Time far from peace and love

             A favorite Richard Brautigan book of mine is about a falling sombrero. One day out of the clear blue sky, a sombrero falls to earth. The ensuing discussion and action over who will pick it up, who it belongs to and who is responsible for it brings the community to a full blown war.  For me, I’m wondering if the arrival of the idea of universal health insurance for all isn’t going to take us down the same path.

            There has been enough misspeak and outright lies about the proposal to cloud the issue beyond all recognition or semblance of cogent discussion. Despite that fact that it has yet to get out of paper writing sessions it would seem that we all quite frankly would do well to remember we have gone to war over less solid information! Talk about a sombrero from nowhere! It appears this bill will arrive DOA, never even given a chance.

            Does anyone remember that Richard Nixon offered the Democrats total health insurance for us all and they turned it down? Won’t read about that one in any modern day printed history book any time soon.  Nor does it make sense that the latest road block in the battle for health care for all should come from those that have it; seniors

            Fueled by conservative talk show bobble heads, which apparently create their facts according to which political side of the fence is paying their rent, the seniors have been stampeded by the threat of cuts in Medicare. And who wouldn’t get angry? After paying their own insurance for their entire lives, these folks have arrived in insurance heaven and any attempt to lessen the sweet smell of paid for care has them in arms. It appears the most conservative, I, me, mine group in the history of the country will turn out to be the boomers and them that put them on the earth! How far from peace and love have we come!

            Sure seniors still need supplemental insurance coverage and have to survive being in payment donut holes but for the most part, surprisingly Medicare works for an ever-growing amount of elderly Americans.  The irony is that it would work for all Americans if we only gave it half a chance. But don’t look for that to happen any time soon.

             The same lobby that has been searching for a cure for cancer for fifty years, fighting every social and deadly disease known to man and provides what little care we do get at top dollar price, has no intention of competing against any government backed plan. You might say it’s a conspiracy, but in fact it’s just business as usual. The business of making money is as American as cheeseburgers and coke!  You do your part and get sick, they will do their part and make sure each and every option in your way includes paying more and more to get better.

            So, get used to it. Risk assessment health care is to be the legacy for the rest of us. Going bankrupt to pay for knee surgery or an open heart surgery is still the rule of the day. Private care survivors will call the shots for another ten years or so.

             As the President plans to talk before a joint session of Congress that is insured to the hilt, it is going to be hard for him to raise any empathy among his audience. But let’s hope he reminds them that the electorate that has no coverage still has the right to vote.


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