I was sitting in a bank yesterday, and Fox News was on the tee vee box. Sarah Palin was being interviewed about Ted Cruz’s upcoming filibuster. Oh Joy. (Dr. Seuss? Picked something really advanced from your library?) Saved only by Mr. Bank Man. The Republicans are at it again – holding the country hostage so they can make yet another attempt to defund the Affordable Care Act, while citizens go hungry and our infrastructure is decaying all around us. Good grief, the Republicans are even quoting the 1936 Soviet Constitution to justify starving poor people.
They claim to be the party of St. Ronald Reagan, but Ronnie would be too liberal for these folks to even elect him dogcatcher today. All that matters is that if the other side is for it, they are against it.
Go ahead, accuse me of being a flaming liberal. (I will admit to voting for St. Ronnie, but I was young and stupid at the time.) If being liberal means that I believe that everyone should have access to health care and health insurance, then just go ahead and carve a giant “L” into my forehead. Guilty as charged.
Let’s take a look at this:
Early last year, I directed the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare to prepare a new and improved plan for comprehensive health insurance. That plan, as I indicated in my State of the Union message, has been developed and I am presenting it to the Congress today. I urge its enactment as soon as possible.
The plan is organized around seven principles:
First, it offers every American an opportunity to obtain a balanced, comprehensive range of health insurance benefits;
Second, it will cost no American more than he can afford to pay;
Third, it builds on the strength and diversity of our existing public and private systems of health financing and harmonizes them into an overall system;
Fourth, it uses public funds only where needed and requires no new Federal taxes;
Fifth, it would maintain freedom of choice by patients and ensure that doctors work for their patient, not for the Federal Government.
Sixth, it encourages more effective use of our health care resources;
And finally, it is organized so that all parties would have a direct stake in making the system work–consumer, provider, insurer, State governments and the Federal Government.
Obama? No. Richard Nixon. Hey, even Nixon was in favor of some sort of socialized health care plan. Impeachment and resignation aside, he couldn’t get elected by the GOP today either.
Or how about this?
America’s children must also have a healthy start in life. In a new term, we will lead an aggressive effort to enroll millions of poor children who are eligible but not signed up for the government’s health insurance programs. We will not allow a lack of attention, or information, to stand between these children and the health care they need.
Because I had insurance, I didn’t worry about the cost of calling my doctor when I suspected something was wrong. Surgery? Of course, just go ahead – $300 out of pocket. By the time the second surgery rolled around, I’d met my deductable for the year. When my chemo port broke, it was just another matter of getting it taken care of. Money wasn’t that much of an issue.
I didn’t have to put off my mammograms until I had a tumor eating through my skin. I didn’t have to ask my friends to have charity dances to pay for my medical bills, or set up a lemonade stand to raise money for chemo. I didn’t have to wonder if I was going to die because I couldn’t afford my next chemo treatment.
Juan Cole just published a great blog post, I lived to See the Day when the Pope and the President of Iran are more doctrinally Flexible than the GOP:
Not since British landlords actually exported food from Ireland for profit during the Great Famine of the 1840s have we seen this kind of hard-heartedness in an elite.
OK, I can understand people having different viewpoints. I understand that there are Liberals, Conservatives, Anarchists, Atheists, Nudists, People Who Put Their Left Shoes On First, what have you. That’s all great. What I can’t understand is how people can stand by and watch their fellow humans die because they don’t have access to health insurance, just because Obama is guilty of presidentin’ while liberal AND black. I am fed up with the dog and pony show that is the current Republican Party. The Affordable Care Act has been upheld by the Supreme Court, the same court the GOP loves when they agree with them.
Here are some actual facts about the Affordable Care Act. There will come a day when “Obamacare” is not used in a pejorative way. Until then, educate yourself on just some of what is actually in the law.
- No lifetime limit on coverage for 105 million Americans.
- Up to 17 million children with pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied coverage by insurers.
- 6.6 million young adults up to age 26 have taken advantage of the law to obtain health insurance through their parents’ plan.
- Free coverage for comprehensive preventive services for millions of women starting in August.
- 86 million Americans, including 32 million seniors in Medicare, have already received free preventive services.
- 5.3 million seniors have already saved $3.7 billion on their prescription drugs.
- Since the health care law was enacted in March 2010, 4.2 million private sector jobs have been created – many of them in the health care industry.
- The Small Business Health Care Tax Credit has already been used by 360,000 small businesses to help insure 2 million workers.
- $1.1 billion in rebates from health insurance companies this summer will benefit nearly 13 million Americans.
- The health care law reduces the deficit by $124 billion over the next 10 years and over $1 trillion over the following decade.
So, stay healthy – October 1st is just around the corner, in spite of the GOP’s best efforts.