Health Care Babbaloney
The savage battle for healthcare reform, waged so valiantly in the "bloody" halls of the Congress, but carefully crafted in the cowardly confines of the lobbies, is about to hit a watershed moment. Something must be done. The manufacturing base of an entire nation is at stake. The undeniable fact is that this country's already failing industrial infrastructure is in serious danger of total collapse without some sort of reasonable national health care. To many people's utter amazement, many of our automobile factories were lost, not to third world countries where wages were cheaper, but to Canada, where wages, taxes,and currency were all more expensive! Canada, however, has national health care and companies can save fifteen hundred to two thousand dollars per vehicle produced!
Yes, forty eight million uninsured Americans, daunting as the figure seems, is not as shocking as the impending collapse of the entire economy and eventual establishment of a single payer system, desirable as it may be, is not as important asimmediate reform of private insurance. Nine years ago, I watched an arrogant and largely incompetent president and Republican Congress proclaim that they possessed a "mandate," allowing them to dictate to the lowly minority what legislation "mandated" passage. Eight years later, equally shocked and dismayed, I witnessed Ms. Pelosi and an incompetent Democratic Congress turn, condescendingly, to the minority party with their mandate. The result, although not as blatantly psychotic, was still, very clearly, dysfunctional. The Democrats, unable to convince their own party members that the country was ready for a single payer system, were willing to compromise with the lowly Republicans and substitute a "public option," knowing that it was almost as odious to legitimate conservatives as "socialized medicine." In this way, they could placate President Obama's plea for "bipartisanship" without risk of such a "repugnant" gesture succeeding.
Understand that I am and have always been a strong proponent of a single payer system for health care delivery. Eventually, despite the best efforts of the insurance industry, of legitimate as well as "convenient" conservatives, of lobbyists and other special interest groups, virtually every free society will choose "socialized medicine." In fact, virtually every free society will become ever more socialistic as it progresses. It is the nature of a free society, with a responsive government, toask that government to be its agent, to negotiate for its people, for their health, for their security, for fair prices and, yes, evenfair taxes. The operative word, of course, is "ask." It is not the way of a democratic government to decide, for their people, that it is time to turn to a single payer or initiate a public option or arbitrarily attack a foreign country or loot their Social Security/Retirement fund to pay for such a pointless attack. All represent an inappropriate presumption of power, usually reserved for dictatorships.