We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I understand the temptation to take cheap shots at viagra or at men with ED. It's kind of like when you were in the 6th grade and couldn't walk past the fat girl without making some snide fat girl comment. It's easy and funny in a 6th grade kinda way. But ED is a real disease. Unlike many of the diseases that medicare pays for it is a real disease. It is serious enough that most suicides by men over the age of 55 are the result of their ED. It is supposed to have been the reason Ernest Hemingway committed suicide. Which is preferable: To pay for medicine for real diseases and save lives or spend money on fake diseases with no benefit???
Howdy GWTW and BD
Erectile dysfunction is a symptom caused by medical problems; it is no more a disease than is a cough or chest pain. ED may also be devastating to a man's view of himself in some cases.
ED may follow from recognized disease processes like heart disease and diabetes; managing the disease process may or may not do much for the ED symptomology. It is also a change in body function for which a treatment may be effective. That's different from menopause to at least some degree but I don't know to what degree.
Should Medicare be paying for ED medications? That's a policy decision that the government apparently gets away with, but for which a private insurance company would be smeared badly. I don't know what the product costs, but perhaps we should expect people to pay for this one themselves.
One can "invest" in an Apple product, or in apple stock.
In 1997 would find Apple with it's 3rd CEO in the space of two years, sales plummeting, stock price at a record low, and crippling financial losses. In hindsight, a perfect time to buy the stock, but it would look like a pretty stupid move at the time.
On the other hand the Powerbook of the time really was one of the best laptop computers available, and a skilled user with the right utility software would have no problem with cross-platform compatibility. Are we really factoring in the productivity for which the tool was purchased? or are we just saying that the depreciated asset is now worth less?
Regarding the taxing of the rich: the numbers juggled in the article tell us that a goodly number of people make $200k per year. In other words, there are a pretty large number of wealthy people. Only in a free (free-ish, lately) society do you see this. And those of us rather below the $100k mark are still enjoying a good standard of living.
I know the main point was that confiscating everything the wealthy make won't close the deficit. Turns out that confiscating their actual fortunes won't either. But the article also makes the point that the US has produced widespread affluence on a level that no other large nation has ever enjoyed.
I'm very annoyed that Obama and his enablers want to change that.
I think your statement that "Erectile dysfunction is a symptom caused by medical problems; it is no more a disease than is a cough or chest pain" is a distinction without a difference. Almost all of what we know of as diabetes is symptoms and we treat the symptoms. Most of us take "something" to treat the common cold but everything we take treats the symptoms. I recently had minor surgery where the doctor said take tylenol for pain and if it gets too bad I will give you a prescription, what was she treating??? Should we pay for prosthetics? My wife's great grandfather's missing leg was a "symptom" of the disease he was treated for and even back in 1929 they treated that symptom. To be honest some "diseases" engender more sympathy thenm others and some give rise to comedy. Baldness for a woman is very serious and, how did you put it "may also be devastating to a woman's view of herself in some cases" but baldness in a man is the subject of jokes. ED is by it's nature an easy target for jokes and that situation is made all the worse because the medication used for treatment is often misused. I wonder if Earnest Hemingway was laughing???