The Great Debate UK
-Laurence Copeland is a professor of finance at Cardiff Business School. The opinions expressed are his own.-
“The NHS – the envy of the world”. This is one of the Great British Myths to rank alongside “A-level standards haven’t fallen”.
It makes you wonder why all those rich well-organised Europeans are looking longingly at Britain – it’s not as though they can’t afford their own NHS. The truth of course is that they take one look and say “thanks, but no thanks”, and you can’t really blame them.
By most indicators, the NHS produces outcomes that are very unimpressive compared to our European neighbours and are in many cases inferior to those achieved in far poorer countries.
- John A. Cunningham is Canada research chair in brief interventions for addictive behaviours, a senior scientist at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and a professor at the University of Toronto. The opinions expressed are his own. -
Whether you live in Britain, Canada, the U.S. or one of many other countries around the world, alcohol consumption is one of the leading causes of preventable death.
from The Great Debate:
Prophetic words they were not. "By God, we've kicked the Vietnam syndrome once and for all...The specter of Vietnam has been buried forever in the desert sands of the Arabian Peninsula."
GM's Lordstown, Ohio assembly plant has become a symbol of both GM's hard times and its best hopes for a turnaround after a $50 billion federal investment. A recent bump in sales because of the government's "Cash for Clunkers" program has allowed GM to call back more than 1,000 workers from layoff. So it was a natural backdrop for a return visit by President Obama, who held a roundtable with workers and then gave a stump speech from the factory floor for his economic policies and health care reform. But this is not your father's GM anymore and nothing about it as clear-cut as it seems -- even if you are the leader of the free world and head of the government that holds a controlling stake in the automaker. At one point, Obama -- veering from his prepared remarks -- suggested that health-care reform would allow the UAW-represented workers in the audience to negotiate better wages.
“Think about it. If you are a member of the union right now, you’re spending all your time negotiating about health care. You need to be spending some time negotiating about wages, but you can’t do it," he said.
There's something scary about big numbers. It's one reason we in the media often like to put the biggest number we can find into a headline.
So it was no surprise that most media outlets went gaga over the Obama administration's projection that the nation's debt will grow by $9 trillion over the next decade. And sure enough, critics of the administration's efforts to reform healthcare were quick to seize on that scary number as another reason to advocate doing nothing.