As usual, Keith Olbermann does a good job of explaining the need for healthcare reform, and explaining the public option. Olbermann cites a comment by Winston Churchill:
Churchill’s argument was this, “I have heard it said that the government had no mandate such a doctrine is wholly inadmissible. The responsibility for the public safety is absolute and requires no mandate!”
And there is the essence of what this is. What, on the eternal list of priorities, precedes health? What more obvious role could government have than the defense of the life, of each citizen? We cannot stop every germ that seeks to harm us any more than we can stop every person who seeks to harm us. But we can try dammit and government’s essential role in that effort facilitate it, reduce its cost, broaden its availability, improve my health and yours, seems, ultimately, self-explanatory.
Leave it to Bill Moyers to be the voice of sanity in an otherwise insane discussion about healthcare reform.
A recent report showing the majority of bankruptcies in America are healthcare related (and most of those people have healthcare insurance) should be causing Americans to demand that our Congress Critters take a serious look at single payer as the only real way to reform healthcare. But it’s just not happening, and Obama and the Congress have been bought and paid for by the insurance and healthcare industries.
And when you just go right to Big Insurance, the non-presidential candidates who got the biggest legalized bribes were the 7 senators who have been tasked with the job of killing single-payer:
Ben Nelson (DLC-NE- $1,196,799)
Max Baucus (DLC- MT- $1,184,113)
Joe Lieberman (DLC- CT- $1,036,302)
Arlen Specter (R-D- PA- $1,035,530)
Chuck Schumer (D-NY- $981,400)
Mitch McConnell (R-KY- $929,207)
Chuck Grassley (R-IA- $884,724)
The water-carriers for the health insurance industry (see list above) have managed to mischaracterize the plan as “socialized medicine,” and convince us that we do not want “government bureaucrats” running our healthcare (never mind that these members of Congress have their very own government run, “socialized,” health insurance, and they are doing very well…and not willing to share).
I have written about this before, and just don’t understand why we think we’re better off having an insurance company bureaucrat make our healthcare decisions.It’s important to remember that, as publicly traded companies, insurance companies do NOT have any obligation to keep you healthy or get you well when you get sick. Their one and only LEGAL obligation is to increase shareholder value, and they don’t accomplish that goal by paying your healthcare bills. They do it by finding ways to NOT pay your healthcare bills. So wise-up America. If we want to have a well functioning single-payer option we can. It’s just something we have to demand of our leaders.
But back to Bill Moyers:
Health care reform is coming. Both Congress and President Obama have made it a top priority, and many expect a bill by the fall. Now comes the tricky part — designing and funding a plan. President Obama has outlined broad goals, several competing plans have been introduced in the Congress, and the Republican party recently introduced its own plan.
But Dr. David Himmelstein and Dr. Sidney Wolfe tell Bill Moyers on the JOURNAL that President Obama isn’t considering a popular plan — single-payer. In a recent town-hall meeting in New Mexico, President Obama said switching to single-payer would be too disruptive.
The term “single-payer” generally means a system in which rather than having private, for-profit insurance companies, the government runs one large non-profit insurance organization. That organization pays all the doctor, drug and hospital bills — it is the “single-payer” of all medical bills. In most single-payer plans, every American would be enrolled and would pay into the fund through taxes…
I know this video is 30 minutes long, but it’s a small investment to make for your future physical and financial well-being.
I don’t know the final best answer to the healthcare crisis in this country, but I know it’s a mess, and it has to be fixed. Bill Clinton tried, but the Republicans were having none of it. Obama is now trying it, and again, the Republicans are doing all they can to protect the status quo. In fact, even some of the Democrats are bought and paid for by the health insurance companies.
I know one thing that is an absolute certainty. This problem will never be solved until the insurance companies and their influence are removed completely from the process. They have every reason to keep things exactly as they are, and nothing to add to the conversation. They are the ones primarily responsible for the mess we have now.
I have heard some really stupid people who keep complaining that they certainly don’t want the government and some bureaucrat to be responsible for their healthcare. Neither do I. I want my physician making those decisions. The problem is, these people, stand around and ignorantly spouting their Rush Limbaugh talking points have no clue what they are saying.
They make these comments to support Republican positions for keeping things as they are. So what they are saying is that they would prefer to have an insurance company executive and/or (if they’re lucky) some med tech or some other low cost healthcare person, making the decision about their healthcare.
I want everyone who holds such beliefs to think about this…the insurance companies, all of which are publically traded, have absolutely no obligation (none, nadda, zilch) to get you or keep you healthy. Their only legal obligation is to increase shareholder value, and they do that by paying for the least amount of care for you they can.
So, when you all are out there mumbling about our great healthcare, and how you don’t want a governmentbureaucrat involved, just know that you’ve placed your help in the hands of a company that is considered to be in the “financial sector” of the enconomy…and how’s that working for you right now?
Acclaimed filmmaker Michael Moore sets out to investigate the American healthcare system. Sticking to his tried-and-true one-man approach, Moore sheds light on the complicated medical affairs of individuals and local communities.
Directed by Michael Moore
Michael Moore, et. al.
This was perhaps Moore’s most mature effort. While I’ve appreciated the other films he’s done, Sicko does the best job of explaining our current health insurance system, and dispelling the falsehoods spread by the politicians and the insurance lobby. One can only hope that this will advance the discussion of this topic during an election cycle.