As I was driving to work this morning, I was stuck on FL-713 (High Meadow Ave., Palm City) heading towards I-95 behind a slow-moving Chrysler New Yorker. The speed limit on this stretch of road is 55 MPH. This car held up a dozen cars as it piddled along at 35 – 40 MPH.
As the cars finally were able to pass this expensive large tortoise-like thing, we could all take a look at older more wealthy people with a Florida license plate. It kinda reminded me of when I first moved to Florida about 25 years ago. I remember feeling disgust when I saw the native Floridian bumper sticker, “When I retire, I’m going to move up North and drive slowly!” Twenty-five years later, I can relate to the bumper sticker. There is one very big problem. The enslaved workers of Florida will likely never earn enough to retire. PERIOD!
Those people who have arrived here blocking our roads are also arrogant about paying the taxes for the services that help support their big asses (and other items) as they drive them down the road. More importantly, in their quest for the “fountain of youth” or “John Galt” or God only knows what, they selfishly and greedily proclaim their disdain at paying their grandchildren’s education – or anyone else’s grandchildren.
For instance, in the St. Lucie News Tribune (August 16, 2009), the headline screams, “St. Lucie Schools Take Hits With Budget Cuts.” AHHHH! John Galt’s paradise – at last! Who cares about those little “buggers” (the name used by rural folks where I was raised in upstate NY to describe children) anyway?
What does this have to do with healthcare?
It seems it’s the same Randian seniors who are selfishly clinging to the status quo with regard to healthcare. Little do they think that a change might help them, not hinder them. A change MIGHT make things better than what they have now. Fear and intimidation by insurance companies convince such people that things could only possibly get worst, not better.
Here is something to consider. In the August 17/24 2009, The Nation, five doctors (that’s MDs, not PhDs or JDs) explain things this way:
“A healthcare system dominated by private insurers cannot provide families with the affordable coverage they need. A public clone of private insurers won’t help.”
“Only a single-payer reform would make universal, first dollar coverage affordable. It would save about $400 billion annually on bureaucracy and rein in costs over the long term through global budgeting and rational health planning.”
Back to St. Lucie County schools. Who raised a fuss when “change” occurred in the public schools? Did anyone rise up and say, “gee, we need education for our children, why are you making such stupid decisions by cutting the school budgets?”
Did anyone use fear and intimidation to stop the “change” that will only make what is lousy more lousy (in Florida schools)? Did anyone utilize mis-information to counter the “change” (aka cutbacks)? Did any Republicans or senior citizens sabotage and obstruct the school board from making the cutbacks? Not one. In fact, the strategy to bust the market, force foreclosures in the housing market, and ultimately lower taxes is working just fine. It satisfies those with Saudi Arabian oil interests just fine. It satisfies the fictional idiots who yearn for “John Galt.”
In the quest for healthcare reform, those who seek progressive change are faced with obstructionists, saboteurs, and deceitful people who promote propaganda (false information) that creates fear, which, in turn, leads to arrogant ignorance.
Facts about potentially saving on private enterprise bureaucracy costs of $400 billion are glossed over in favor of fear from (supposed) “death boards” and loss of what is currently found in private insurance (which does not satisfy many people – and certainly rapes those who don’t have insurance at all).
That $400 billion “bureaucracy costs” are paying for unproductive and unnecessary jobs in insurance “…tracking eligibility, collecting premiums, marketing to healthy (profitable) patients, demarketing to avoid the sick, and shifting costs to patients and providers.” Furthermore, insurance companies raise premiums about 20% at a time. These unregulated corrupt practices are designed to raise tons of money in order to defend the status quo – a status quo that only works well for the CEOs at the top of the insurance companies, not the people who actually need the healthcare.
How do we pay this $400 billion price tag? We claim there is never enough money for real productive jobs producing real goods and services. Since Reagan and the era of darkness began in America, our corporate leaders have told us how important it is to control prices by controlling labor costs (translated from CEO jargon: destroy unions). But we somehow manage to pay this $400 billion cost for bureaucratic horse s***. Silly people – those of us who actually consider it might be nice for a family budget to have something other than a negative balance sheet after figuring income and expenses. Silliness! Only CEOs can have positive balance sheets!
Then, propaganda and fear and intimidation teaches people to hate taxes. Lower those evil taxes because look how much taxes have risen! Don’t consider that taxes pay for education, police, firefighters, and other service personnel. Evil bureaucracy in government. Great bureaucracy in private enterprise. NOT! Consider how much private enterprise bureaucracy prices have risen.
Then there are the 300 jobs destroyed in St. Lucie County. The furloughs at University of California. The destruction of good jobs in America. The list can go on and on. Essentially, ignorant Americans stand up and defend the jobs of unproductive workers in private insurance industries rather than consider a switch to a single-payer universal health care. President Obama is ready to throw in the towel on ANY public option. “Don’t make no sense” (Elton John, in the song, “American Tragedy;” about an unrelated issue of Matthew Shepard).
Thanks to all of these actions of sabotage and obstruction motivated by fear of some fictionalized “death panels,” many Americans condemn their fellow Americans to death: the ones dropped from pig (er, I mean BIG) insurance companies, the ones unable to purchase insurance, and the ones with catastrophic health problems.
I know little about Marx. I have learned a great deal about Adam Smith, the truly Christian capitalist. I know about the U. of Leicester (England) study of the happiest people on earth. The “happiest” are NOT in America. The “happiest” people are in Denmark. Other Scandinavian countries are not far behind.
My desire is to attain happiness for me, my family, my friends and all Americans. There is a document that talks about our right to “…life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” The Scandinavian countries are mixed socialist / capitalist. I don’t give a damn about their ideology. But I DO like the fact they have solved their problems and make their people the happiest on earth. What is wrong with seeking the same for Americans?
Meanwhile, to the fat asses who are unable to drive the speed limit: go back to your original home – or seek the roads with the speed limits you feel most comfortable and drive the speed limit. In other words, one percent of the population should not be holding the rest of us back from progress.