By W.H. WATERS
America, America, what is happening to common sense and good reasoning in our land?
Do you remember that President Bill Clinton and his wife, Hilary Clinton, strove hard to change the medical care system in 1993? Republican congressmen and the money from HMO’s and insurance companies fought it with money and arguments that were in many respects untrue. Even so, things did not improve and costs went up and up.
The Republican Party came to power in 2001 and held sway until 2009. In spite of the fact that medical costs went higher and higher we heard not one word from them about any plan or correction that would change the way all Americans could have hospital coverage. Yes, they passed a bill giving limited drug insurance but refused to allow negotiation with drug companies to reduce the cost. It was the bottom line of drug companies that received the greatest reward. This is and has been the guiding light of Republican thinking for all the years of my life. The people come far behind the bottom line of business. If business and the capitalistic system cannot provide for the welfare of the citizens then government must step in as it did with Social Security long ago.
Today you hear Republican congressmen ask why the hurry. Then someone says we have a better plan. Where were the better plans and better ideas from 2001 to 2009? I believe this bears out the lack of concern for middle class America and for this reason we have many reasons to wonder about the many television skits that try to sell all the bad things that are going to happen if our President wins the day. I saw a column headed by the attitude that this problem was too big for President Obama. He has carried a massive load left by the very group of people who have the audacity to criticize him. He surely has the interest of all America at heart and not just the upper crust. Even so, I think the welfare of the moneyed interest would be better served over the long haul. They cannot continue to do well when the working man is in despair. Really, this is what this is all about!
In the HMO market you have seen many massive fortunes made during the past 50 years. We have many of them in Tennessee. I suspect this why we have a number of “Blue Dog” Democrats as congressmen. Money for re-election comes from this source. When you see that 20 percent or more of the money paid for medical care goes to these people for administrative costs, you can see why they are fighting so hard to retain their cash cow.
Are we, the citizens of this land, going to stand by and listen to all these scare tactics we hear? If the battle is won by the naysayers, costs will go up and up again and again. This is not a scare tactic for this is surely what we have seen during the past 20 years or more.
Who has the interest of the average American at heart? I want cost to be controlled, but if it cannot be controlled then government must protect us all. Have the people who fight so hard for their cash cow protected the whole of America? There is no doubt as to the answer to this question. It surely is NO!
Editor’s Note: Mr. W.H. Waters resides in Lebanon and is a contributor to The Wilson Post.