Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Health Care Chronicles: I hear cries of "RINO" in the distance...

Amidst all of the disinformation campaigns and cries of "socialism" and "communism" on the right and the unwillingness to back down from a full public option on the left, it is nice to see that there are some politicans that are interested in working together to craft bipartisan (or at least compromised) legislation. The sad part is that any attempt by a Republican to reform health care will be viewed by neocon Republicans (and their adoring public ditto-heads) as capitulation to the Democrats; they term these people "RINO" - Republicans In Name Only - a term that plagued Arlen Specter for years. In this potential legislation, the public option would only take hold if the health care industrial complex does not meet the goals outlined in the proposed legislation. Unfortunately however, few are likely to report this in depth and even fewer in the public are going to care.

It was said best in the movie Gladiator: "The mob is fickle, brother." Even now as we have important things to debate, the more viewed stories on CNN are "Heigl to take 'Grey's' Hiatus" and "Michael Jackson to be interred Thursday." People have hit overload and they are losing faith in the plan according to polls, and the politicians - outside of a few - are doing nothing to help keep this topic as a part of REASONABLE public discourse.

I have heard many positive messages on NPR as of late regarding health care, but it's falling on ears that already agree that something needs to be done. We have some semi-objective studies done of what is offered around the world ( TR Reid's The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care), but people have already made their minds up. They listen to Glenn Beck decry socialism at the idea that the government could take on a minor role, while leaving much of the system private (read: STILL CAPITALISTIC!) and see images of the hammer and sickle and imagine themselves being planted into a bread line in Communist Russia. The few responsible Republicans that remain and the Democrats are doing nothing to battle this perception problem. I want Olympia Snowe to come out against the neocon notion that she is only a Republican in name only; I want her to come out sneering at the Party-of-No Republicans that at least she is attempting to compromise. But that might be expecting too much out of politicians, and expecting that the public will be thoughtful and open-minded probably would be too.

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