Tuesday, March 23, 2010

HEALTHCARE REFORM

As anyone knows, who has been actually listening to and reading what the healthcare bill actually proposes, almost everything in it proposes changes the voters of the USA are for.

Interestingly, the major news outlets—which still pretend to offer "objective" takes on the "top" (i.e. whatever the rightwing propaganda machine pushes as the main story of the day) new stories—only began discussing and explaining what the bill contains after it became apparent over the weekend that the bill might pass.

This film I found on Youtube shows how the rightwing tea Party supporters have no idea what's in the bill and are only reacting to rightwing lies (i.e. "socialist medicine"—that would mean the state, i.e. the government, owns all the hospitals and clinics and drug and health insurance companies etc. and all the doctors and nurses etc. work for the government, are paid by them etc. etc. etc. when in fact the bill as written is closer to Republican proposals for healthcare reform than anything liberal or progressive Dems have proposed, as can be seen here—thanks Tom for hipping me to this link).

But the "mass media" continue to promulgate this idea that to be objective both sides have to be given the same weight, which usually means the rightist perspective is emphasized over any moderate or centrist position (there is almost no representation on the news of any "leftist" side of the issues of the day), so that a handful of Tea Party protesters in DC are portrayed as a significant news event, but a much larger group of immigration reform advocates in the same place on the same day is passed over as an afterthought etc.

It's pretty disheartening to see how much the news media has capitulated to the right in this country. It was one of the first things that struck me as my brain began recovering from the surgery over four months ago now. How absurd the political discussion had become in this country. To the point where almost nothing of substance is argued or explained in the mainstream media but only the arguments over who's "winning" an argument based on rightwing lies and exaggerations.

It's actually pretty frightening. The sway these rightwingers have over any public discussion. Like my friends who have been sucked in by the rightwing troll on this site (and unfortunately he has taken to doing the same on the sites of other friends) who has lost any concept of the truth he might have ever had.

I leave his comments on because some of you find it informative to see what lies the rightwingers are pushing each day, but for my own taste, I feel he can get his own blog to bloviate on. I find almost everything the rightwing nuts have had to say about healthcare reform to be complete and total lies.

But they have to lie because the truth would expose them for what they are, sore losers with no concept of what democracy means, but only an intense desire to thwart and destroy whatever the majority has voted for if it doesn't serve the interests of their corporate masters, whether corporate entertainment (Fix News, Rush, et. al.) or corporate game rigging (drug and insurance companies etc.).

If the rightwingers really believe it is wrong to extend health insurance to all children, to extend children's health insurance coverage on their parents' plans to age 26, to prevent health insurance companies from refusing coverage for an "existing condition" or for any other reason, or to cap benefits for healthcare so that anyone with a serious illness runs out of healthcare benefits and has to sell their house and go into debt and declare bankruptcy and lose everything they have as has happened to so many because they were unlucky enough to get a serious illness after paying into a health insurance policy for decades, lifetimes, etc. if the rightwingers really want to support that let them say so—in fact MAKE THEM SAY SO.

So, despite the fact that some of you enjoy the mad ravings of this blog's rightwing troll, I may start deleting his comments when they propagate outright lies (which lately has been every comment—by the way he is now pretending he was always against Bush Junior when if you scroll back to when Junior and his rightwing republican cronies were running the country, you will see he was all for their policies etc.).

It's time for the Dems to answer every lie from the rightwingers with a simple TRUTH OF THE DAY, like this bill accomplishes many of the things the Republicans were pushing for under Clinton and even more of the things the voters said they wanted when Obama and the Democratic Congress was last elected. When the pollsters ask specific questions about the bill, the majority are for its components (like some mentioned above, all of which the Congressional Budget office says will say money, not to mention the rider that eliminates corporations that make money off student loans by charging them more which will also save money, 32 billion according to the budget office etc.) and the main objection is THEY DON'T GO FAR ENOUGH!

Anyone who loves democracy, the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and what this country once stood for—"liberty and justice for all" for example—should be outraged at what the rightwingers have been doing and are trying to do and should organize to marginalize them to where they should be and once were, radio talk shows at 1 and 3AM, and in hate mongering publications with a handful of subscribers, etc.

