeglasses returned to him since being arrested a week ago.

He smiled from the other side of the glass, sometimes gesturing with his hands. A plastic, red bracelet with his mug shot clung to his left wrist.

Until last week Verone had never been in trouble with the law.

Now he hopes to be booked as a felon and held in prison where he can be treated for several physical afflictions.

With his back against the wall, Mr Verone felt compelled that his only one remaining option was to break the law so he could finally get the healthcare assistance he finally needed, because at least a convicted felon is entitled to healthcare where as a free man who has no means of paying for the cost of health care will sometimes be forced to come up with other alternatives.

But before you go thinking Mr Verone is a capricious man looking to take advantage of a broken system one should bear in mind that for most of his life he has played text book with the rules. He held a job with Coca Cola for 17 years before that job ended (one can safely assume Mr Verone was not offered a pension or a health care benefit as an exit payment, unlike something many senior executives can expect to receive). After that he got another job as a delivery man before that job ended and yet another  job as a convenience store clerk which led to him eventually incurring physical pains. Something on his wages and lack of health insurance could hardly attend to.

Nevertheless Mr Verone applied for disability and early social security, instead all he got was food stamps. By then his physical pains now included a protrusion in his chest, arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome. Ailments which he had no way of dealing with until Mr Verone finally decided to exercise his last resort.

A couple of months ago Verone started weighing his options.

He considered turning to a homeless shelter and seeking medical help through charitable organizations.

Then he had another idea: commit a crime and get set up with a place to stay, food and doctors.

He started planning.

As his bank account depleted and the day of execution got closer, Verone sold and donated his furniture. He paid his last month’s rent and gave his notice.

He moved into the Hampton Inn for the last couple of days. Then on June 9 he followed his typical morning routine of getting ready for the day.

He took a cab down New Hope Road and picked a bank at random — RBC Bank.

Verone didn’t want to scare anyone. He executed the robbery the most passive way he knew how.

He handed the teller a note demanding one dollar, and medical attention.

“I didn’t have any fears,” said Verone. “I told the teller that I would sit over here and wait for police.”

And sure enough the police came and arrested Mr Verone to his relief, who is happy to say he is finally receiving the necessary healthcare that he needs. Because the money he attempted to rob was less than what would merit the classification of grand larceny, Mr Verane can expect to receive a short sentence. But that hasn’t stopped Mr Verane from arguing in a letter he sent to the Gazette the morning of his robbery he would do it once again, and that he has no regrets because he did everything he possibly could in his power to get the health attention he was in so desperate need of.

All of which begs the question, why does it take a man plotting his ultimate demise and freedom in order to attain the dignity and well being that is afforded to most citizens in the free world?

Or if you want to cut straight to the chase perhaps we ought to ask why the indoctrinated power structure we insist on leaving healthcare to a capitalistic operandi who at its very essence has the pursuit of profit over that of a human being’s well being?



  1. Socialized medicine isn’t the problem. The problem is an inept and incompetent Government.

    It can’t even define, balance, and execute a working budget. How can anyone expect it to deliver something as complex as national health care with any level of success?

  2. Since when do most people in the free world get good medical care? Just sayin’. Even in countries with socialized medical care, it predictably sucks.

  3. awesome! take advantage of the stupidass system! why the fuck wouldnt you? when backed into a corner, theres only so much you can do…

  4. It’s highly dependent on the area… Usually, if you are near an interstate highway, it’s easy to find. In some towns and cities, it might be only 20% of stations that have diesel.

    I’ve tried to talk my father into a Jetta TDI, but the stations that he usually visits don’t have diesel, and he doesn’t want to drive out of his way to fill up, and have to take the car back to the dealership for service. There’s one specialty repair shop that specializes in European cars, that will work on diesels, but they’re priced pretty high. None of the other shops will touch them, they say to go back to the dealer.

    Personally, I like diesels

  5. Really? I’m in Canada and every gas station minus a couple specialty/discount stations has diesel..though for some reason all of the diesel cars like the TDI Jetta get released in the US first, I guess I’ll need to look harder next time I’m down there, I always assumed it was the same.

  6. There is another, valid, argument that it is the HMO Mandate by Nixon that is the root cause of the problem, and that the HMO Mandate needs to go. These guys are ripping us off left, right and center. Before Nixon, healthcare was not free but at least it was affordable.

