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Why Cat Owners Should All be Penalized
Medscape Internal Medicine News ^ | 6/22/2012 | Arthur L. Caplan, PhD

Posted on 06/26/2012 12:11:10 PM PDT by fteuph

Hi. I'm Art Caplan, speaking to you from the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania. Today I want to talk about a very serious healthcare problem: irresponsible behavior on the part of a lot of Americans that isn't getting much attention, and that means you if you own a cat.

Many types of health costs are associated with cat ownership. We have allergies and asthma, people who wind up going to the hospital because they have allergic reactions either to the cat or the medicine they take, and there are all types of skin problems. The list goes on and on.

It is pretty clear that these miserable mousers are a huge healthcare problem. I started thinking about this when I saw a recent poll that was published in Forbes magazine that said that most Americans believe that there ought to be a tax on people who are overweight. They make a lifestyle choice and wind up causing more healthcare costs for everybody else due to the diseases and ailments linked to obesity, so Americans think they should pay more. By the way, their employers are starting to think that as well, that they should start to levy penalties and fines on people who are overweight at the workplace.

All of which takes me back to the issue of cats. If we are going to put a penalty on lifestyle choices, then shouldn't we penalize all lifestyle choices? If cats are really causing healthcare problems in the way that I think they do, then I think we need to be fair and tax cat owners.

If you look at the situation, there are probably 60 million or more Americans who own a cat. A lot of you out there choose to own more than one. Many of you have a cat and you actually keep children in the house near this cat, so these are all horrible, terrible, inappropriate, and immoral decisions.

Why? Well, we don't know exactly how much cat ownership costs, but it probably runs into billions of dollars every year in terms of allergy medicines that people take, hospitalizations that I mentioned earlier, and treating skin diseases. You are also exposing others who don't want to own a cat to cats because you can never get the cat dander and the cat allergen out of the rug, the furniture, and the carpet. Even if you move the cat, so to speak, the presence of the cat is left behind. This is a very burdensome thing, not just for people who live with cats but the rest of us who try to visit you or who want to move into a place where you have been.

Therefore, it is pretty clear -- probably beyond any ethical dispute -- that cat ownership is an irresponsible choice. Let me add that none of this applies to dogs. I own a dog. I think they are wonderful. In fact, there probably should be a tax break for dog owners. But for cats, looking at the kinds of costs that are involved and the irresponsibility that cat owners exercise in choosing to have them, I think we need to start thinking more seriously about ways to extend penalties if we are going to make personal responsibility a part of healthcare.

Cat owners, think hard about what I said. And those of you who are in favor of personal responsibility as a way to cut down healthcare costs, you know who I am talking about.

This is Art Caplan at the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania. I wish all of you a happy summer.


TOPICS: Health/Medicine; Humor; Pets/Animals
KEYWORDS: cats; kittyping; napl; satire
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1 posted on 06/26/2012 12:11:14 PM PDT by fteuph
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To: fteuph

Viking Kitties are not going to be happy about this one......


2 posted on 06/26/2012 12:12:48 PM PDT by b4its2late (A Liberal is a person who will give away everything he doesn't own.)
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To: fteuph

Jokers like Caplan must be sterilized and then lobotomized!


3 posted on 06/26/2012 12:14:28 PM PDT by DarthVader (Politicians govern out of self interest, Statesmen govern for a Vision greater than themselves)
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To: b4its2late

Cat owners are by definition martyrs and should be venerated.

Arthur Caplan (sliced & diced) would be a dish best served cold to my feral pussy posse.


4 posted on 06/26/2012 12:16:43 PM PDT by Fightin Whitey
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To: fteuph
What we REALLY need is a fear-mongering tax.
5 posted on 06/26/2012 12:17:41 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Government is the religion of the sociopath.)
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To: fteuph

Hey Art! We just levied a $1000 fine on stupidity. Now pay up!!


6 posted on 06/26/2012 12:18:25 PM PDT by Islander7 (There is no septic system so vile, so filthy, the left won't drink from to further their agenda)
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To: fteuph

And those of us who own birds stand behind this wholeheartedly!