[Oh and PS: I'm sure you're already aware of this, but the "unconstitutional" methods the rightwing nuts are screaming about the Dems employing to pass this bill—like "reconciliation"—have been used more by the Republicans rightwingers than anyone else in Congress over the decades since Reagan first utilized the old Nazi and Stalinist idea of "the big lie" to thwart the will of the people and pass legislation which hurt most of us but benefited corporate interests and the wealthy, in fact the last time "reconciliation" was most successfully used was to ram through Bush Junior's tax cuts for the wealthiest few which destroyed the surplus left by Clinton and put this country into the worst debt it had ever seen before and led to the financial mess we're in now, but no tea Party action then, hmmm....]

[PPS: This Op-ed column in today's NY Times sums it up nicely.]

12 comments:

harryn said...

i don't think anyone likes the feeling of losing control, and historically a lot of bad things have happened to civilizations who have surrendered control to bureaucrats and politicians - so the fear is present, especially in the recent shadows of WWII and communism ... what becomes 'new' is the fear-mongering machine of the right wing, which is no longer an isolated situation like McCarthy, or Nixon, Reagan, Limbaugh or Gingrich - its a bait and switch, incendiary, and divisive scheme to divert attention from the real issues that has been honed to an art form over the past ten years - it acidicly erodes at the foundations of progress to advance a right wing fundamentalist christian agenda by inciting mob behavior with lies ...
and lets face it - a majority of those protesting are just ill-informed, stupid people waiting for a rapture or revolt to improve their miserable lives ...
and what becomes sadder is the fact that they don't recognize the brown-shirt tactics being employed by the republican guard to manipulate them into the right wing agenda of servitude ...
the best thing to happen to history at this time is Obama's tenure as president and health care is another step toward freedom ...

JIm said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Robert G. Zuckerman said...

Hamlet said "But that the dread of something after death, the undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns, makes us rather bear those ills we have than fly to others that we know not of..." The only thing that may wake Jim and other dogmatics up is to connect with their own mortality. Thich Nhat Hanh says: "In order for things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them." And Lao-Tzu says: "What is a good man, but a bad man's teacher, and what is a bad man but a good man's job?" Jim, the people who are passing health care reform are not bastards, maxists, socialists, etc. They are hard working, God worshipping, community supporting family men and women. Name calling and hate is ultimately self defeating. It's the low road. I know you are better than this. One day, when we're in the same vicinity, perhaps we can meet up and talk and go visit a VA hospital together and do our own poll in the streets, first hand, no twisted hearsay.

Until that time, I'm signing off - too much to do, mentor kids, support my family, and, as Dylan Thomas says, "foster the light."

Butch in Waukegan said...

[I wrote the following to post on the previous thread but I think it is more appropriate here. Jlm’s comment is from the previous thread.]

Jlm:
I do not usually use CNN as a source but this was to good to ignore.

CNN Poll
As you may know, the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate are trying to pass final legislation that would make major changes in the country’s health care system. Based on what you have read or heard about that legislation, do you generally favor it or generally oppose it?

Mar 19-21
2010
Favor 39%
Oppose 59%
No opinion 2%


As usual Jlm skims the headlines of his various right wing sites and comes up with a (conveniently) wrong set of facts. This is from the CNN article on the poll that he quotes:

"Roughly one in five of respondents who said they opposed the bill did so because it was not liberal enough, and those people are unlikely to vote Republican. Take them out of the picture and opposition to the bill because it is too liberal is 43 percent."

It has been evident from the first that single payer (which was later watered down to the “public option”) was and is the most popular alternative. Much of the opposition is from people who don’t understand the issues, and the “debate” over the last year has done little to clarify them. There has been little, as they say, transparency.

Despite all the ballyhoo about the bill, and the tepid endorsement by many good people, I believe that it would be better if was defeated. Here is an article I found very informative. Also, this industry report shows how Pharma and the insurance companies are pleased with the result.

Most troubling for me is mandated insurance. Forcing someone to buy a private product. United Corporations of America. How far down the road will it be when we are forced to buy education for our children from private corporations, a dream come true for Jlm?

Another problem is that the bill provides (almost) universal coverage by taxing working people, to provide subsidies, so they can buy private insurance. This is an indirect tax goes right into the pockets of the wealthy. Also there are no cost controls on the corporations, such as bulk discounts for medicine.