  7. read the story….

    and understand this man gets medical care….

    l cannot afford while working….

    and either qualifies for medicaid…..

    or does not……

    if he does not….

    conviction of a felony gets him free medical care….

    and protects assets he is unwilling to use…..

    for that care…..

  8. I’ll have to disagree with you. Other countries have drugs tested for safety without the heavy-handed regulations that the FDA imposes. One of my friends works at a drug company, in the IT department. He literally has to document every single click he makes on a computer when he’s working on it. It is amazingly ridiculous. The other day he was working from home, and I was around. He was installing a program on a computer. He had to take a screenshot and write a description of literally every single click in the process, even though it was just a simple routine program installation. He ended up with a 20 page report on installing this program. It took longer to document the work than it did to click ‘next’ 5 times. All of this is for FDA compliance. It is crazy.

  9. We don’t have diesel at all of our gas stations though, and we don’t have many mechanics that work on diesels. Owning a diesel is a much larger inconvenience here than it is on the other side of the pond.

  10. What are we fighting the commies still? It’s not the word it’s our stupid two party system getting their panties in a bunch and not being able to agree for the betterment of our country. All in the name of making the other guy look bad. Makes me want to move in with my friends in Iceland.

  11. At the same time, a cost of 50 Billion dollars to investigate a new tech seems almost like either extortion or blackmail. I’m not saying that the FDA should be eliminated – it shouldn’t – but, really, who watches the watchers?

  12. There’s a few of us who get that. It’s just that, “socialism” has been associated with (dictatorial) “communism” and weaponized. It really sucks.

  13. you realize without the FDA, dangerous, untested, and even lethal drugs, foods, vaccines, devices, etc. would be released to the public. while i agree with you that sometimes their screening process is rather tedious and unnecessary, however, there have been times where this screening process has been necessary. a few examples:

    -Lorqess: a dietary aid. FDA found that it caused cancer in rats, and was deemed dangerous
    -JZP-6: a fibromyalgia pain killer. also known to many as the “date-rape” drug
    -Qnexa: another dietary aid: After testing, FDA found it negatively affected heart rate, and also caused birth defects, and psychiatric problems.
    Cipro: an antibiotic. caused Tendonitis and Tendon ruptures.

    I think that it would be incredibly stupid to shut down the FDA, otherwise we would have antibiotics that would rupture our tendons, and dietary aid’s that caused cancer. saying that the FDA was needed when people were selling “magic tonics” is a grave misunderstanding of what the FDA does. They protect the public from the dangers of newly developed drugs and makes sure that nothing potentially harmful reaches the public. next time, i suggest you do a little research about an organization before going out and saying that it isn’t necessary anymore

  14. socialized medicine still isn’t the answer. Why doesn’t america start cutting federal agencies that only hurt the medical field? For example, shutting down the FDA would work wonders. Quick example, a company I work for has completely developed and tested a new technology to completely replace the most expensive aspect of a common medical procedure (i’m not telling which to protect the company and myself) but the new technology would reduce the cost of the procedure to a fraction of what it is. the problem is that because it’s classified as a “new technology” by the FDA, it has to go through a rigorous and expensive process to get FDA approved that will take roughly 5 years and cost about 50 billion dollars. this leaves them with 5 years on their patent for it because the patent timer starts once their application to the FDA is sent in. So this leaves them 5 years to break even and make 50 billion dollars, plus the money they invested in research and development. With their product being built to last indefinitely and be super cheap, this makes it impossible to make the money back and so therefore releasing the new technology that would make the procedure available for almost everyone to afford would bankrupt the company in the process and therefore they cant do it and the new technology is just sitting on a shelf somewhere as we speak. So my point is, it’s not the fault of a capitalistic healthcare system that this man is in jail to get health care, it is the fault of the federal government that you all are so anxious to put in charge of the healthcare because you think that that will suddenly make it “free” for everyone. Thing like the FDA make healthcare so incredibly expensive because they just add pointless burdens and costs that get passed right on to you. The FDA was needed when people were selling magic tonics out of a wagon, not when corporations have access to top scientists and engineers and can develop this stuff on their own. If only you all could see the actual big picture, maybe you would change your minds

  15. All this could be avoided if America could grasp the very simple concept that socialized medical care does not mean your government is a communist regime.

  16. As someone outside the US looking in it seems the seriotypical american is actually the real american.

    99% Get to work, sort out social healthcare – sure it costs the rich guys more, but it’s not like they can’t afford to downsize from their V8 for something a little more economical.