7 posted on 06/26/2012 12:18:50 PM PDT by datura (Democrat = Socialist, Progressive Democrat = Communist)
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To: Fightin Whitey

In my cat’s eyes, this is like Mr. Caplan doing the “Bronx Salute” to them. Not good.


8 posted on 06/26/2012 12:19:17 PM PDT by Biggirl ("Jesus talked to us as individuals"-Jim Vicevich/Thanks JimV!)
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To: fteuph
>> If cats are really causing healthcare problems in the way that I think they do, then I think we need to be fair and tax cat owners.

Well, Arthur... or is it DOCTOR Arthur... as long as it's all about what we “think” *might* be true...

if you're one-quarter the douchebag I *think* you are, then I *think* you should be hog-tied and thrown into the tiger cage at the national zoo.

How about that, you arrogant presumptuous meddlesome liberal SOB?

9 posted on 06/26/2012 12:19:59 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Trust in God, but row away from the rocks!)
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To: fteuph

Cats look so cute when viewed through the scope of a Remington 700 SPS chambered in .308


10 posted on 06/26/2012 12:20:13 PM PDT by MeganC (No way in Hell am I voting for Mitt Romney. Not now, not ever. Deal with it.)
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To: datura

My nearly 1,000 chickens salute you!


11 posted on 06/26/2012 12:21:09 PM PDT by MeganC (No way in Hell am I voting for Mitt Romney. Not now, not ever. Deal with it.)
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To: fteuph

Cats, like their owners, should follow Jesse Jackson’s sage advice... “Stay out da Bushes!”


12 posted on 06/26/2012 12:21:35 PM PDT by donozark (Col. C.Beckwith:I'd rather go down the river with 7 studs than with a hundred shitheads.)
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To: fteuph

The good Doc does some real fine satire.


13 posted on 06/26/2012 12:22:56 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: fteuph

What a Maroon.


14 posted on 06/26/2012 12:23:15 PM PDT by JaguarXKE (If my Fluffy had a puppy, it would look like the puppy Obama ate!)
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To: fteuph

Somebody forgot the /s tag....


15 posted on 06/26/2012 12:24:17 PM PDT by I Shall Endure
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To: Borax Queen
Taxed and then manacled to a bed, once per cat.......

:-)

16 posted on 06/26/2012 12:24:29 PM PDT by Lakeshark (I don't care for Mitt, the alternative is unthinkable)
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To: MeganC

So do people who would try to shoot my cats through the Illuminated Tactical Scope of a CZ-550 Safari Magnum chambered in .375 H&H Magnum. Makes a real mess!


17 posted on 06/26/2012 12:24:39 PM PDT by DarthVader (Politicians govern out of self interest, Statesmen govern for a Vision greater than themselves)
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To: All

On second reading:

I think Dr. Kaplan’s piece is pure sarcasm aimed at the “bioethics” nanny-staters.

Good sarcasm, too.

I apologize to the good Doctor, and take back my medieval punishment suggestion too!


18 posted on 06/26/2012 12:24:39 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Trust in God, but row away from the rocks!)
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To: fteuph

Somehow I get the feeling that if rodents started to over run the country that Arthur L. Caplan, PhD would be one of the firsts to whine about it.....


19 posted on 06/26/2012 12:25:08 PM PDT by chris_bdba
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To: fteuph

How your cat is making you crazy.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2898128/posts


20 posted on 06/26/2012 12:26:02 PM PDT by Bon mots ("When seconds count, the police are just minutes away...")
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To: fteuph

Too funny.


21 posted on 06/26/2012 12:26:15 PM PDT by rockinqsranch (Dems, Libs, Socialists, call 'em what you will, they ALL have fairies livin' in their trees.)
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To: fteuph
This is a very burdensome thing, not just for people who live with cats but the rest of us who try to visit you or who want to move into a place where you have been.

I cannot think of a single reason why I would want to make it convenient for him or his ilk to try and visit me or to move into my house, so I really don't see the problem.

22 posted on 06/26/2012 12:26:19 PM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: fteuph
"And those of you who are in favor of personal responsibility as a way to cut down healthcare costs, you know who I am talking about."

This is SARCASM....right? Wonder, though, whether some ever wonder about the homo's passing the AIDS virus around....and THEIR lack of personal responsibility?

