Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Hypocritic Oath

Accept the fact – life is a pre-existing condition. Any health insurance that denies this fact is not health insurance; it’s death insurance. Sad to say, that’s what the United States’ so-called health care has become. Except for the rich, of course. The poor don’t count. The middle class don’t count. They’re going to die anyway. May as well be sooner as later.

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 more than they are. They’re the only two programs the United States has that return benefit 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 coverage? 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, 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 worse. In our current system, only the lives of the rich seem worth saving. Do they think they aren’t going to die?

In their zeal to “kill” healthcare reform, Republicans have declared war against President Obama, predicting a defeat will be the President’s “Waterloo” and will “break” him. Isn’t there something a bit unpatriotic about trying to bring down a President who is heroically working to repair the severe damage inflicted on the United States by the previous Republican administration? The gang that for eight years self-righteously promoted itself as the party of family values and country now turns its back on both and acts as if it wishes nothing other than revenge against the American people for electing President Obama.

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?

What a sorry bunch of human specimens that would rather, through their cynical inaction and sudden onset of fiscal conservatism, kill a healthcare bill that could prevent so much suffering and save people’s lives. Life is cheap. It’s health industry dollars that line politicians’ pockets.

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.

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