Right wing crazies being against this bill is not a good enough reason to support it. In 4 to 8 years, as this law implemented, the US will still pay twice as much (or more) for health care than the rest of the industrialize world.

Lally said...

Butch, I agree extension of Medicare style single-payer universal healthcare is the best solution to the healthcare crisis and that aspects of this healthcare reform bill do not go far enough in that direction and go too far in trying to accommodate corporate solutions to public problems etc. But those aspects of the bill can be revisited as they don't kick in for a while, and in fact some may be challenged successfully in the Supreme Court by rightwing law firms as long as the Court continues to be slanted toward the right. One of the revisionist positions of right wing historians in recent years has been that FDR kept the Depression going by his New Deal reforms, when the fact is his reforms began to end the Depression but challenges to his New Deal programs were successful in the right leaning court he inherited (much as Obama inherited his and is and will be thwarted by their decisions) and their rightwing decisions prolonged the Depression, not FDR's.

Anonymous said...

Dear M:
Great post, one of your best. And I salute your decision regarding the "troll" (though, as you know, I stopped reading his comments years ago).
TPW

Butch in Waukegan said...

Mike,

If I believed that the bill will be improved over time I would feel the same way you do.

In my experience that is not the way the world works. The “industry” has employed thousands of lobbyists in DC, and spent way over $500 million to fashion a bill they “could live with”. They got it, but they are not putting away their billfolds and going home.

Now the tweaking begins - in Congress with bills that refine and define implementation, and in the regulatory agencies that interpret and enforce the law. I can’t think of one case where policies contrary to business interests were put in place after a law was passed. It always goes the other way.

The government was set up to cater to business interests, and it’s getting worse each year. Case in point, JP Morgan Chase is doing quite well with the Obama EPA approving mountain top removal for the coal mines.

I believe this bill will become more industry friendly over time. To pick an example, I am pretty sure the “no penalty for pre-existing conditions” feature will end up looking nothing like what you or I imagined.

Ed Baker said...

I can hardly wait until, like now in Massechewsettes, where THEIR plan is the model for this one,
the wait to see a primary-care-gatekeeper physician is 44 days! that is, if you can find a GP... (the money is in doctor's specializing.

I like the Australian way

seems like lots of "goodies" in this (now law?) plan..

the best feature is that drug companies are gonna be protected from generics

I betcha
when the "dust" settles" it will be "business as usual"
hope is NOT.

Ed Baker said...

look what I found! The Australian plan...
and they've been "tweeking" it since 1975!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medicare_%28Australia%29


heck,

I doubt very seriously if
we Americans/ our system has much more of an attention span, maybe, a week?

more today on the news about Sandra Bullock and her crap than about what's happening in our congress! (so to speak)

Miles said...

Ed,

Where did you get the idea that it takes 44 days to see a GP in Massachusetts? I live in MA and have friends on Masshealth. They access medical care in exactly the same way that I do (I'm on Blue Cross). Both of the families I know that are on the state plan have encouraged me to join, they are quite happy with their care and coverage.

Ed Baker said...

fo came from a Republican "talking head" congress-man in a $925.99
Brooks Brother's three-piece suit on CNN (or was it MSNBC? FOX?)

He may have been talking about Medicaid waiting lists
(are there any "poor people" in Mass.?

I tell tuh "they" (the phat cats and politicians now taking just under 25 % of my monthly SS check to cover part B of my Medicare! what's coming?

thinking seriously of stealing food from the grocery up the street (which is owned ENTIRELY by a Dutch conglomerate ( Ahold, or some such.. they, the Giant sell Budweiser Beer which is now owned by a Belgian Company ...)

heck

Japan OWNS the USA auto industry and China Owns
everything else

and our past-due bills are "collected" via Collection Agencies in India..

Might as well move to Boston and learn how to cook beans 250 different ways...

epaminondas said...

i happen to be one of those who were in favor of a not for profit single payer health care system, but i'm disturbed by those who harangue those who were in favor of this bill that it costs to much and it will lead us to greater debt.
what exactly would they like their taxes to fund?:invasion and occupation of foreign lands; the maintenance of a nuclear arsenal that can blow up the planet many times more than once; the funding at 0% interest the g.n.p. shell game of our financial institutions; more,air craft carriers,nuclear subs; mercenaries that can kill with impunity.etc. etc.
as bob dylan asked," how many deaths will it take till we know that to many people have died?"