The Right’s Absurd Defense of the Healthcare Industry

Sep 07, 09 The Right’s Absurd Defense of the Healthcare Industry
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Try as I might, I find it hard to believe that Republicans are debating the healthcare reform issue in good faith.  Many of them have taken to actually defending the supposed largesse of health insurance companies.  Dan Gerstein penned one of the most reprehensible lines of attack in his column for Forbes.com.

In his article, Mr. Gerstein argues that the Democrats have created a “bogus boogeyman” because insurance companies have been cooperating with healthcare reform.

It doesn’t seem to matter that the Republicans, in collusion with the healthcare industries, have blocked healthcare reform for over forty years.  In addition, the only reason some segments of the healthcare industry are cooperating (I use that term loosely) is because the Obama administration has already cut a murky quid pro quo deal with them.

Healthcare management degree graduates, what do you think? Where does the bias lie?

The health insurance companies have no interest in true reform.  The only reason insurers are willing to allow the Democrats to require them to carry people with pre-existing conditions is that they are going to make more money when the federal government mandates healthcare coverage for all Americans.

That is why the fight over the public option is so critical.  Without the threat of competition, health insurance companies have no incentive to lower costs.  Those without health insurance will still be unable to afford insurance, with or without pre-existing conditions.

Mr. Gerstein has the audacity to write, “At a certain point, the insurance companies and other industry interests will run out of patience and walk away from the table.”

Wow!  It’s good to know that Mr. Gerstein, and those of his ilk, believe that our democracy should be beholden to corporate interests.  These people really believe, or they really want you to believe that they believe, that we should not advocate for substantive changes in our society, fundamental reforms that will make the lives of every American better, because those who have been gouging us for decades might take their ball and go home.

The monumental stupidity of arguments such as this makes it nearly impossible to obtain bipartisan support for healthcare reform.  The right wants the left to bow and be happy for the few crumbs that the healthcare industry is willing to chuck to the American public.

However, if lawmakers would listen to the people, the health insurers and their fellow travelers would no longer be able to make their living off the lives and deaths of our fellow citizens.

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