A report in the December 19, 2009 New York Times, "In Industrial Thailand, Health and Business Concerns Collide," (click here=1&th&emc=th) ruthlessly rips the scab from the festering sore that is the Asian country's industrial city of Map Ta Phut, on the northern shores of the Gulf of Thailand.
More -- as if more might now be needed -- evidence that neither the free market nor its corporate components give the first damn what damage they do to the environment, or the peoples who live in it. After all, the executives don't have to. They reside in the rarified atmospheres that are never touched by the putrefying carnage their manufacturing schemes provoke.
Exactly as it is with American health insurers, by the way. Their Gulfstream private jets fly well above and their 110-foot yachts sail well beyond and their stretch limos with blackened windows drive well away from the cemeteries of the 45,000 who perish each year because they either cannot afford health insurance coverage, or have had their coverage canceled when they needed it most.
These are not good people, the likes of Ben Nelson, Joe Lieberman, Mary Landrieu, Blanche Lincoln, and every Republican in the House and Senate have attached themselves to. I am conflicted, whether to support the Senate's current health reform bill. Given its emasculated form of no single-payer, no public option, no Medicare buy-in, nor not even a trigger, it nonetheless is better than leaving the status quo the status quo that will consume, and therewith doom the entire US economy within a very brief period. (Simple arithmetic: By the Rule of 72, wherein the currently escalating premium rate of 10 - 15%, the present family of four premium of $15,000 will double within six to seven years, both employers and individuals will be forced to opt out of coverage altogether. And how do ya like them apples?) As bitter a pill as it is, if we get nothing, it's unlikely we'll get anything for another decade or more, which by then will be a decade too late for most, if not all, of us.
What I am not conflicted over, however is the moral obligation to strive as hard as we can to remove from office every Democratic senator and representative who put the welfare of Jefferson's merchants above that of their countrymen. Nor must we shirk from working as diligently to also separate every Republican from their offices. Let them, as private citizens, devote as much time as they wish to bed the corporate johns they hired themselves out to.