Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics


Health Care Reform the Obama Way – The Real ObamaCare

The dog days of August have long been known as “the silly season” in the media. Most people are busy enjoying the summer and the media has to stretch to find stories of interest. This is the time for “man bites dog” stories. It has been this way in this country for a long time.

Tonight, the silly season officially came to an end.

Anyone who is not blinded by hatred or ideology will admit that Barack Obama is one of the most skilled political orators to ever hold the office of President of the United States. He reaffirmed that status in a speech tonight to the joint houses of Congress.

The timing of the speech couldn’t have been better. During August, the health care debate seemed to be reaching an impasse. Opponents were twisting reasonable proposals into “death panels” and “government takeovers”. Supporters were complaining about lack of leadership, focus, and messaging. It was time to get the reform effort back on track.

President Obama addressed both sides tonight, as well as the huge number of people who were on neither side so far.

Tell Congress to Support Section 440 in the Final Health Reform Bill

Please feel free to use the text below to let your representatives know your opinion on this issue. Select and copy the text below then click here to send a message to your congressional representative and senators.

As a constituent, I am strongly in favor of the inclusion of Section 440 of H.R.3200 in any final health bill. Please work to include pre-natal counseling, education for families concerning healthy eating, healthy family activities.

As we see more obesity in younger and younger children,  we see more children with cholesterol issues, blood pressure issues, at ages we never did before.  This alarming trend has to be challenged head on and one way is educating families on eating healthy, family exercise habits and how to eat healthier on a budget.

Waiting on these issues is akin to parking an ambulance at the bottom of an abyss when the bridge is out.  Educating parents on prenatal care, healthy eating and exercise habits, is like putting up directions for a detour before driving a car off a bridge.  It would, in the long run, be cheaper for all and decrease the incidence of disease at an early age.  

I urge you to support being smart and efficient about health care.

The Liberals Want To Kill Grandma and Other Lies

Rush told me this so it must be true. Sarah Palin said the same thing. She also said they want to kill her baby. We must stop them before it is too late.

Does anyone truly believe these claims?

According to conservative web sites and pundits the health care reform sponsored by Democrats will lead to “death panels” that will decide who lives and who dies. If you listen to talk radio you are told that the “evil libruls” want to kill off all of the old people in order to save money on health care. They never explain how this matches with their claims that liberals are all about tax and spend. That liberals never met an expensive program they didn’t like. According to them, it’s not liberals that want to save money, it is conservatives that are supposed to be all about cutting spending.

The conflict between their claims that ‘evil libruls’ want to go to extreme lengths to save money and at the same time are spendthrifts who only want to get as much of your tax dollars as possible isn’t the only paradox in their arguments. They also need to explain how the party that has always been for the weak and defenseless is all of a sudden going to turn on the very types of people they have always defended. On the other hand, when have conservatives ever shown the least bit of concern for the elderly or the disabled?

I could write far more about these nonsensical claims, but they don’t deserve the amount of attention I’ve already given them. They are fabricated out of thin air in an attempt to scare people.

Medicare for All – Support H.R. 676 Single-payer health care

Please feel free to use the text below to let your representatives know your opinion on this issue. Select and copy the text below then click here to send a message to your congressional representative and senators.

I urge you to co-sponsor H.R. 676, the “Medicare For All” Bill introduced by Rep. John Conyers.

Our health care system is broken. We spend over $2.3 trillion, or $7,500 per capita, for healthcare in the US, yet 42% of people under 65 have inadequate or no insurance coverage. At least 18,000 of them die unnecessarily each year as a result.

Every other industrialized country in the world makes sure its population has access to basic healthcare. The United States is the only industrialized nation that does not guarantee access to health care as a human right.

28 industrialized nations have single payer universal health care systems like the type proposed in this bill – privately delivered health care, publicly financed – and none spend as much per capita on health care as the United States. The United States ranks near the bottom among industrial countries in indicators from life expectancy (20th) to infant mortality (23rd).

Under H.R. 676, a family of four making the median income of $56,200 would pay about $2,700 in payroll tax for all health care costs. No deductibles, no co-pays, no worrying about catastrophic coverage.

The services covered include primary care, inpatient, outpatient and emergency hospital care, prescription drugs, durable medical equipment, hearing, dental and vision care, chiropractic treatment, mental health services, and long-term care.

Physicians for a National Health Program estimates the nation could save over $286 billion dollars a year in total health care costs. That’s enough to cover all the uninsured and provide full prescription drug coverage for everyone in the United States.

60% of physicians now support a national, single-payer health insurance system for everyone. HR 676 has been endorsed by 463 union organizations in 49 states including 116 Central Labor Councils and Area Labor Federations and 39 state AFL-CIO’s.

No other issue so directly impacts Americans. Please sign on to co-sponsor this vital bill. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Tell Congress to keep the public plan option in health care reform

Please feel free to use the text below to let your representatives know your opinion on this issue. Select and copy the text below then click here to send a message to your congressional representative and senators.

It is obvious to any thinking American that health care reform is urgently needed in this country. As a constituent and voter I want to let you know my feelings on the issue of a public option in the current reform effort.

The private insurance industry has had several decades to deal with the problems regarding the availability of health care. They have only made things worse. The only way to get them to take this matter seriously is to provide people with a choice that does not involve private companies. Only then will they face up to reality.

Government employees, including representatives such as yourself, receive health care paid for with taxpayer dollars. Are the average citizens of this country any less deserving than government employees?

Please support the option of a strong public plan in the current reform. A plan that will be able to negotiate prices with providers in the same way that private insurance companies do today.

Any reform bill without a public plan option will be a weak bill and will reflect poorly on those politicians who support it.

Why Health Care Reform? A primer

This evening, I was talking about health care reform with a family member and she said something that threw me off-balance for a bit. She said that it was about people with their hands out wanting something for free. As far as she was concerned, no one gave her health care and she doesn’t see why anyone else shouldn’t have to go out and get their own. I was totally unprepared to hear this coming from someone in my family, so I didn’t respond right away. It was also late and I knew there wasn’t really time to go into everything involved right then. Since I really didn’t want to let it die there I wrote the information below and emailed it to her. I decided that if someone close to me could misunderstand the need for reform that it would probably be a good idea to put this on the Moose for everyone to read.

The email was titled, “A little primer I wrote for you on the health care debate – it isn’t all about the uninsured”

The cost for health care in the United States currently consumes 17% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in this country. The U.S. spends, on average, 50% more per person than any other developed country. Unfortunately, the extra money we spend doesn’t buy us better health care.

An excerpt from a speech by Kathleen Sebelius the Secretary of Health and Human Services: (my emphasis)

Republicans and Health Care

Obama is right, as usual. Bi-partisanship is worth pursuing. Universal Health Care (UHC) will never be passed unless we get some help from the Republicans. I, for one, really, really want this country to get a health plan that covers everyone. I imagine most of the people reading this diary want the same thing. If we want help from the Republicans then we must make UHC seem the right choice.

(Each of the following subjects deserves its own diary.)

Most of the arguments from the Right can be rightly called fears. The biggest fear is the fear of Socialism. We need to show that UHC is not socialism. In the first place, it is an insurance plan not nationalization of the health care system. Doctors will still be private employees, except at public facilities and the VA. Hospitals that are private businesses now will remain private. We will hopefully have more publicly-owned clinics, but that’s a different program.

(Harry Truman looks on as President Lyndon Johnson signs the Medicare Bill)

This is not socialism in any way. We aren’t even proposing nationalizing the health insurance industry. Everyone will have the option of choosing a private plan or adding a supplemental one if they want to pay for it. The insurance companies will shrink, but they won’t go away.