March 26, 2007


Caption: This man takes out his psychological conflicts on a toy money.

Since El Cabrero has been on a psychology jag lately, I’ve decided to quench not the spirit. Instead, I’m pleased to proclaim this is Goat Rope’s official Fun with Freud week.

I still remember when I first discovered Freud. It was about the same time I ran into Nietzsche and the effects on me were similar to those that occurred when I got into my mother’s homemade wine as a kid. I was buzzing!

I was at that stage of life when one is trying to figure out oneself and others (before I realized it couldn’t be done) and I still have a soft spot for old Sig.

Imagine my disappointment when I took my first college psychology class. My professor belonged to that idiotic tribe known as behaviorists and he scoffed at the idea of consciousness, much less of the unconscious. (There may have been loopier and more evil ideas than behaviorism in psychology, but I can't think of any at the moment.) That was the end of my major in psychology.

Not that I’m a Freudian fundamentalist today. He’s taken quite a beating over the years (some of it possibly deserved) but I think he was right about some big ideas even if he was wrong about the specifics.

So this week, in addition to whatever else comes up, will include Sigmund’s greatest hits.

Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, but you never know…

HEALTH CARE FRONT AND CENTER. The traditional U.S. connection between employment and health insurance is increasingly frayed. The Employee Benefits Research Institute reported this month that

In 2005, 50.1 percent of workers were employed at a firm that did not offer health benefits to any workers. Nearly 18 percent worked for an employer that provided benefits, but were not eligible for them; and nearly one-third were offered benefits but chose not to participate

Whatever the final outcome of the 2008 election may be, one issue that is likely to dominate public debate is health care. Here's a NY Times article on a recent forum for presidential candidates. So far, Edwards appears to have the most detailed proposal. For those looking for ideas on the subject, I'd recommend the Agenda for Shared Prosperity's Health Care for America proposal.

THE GREAT RISK SHIFT. The health care proposal mentioned above was developed by Jacob S. Hacker, who is also the author of the book The Great Risk shift: The Assault on American Jobs, Families, Health Care and Retirement and How You Can Fight Back. For a review by Charleston Gazette staff writer Paul Nyden, click here.



Jspiker said...

Q. What does HMO stand for?

A. This is actually a variation of the phrase, "HEY MOE." Its roots go back to a concept pioneered by Moe of the Three Stooges, who discovered that a patient could be made to forget the pain in his foot if he was poked hard enough in the eye.

An American files for bankruptcy every 30 seconds in part, because of medical bills.

El Cabrero said...

Nyuck, nyuck, nyuck...

That reminds me--at some point we need to fix that bankruptcy law.

hipparchia said...

yep. definitely need to fix the bankruptcy law.

i don't have any faith in a mix of private insurance and public health care. it might work if we had a public system that paid a substantial portion of all costs [say 80%] and people could buy private insurance to cover their 20% co-pay.

El Cabrero said...

Are you more in favor of a public program?