    Get a diesel for goodness sake – twice the distance driven on a tank, saves the environment large amounts of pollution.

  17. He should come to Argentina. We have free health care for everybody, as well as free university education, pension for the elderly, disabled… And that´s for everybody, even if you are from another country.

  18. Well said Deevo. The funny thing is that most of the Yanks you bitch about “Socialism” really haven’t the faintest idea what it is, or that most of Europe is not actually socialist, but socio-capitalist.

    I have a friend currently in hospital for knee surgery. Total cost to him? Nil. Bargain.

  19. “I get so sick and tired of these internet grammar nazis. Damn, you know what the writer meant. If the grammar is so freaking important to you then why not become a teacher and leave us alone.”

    I did – but unfortunately you can only teach those who want to be taught, and ignoramuses like you have the attitude “Does it really matter?” which makes teaching even harder.

  20. Appalling. You yanks just love to hate don’t you? You especially hate each other.
    So what’s your beef against social medicine? What’s your problem with socialism? What do you think socialism is about – the government seizing all your pathetic assets or something?
    Doesn’t happen you stupid people. What socialised medicine is about is actually getting something back for your tax dollars, instead of just giving all your tax money to some rich guy like you do now. We call it getting value for money, not communism like you idiots do.
    And guess what? We make damn sure we get value for our tax dollar by keeping prices under control by making the government carefully scrutinise all associated costs. You guys are either too lazy or too stupid to do this, and that’s why you’re in such a mess.

  21. Maybe he had a felony in his past, dumb-fucks. A federal crime prohibits you from getting any federal aid at all. If he wasn’t banned from our crude safety net before, he is now.

    PS. Don’t try this is California, we don’t mind if our prisoners starve to death protesting their inhumane treatment and lack of medical care.

    And some guy here floated the Ron Paul bullshit that “universal healhtcare makes providers into slaves”. Its a ridiculous position to hold or even float. Our country’s healthcare costs are artificially high because we allow healthcare companies to charge our private citizens whatever they want. Our federal gov. can simply tell the health corps what we will pay and they will have to take it or get the fuck out of the country (which i’m sure they would not do).

  22. okay, so why do criminals / felons get free health care and i, a taxpayer, do not? nobody can possibly give me a satisfactory answer for that. people who think healthcare is not a right have obviously never been in a low – income situation. you have no empathy for people with no access to health care because you have money (and probably always have). you don’t want to help pay for the poor’s healthcare.. but you already pay for prisoners who don’t pay taxes. idiots.

  23. And, for the record, the Canadian dollar is not “way stronger” than the USD. The current exchange rate is 1.04/USD. 1 Canadian dollar will get you USD1.04. Not a huge difference there, genius. Regardless, exchange rate is not a good way to judge an economy. When the USD is weaker than other countries currencies, foreigners will buy more from the US because it is cheaper, therefore boosting the economy. Some countries, like China, purposely keep there currency weaker than another for this specific purpose. So, you can go “tea bag” yourself for being so fucking smart!

  24. Uh, did anyone take into consideration how sad it is that our country’s criminals get better healthcare, living situations and food than a majority of our citizens. I think this is more of the issue than the heathcare system itself. Maybe if the government would spend a little less “baby-ing” convicted criminals, we would have more money to spend on law abiding citzen’s healthcare.

  25. i don’t understand you stupid americans. you won’t bankrupt your country, you stupid fucks. there are several countries I can name off the top of my head who have public helthcare systems that AREN’T bankrupt and most of them are doing BETTER THAN THE USA.
    first, look at canada, the canadian dollar is way stronger than the american shit hole dollar. how about switeserland, who has even BETTER medical coverage than canadians. oh and i heard all those stupid arguments about “oh if canadian healthcare is so good, why do they come to the usa for treatment” and MOST canadians DO NOT, but there are some who do… why? because healthcare costs so bloody much in the usa, most of your hospitals and clinics are fucking vacent, cause most poeple can’t afford it, so those willing to pay a lot of money can easily just walk in for any procedure they would like to pay for. this doesn’t mean it’s any better, just more available, if you’re willing to pay.
    god damn you americans are so fucking stupid it kills me… i’m so glad your country is on the decline – hopefully obama can fix it, but you’re too stupid to let him anyway. go fucking teabag yourselfs and just wait, you’ll all be in the poor house soon enough!