23 posted on 06/26/2012 12:26:51 PM PDT by goodnesswins (What has happened to America?)
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To: Islander7

This is obvious satire and a jab at the proposed obesity tax.


24 posted on 06/26/2012 12:27:59 PM PDT by HerrBlucher
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To: fteuph

OK,I tried not to say it, but I can’t help it: “DR. KAPLAN HATES PUSSY!!!!!!”


25 posted on 06/26/2012 12:28:09 PM PDT by Repulican Donkey
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To: fteuph

Homosexuals are by far the sickest and costliest group to our health system.


26 posted on 06/26/2012 12:29:21 PM PDT by wolfman23601
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To: fteuph

Toxoplasmosis is spread by cats

More Articles
Mood altering parasite makes women more friendly and men into jerks.

Mood altering parasite – Fox News article

Large increase in traffic accidents thanks to toxoplasmosis infections

Schizophrenia and toxoplasmosis – Increases chances of schizophrenia

Changes in testosterone levels from Toxoplasmosis infection

Reconsider the carpaccio...

Article on Toxoplasmosis in Science Daily



ECONOMIST Article on Toxoplasmosis and new evidence that it affects human behavior



Increased incidence of traffic accidents for military drivers infected with toxoplasmosis


National Institute of Health article

27 posted on 06/26/2012 12:29:26 PM PDT by Bon mots ("When seconds count, the police are just minutes away...")
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To: Nervous Tick
I think Dr. Kaplan’s piece is pure sarcasm aimed at the “bioethics” nanny-staters.

Bingo!

28 posted on 06/26/2012 12:30:07 PM PDT by b4its2late (A Liberal is a person who will give away everything he doesn't own.)
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To: fteuph

Eradicate the kitties!

Bring back the Plague!


29 posted on 06/26/2012 12:30:48 PM PDT by Jedidah
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To: datura
And those of us who own birds stand behind this wholeheartedly!

Oh, no doubt. Together with the rodent folks, you should have a powerful lobbying group.


30 posted on 06/26/2012 12:31:26 PM PDT by Charles Martel (Endeavor to persevere...)
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To: cripplecreek
The good Doc does some real fine satire.

Yup.

31 posted on 06/26/2012 12:34:59 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
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To: DarthVader

The only cats we ever shoot are the ones that come on the property and take a run at the chickens or fight with our barn cats. Stray dogs get even less tolerance because they LOVE to chase the cattle. The problem is it seems like a lot of people abandon their pets in the country thinking that someone will take them in or else maybe that nature is some Utopia for domestic critters. It isn’t. I’m sure for every cat we’ve ever shot that there’s a dozen or more the coyotes, foxes, cougars, and now wolves get to first.


32 posted on 06/26/2012 12:36:50 PM PDT by MeganC (No way in Hell am I voting for Mitt Romney. Not now, not ever. Deal with it.)
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To: fteuph

Lol! Even when satire is clearly l labeled as “SATIRE”, too many of our fellow Freepers show that they have NO sense of humor. B-HO has just sapped it all. :)


33 posted on 06/26/2012 12:38:44 PM PDT by LittleBillyInfidel (This tagline has been formatted to fit the screen. Some content has been edited.)
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To: Charles Martel
The friend of my enemy....

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
34 posted on 06/26/2012 12:40:20 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: cripplecreek
The good Doc does some real fine satire.

That is my take on it. (I have 12 cats)

35 posted on 06/26/2012 12:41:03 PM PDT by loboinok (Gun control is hitting what you aim at!)
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To: HerrBlucher

I agree regarding the satire.

First give away...Everybody knows people don’t “own” cats. :)


36 posted on 06/26/2012 12:42:27 PM PDT by berdie
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To: chris_bdba

Rats have been taking over our section of north america for years..

My cat takes one look at these Rats and walks away.. He knows his limitations..

Mouse? no problem.
Rabbit? No problem.
Bird? slight problem.
Standard US (democ)Rat, problem.

He knows he just can’t take one down. But there are days it looks like he wants to try.


