Health More Important Than Wealth

They didn't call gout the "rich man's disease" for nothing.

If Americans truly want the American Dream for ourselves and our children, we're going to have start emulating our cousins across the pond.

Bad Health Care, Deficient Welfare Keep Americans Short

For decades, it has been clear that average European heights have been increasing while those on the other side of the Atlantic have not. But why? A new study says it might have to do with health care and the social net.

This is the kind of "common sense" which a die-hard belief in "the one with the most toys wins" makes appear nonsensical. People give up family, introspection, and geographic community for the sake climbing the ladder of capitalist society. Even their Churches take their wealth, often for ridiculously capitalistic reasons (ie, building a bigger church!) and give little but platitudes and delusional fairy tales in return.

How often do you hear someone who has everything complain about someone "getting an unfair advantage"? Or complaining about Taxes and that they don't want to pay for "those lazy bastards'" health care?

I hear way too much of it; usually in a lowered tone of voice because, while folks may be "emboldened" by the likes of Rush & Bill O', they do still have their grandparents' values of human dignity and conscience inside them. They've just been peer-pressured and beaten down with fear and way too many hours working for someone else's capital gains to realize that We Are All In The Same Pale Blue Boat.
A new study published in the current issue of the Social Science Quarterly by researchers from Princeton University in the US and the University of Munich in Germany indicates that the difference may have to do more with politics than biology. Specifically, the study, which involved the statistical analysis of demographic and health data collected between 1959 and 2002, concludes that the spotty US health-care system and weak welfare net could explain why Americans have stopped growing.

"We surmise that the health systems and high degree of social security in Europe provide better conditions for growth than the American health system, despite the fact that the system costs twice as much," said study co-author John Komlos from the University of Munich in a statement. "There are also indications that American diets are deficient in several areas."

From the Colonial times until roughly the 1970s, Americans were the tallest people in the world. But then, growth stagnated while Europeans spent the second half of the 20th century growing like weeds. Now, the average Dutchman is six centimeters taller than the average American -- "almost an exact reversal of the relationship in the middle of the 19th century," Komlos says.

[The Rich Can't Care Enough...]
They're way too busy trying to make more meaninglessness in their own lives to afford to.


  1. I'm starting to think that our government wants us to be dumb and sick. At least that seems to be the direction they are taking. Ugh.

  2. Adorable GirlfriendMay 22, 2007 9:50 PM

    I'm not quite sure I agree. I suggest it has more to do with the fact that Europeans are now intermarrying in a way Americans have for centuries. I'd have to do some more research though. :)

  3. that's what i'm talking about, peacechick!! sad thing about u.s. food and produce is it's either spiked with hormones/chemicals or been on a shelf for a long while. not to mention everythings processed. a market tomato picked five days ago has almost no vitamins as compared to the day it was harvested. just eat cardboard... here's to staying short and being unhealthy.

  4. Whatever keeps the Economy Growing, eh Mary? Talk about short-sighted leadership...

    Thinkin' 'bout playin' the research field, are we AG? ;-)

    Hey Raffi, I thought all those Preservatives were what made us Live Longer!? (Yikes!)

    Ed, if that's what it takes to tell such cool stories, don't go changin' daddy-o!

  5. Adorable GirlfriendMay 23, 2007 3:44 PM

    AG already plays, but her research is far more hated. So for now, AG will stay in that court.

    Hey, are you going to make the Chicago meet-up in July?

  6. It seems like every car in front of and behind me today was a Lexus.

    We just put the kibosh on a deal for one of our clients, a nonprofit trade organization devoted to improving the chances of manufacturing in our region. These folks stretched to make a very handsome offer to the incumbent, in fact more than double what the sitting exec is making at the point of retirement.

    In addition to an obscene list of other unnaturally greedy demands, the selected candidate wanted, I kid you not, A ONE THOUSAND DOLLAR A MONTH AUTO ALLOWANCE.

    Where does this greed come from? It really makes me appreciate the practice of going through a process in my family of teaching the difference between NEED vs WANT.

    And, I'm short. I'll always be short. As far as I know it has nothing to do with how hard I'm working. I'm just lucky, I guess.

  7. The New Yorker had an article about height some time ago. The main reason Americans are no longer so tall seemed to be obesity (poor diet), which can trigger early adolesence, which in turn stunts height. (Entirely from memory so I could be mistaken somewhere.)

    At any rate, it certainly is true that this country invests almost nothing in real health care, but creates billions in health profits for those in the game.

  8. i love preservatives... they make my sweat taste like chemicals.


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