Last night President Obama gave what could well be the speech of his life. Perhaps the most important thing he did, besides inspiring the nation to regain the high moral character which made it possible to write the magnificent US constitution and land a man safely on the moon, was to call out the GOP scare-mongering lies about health care reform. And he did so clearly and effectively.
Before his speech Sarah Palin wrote an editorial in the Wall Street Journal where she again raised the specter of so-called death panels, which ostensibly would decide which seniors would live and which would die (or be killed). Palin is nothing more than an idiot extension of the well-financed ultra-extreme-right-wing groups that have been funding those false, lying, fear-mongering TV ads totally fabricating that the Canadian government decides health care availability for its citizens, and that seniors in the USA would be forced to change doctors, lose Medicare benefits, and have bureaucrats decide if they receive medical care or not.
As if to epitomize the GOP tactics of lies and fear to make Americans scared of what every other industrialized nation on the planet loves and enjoys, republican congressional representative Joe Wilson from South Carolina (the state that gave us republican governor Mark Sanford and his Argentinian extra-marital affair) interrupted president Obama’s statement that undocumented foreigners would not be covered under health care reform by shouting “You lie!”. This monstrous breech of professional protocol by Wilson resulted in very strong and blunt condemnation of Wilson by both democrats and republicans alike, and probably has guaranteed that a democrat will win Wilson’s seat in 2010.
Checking the real facts revealed that the health care reform bill HR 3200, section 246 specifically forbids payments “on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.”
It is clear that Joe Wilson and all the other GOP scare-mongers out there are the real liars. They’re the same folks who calculate that the majority of Americans are stupid and/or lazy and/or research-challenged, and will therefore believe the seemingly informed alarmists and propagandists who are seemingly trying to warn them that democrats are trying to steal their money, security, peace of mind, and first-born.
How are they doing it? They are using tactics learned from Hitler and Joseph Goebbels, both of whom did this in late 1920’s-early 1930’s Germany to rise to power and implement Nazism. Hitler and Goebbels made up monstrous lies and conspiracy theories designed to scare the German people and make them angry at the existing government. They and their cronies then repeated those lies over and over with ever-increasing volume and insistence, and ultimately made the people believe them with no proof whatsoever to back up the lies.
Fast-forward eighty years and the same heinous tactics are being used by an entire increasingly-more-right-wing political party right here in the USA. Even moderate republicans who are actually working on health care reform in congressional committees are meekly remaining silent while their more radical party-mates scream lies at the top of their lungs.
It also turns out that according to this article Joe Wilson’s outrageous outburst was planned. If so, then perhaps he was also party to the establishment and implementation of pre-organized protesters at town hall meetings in South Carolina and elsewhere. Those protesters attended these meetings for the sole purpose of disrupting them and shouting down anyone who favors health care reform.
Thus, it was heartening to hear president Obama again attempt to work in a bipartisan manner last night, but also make it crystal clear in no uncertain terms that if the GOP continues its nazi-like tactics, he will call them out. If nothing else, this will at least give the real truth a fighting chance to be heard and understood in the face of the relentless onslaught of lies and fear-mongering propaganda foisted against the American people in recent months.
Furthermore, if anyone has doubts about what health care reform really entails, he or she can check the facts himself/herself at any number of fact-verification web sites such as factcheck.org, the reality check site, and particularly Politifact.com, with its now-famous “truth-o-meter”. But if you don’t make even the slightest effort get the true facts, and if you simply believe the fear-mongering propagandists who stand to lose their enormous health insurance profits at the expense of quality health care for all, then you truly deserve what you end up with…which may well be no health care at all.
We, the People!! will make a prediction: Health care reform, largely as outlined in the speech last night, will pass before Christmas. It will include a provision which forces spending cuts elsewhere in government if it is not deficit-neutral. It will also include both a health insurance exchange, and a public option with a trigger, i.e., the public option is only implemented if the insurance companies don’t get their act together by __ date. The GOP will try to water down the trigger mechanism to make it essentially toothless, but the dems won’t let them do that.
The 1500 insurance companies out there will simply not be able to get away from their “profits above all!” modus operandi. Their reluctance to streamline and implement fairer pricing and fairer policies will trigger the public option, and only after they actually start to lose significant numbers of subscribers and the profits those subscribers represent, all of a sudden they will figure out how become efficient and cost effective while providing affordable quality health insurance.
After all, that’s how American capitalist competition has always worked, isn’t it?