The Least, First

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Dazzling: Olbermann indicts elected officials on healthcare-funded campaigns

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Watch this video!

Keith Olbermann reveals the numbers behind those Senators and Congressmen and women who have funded their elections with health industry money, and who now deliver the goods by killing the public option.

I believe that Iowa’s own Chuck Grassley (who lately has joined in the “death panels” fabrication)  is among the top ten recipients of health industry contributions in the Senate.  Sen. Max Baucus, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, received more campaign money from the industry than from his home state.

The public option is the single greatest cost-cutting measure of this entire process.  It creates competition for an industry that operates in near-monopoly conditions. It takes the need to make a profit out of the choices doctors offer their patients.

It is good for Americans but bad for health industry millionaires.  And the CEOs are calling in their debts.

The politicians who rode industry money into office know what’s at stake:  choke the the public option, or find other money to fund your re-election.

Write your elected officials today.  Tell them you want the option to choose insurance that doesn’t connect care with profits.  You can find their addresses in the right sidebar, under the heading “E-mail.”

They’ve got the money.  But we cast the votes.

sig1_100w

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GOP’s healthcare “think tank?” It’s owned by an insurance company.

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In this brief video clip, a host of GOP lawmakers rattle off the words “Lewin Group” to substantiate their woeful stories of the Very Bad Things that will happen if there’s any serious health insurance reform.

Newt Gingrich calls the Lewin Group “respected.” Charles Grassley labels it a “think tank.”

Then CNN calls it “owned”—lock, stock, and barrel—by an insurance company.

clipped from www.youtube.com

GOP-Cited Firm Owned By Insurance Company
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Remember how they used to give us tobacco industry “experts” to convince us tobacco was harmless?

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Nurses: If you ever had to see a sick child turned away because they had no healthcare coverage…

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clipped from www.huffingtonpost.com
This ad, called “Nurses,” premieres on Sunday.  “Patients aren’t the only ones crying out for health care reform,” it says.
The initial buy for the “Nurses” ad begins Sunday, July 26 and will continue on networks and cable through July 29th.
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What kind of a nation turns away sick children in order to protect profits?

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Written by Monte

July 24, 2009 at 4:44 pm

Protecting private profits: the reason the healthcare debate goes on

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And the reason it is so hard to understand: politicians are trying to craft a plan that preserves the problem while fixing it. It’s been that way since Harry Truman.
clipped from www.truthout.org
“Absent from the debate are not only single-payer systems like the ones in England and Canada, but other systems with multiple payers, like ones in Germany and Japan – or, for that matter, any discussion of why a system that relies on competition among private insurers in The Netherlands hasn’t resulted in lower prices for consumers, as advocates claimed.”

    The variety of health care delivery systems abroad, in industrialized countries, spans a common assumption – health care as a human right – an assumption that doesn’t cut the mass-media mustard in the United States. “What’s common to all these systems,” Lieberman points out, “is that everyone is entitled to health care and pays taxes to support the system, and medical costs are controlled by limits on spending. The specter of a system that takes a significant bite out of stakeholder profits in the US is the real reason the debate is so restricted.”

“Reform efforts have danced around this impasse for decades.”
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Written by Monte

July 24, 2009 at 11:17 am

Posted in Politics

Wanted: A prophetic voice in the healthcare debate

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Time for the religious and humanist communities to insist that reform itself is not enough: Time for the plan that gives “‘care’ the priority over ‘profits'” and over “‘what will fly in D.C.'” (“simply code words for ‘what those congressional reps who are dependent on the contributions of the health care industry are willing to allow to get through their committees.’”)
clipped from www.tikkun.org

Engraving of the Prophet Amos by Gustave Doré ...

[T]he Religious Community has a responsibility to be a Prophetic Voice, and to insist on the approach that is most consistent with actually giving “care” the priority over “profits” for the health care profiteers, and saying that that must be the principle guiding the health care debate.

That would mean endorsing Congressman John Conyers’ HR 676, The United States National Health Insurance Act, insisting that the media give attention to the ways that that kind of “single-payer” plan would be both more cost efficient and provide better care, and insisting that the discussion be shifted to the issue of care rather than “what will fly in D.C.,” which is simply code words for “what those congressional reps who are dependent on the contributions of the health care industry are willing to allow to get through their committees.”

Obama has cut the ground from under the progressive perspective by convincing them all to be “realistic” [...]
he faces no counter-pressure … apart from the pressures to his right [...]
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Many other good points are made in Rabbi Lerner’s post. I recommend it.

I want love to win the day.  I want care for the least to matter more than riches for the CEO.  And I see no ethical reason to compromise with those who protect millionaires.

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