Notes on the health care wars

“Let all of the poisons hatch out.” is the Shakespearean portent from Robert Graves’ book ‘I, Claudius’ at the point when Claudius realizes that everything has to be revealed no matter how ugly before he can rebuild the Republic of Rome. It came to mind watching President Obama’s measured and respectful response to all of the below the belt punches he is taking.

Last week guns, swastikas and more rumors became part of the tv entertainment, this week a man finally ripped the lid off of what has been floating in the organized mob hysteria with a man carrying a sign ‘Death to Obama, his wife Michelle and his two stupid kids.’

This not only stirs sadness that an American would wish that a President of the United States would be killed, but it prompts anger over the fact that those elected officials who are against Obama let these destructive attitudes festers without directly repudiating such statements. Hate speech has consequences and Republican silence against these tactics is not only unconscionable, but also seditious.

The defense of corporate medicine, insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies is completely irrational. It is a mafia and everybody is getting a cut. Check out an uninsured bill from a night in the emergency room for confirmation.  The lobbyists are the bagmen. Monolithic, soulless conglomerates own hospitals and they reconstitute at will depending on the money tides. Insurance companies are the brass knuckles that bring people to their knees and pharmaceutical companies are little better than drug cartels.  

The crap hurled at the President unfairly is stunning. There is even a catch phrase being bandied about ‘Obama death panels.’ This was spun out of unbridled hate for the President that has no relation to anything be believes or is proposing. The New York Times has taken the time to track the venomous route of this controversy. It started last Nov. and was and is a deliberate misinterpretation that refers to a doctor reimbursement provision in the reform bill about end of life consultations at the request of the patient. Such consults happen every day as a practical part of medicine. A truly sick mind has twisted this into a ‘death panel’ ala the Nazis to tag onto the President.

Speaking of twisted minds, Sarah Palin furthered the talk in the interest of her own career and that Republican gasbag Grassly is being deliberately ambiguous “We should not have a government program whether you are going to pull the plug on Grandma.”  He voted for a similar provision in health care legislation under the Bush administration.