Thursday, September 10, 2009

All the President's Men and Health Care Reform

I am providing a link to an article and video published before the President's address last night.   Bill Moyers said all I have wanted to say about the nuttiness that has invaded the health care debate, so instead of repeating what he said, here is a link to read it.  It won't take long and it might make you feel better.  It did me.
Did you hear the president's speech to Congress and the Nation last night?  I thought it was one of his best yet.  He certainly put the whacko's in their place.  I loved it when he said that if they continue to lie, "we will call you out."  
Here are a few things that have not been stressed before.   Some of them I learned from a doctor on C-Span.
  • We spend 1 1/2 times as much on health care as other industrialized countries.
  • Only 2% of students studying to be doctors are now becoming primary care physicians because the way the current system works the specialists are paid much more.
  • Universal care in other countries is based on Primary Care physicians.
  • Doctor's are unable to negotiate with the insurance companies.
  • There are four different amounts doctors are paid for the same procedure.
Our system is very broken and anyone who wants to keep it this way is making money from it in some fashion or a very uninformed idiot.  (Yeah - I can be nasty  too.)
The Republicans looked so small and petty as they sat on their hands and glared.  The ones that actually were texting instead of paying attention made it obvious that they were not about to listen.  They have already decided they will do everything in their power to sabotage the President's agenda, even if it means that the country goes down the tubes.  The shameful outburst by Joe Wilson, Republican of South Carolina, was the most disgraceful thing I have ever witnessed in all my years of hearing presidential addresses.  Talk about  having no class.  When uncivil discourse has fallen to this new low I think Americans had better look at the image we are projecting around the world.  Freedom of speech should not cover boorishness.
Not only did Joe Wilson look rude, he showed his lack of knowledge.  The President did not lie.  Coverage of illegal aliens is NOT in any of the five bills floating around Congress.  One thing Joe (not the plumber)  should have considered is that we are now paying for their care when they show up in emergency rooms.  Personally, I think coverage should be provided for them in some form.  If they have an infectious disease, wouldn't it be better to have medical attention available to them so they wouldn't spread it around?  Maybe we could work with Mexico to be reimbursed for their care, but even undocumented workers deserve to have medical attention; especially innocent children.

The president showed leadership. Now it's up to his men, the Democrats, to help him.  He laid it out and they must see that his agenda passes with the stipulations that he outlined.  He was not firm on the Public Option, but did say that if someone had a better plan to bring costs down he would listen.  I think it's pretty obvious that there is no better plan.  The Repubs claim just cutting waste and fraud and doing away with tort reform is enough.  Baloney!  Those savings would do nothing about covering all the people who do not have insurance. 

If there isn't some way to eliminate the profit - I might say obscene profit - in health care the problem will be with us forever.  The trigger is not a solution; it is only a delaying tactic.  The cooperatives are still handled by insurance companies with all of the pitfalls involved.  Nothing except Medicare for all will really solve the current cost.

After analyzing the objections to reform it really boils down to this:  ideology.  The belief that less government is better.  Well there are many things that government does better than private industry.  However, that argument is for another day.  No one will every change the minds of the people who believe that.  But for the rest of us, we demand that, after fifty years of talking about this, we will now get reform.


Vagabonde said...

Darlene I enjoy reading your posts very much – they are so full of life. You say that the objections to health care reform boils down to ideology. Well I think you are right but there is another big, if not the biggest contribution to these objections and it is coming from all the lobbyists. So far they have spent millions - I heard 350 millions to influence our elected officials and the public. They give $100,000 plus to some senators – and the various senators take the money you can be sure, they don’t refuse it. The lobbyists know that if they take their money, they will play. In this country PR works and they know it, if not they would not spend that kind of money. Insurance companies, nursing homes, hospitals, big pharma makes huge profit now – they don’t want to lose these profits so it is nothing for them to spend a few millions on attack and misleading ads or in the coffer of elected officials. They know the public who is mostly in a hurry, ignorant, and scared will believe all of this. Here is a good site to read about this:
About this representative in South Carolina – he should have been ushered outside immediately. Even in England where they do a lot of mumbling during their sessions, twice one of them screamed “you lie’ to Margaret Thatcher and was thrown out. Why is it in this country that such unbecoming conduct is tolerated? The South here prides itself of their gentle manner but most of their politicians (on the right, which is most of them) forget them during their professional work? This is a disgrace. Do people in South Carolina insult officials like this at all meetings?
I am going on a trip and won’t be able to write comments as I won’t have a computer but I’ll read all your posts when I am back.

possumlady said...

