Not that it has happened, or it definitely will happen, but the Greek government is looking into the possibility of a heating benefit in Greece, due to the fact that most folks use petrol to heat their homes and apartments here and oil prices are rising so high.
Such things really blow my mind here. Sure, there are plenty of bad things about Greece, but this is a government that actually thinks about its citizens now and then. Greece is struggling financially, but its people have health insurance. Even I have health insurance here (well, thanks to being married to a Greek citizen). Yet, 45.8 million Americans lack health insurance, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Tennessee alone recently dumped over 200,000 from their state insurance program, TennCare (and dumped is the correct terminology here, if you read the stories of the affected people).
Sure, there is a big difference between Greece and America. There are only about 10 million people in Greece. Is it easier to manage health insurance for 10 million? Perhaps. Of course, the Greek budget is considerably smaller too. But there are controls on how much profit doctors and hospitals and pharmaceutical companies can make here, too. These controls help keep costs down and make health insurance more manageable for the government. When I buy my prescriptions, and pay anywhere from 3 to 9 times less for a drug than I did in the U.S., I have to wonder why. The pharmaceutical companies are all the same. Can it be that Americans are paying the cost of research, while Europeans are getting a free ride?
Ironically, the Iraqi people are getting health insurance written into their constitution. Will the servicemen and women who are fighting for Iraqi "freedom" have health insurance when they get home? Will they have it in the future?
I suppose I should quit beating this dead horse, especially since there is no insurance to cover its revival.