37 posted on 06/26/2012 12:45:49 PM PDT by cableguymn (If your policies are pushing the economy in to headwinds.. TURN YOUR POLICY AROUND!)
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To: Nervous Tick

That’s how I took it too. He’s not actually arguing for it but trying to point out the slippery slope...


38 posted on 06/26/2012 12:50:22 PM PDT by fuzzylogic (welfare state = sharing consequences of poor moral choices among everybody)
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To: MeganC

You don’t by chance read Stephan Hunter?


39 posted on 06/26/2012 12:50:42 PM PDT by jonno (Having an opinion is not the same as having the answer...)
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To: fteuph

Very full of himself, our little weak-minded Mr. Caplan. And not funny at all.


40 posted on 06/26/2012 12:58:01 PM PDT by EggsAckley ( There's an Ethiopian in the fuel supply ! ! ..)
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To: Nervous Tick
I think Dr. Kaplan’s piece is pure sarcasm aimed at the “bioethics” nanny-staters.

Replace cats with "homo sexuals" and watch 'em howel...I mean meow!

41 posted on 06/26/2012 12:58:49 PM PDT by Las Vegas Ron (Rush Limbaugh = the Beethoven of talk radio - http://www.istandwithrush.org/)
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To: jonno

Never heard of him until now. I just read some stuff on the net about him and will add some of his books to my hubby’s birthday presents. Thank you!


42 posted on 06/26/2012 1:14:59 PM PDT by MeganC (No way in Hell am I voting for Mitt Romney. Not now, not ever. Deal with it.)
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To: fteuph

43 posted on 06/26/2012 1:17:08 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open (<o> ---)
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To: Nervous Tick

This is satire. He’s making the point that, if you’re going to penalize life-style choices (smoking obesity), then you have to penalize ALL of them.

He believes the opposite.

Hyperbole.


44 posted on 06/26/2012 1:18:21 PM PDT by Marie (Our only hope is in electing a very conservative congress.)
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To: MeganC
I have similar problem, but that's still not a reason to make such a comment about a companion animal.

We usually take them in, spay/neuter and feed them. We have no problems when it comes to cats and the free range poultry. The chickens and ducks are able to defend themselves against felines.

45 posted on 06/26/2012 1:26:03 PM PDT by Sarajevo (Ever notice that when a beggar gets a donation, they immediately put their hand out for more.)
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To: fteuph
basement cat whispers Pictures, Images and Photos
46 posted on 06/26/2012 1:29:24 PM PDT by Snickering Hound
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To: Bon mots

You realize, of course, the connection will be lost on most cat owners, don’t you?

:)


47 posted on 06/26/2012 1:43:07 PM PDT by Salamander (I wanna hurt you just to hear you screaming my name.)
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To: Sarajevo

You don’t live on a farm/ranch. Neither did I until a few years ago and once you do you tend to become much more pragmatic.


48 posted on 06/26/2012 1:49:58 PM PDT by MeganC (No way in Hell am I voting for Mitt Romney. Not now, not ever. Deal with it.)
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To: DarthVader
You got the joker part right.

Obviously Caplan is mocking the futility of basing insurance rates on personal choices. People make hundreds of choices daily that may affect their health. It is absurd to dictate legal behavior in individuals, & impossible to verify. If this is the price of health insurance, I'll pass. (Is it any wonder that the nanny Rats want to force us to buy health insurance?)

The dog thing gives it away. Dogs are “wonderful”? Yeah, I agree, but that's not a health argument. Dogs are just as bad as cats for allergies & diseases. Caplan knows 60M people will go ballistic over losing their cats.

He also knows it is cats today - alcohol, red meat, anything processed, dairy products, sugar, ... tomorrow. Before the nannies are through, only tofu & grass sprouts will be on our menus, & we will jog to the store to buy it. Again, just to have affordable insurance! A free market in health insurance would laugh this nonsense out of business?

49 posted on 06/26/2012 1:51:31 PM PDT by Mister Da (The mark of a wise man is not what he knows, but what he knows he doesn't know!)
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To: Marie

>> Hyperbole.

See my post #18. I’m slow, but eventually I catch on. :-)


50 posted on 06/26/2012 1:58:12 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Trust in God, but row away from the rocks!)
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