Love this post. I was so mad at that thug, Joe Wilson, I couldn't fall asleep last night. I was so mad that I went and contributed what little I can to Rob Miller, who is running against him.

Following on Vagabonde's post, I found this little nugget on The Mudflats blog "Over the course of his political career, health professionals represent Wilson’s top industry contributors, donating a total of $244,196 to his campaign, according to the Center for Responsive Politics database. He received another $86,150 from pharmaceutical companies, $73,050 from insurance companies and $68,000 from hospitals and nursing homes."

Looking to the Stars said...

Good post. I was disgusted with Wilson, no class what so ever. Tho, I feel the republicans are trying to draw us into a soap opera.

We will see if the Democrats are going to stand with Obama. The oval office can be a lonely place when you go for change. I'm glad Obama had the guts to go after health reform :)

Darlene said...

*Vagabonde - Of course you are right. Follow the money, as they say. Our politicians are bought and paid for with a few exceptions. Russ Feingold and Dennis Kuchinek are both honorable and fight for their principles. Of course, they are despised by the right.

Enjoy your trip and I am looking forward to hearing all about it and seeing your wonderful photos when you return.

*possumlady - Golly, it's nice to see a new name in my commment section. Thank you for visiting and I do hope you will return.

I hope you sleep tonight because Wilson has been chastised. Not enough, of course, but even the Republicans aren't happy with him. He gave them a bad image. (That isn't hard these days.)

*Looking to the the Stars - that's a good one; a Republican soap opera. Tee He!

Pete said...

Conservatism seems to have been taken over by louts, bullies and nutjobs. I grew up in a family of Republicans in the days of Nelson Rockefeller and Margaret Chase Smith. Both of these leaders would hang their heads in sorrow and shame to see what their party has become.

And it isn't just that clod Wilson (although with his two-word interruption of Obama he seems to have raised close to half a million dollars for the Dems in SC).

Former Vice President Cheney seems to believe he is entitled to take any shot at Obama with impunity. Perhaps his current status should be described as "still unindicted."

Memo to GOP:

1. Rude is not the same thing as persuasive.

2. Loud is not the same thing as well-reasoned.

3. Relentless is not the same thing as committed.

4. Selfish is not the same thing as prudent.

5. Strident is not the same thing as patriotic.

6. And lies, well, you ought to know about lies. You tell enough of them these days.

wally said...

The morining after the speech I emailed my congressman urging him to support the president's health care plan. I also aked him if he would be willing to publish a list of all the corporations and organizations that have given him money. If we all knew the source of our representatives' cash flow we would know whose interests they actually pursue.

kathy said...

Hi Darlene, I just found you from another site, wow, I just love your blog, can't wait to read more!

Darlene said...

*Pete - It's always nice to get a comment from you. You are so right. Barry Goldwater would cry also I'll bet. The whackos have taken over the once respected GOP.

*Wally - Thanks for visiting my site. I hope you will return. As they say, follow the money. Good for you making that point to your congressman. I just posted a clever article from Truthout on the money angle.

*Kathy - Thank you for your visit and your kind words.

Nancy said...


I loved what Dave Letterman said about Rep. Joe Wilson.(R-SC)

As part of his monologue, Dave Said," It's good Congressman Wilson yelled "You Lie" to President Obama last night. After all, it's been over a week now since a Republican has embarrassed the people of South Carolina."

Taru Fisher said...

Thanks for this informative post on health care reform. Having been a medical practice management consultant in my past, I know first hand how broken this so-called health care system is. It now exists to serve its' masters; the insurance lobby, big pharma and the greedy politicians who take their money. The same politicians that have the best health care plan in the US.

I witnessed denials of coverage for specious reasons, unreasonably burdensome requirements for paperwork to support reimbursement, and doctors who were having to require payment up front from patients because the payments from the insurance companies were so slow in coming.

My husband had to take a $3000 deductible plan in order to be able to afford the premiums, which went up 30% this year.

End of rant. Off to tweet about your blog post. Spreading the word!

Darlene said...

*Nancy - Leave it to Letterman to sum it up with humor.

*Taru Fisher - Thank you for the information and for visiting my post. A big thank you for spreading the word!