This piece originally appeared on September 4th, 2009 on the MikesAndDislikes site here and on the website of local Vancouver paper The Georgia Straight here.
"The best test of a civilised society is the way in which it treats its most vulnerable and weakest members."
That the majority of the rich and powerful in America, particularly those on the right, are vehemently opposed to universal healthcare and instead support the present free-market private insurance system is hardly surprising. Clearly they have nothing to fear, as it's highly unlikely that they will ever find themselves without coverage and they're certainly never going to be choosing between treatment and bankruptcy.
- Mahatma Gandhi
This stance - though truly despicable, completely devoid of compassion and totally self-absorbed - isn't really all that difficult to understand. It's simply the latest manifestation of that age-old philosophy: "Hey, I'm alright. Screw everyone else!"
What IS extremely hard to figure out, however, is the mindset of all these regular, ordinary working class and middle class right-wing nut-jobs who have been showing up all summer long at these town hall meetings chanting:
"Socialism! Communism! Stalinism!!"
Not to mention: "Obama is Hitler!!"
And: "Better dead than North Korean or Canadian!"
I mean, seriously, what's up with these people anyway? Don't they understand just how much they potentially have to lose?
They may be feeling quite secure about their insurance coverage today, but that could so very easily change tomorrow.
Wouldn't it just be so karmically perfect if, after battling so incredibly hard to defeat the implementation of a universal healthcare system, they found themselves unemployed, unwell and uninsured?
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Mike Cowie is a 42-year-old freelance writer, who lives together with his wife and son just outside of Vancouver, B.C.
After spending 15 years living, travelling and working overseas Mike returned to live in Canada back in 2004. His final trip, (more...
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