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Rep. Cooper Talks About Death and Taxes

She got some small medical facts correct about England's national health care system but missed the big picture.

State Rep. Sharon Cooper was the guest speaker of the East Cobb Civic Association this week at the .

The two subjects that took up the majority of the discussion were health care and tax changes.

Rep. Cooper criticized Obama Care and talked about the hundreds of thousands of Georgians who will soon be eligible for an already overextended Georgia Medicaid system. The situation seemed difficult but Rep. Cooper said that it was better than England where the National Health Care system prohibits kidney transplants for anyone over 65.

A retired Lockheed engineer with a thick English accent interjected that he did not know about the 65-year-old cutoff but he did know that in England everyone is covered, the life expectancy is greater than the U.S., and the total cost is half what it is here.

After a long pause, Rep. Cooper added that breast cancer survival in England is less than here. The retired engineer repeated that in England everyone is covered, life expectancy is greater than here, and it costs half as much.

A quick look at Google showed that.

How does NHS health care compare with U.S. health care?

Like most developed countries, Britain ranks above the U.S. in most health measurements. Its citizens have a longer life expectancy and lower infant mortality, and the country has more acute-care hospital beds per capita and fewer deaths related to surgical or medical mishaps.

Britain achieves these results while spending proportionally less on health care than the U.S. — about $2,500 per person in Britain, compared with $6,000 in the U.S. For these reasons, the World Health Organization (WHO) ranked Britain 18th in a global league table of health-care systems (the U.S. was ranked 37th). However, there are measures by which the U.S. outperforms Britain: for instance, the U.S. has lower cancer mortality rates.

Not to worry, said Rep. Cooper, a long time supporter of Newt Gingrich. She said he claims we are on the edge of dramatic breakthroughs in science and that she hopes to live long enough to see them come true.

On the issue of taxes, Rep. Cooper was proud to report that the marriage tax penalty was changed and that the car tax was eliminated, sort of. The 52-page tax bill was presented to the state legislature at the last minute and no legislator had time to read it, before voting on it. Instead of paying a yearly car tax, Rep. Cooper said that a higher tax would be applied at the time of purchase but no yearly tax afterwards.

However, if you do not buy a car, then you’ll continue to pay the car tax as usual, until you sell it. She was asked if the change was actually a tax increase. She said that nearly all the Republicans in the state legislature had signed an oath to Grover Norquist and his organization, Americans for Tax Reform, not to raise taxes.

Since Grover had not complained, the law must not be a tax increase. There was no discussion about the question of registration or emissions testing. The question about car tags did not come up either. Rep. Cooper said that she would get the 52-page document and put it on her website.

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