  26. This is just like the case from Southern Pennsylvania, where a guy “robbed” a bank with a BB gun to get away from his abusive wife.

  27. NEWSFLASH!!!!

    YOU already pay for the healthcare of people that dont have medical insurance

    We fall far behind other great countries due to our lack of heathcare coverage for Americans. If we are so much better than all of the other countries, then why can they figure out a way to give free care to their people without going bankrupt and we can’t?

  28. Yeah, having to pay for your own healthcare really sucks doesn’t it? Having to pay for my groceries every week sucks too but I’m not about to get myself sent to jail over it.

  29. And when the money the gub’ment is taking from working citizens and “for profit” medical care is wiped out the system will collapse and there will lots of “nothing” for “everyone”. That’s the end of any story that starts with a socialist mantra.

  30. What all you morons fail to understand is that this guy was not dying. If he showed up at a hospital and said “I’m dying” – the doctors would work on him pro-bono, as part of being a doctor is taking a hypocratic oath. This stupid line about profit motive driving these kinds of situations is absolute rubbish. This happens in so insignificant a number of cases in a country of 300 million people that when it does, you all jump on it and claim the system is broken. People in the United States have more wealth, greater life expenctancy and health than the vast majority of countries in the world, and by comparison, a far greater demographic diversity and level of individual liberty than any of the countries you mention with “free healthcare” – which are mostly monocultural, borderline communist states with very little individual and collective freedom, so why don’t you look at things like human rights abuses there? Oh, wait, that would show that the US actually doesn’t have it so bad… You want to carry on like this is a “Shame” “Shame” “Shame” – do your research, citing one or even a dozen cases like this a year is still only a drop in the ocean which is your healthcare system. It’s not failing because it’s overburdened or overpriced due to bureaucracy (as the conservatives put it) and it’s not failing because it’s not “free” – it’s quite simply not failing. Get over yourselves, the lot of you.

  31. Just another example of someone abusing the system to get its benefits. It doesn’t matter if you believe healthcare is a human right, or a private interest, people should be protesting such a thing in a way that will not financially affect the rest of us.

  32. Healthcare is a human right. It cannot be denied to anyone. The judge who sent that poor man to prison, should have instead ordered the government to pay for the medical treatment he needed.
    Does anybody give a damn if someone dies because that person couldn’t afford medical treatment??
    Also, a country won’t go bankrupt for giving free healthcare. That wasn’t what happened to Greece, we all know the story. Is not about free healthcare vs paid healthcare, it could be both. Just look what is being done in countries like Canada, Brasil, Argentina, Chile, etc. Specially the last three. Those aren’t rich countries, but they never ceased from giving healthcare for the poor.

  33. Rachel- you are a delightful simpleton who lacks coherent understanding of the dilemma at hand. Mr Verane was not making enough money that would able to afford him the onerous cost of healthcare which in other parts of the world comes subsidized by the government. But because healthcare is in the hands of private industry, the only incentive is that of profit, not health.

    As for grammar. I make no disclaimer, we sometimes leave out commas, make spelling mistakes, but unlike the mainstream media, we publish compelling content and had we not published this, I can assure you the mainstream media would not have picked up on this story. In fact it sat there for a few days before I decided somebody had to bring it to wider attention.

    So next time you and the spell check terrorists go on the offensive, what you ought to really ask is the following: Is the media spelling correctly or are they making an effort to report on relevant news that we all ought to know about and discuss in length? And if not- why?

    best the Editor.

  34. People need to stop relying on the government to take care of them. I am a grown adult with medical needs and no insurance and guess what? I don’t rob a bank to take care of the costs. That’s PATHETIC! I figure out a way to pay for what I need and deal with it. People need to stop acting like ninny’s and take care of themselves.
    On a side note, about the grammar nazi comment, I can’t tell you how many people I see on the internet who don’t know how to write proper english. Their FIRST language!!! You spend your ENTIRE LIFE using and writing this language, you should know the ins and outs by now. If you can’t muster up enough intelligence write your own language correctly, DON’T!

  35. Ahhh I’m glad my parents migrated to Australia instead of America. Here were have free health care but that means longer waiting time because of the high influx of people going to the doctors to check up on their common colds and flues!

  36. @Patrick

    You make a good point, but consider this:

    It’s estimated that nearly half of adults in the US, and up to a quarter of juveniles, will have some type of diabetes by the year 2020. That is a LOT of insulin, a LOT of health care, and a LOT of money that will need to be spent.

