Richard Brown: A selfish and shameful block of seniors
Being a senior myself, I am ashamed to say that national polls indicate that seniors represent the largest block of Americans against President Obama’s health care reform. Seniors along with armed service veterans have the best and most efficiently administered health coverage of any Americans.
We could completely reconstruct health care in a few years if enough of us wanted to have a sustainable, affordable, quality health care system that would cover all Americans. That selfish and shameful block of seniors does not even want to consider it! They are only concerned about ‘Me’ – disregarding the millions of poor and lower middle-class that cannot afford insurance, as well as the individuals who have pre-existing conditions, have had their policies terminated or have gone bankrupt due to excessive medical bills. They use the excuse that they don’t want the government standing between them and their doctors (of course, the greedy health insurance companies would be better), it would lead to socialism or even communism, “death panels” would decide their fate, abortions would be mandated, or any of the other ridiculous talking points that both the Republicans and the “blue dog” Democrats lie about. They are only afraid of losing the big contributions from the health insurance companies and pharmaceuticals. The health insurance companies’ profits and CEO salaries and bonuses keep skyrocketing – yet premiums keep increasing at a ridiculous rate. It is disgraceful and obscene! The only way that these premiums can be held in check is if there is a “public option” available to compete – not a “co-op” or other political cop-out. America should have universal health care or a single-payer system – like every other large industrialize nation in the world, but in this current political environment it does not stand a chance.
Seniors are concerned about the unsubstantiated possibility of Medicare coverage being reduced, taxes for the middle and lower classes going up, the deficit increasing (Bush/Cheney caused the biggest shift from surplus to deficit ever), and other strictly selfish concerns. They do express apprehension that their kids, grandkids and great grandkids will have to pay off the deficit. They should worry about their descendants having to pay ever increasing premiums to get ever decreasing coverage, as well as all of the reasons that the insurance companies can drop them or never provide coverage.
If we got out of the immoral and illegal wars that we are currently implicated in, reduced the decadent spending for ultra complex and sophisticated weapons systems that are useless in the probable types of future conflicts, stop supporting the industrial military complex CEOs, and roll back the Bush tax cuts, we could pay for the additional public coverage that we would need to cover every American. If we did this, seniors, we may even avoid the senseless death or maiming of some of your future descendants. We could probably even include more wellness and prevention programs to avoid potentially devastating illnesses. Wake up seniors!
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