The opposition to healthcare reform comes mainly from Republicans but also from a small group of "blue dog" Democrats, and it's gotten ugly. These politicians, elected to serve the American people are, instead, serving health insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyists. Once again, the power of money trumps the health of a nation.
Forget single-payer - the plan some 72 percent of polled Americans want. It's socialism, cry the corporate flunkies. But the two government programs that really help people - Medicare and Social Security - are both socialism. Without those programs, millions of Americans would be suffering even more than they are. They're the only two programs the United States has that return benefits to citizens who have worked and paid taxes all their lives. Why not solve the health crisis by extending Medicare to everyone?
It's striking that the same crowd of public citizens who oppose single-payer health insurance didn't mind socializing debt through the bank bailouts. Okay for the government to be the single payer in those transactions. Mercy! What would happen if we really had universal health care in the United States like most other civilized Western countries? If we cherished and nourished that pre-existing condition we call life instead of denying it? The big bad wolf of socialism would eat up some of those inflated profits of health insurance and pharmaceutical companies. Oh mercy, health care just might become affordable for our citizens if we had a single-payer system. People might go for check-ups more often. Maybe our citizens would be healthier and wouldn't have to wait until they are so ill, that they have to use hospital emergency rooms as their family physician. Sickness is costly. Untreated diseases that reach advanced stages when diagnosed require the most expensive treatment. Fostering health is a lot more cost-effective than the current neglect and denial built into our wretched healthcare system. It's no accident our health care is the most expensive in the world but our outcomes are among the worst. In our current system, only the lives of the rich seem worth saving. Do they think they aren't going to die?
As the President said in his press conference about healthcare last week, this isn't about him. It's about the health of the American people and the future of our economy. But nobody gets rich looking out for the poor and middle class in this country. Only the corporate rich deserve tax breaks, health care, and bonuses.
The party that racked up the largest deficit in American history - more than that of all previous Presidents combined - now complains about the cost of healthcare reform. Do they really think Americans are too stupid to see through the hypocrisy?
As for the blue dog Democrats, their opposition to healthcare reform, places them in the same alternate universe as the right-wing Republicans who have sold their souls to lobbyists and turned their backs on the only condition that afflicts any of us -- life.