Sunday, January 08, 2006

An Opportunity to Do the Right Thing

I don't really have a post today, but I want to try to say a few words about doing the right thing... and to point out that I've added Kay's Thinking Cap and Craig's Donkey Path over to the right.
I am often troubled by the mindless pigeon-holing of significant issues as conservative or liberal, Republican or Democrat, etc. At the extremes there are "every man for himself and the devil take the hindmost" and "from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs." Nearly all of us stand somewhere between those two extremes. Generally I believe that, if we would stop to reflect, we would see that our differences are, for the most part, differences of degree.
Ronni Bennett has proposed that we make Universal Health Care a litmus test issue for 2006. It is an easy thing for a politician to say that they respect the Golden Rule, but it is another thing entirely to provide the healthcare for all of our fellow Americans that we would move heaven and earth to provide for our own families.
Is it socialized medicine? Would necessary services be rationed? Would there be an issue with a lack of participating physicians? Those are some of the typical hysterical responses. One might ask if any of those are true of Medicare. Ronni has better citations and statistics, but from my reading it would be a near-immediate economic blessing to all of us... particularly to anyone whose care might have been denied or delayed due to restrictions on pre-existing medical conditions. Wouldn't that be something if the humane choice was also a sound business decision?
The bottom line, to my mind is that it is the right thing to do. We don't try to do the right thing by people because of who they are. We try to do the right thing by people because of who we are. Even if Universal Health Care wouldn't immediately break even or result in substantial savings, if we can return 54% of the Bush tax cuts to date to the top 20% of income earners, $230 billion, while spending another $230 billion on the war in Iraq can we not provide healthcare to our citizens? Who are we?

2 Comments:

Anonymous RonniBennett said...

According to news and opinion pieces at dozens and dozens of newspapers and websites on Sunday, the Abramoff plea bargain deal is going to reveal, in coming months, corruption in Congress, in corporations and the lobbying business, on a scale so monumental, it will tar nearly everyone in the halls of Congress.

Unless the American public has been completely soma-tized by 500 channels of television entertainment, the 24/7 iPod-ization anf cell-phone-itis of their lives, they are going to be mad as hell and not in a mood to take it anymore.

This creates a short window of opportunity (until the outrage fades so the next batch of corrupt politicians can begin their theft) for Congress to do the right thing - like Universal Healthcare.

6:16 AM  
Blogger Jack Davis said...

I agree with you that there should be health care reform, asap. I don't agree with your assessment of the Bush tax cut. The top 20% pay more than half of the taxes, so why shouldn't they receive the lion's share of the tax cut. Poor people--like me-- don't pay income taxes.

8:34 PM  

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