    So if nearly half the adult population cannot even reduce their consumption of high fructose corn syrup or trans-fats, just by a simple change in their eating habits, how LIKELY do you think it is that those same people will be able to manage a budget to live on, or a savings plan, or an investment plan, when the cost of health care is rising faster than inflation?

    If you think this guy is an isolated incident of some deadbeat milking the system, I think you have a huge surprise in store in the next ten years.

  37. It’s unfortunate that the writer does ask why this man did not invest wisely when he was younger and working, stay out of debt and live within his means so that when he was older he could retire in dignity and provide for his own care rather than depend on the government.

  38. Someone mentioned they didn’t know how the health care in “socialized” countries worked, here’s a clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uGTzbj3fRSw

    Although the statement about a two weeks tropical vacation is slightly ambitious (you have to pay a part of the ticket), it is generally correct.

    Oh, the woes and dangers of socialism!

  39. The thing with medicaid and medicare (in new york state anyway) is that if you take in a certain income you do not qualify for it. Now, our state has a few low income options but we are not everywhere. Since he was working he didn’t qualify for medicaide (or made too much money to qualify for it), too young for medicare, but just just poor enough to receive food assistance. It also takes weeks and sometimes months for your benefits to go through even if one did qualify. My low cost health insurance took three months to get approved…

    The entire system is completely screwed up.

  40. Jonathan, while there are bad examples of how to run a country (Greece), the fact is that our system right now, if you want to call it a “system”, costs about twice as much as other systems and those other systems give people cradle to grave health care coverage.

    So, we could cover this man and still spend less money we don’t have–go into the red LESS–than we do now. Many other countries do it. We are spending big bucks and getting nothing in return. Greece is one extreme example of a FAIL, but so are WE!

  41. Coming from a country with free healthcare I can say that I would never – and I am not alone – visit America because of the healthcare situation. Even with insurance, it’s just not worth the risk.

  42. This is a huge blow to our system and our country as a whole. This is a herendous story for someone that simple wan’ts health insurace. Not everyone is as fortunate to have health care insurance, life insurance, and just any insurance and just for simple basic care someone needs our society and government has failed. I remember just to get a medical insurance quote for my daughters asthma problems cost me 50 dollars out of pocket to just to find out what I would eventually be paying them. I feel for this person and he is taking full advantage of the messed up system we have.

  43. What a sad and depressing story for America. I’m sure this isn’t the first time someone has had to do this just for medical insurance network. My cousin is an insurance agent works at a insurance agency that deal primarly with healthcare and I hear sad stories all the time of how people are robbed of just getting the basic treatment and care they need cause they can’t afford it. Our government needs to fix this right away cause if people are going to jail voluntary basically just for care there is a problem with our society and government.

  44. Kmuzu: 9500 dollars!!!!! Good lord I hope you are alright mate. Sounds like an operation.

    Standard General Practitioner in Oz is about $60, of which Medicare rebates you around $30-$40.
    Some GPs in poorer areas charge closer to the medicare rebated amount, which means the poor get mostly free health care, but personally I find most Aussie GPs to be quacks. The best ones are in the hospitals (which is a good thing when you get into a car accident, I don’t go to the quack for the common cold).

    We pay between 1.6 and 2.6% of our taxes as a medicare levy, but spend around 9-10% of GDP on health care, so the government picks up the monkey’s share of the bill. In the US you spend around 12% of GDP on healthcare, and sorry to be blunt, but it mostly sucks. I think Vioxx alone could have killed tens of thousands.

    As for this poor fella, looks like he got everything he wanted. Prison will give him a job, a roof over his head, medical treatment, new friends. Might even pick up a trade.

    And Brian, if you are so incensed about your tax dollars paying for his medical care, why do you want him to spend a long time inside? Surely the longer his sentence, the more of “your” taxes will be spent on his upkeep?

  45. America: Leave no rich person behind.

    Somehow we find $1 Trillion dollars per year to fight wars and occupy nations and sustain a Cold War sized military, but we can’t even get basic health care for the average citizen without them having to file for bankruptcy.

  46. I get so sick and tired of these internet grammar nazis. Damn, you know what the writer meant. If the grammar is so freaking important to you then why not become a teacher and leave us alone.

    Comment after comment on different sites and all this you spelled this wrong, that word is wrong. Get a life will ya.

