Well, the news of the day seems to be about the current attempts to get healthcare reform through Congress. Not surprising, it affects pretty much everyone in the country to some extent, which means all the news channels know they have an audience. And there are those doing everything they can to bring even more attention to it, using any method they can think of.
I have no problem with people wanting express their views to their representatives in Congress. That is one of the most basic foundations of how our system works, and it is necessary to truly have a government by and for the people. No matter how much I agree or disagree with someone’s views about something, they have every right to express them, especially to the government. And I think the proverbial town hall meeting is a great way to do just that.
Unfortunately, there are those that seem to think that matters of how our government works should not be determined by looking at all options and working out what is best. Instead of coming up with better ideas, they want to pack the town halls and prevent others from disagreeing with them. If this succeeds, they can make it look like their position is in fact the overwhelming majority, no matter how big it really is or isn’t.
Rachel Maddow had an excellent segment on it last night:
It is a rather long segment, but has some excellent points.
There are also the people out there that are being less then honest about the current healthcare bills in Congress. There is apparently one of the ubiqitous emails floating around full of many of the lies being spread. It has been effectively refuted by Polifact.com but of course, those spreading the lies discount that, after all the words of the bill mean what they want them to mean, not what is actually written. Always an effective debating technique, change the meaning of the words.
One of the biggest lies and scare tactics showing up in the various ads and news stories is how horrible the Canadian single-payer system is. Of course, the vast majority of Canadians do not think so, and they even have real facts (as opposed to the “facts” reported on most US news) to back up their support for their system.
So if reforming healthcare is supported by most Americans, and the actual facts about the bills and how the reforms would impact our lives and economy are so favorable, why is it so hard to get the changes made? I am afraid that the answer to that can best be explained by Keith Olberman, on his #1 story last night, a Special Comment on healthcare.
And that is the real crisis facing our healthcare system. The outright purchase of the Senators and Representatives that should be taking care of the people in their states and districts, not the corporations that give them the most money. One Senator, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, has even pretty much admitted this is true in a phone call to one of his constituents. He is all for a public plan, which he says will be better for the public, as long as it doesn’t hurt the profits of the insurance companies. He seems to have forgotten why he is supposed to be there.