Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Shooting Up with Health Care

I haven’t paid much attention to all the noise over health care reform the reasons being when confronted with the most corrupt Congress since the Gilded Age and Obama’s unwillingness to take a stand on anything, not to mention the incredible power (literally of life and death) wielded by the insurance companies, I would be astounded that anything that made as much sense as expanding Medicare to everyone is likely to happen though I would be gladly proven wrong but it just isn’t in the cards.

And on top of all that this is compounded by the incredibly expensive wars and occupations we are now saddled with so really a lot of this comes down to what you want, an empire or would you prefer to have access to medical care. Oh yeah, right, really I want to bring democracy to I’ve-never-heard-of-this-place-stan. It’s like what I’ve always dreamed of – democracy in Afghanistan. Who could possibly want more out of life than democracy in Afghanistan? It sounds stupid I know but this is the great choice now facing and being ignored by our leaders. Do we pursue empire or do we keep the U.S. from collapsing in on itself like a rickety house eaten from the inside out by termites. I don’t know why I say “we” as “we” really don’t have any say in this anyway.

Consider this Obama quote from McClatchy.


"And I have to say, the reason this has been controversial is, you know, a lot of people have heard this phrase 'socialized medicine.' And they say, 'We don't want government-run health care,' "he said, adding, "Nobody's talking about that."

There you have it. The thing regarding Obama is you have to actually listen to what he says and what he says regarding a government health care plan is “Nobody’s talking about that.” What Obama is really saying is he isn’t talking about that because Obama just lied to you when he said people don’t want a single payer plan, at least according to these polls which show 59 percent of those polled would like to see Medicare expanded to everyone. This should surprise nobody considering high unemployment rates, a lousy economy with no sign that there is anything in the universe that could turn it around, certainly by not the present group of clowns now occupying the White House. But go read the whole article, it left me with the impression that we would be lucky to get a free bottle of aspirin from our pals in Washington.

We’ll be lucky if they don’t destroy Social Security much less let us have a single payer health care plan.

We’ll be lucky if instead of expanding Medicare that they don’t dismantle it altogether.


At July 28, 2009 10:09 PM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

We can possibly derail healthcare reform, which would be better than any of the "politically viable" plans being floated in congress right now.

Regarding Medicare, this is part of the comment I left at ATR earlier this week:

I suspect part of the reason Obama and others have been so vague about the details of how healthcare reform is supposed to work is because they mean to pay for in large part by diverting funds from medicare(FICA) taxes, which of course are regressive in nature.

Obama hasn't said this directly, but he has noted that the reform bill would save the medicare program money, and has said he would be open to an up-or-down vote on budgetary and tax aspects of the bill, which I read as code for I'm going to let the GOP "force" me to tax medicare to get my bill passed. If McCain tried the same stunt I imagine the lefty blogosphere would call him on it, but as you said Jon, love is blind and the stupid hurts. OK, so I embellish about what you actually said...

from the conference call(MP3 link)to various bigshot bloggers he made last week


Nobody followed up on my comment, at least thus far.

At July 28, 2009 10:14 PM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

Of course, what I should have written at ATR was,

which I read as code for 'I'm going to let the GOP "force" me to gut medicare to get my bill passed.'

but you get the idea.

At July 28, 2009 10:56 PM, Blogger rob payne said...

That’s some shrewd thinking on your part. And speaking of ATR Jonathan Schwarz said something along the lines that it would take a Democratic president to dismantle Social Security which I think is pretty much true so it wouldn’t be that great of a stretch to dismantle Medicare as well. Don’t feel badly if no one followed up on what you wrote, people have ignored me for years (sniff, sniff). These terror wars have been a tool to destroy our basic rights, our privacy, our economy, a chance of even a half-way decent future and there have been forces at work that would love to dismantle any and all of what pitiful safety nets are available to U.S. citizens.

At July 29, 2009 11:39 AM, Anonymous micah holmquist said...

I am glad that people are noticing how vague the plan is. I suspect that any "public option" or coop plan that is passed is going to be a lousy plan along the lines that a person can get now by working at some place like Wal-Mart and paying a not insignificant amount of money each week.

And then if businesses do dump their employees into this plan, we can hear those on the right once again complain that poor people have screwed everything up for decent people.

What I will say, and I mean this as a genuine compliment, is that I admire those people, such as those who write this blog, who have the energy to think and write about these issues. The Bush years burned me out.

At July 30, 2009 8:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jonathan -- you may be right about how it would be funded, but to me that detail is irrelevant. What matters to me is that it will not be what we need. It will not be close. It will be SOLD AS precisely what we need. It will be SOLD AS the best that's possible. It will be SOLD AS a political triumph for the Noble Democrats. It will be SOLD AS everything it is NOT.

There is no Repub vs Dem wrangling on this. Both sides want to please the money men. The money men want us un-moneyed men and women to go poormouth. They want us broke. They want us economically powerless and without leverage to get a real health care system in America.

This is the end stage of American capitalism. Those who have are trying to destroy those of us who do not. They want to bleed every possible piece of economic leverage (gain for them, loss for us) out of the dying system.

Whatever system we get, it will be useless -- and extremely expensive, but the costs will be passed mainly along to those who cannot afford them.

As to follow-ups at ATR, that place is a closed circle of inside commentary among 3 or 4 regulars. It doesn't matter whether what you say has any bearing on what they're saying. They'll ignore you. They'll pretend you don't exist. They're fucking elitist assholes over there. I don't care how funny Schwarz is. And Chazelle's a freakin' moron.


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