  47. It’s a growing trend. People who have no jobs anymore (long-term unemployed and not even counted in the unemployment rate any longer) and can’t get County for one of the many reasons they disqualify you (including being between residences) but do have serious medical care problems that can’t be treated in an emergency room of a hospital really have no choice but to lay down and die, deform into a cripple and go on SSI, or commit a crime to get health care in our jails/prisons.

    The only sane solution to this growing madness isn’t democide (which the GOP wishes with all their heart on laid off poor Americans who simply cannot find non-existent work) but rather medical care!

    The Affordable Healthcare Act 2014 can’t come soon enough for this country.

  48. I spent 12 days in a Australian hospital in Sydney .. Think it was the Prince of Wales. Australia is full on government run healthcare. I unfortunately did not have traveler’s insurance. The hospital was top rate – best one I’ve been too. Better than American hospitals. Doctors were incredible and the nurses were very professional. The only difference I saw was that I had to share a room with five other patients. That was kind of annoying. Oh there was one other difference – the total cost to me was $9,500. This amount is one ER visit in the US. Paul Ryan’s voucher is $8,000. As you can see it doesn’t even cover one socialized hospital visit.

  49. Now that prisons are privatized, this type of behavior is perfectly acceptable. Corporations make more money and the Verone’s of America are passive and obedient. Of course, the Tea Party will complain that this man should be thrown out of prison cause it cost them another dime in taxes. But just wait until Tea Party ends medicaid and medicare and you will have a whole army of imprisoned indigent and hospice care patients.

    As for me, I’m moving to Vermont to upgrade my Obamacare. I like it up north, educated and friendly people and it’s one step closer to Canada .. if it will take me.

  50. Google Medicare… this man chose this because he’s mentally unstable. There are actually several options available for low income people like him to obtain 100% covered tax-dollar paid for healthcare. His “ailments” were carpal tunnel and arthritis… do you people even read things before you go half-cocked about the injustices in this country?

  51. I hope they throw the book at this guy, lots of time in a maximum security prison. Lots of hard labor. Jerkoff gets to use my hard earned dollars to cover his healthcare while in prison he needs to be growing my food…

  52. Thanks for the editorial.Communists,you’re all the same.How did Clinton’s stuff taste.Did he work the cigar really good for you?lol

  53. Okay, don’t attack because I’m just trying to float arguments here and I really want to hear it if there really is a way to make this work.

    If we grant free healthcare to everyone doesn’t that amount to some kind of slavery for healthcare workers? “No, the government will pay for it and they will pay well.” What about when the Government runs out of capital? “That won’t happen.” Look at Greece. “Nevermind Greece, we’ll just raise taxes on rich people.” What if those people decide to go elsewhere, or hire lobbyists that keep them from paying those taxes (General Electric), or just decide to stop investing their money in creating businesses because they lose too much. “Healthcare is a basic human right.” But someone has to pay for it. Someone has to work and earn money and give that money away (or have it taken from them) in order to buy that basic human right.

    The big question is not “is free healthcare the right thing to do” the big question is “how do you make it happen without bankrupting your country?” This man needed healthcare very badly, but whose money do you take to pay for it? Is that actually Justice, or does it just make us feel good to stick it to someone who has more? I feel like we’re just banging our heads against the reality of limited resources and the systems we’ve made to dispense them. I live in the US so I’m not entirely sure how successful other systems are, but it seems like the same thing would happen with socialized medicine. This man’s aliments might be in the budget, but what about something much more expensive? What if it takes a few million dollars to keep your eighty year old mother alive? Does she get that treatment? Or is it decided that she’s lived a good long life? Does she get Justice? Or is Justice weighted on the side of the collective who can make better use of those few million bucks? Don’t we eventually come back to the hard truth that its a harsh world and there simply isn’t enough for everyone to have everything they need?

  54. Also, I’m fairly sure that “belies” doesn’t mean what you think it means. But still. Interesting article!

  55. Dear Nate- point taken. I confess even I need a good editor and I am the editor. Oh dear….lol.

    But yes, such a tragic and bizarre situation. As an Australian who lives in the US, I’m just beguiled by how some things work here. I do hope this man going to jail raises some questions and embarrasses the chiefs in healthcare to have a close look at this unjust system.
    – best Scallywag.

  56. Good article. Thought I’d let you know that “begs the question” should be “raises the question.” Begging the question is something entirely different.

  57. Even though I have a good job with good insurance, I am planning on moving to France once my daughter has grown up and left home. The United States is no place for humans to live.

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