Wednesday, March 16, 2016


So I saw this on a person's Facebook timeline: "Obamacare has failed our nation. We, as Americans, deserve a new patient-centered and market-driven solution. It’s time for Americans to choose their healthcare. Join me if you agree."

And I have to ask: what is the problem with people's brains- their analytical ability- that they can come to a conclusion based on.... propaganda instead of facts? Is the Health Care Reform Act of 2009 the best possible method of providing coverage to Americans previously not covered by insurance? Of course not. A single payer plan, a public option, an expansion of Medicare (or Medicaid). Any would be preferable. However, has the HCA failed? Not by any statistical measure I've seen. For instance, every report I've seen has reported that there are an additional 10 or 20 million covered who didn't have health insurance before 2010. And Gallup reported the percentage of uninsured adults declined dramatically. "According to Gallup the uninsured rate was 11.9% for the 18 – 65 demographic in the 1st quarter of 2015, down from a high of 18% in 2013. By the second quarter of 2015 the uninsured rate fell to 11.4%"

But some people won't believe the facts that are right in front of them- either anecdotally from their friends, or statistically from the media-- other than Fox News, of course. Their "pundits," and top Republican officials in the House and Senate, and every Republican presidential candidate except John Kasich (a Republican governor compassionate and intelligent enough to accept the Federal funding from the HCA to expand Medicaid rolls in Ohio) have decried the HCA (which they call Obama Care) and claimed it is an awful failure; an abomination, as it were.

Here was a report from the land of fantasy that slammed Kasich for living in the land of reality: "Americans for Prosperity (AFP), one of the largest conservative activist groups in the United States, held their annual “Defending the American Dream Summit” in Columbus, Ohio, this week, but the state’s Republican Governor John Kasich was not invited.

Kasich’s decision to expand Medicaid under Obamacare—a move that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled was optional and up to state discretion—is a sore subject for fiscal conservatives and led to him being, not just left out of an event held in his backyard, but attacked by several of the event’s speakers, including former Texas Gov. Rick Perry and AFP President Tim Phillips."

But the real question, again, is why? Why do the so called "conservatives" (who don't want to conserve anything- not the land, not oil, not the oceans, not civil liberties enshrined in the Bill of Rights- other than the 2nd Amendment) have to not only deny reality- but claim that in their world, it is the opposite of reality. From vaccinations, to flouridation (from the old John Birch society- the original climate deniers/science deniers), to global climate change, to the effects of tax cuts on the economy, to the effects of deficit spending on inflation (wrong every single time the last 36 years, since the era of Reagan), to the desirability of having a federal law that would prohibit insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions or putting life time caps on benefits that would leave sick children outside the tent of coverage for serious illnesses- why claim that these are all bad things, or the opposite of what is happening. What is wrong with the brains of these people, and why do otherwise intelligent people (I put Rush Limbaugh in that category, along with Paul Ryan) try to foist these falsehoods on the dullards and ignoramuses who make up their flock? I just don't get it. What's in it for them? How tough would it be for Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan to say: the HCA is working, but not well, and we can make it better (by adding a public option, for instance, instead of all of these separate market places- just let people purchase Medicare at cost, for gosh sakes)? If anyone has an answer, pass it along and enlighten me.

Here's another question: how is it that the media lets them get away with the fact free statements about how they need to "repeal and replace" the HCA? Will someone from the main stream media please ask the next Republican who mouths that absurdity: "Well, sir (or m'am), your political party controlled both the presidency and one or both houses of Congress from 1981 through 1993, and 2001 through 2009. Name one bill that was passed and put on a Republican president's desk that would have expanded the number of Americans covered by Health insurance?" And if the bloviator claims that the "Medical Savings Accounts" would have accomplished that, then ask: "how do people making less than $50,000 a year put enough money in a Medical Savings Account to cover their sick child who needs an operation and hospitalization that will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars? Aren't MSA's only for the very rich to avoid taxes?"