Saturday, March 16, 2013

Full of Sound And Fury

(Editorial cartoon by Jim Morin / Miami Herald (March 16, 2013) and featured at McClatchy DC.  Click on image to enlarge and then return.)

David Lazarus has a reasonably modest column up on the ongoing GOP war against Obamacare.  It's clear that Lazarus doesn't think the signature act of Obama's first term is perfect, but he does see some improvement in healthcare coverage for millions of Americans who were doing without.

Republican lawmakers, in their budget proposal released this week, showed they're determined to roll back President Obama's healthcare reforms, deny coverage to millions, limit treatment of the poor and essentially hand Medicare over to private insurers.
This isn't just bad public policy. It's the perpetuation of a Darwinian struggle between those who have access to affordable healthcare and those who do not.

"There are goods and services that the private market does a very good job of providing," said Mindy Marks, an associate professor of economics at UC Riverside. "Healthcare isn't one of them."

Obamacare isn't perfect. It doesn't extend health insurance to everyone. It doesn't do enough to reduce medical costs.

But there's no getting around this fact: President Obama's healthcare reform law is the first meaningful change to our monumentally ill-conceived medical system in decades. ...

"We still have to decide whether healthcare is a privilege or a right," said Tony Sinay, a healthcare economist at Cal State Long Beach. "If you look at other countries, it's a right."   [Emphasis added]

Lazarus does a good job ticking off the improvements that Obamacare has brought and will be bringing as each stage phases in.  But it's clear that he, like many of us, believe that a single-payer "Medicare for all" system would be the ideal solution, one that would wrest healthcare from profit-seeking insurance companies.  It would also end the shackling of healthcare to employment at a time when there are so many millions of Americans without jobs.

In the meantime, however, it is a start.  I guess that baby-step incrementalism is all we are entitled to right now.

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Blogger ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I guess that baby-step incrementalism is all we are entitled to right now.

It's all our neoliberal President thinks we will demand.

Power concedes nothing without a demand, and we demand so pathetically little.

"Republicans fear their base. Democrats despise theirs."

5:01 PM  

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