You Lie!

As soon as the speech ended, my phone went all crazy bananas.  I had calls, calls waiting, text messages, and voice-mails.  It seemed people were watching.  The most satisfying call came from a good friend, a guy I love very much, but who has a very hard time accepting Obama as POTUS.  He regularly calls me and parrots what he hears on talk radio.  Now, most of the time, he is just stirring the pot, because he enjoys getting a rise out of folks, and particularly, me.  I’ve learned not to take the bait, or, I frame my response in a way that actually sounds as if I agree, until I lower the boom.  One thing I have to say, he has been willing to accept some Liberal arguments.

So, this guy has a young son, who I met when he was around 3 yrs old.  He needs daily medications or he risks having seizures.  He requires MRIs at least yearly.  It has been 3 yrs since his last one.  His dad cannot afford to keep him covered, and what little coverage the State offers does not allow for MRIs.  There is a spot on his brain, and it needs to be carefully monitored, and that isn’t happening at the moment.

My friend has the rare ability to boil things down to their most basic elements.  I often accuse him of being cynical, and jaded, but that doesn’t mean his analysis is always wrong.  His entire support group is Republican, rabidly so, in fact.  It is always an uphill battle for me to move him from his default Red-State positions.  But tonight, he calls, and says “well, you could really see how much the insurance companies are leaning on certain politicians to kill reform.”  Ok, I’m paraphrasing.  You want the quote?  Fine:

“Boy, I bet the insurance companies were all, motherfucker, stop this reform shit now.”

So I’m thinking maybe, just maybe, the full court press tipped their hand, and even this pretty conservative guy sees the core problem.

I liked the speech.  Sure, I still have questions.  I don’t like mandated coverage.  I hated it when the Govt required everyone to purchase auto insurance, and I’m skeptical of any plan that makes a guy earning 22k a year and trying to save for a house or retirement buy health insurance.  When hard times come, generally, its a roof, food, gas for the car, and heating or cooling, probably in that order.  If he defaults, will he be penalized when he can afford to resume coverage?

I also liked that he opened the door to tort reform.  I’m supposed to oppose this, being a Democrat and all, but the fact remains that young doctors are facing mounting debt from school, and often exorbitant rates for malpractice insurance.  It makes them see too many patients a day, and care gets missed.  It makes them order tests that are redundant or unnecessary, and that is wasteful.  We need to hold bad doctors accountable, but we need to give doctors and nurses some protection from frivolous suits.

More later, but I’ll close with this:

Joe Wilson(R) of South Carolina, you are an asshole.

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8 Comments

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8 responses to “You Lie!

  1. democommie

    Mack:

    I don’t got no teevee, as you know, so I don’t watch ANY speeches or much else as a rule.

    I’m not fond of the model that says everybody will buy insurance–unless, the gummint is the insurer. HMO’s and health insurers have demonstrated over the last fifty years, at least, that they cannot be trusted and must be monitored at every level to insure that they don’t break current laws. I fear that what we will wind up with is a medical version of the TSA; just one more bloated, inept bureacracy.

    I gotta go to bed, I’m headed for Cow Hampshire in the morning to celebrate a dear old friend’s 60th b’day and see some of my other pals.

  2. Just a small point of correction – the insurance and hospital industries have already signed on to reform (Obama got their support early to avaoid the mistakes of Clinton).

    If you’ll check, you’ll find that none of the financing for the opposition is coming from insurance PACs. And Rick Scott’s group is rogue and does not represent the AHA, which is behind reform as well. As you know, I’m in a positition to know this, but will say no more about that.

    The big businesses are all on Obama’s side (at least officially). The opposition is almost exclusively, as you would call them, “Crazies”.

  3. The Missus

    Joe Wilson has an opponent, Democrat Rob Miller he raised $41,000 last night, after Wilson’s outburst. I love it!

  4. So if we are all mandated to get coverage, just like auto insurance coverage, will we also have to pay more if we have a bad driving health record?

  5. Miller’s campaign coffers are now over $400,ooo.

  6. Insurance is legalized betting. They bet you won’t need coverage ever and the premiums are set high enough to cover the ones that actually do use the insurance, plus vigorish for the insurance company. You get a pool big enough and it’ll come close to balancing out.

  7. Jim, thats the potential upside. By mandating, the pool will by default be quite large. The trick, I think, is to make sure that the numbers do indeed work in the policy-holder’s favor.

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