Chicken Run

Onlysomeone who has no chance in hell of ever NEEDING to use a chicken to pay for health care would ever actually suggest it. I mean, seriously. Paying your doctor in sacks of flour wasn’t something you did because it was preferable, it was something you did because if you didn’t he wouldn’t get paid at all. Even when the poor paid in chickens the rich still paid in money.



10 thoughts on “Chicken Run

  1. And if you, say, owe the hospital $ 3,000 for your colonoscopy, does the hospital have someone tending the chicken coop for your 3,000 chickens plus all the other chickens from today?

  2. try a day of purdue chickens for 1 MRI. today’s health industrial complex is not like it used to be.
    stupid bitch.

  3. Ah, yes. The olden days, when granny and gramps would give kindly old Doctor Kimball a chicken for his services.
    What fucking fantasy world does this woman live in, again?
    And are the wingnuts in other countries this insane?

  4. Well,if the chickens aren’t enough payment, there are other patriotic citizens advising us to “sell some bling” to help pay for our necessary lifesaving medical procedures.
    I think I’ll have Coco Robicheaux deliver the chickens to my doctor for me. Maybe that’ll get the doctor to shave a few bucks off my tab.

  5. Will wingers stock up on eggs and feed (tax exempt, of course), then cruelly mock anyone who didn’t? Will we hear sad stories about how they “earned” their coop because they “worked harder than anyone else,” and that it’s sooooo “unfair” they have to subsidize chickens for the poor and/or victims of fox attacks?

  6. I grew up during those good old days. When I needed a doctor as a small boy my parents got the town doctor to pay a visit, with his little pill case. He would tap on my stomach a few times, take my temperature and pulse, have me stick out my tongue, then make his diagnosis. That diagnosis always led to his opening his pill bottle case and pouring out a few of a couple of them – a laxative and aspirin. My dad would pay him $10, and off he would go. When I broke my arm, not badly but still broken, he diagnosed that by feeling it. Then he went outdoors to find a piece of wood shingle, which he whittled into a splint. That he attached to my arm with a couple of yards of gauze. And, of course I got some pills – a laxative and aspirin – another $10.
    In retrospect I have to thank Thor or whomever that I didn’t get Leukemia or something like that. If I had, I’m sure I would have gotten some pills – a laxative and aspirin. Of course you wouldn’t have to read this in that case.

  7. What this really punches home is that most conservatives have a near-terminal case of nostalgia for a time that never really existed in this country. Country people paid country doctors in goods and services because that’s all they had–they were poor because for decades in this country, the railroad corporations manipulated the markets through control of transportation to keep prices to the producers low.
    And anyone who thinks the average schmo today can pay cash (and negotiate prices) for needed medical services is living in a goddamned dream world.
    The bigger point is that Lowden doesn’t actually do that herself. I’d bet a steak dinner to a doughnut that she’s got an excellent insurance plan.
    And, in back of this, certainly, is the promotion of health care savings accounts as a substitute for a truly egalitarian system, which is simply another tax dodge boondoggle for the wealthy in its current form.

  8. I don’t doubt that barter goes on now, in poor communities, or in rural areas, or in immigrant communities, in all kinds of situations. It’s what people do to get by, to get needed services they might not be able to get any other way, or to maintain some shred of dignity if the service was given freely in a culture that still craps on you if you have few means (whatever the reason).
    I don’t want to crap all over that. People deserve health and dignity. But for someone so well fed and well protected to suggest that a 19th century “barter” is The Answer (TM) is vile. Vile and cruel and, oh, by the way, STOOOOPID. If she thinks the 19th century had the answers, I invite her to live that way (and not in the cute steampunk way–I mean in the dying-young-of-preventable-illnesses, no-voting-rights-for-YOU way).

  9. Gidget, exactly, and here’s what makes me crazy: Buying your friends pizza and beer for moving 60 boxes of books and a piano into your house with you (I am SO SORRY about your back, K, call me!) or even offering services in exchange for food from someone’s garden is a whole other thing than the concept of bartering for health care. Which costs bazillions of dollars, once you’re into MRIs and whatnot. That’s a lot of pizza, and also? You shouldn’t have to be calculating what your life is worth, either in cash or in sacks of flour or poultry or whatever, when you are fucking SICK.
    I’m sympathetic to the argument that mocking a barter economy as a whole is classist and even racist, but I think the mockery stems from the obliviousness of a very rich person suggesting this is preferable to reforming the health care system so that everyone has equal access, rather than mocking the value of a barter system in general.

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