President Obama's Health Care Reform is essential


This is the next show in our ongoing series on President Obama's Health Care Reform. 

On Wednesday, Sep 9 the President gave an informative, clarifying, and compelling speech to a joint session of congress re the health care reform. The transcript for the entire speech and the key summary points of the plan are, of course, available on Whitehouse.Gov and are also available in a separate entry in PolitOpine.

And, the President's weekly address (today - Sat Sep 12, 2009) video is available at the top of this page. Transcript for this weekly is here.

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So let's see where we are two days later ....

The President refocused the debate towards facts yet Republican leadership is unfortunately still not interested in true and real constructive debate. 

From the President's speech .... " Some of people's concerns have grown out of bogus claims spread by those whose only agenda is to kill reform at any cost.  The best example is the claim made not just by radio and cable talk show hosts, but by prominent politicians, that we plan to set up panels of bureaucrats with the power to kill off senior citizens.  Now, such a charge would be laughable if it weren't so cynical and irresponsible.  It is a lie, plain and simple."

Despite the speech, House Minority Leader John A. Boehner of Ohio stuck to Republican positions that the Democratic health-care proposals would give illegal immigrants health care, pay for abortions, and establish panels that make life-and-death decisions.


What an utterly irresponsible behavior from one of the leaders of the opposition party?

It is obvious that this President is interested in the well being of all Americans not just some small % of Americans. This President is interested in investing in all of America not just some small number of corporations.... whereas the opponents of the Health Care Reform are obviously not interested in America's well being else they would not be taking such irresponsible and obviously false positions.

And why is the media not calling out such irresponsible behavior?
Why are the media waves not swamped with "calling out of" such clear obstructionist tactics?

Health Care Reform is not only the right and moral thing to do but it also makes absolute financial sense.  

From the President's speech .... "Finally, our health care system is placing an unsustainable burden on taxpayers.  When health care costs grow at the rate they have, it puts greater pressure on programs like Medicare and Medicaid.  If we do nothing to slow these skyrocketing costs, we will eventually be spending more on Medicare and Medicaid than every other government program combined.  Put simply, our health care problem is our deficit problem.  Nothing else even comes close.  Nothing else."

So let's talk about the cost of this reform, Government spending and deficits ... and the matter of "devil is in the  details."

If politicians (regardless of party) supported spending $1.35Trillion in tax cuts or $1+Trillion for the war (which is what the Iraq/Afghanistan wars will cost by the end of fiscal '09) then why not for America's well being or the well being of America's financial future ... because deferring this reform will continue to tax the economy and ill serve the American families (and individuals) as more and more families (and individuals) drop out of health insurance.

If politicians did not quibble over the deficit because of the war spending (or the tax cuts) then why is that an issue for spending on America's well being?

If politicians did not quibble over the "devil is in the details" for the war funding and the tax cuts then why is that an issue for spending on America's well being??

It is easy to say "let's do this right" and keep debating decade after decade, election after election, administration after administration, and get nothing done! That is why such arguments are nothing but distractions. Yes, such issues need to be dealt with, but they can not be a block to passing the broad measures in the reform.

My point is that it is time now to pass the Health Care Reform and yes work the details but DO NOT derail the passing of the reform.

What endeavor, or project, in any corporation, of any size, knows all the details at the time of creating the vision and starting the work on it? And that is what we have to do, i.e., pass the broad measures in the Health Care Reform and continue to work the issues vs. the other way around. President Obama, again, points out the responsible way to handle such detailsrs.

From the speech ...And to prove that I'm serious, there will be a provision in this plan that requires us to come forward with more spending cuts if the savings we promised don't materialize.

How can any politician claim to oppose the Health Care reform while also claiming they support America? And why is the media not making a real issue of such hypocrisy - regardless of party affiliations? Various media outlets were very willing to call out those that were not supporting the war despite the fact that it was a questionable war ... before the start, during the initial years, and in the last couple years it has been clearly established that it was under false pretenses.

The point is that a balance of real debating of truthful matters has been so utterly marginalized that voices of truth are simply drowned out ... and in the end the majority indeed suffers whether they realize it or not whether they are willing to acknowledge it or not ... whether their voices are heard on the national media waves or not ...

The populace at large, unfortunately, tends to get swayed by the media, which was irresponsible re the war and the tax cuts ... and its financial impact on America. And the media is still not giving the requisite support to health care, which is essential for America's well being compared to the unnecessary, wasteful war and the tax cuts for the wealthy. 

Why is the media not pumping out facts after facts re how the reform will serve America instead of giving unnecessary "media space" to some disrespectful and ill informed congressman who is willing to break Congressional decorum?

We know that with the passing of Health Care Reform, more and more American families will benefit, as will the economy, and ... as will the deficit.

From the President's speech .... Now, most of these costs will be paid for with money already being spent -- but spent badly -- in the existing health care system.  The plan will not add to our deficit.  The middle class will realize greater security, not higher taxes.  And if we are able to slow the growth of health care costs by just one-tenth of 1 percent each year -- one-tenth of 1 percent -- it will actually reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over the long term.

Finally. I'm going to touch upon some past matters and some key financial and other numbers. I can go into further details, re these numbers, in a subsequent show, if there is a question.

This is to put the issue of spending in perspective and the position of the opponents of the Health Care Reform.

If you compare the condition of the economy in 2001 to the current state of the economy, the numbers show that those who are concerned about spending were more than willing to spend far more when the economic situation wasn’t nearly as precarious. In 2001 $1.35Trillion in tax cuts was approved - that's a spending - and the rationale given by the Republicans for such a spending was that it would be the best thing for the economy ... Here are some of the key results of that spending:

                                                          2001               Feb-2009

 Unemployment                                      4%               7.6%

 % Population living in Poverty                   12.7%           17%

 Foreclosure Rates                                  0.48%           1.19%


Americans relying on Food Stamps           17Million        Over 30Million


Above figures were obtained from here.

It's not that spending shouldn't be managed... yes it should be managed but let's not be hypocrotical about it. 

The past administration and the Republicans have spent as if there was no limit to the "purse." And yet when money has to be spent on America's well being vs. false wars or tax cuts for the wealthy they are complaining. That is clearly out of balance and needs to be called out.

And, again, I am not interested in demonizing Republicans, I simply want to call out the hypocrisy re spending and bring the debate to real issues vs. distracting political points that, in the end, do not serve America.


So I urge everyone to call their Congressional Representatives and ask them to support this bill instead of quibblng over deficit or spending... these issues are being handled and ... The Health Care Reform should be passed.




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