Jul 2, 2009
Brother, can you spare a CAT Scan?
Alternative title: Will work for Meds.
I’m constantly amazed at how we tout ourselves as the greatest nation on earth, (debatable) and yet are so divided on the concept that we should be providing adequate, affordable health care to all of our citizens. A Great Nation takes care of its people….. all of its people.
For all the talk, we never really get to the heart of the debate. It’s not over HOW we will provide health care for all our people. It is really about WHETHER we should. But Republicans can’t say that. They are politicians after all and the uninsured vote counts the same as an insured vote.
The right wing believes in the fundamental principle that everybody should “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps”. In their minds the uninsured, and the under insured, are getting exactly what they deserve for not bettering themselves. They reason that if someone wants good health care, it’s there for the getting. Just get yourself a good job, like they did.
The arguments they make are laughable.
“Access to health care providers will become difficult.”. Unnecessary tests and over prescribed medications are symptoms of a system where those with coverage get a disproportionate share of the care. Will you have to wait a little longer to get that MRI? Maybe, but shouldn’t you have to if the reason you need it is not life threatening. What has made it available to you at a moment’s notice is that those without access aren’t in line. Again, this argument assumes that somehow the insured have earned the right to be at the head of the line.
“This will be the first step to socialized medicine”. There’s that scary “s” word. Truth be told, we already have socialism. No, really, I’m serious. You see the basic concept of socialism is that you collect from the few to benefit the many. Ever hear of taxes? Do you think you directly benefit from everything your tax dollars go towards? You don’t. Welcome to socialism. But somewhere along the line we decided that certain things were a collective obligation on our part. I think health care for all qualifies.
“We can’t afford it”. Actually we can’t afford not to do something about it. The health care industry has become a victim of the greed culture that has prevailed in this country over the last twenty years. The US pays more for health care than any other country in the world. Is our care significantly better than these other modern nations? No. We have turned health care into a profit making machine that has grown out of control. We are an aging nation with high unemployment. Doing nothing about this problem will cost us more in the long run.
45 million Americans are uninsured. Another 25 million are considered under-insured. So many of us are one job loss and one major health catastrophe away from losing everything. If you're not, then you're lucky, or a member of Congress. By virtue of serving as our legislators they are guaranteed health care now and after they leave office. Must be nice. Also explains why so many of them are so out of touch.