Friday, November 06, 2009

Government health care to the rescue

Amidst all the crazy at Michelle Bachman's GOP teabag party on the Capitol this week, Dana Milbank noted one bit of irony during the proceedings.  After displaying signs like this:

and, among other things, decrying government health care as more dangerous than terrorists and suggesting that Congress should be waterboarded, this happened:

More ominously, a man standing just beyond the TV cameras apparently suffered a heart attack 20 minutes after event began. Medical personnel from the Capitol physician's office -- an entity that could, quite accurately, be labeled government-run health care -- rushed over, attaching electrodes to his chest and giving him oxygen and an IV drip.

This turned into an unwanted visual for the speakers, as a D.C. ambulance and firetruck, lights flashing, pulled in just behind the lawmakers. A path was made through the media section, and the patient, attended to by about 10 government medical personnel, was being wheeled away on a stretcher just as House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) stepped to the microphone. "Join us in defeating Pelosi care!" he exhorted. A few members stole a glance at the stretcher. Boehner may have been distracted as well. He told the crowd he would read from the Constitution, then read the "we hold these truths" bit from the Declaration of Independence.


Robert Sievers said...

It reminds me of how all of those global warming conferences get snowed out.

Two items to note:

1) Congress is not subjected to the governement option. I wonder why not.

2) Much to pg and my dismay, this bill actually has anti-tort reform. If a state caps medical lawsuit payouts, the governement will hold back funds from that state.

Dan, I am holding you personally responsable for the economic collapse that is coming.

PG said...

Um, the economic collapse already happened.

I'm not subject to an economic collapse anyway.

I determined forty years or so ago that I would live on nothing. It's amazing how that has worked out.

I should write a book.

Dan S said...

1. No one is "subject to" the government option. That is why it is called an option.

2. I thought holding back government money was a good thing in your worldview.

As PG said, the collapse has already happened, but the recovery would be slower if not for government spending. And I guess I'll never understand why people think that deficits are fine as long as they support war, but bad when it supports of health care or job creation.

Samuel said...

global warming conferences get snowed out because it snows sometimes. On Global warming, there are two arguments: 1) All of the world's climate scientists are in a massive conspiracy to weaken the global economy and the ice cover on the North pole have melted by coincidence, or 2) Global warming is real, and coal companies pay people to lie because they don't want to change their business model. Your call.

On your particular points:
1)Congress already has a government health care plan. Its not like they receive private health care. The fact that congress does not want to downgrade from its socialized British style system to the less efficient Dutch system of the public option is evidence for the value of a single payer system, not evidence against the public option. Personally, I'm all for making every member of congress live according their own political arguments-the Republican congresspeople can buy their own insurance as individuals on the private market, the democrats can keep the public system. We'll see if anyone wants to insure 60-80 year old white men.

2) Tort reform in Texas has done nothing to control costs. On the other hand, government health insurance in Canada and Western Europe has left health care costs at 50% of US costs, such that the US spends as much of our GDP providing care to the destitute and the elderly as most industrialized countries spend providing full care to all citizens.
I am more than willing to bet you which does a better job keeping government spending under control.

Fingtree said...

"I'm all for making every member of congress live according their own political arguments-the Republican congresspeople can buy their own insurance"
What a fantastic idea! Another good point from the book of Samuel:
"Tort reform in Texas has done nothing to control costs".
Tort reform only makes already exorbitant doctors profits more profitable.

Samuel said...

Robert (and Dan)
just an additional note-
the Senate version of the bill currently makes the exchanges with the government option the place where congress gets its health care-they get the same choices all people on the individualized market get.
Lets hope they leave that bit in.