Redefining Universal Healthcare: What Consequences will this have on vulnerable workers with poor leadership?By Paul A. Donovan
SEIU Mission Statement:
"We are the Service Employees International Union, an organization of more than 1.9 million members united by the belief in the dignity and worth of workers and the services they provide and dedicated to improving the lives of workers and their families and creating a more just and humane society."
First and foremost, I wish to make it clear that I wholeheartedly support the mission of the SEIU. I myself work in the service economy, and have for some time, and therefore recognize the vital role the union plays in today's expanding labor movement, where defense of worker’s rights is needed desperately. This article is not directed towards the SEIU's membership, but rather its leadership who have revealed themselves to be very much out of touch with those whom they are supposed to represent. It appears that some of our union leaders across the country are in on this giant health care scam being perpetrated by Hillary Clinton, Barak Obama, and even John Edwards, and are thus fooling their constituencies.
Presently the Democrats, under the tutelage of Hillary Clinton are running a campaign to trick the American public into a new definition of "Universal Healthcare". Several factors are precipitating this shameful scam on an unsuspecting and desperate public in need of real leadership and even more so solutions. The list below reveals and aids in explaining some of the reasons this issue is being co-opted and morphed by powerful for profit healthcare lobbyists and the politicians that serve their interests over the peoples:
1) Michael Moore's film SICKO did a fine job bringing the criminal private medical industry into the public’s eye, explored successful alternative systems already in place in nations such as France and Cuba, and thereby placed what was already a boiling hot issue back on the front burner directly next to this atrocious war that Hillary Clinton voted for. How many times can this woman "get it wrong" before she packs her bags and leaves the political theater? The two issues affecting this nation most immediately are the healthcare crisis and Bush’s “preemptive wars”. Subsequently, our people’s movements should therefore centralize around these two key culprits that are tearing apart what’s left of the fabric of our nation.
2) Probably most important, the healthcare crime families comprised of the insurance and pharmaceutical industries, that bare the brand names of Aetna, Cigna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Pfizer, Glaxosmithkline, Johnson and Johnson (just to name a few) know that a true universal health care system, or one which removes the profit motive out of the medical equation, would threaten to put them out of business. Therefore, these slippery companies have become very creative in dodging criticism and finding “solutions” which would preserve their flow of income, and keep outlandish profits soaring for themselves, and shareholders.
3) Corporate America has taken the liberty of hiring Hillary Clinton to dupe the public into thinking they will have an "Americanized form" of Universal Healthcare. As most of us already know, the big pharmaceutical lobbyists contributing to her record-breaking campaign are simply ridiculous. Senator Clinton stated that if elected President, she would bring the medical behemoths to heel, but on the contrary those who stuff your campaign coffers are likely to be the one’s holding the leash.
4) Health care is becoming too expensive across almost all demographic stratum (naturally excluding the rich), including many employer's, who unlike us receive negotiated reduced rates, yet still shoulder much of the costs themselves. Thus if a federal/state alternative is put on the healthcare “menu,” the corporations will slowly be alleviated of the burden of insuring their workers, as more workers opt for “state or federal insurance”. This would also help Hillary Clinton get her small business folks on board who truly have a real problem providing affordable health insurance for their employees.
5) The public, as well as businesses both big and small, are up in arms about the rising costs of premiums and the cost of drugs. This stinging reality is coupled by the fact that 46 million people are not covered, and many more are in serious trouble being they are underinsured. Of course the business minded folk are just slightly more concerned with hiring high-risk employees, or keeping them on, or in other words watching their bottom line in today's highly competitive market. The Plutocrats don't plan to bring us all affordable healthcare, but rather they plan to shift the cost off the company and onto the public, who would then purchase their insurance plans from the same people as before. The only difference now is that if you are out of work (and chances are have no money to the pay the bills), in theory you can purchase your mandated insurance through a state or federal plan via a private company, for practically the same exorbitant prices, with maybe a small tax credit at the end of the year…whoopdie do! However, this “out of work” factor matters little because you would have to spend the month recycling cans full-time instead of looking for work in order to pay for it. Does that sound like “Universal Healthcare” to you? Oddly enough to some it does, and unfortunately among the list of those “signing on” to these twisted incarnations of Universal Healthcare are America’s labor leaders.
Recently, the Boston Globe featured an interview with Dennis Rivera, president of the New York-based 1199 SEIU, and the organizations United Healthcare Chairman. When the Globe pressed Rivera for an answer as to which Democratic nominee the SEIU would endorse for President in 2008, he said something to the effect of not being at the liberty of speaking for the union, nor has the union reached any definitive conclusion in respect to a candidate, but he noted many "support" Hillary Clinton.
The following segment below from a recent Boston Globe interview reveals that the union leadership of the SEIU is either naïve enough to fall for the healthcare scam, or is in cahoots with the very corporations that own Hillary, which are not addressing the root of the crisis in healthcare. Personally, I am under the impression that the union members believe the line of their leadership, and do not fully realize they are being bamboozled. Further, the leadership knows full well it's a scam and stands to benefit if they are complacent, agreeable, and if remain so until the election, which will most likely secure their share in the spoils of preserving the status quo. Otherwise, how can one explain why they would support such obviously inadequate healthcare reforms, in light of candidates such as Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) who have plans already formulated that would work for everyone, leaving no American uninsured or underinsured for any reason.
Is this some sort of healthcare conspiracy you ask? Observe the excerpt below, and how Dennis Rivera of the SEIU, pours maple syrup all over Hillary like he was starving and she were a stack of pancakes.
The B-Globe (Q): Who are you backing in the Democratic primary for president?
Rivera (A): The organization has not made a decision. It is far too early.
The B-Globe (Q): It seems significant, since you are based in New York and have such influence, that you have not already come out for Hillary Clinton.
Rivera (A): Hillary is an amazing friend, and she has an amazing knowledge about healthcare reform. I remember when she called me when I announced that I was going to be taking this leadership role, and she said to me, "Dennis, it would be great for me as president of United States and you as leader of healthcare workers of the United States to work together to craft universal healthcare coverage." I have immense sympathy for her. And she is a fantastic leader. But it is fair to say that in our organization, I don't make the decisions. There is a lot of sympathy right now for John Edwards. There is a lot of sympathy for Barack Obama. There is a lot of SUPPRORT for Hillary Clinton. There is also a lot of support for Bill Richardson.