Monday, August 17, 2009

The Debate Goes on, But When Will the Lies Stop

I am still astonished to hear people at town hall meetings rail against health care reform despite the fact that they would be the big losers if health care reform fails. It only goes to show how spin works when it is really sophisticated. And why is Senator Grassley so befuddled when questioned? Is it because he doesn't want to level with his constituents?

And before any of these people cheering for the failure of health care reform jump up and down, I hope they come to their senses and realize that if health care fails, it is a tremendous failure for the whole country.

The insurance companies (and some of the providers, like doctors who own a big piece of the action, such as nursing homes, MRI facilities, etc.) are against two major provisions in health care reform. And this was what they made sure the big noise was about.

1- The "end of life" options for discussions with doctor every five years for Medicare patients (paid for by Medicare and not mandated by anyone). This type of discussion is likely to produce health care proxies, living wills, etc., the types of things that would put an end to the tremendous amounts of money the insurers are now raking in doing totally unnecessary things for terminal patients that make no difference to anything but their bank account.

2-The so-called "Public Option" that so many people are railing about though they have idea what it's about except they scream about socialism, government takeover and everything under the sun. Do you want the government to come between you and your doctor, they scream at meetings. Of course not. The insurance companies are already there and they couldn't bear to lose that sacred position wherein they tell you which doctors you can go to (in network), whether you can even get a decent policy (pre-existing conditions), and so many other things. I myself have been told several times that I could not be covered for certain medications, would not be covered for procedures my doctors thought I needed, etc. A Public Option, which seems dead in the water, is so misunderstood and so important for people to get a better deal in health insurance in coming years. It is needed to stop those greedy insurance companies from continuing their grubby ascent -- I still cannot understand how some people can stand in front of the camera and talk about how wonderful our healthcare system is. These same people were infuriated with Wall Street big shots -- Well, you know what? These insurance CEOs make even more!! And they are scared to death of reform!

So I hope more people get wise and begin to see what is good for them before it's too late. It is beginning to remind me of Bush and all those people in the red states voting for someone who was against all their best interests. They somehow couldn't bring themselves to see what was before their eyes; that "their man" was really for the very rich and powerful and cared nothing for them, and indeed saw to it that things got much worse for people who were not in a good situation to begin with. Well, the entrenched “interests” have gotten so much richer in the past eight years, it is even harder to get the change we need.

I think greed may be an addiction, making those in the throes of it feel that nothing else and no one else matters. But we need reform desperately. So the lies have to be addressed and the doubts and fears allayed. We have been going slowly. Health care reform was first attempted more than 40 years ago, and if we don't get it this time, we may be in even more serious trouble because it is not just about health care, but the economy.

No comments: