In his weekly radio and Internet address on Saturday, President Obama once again attempted to use fear and urgency as the principal reasons to pass his Health Care Reform. With support rapidly dwindling in the public sector for both the legislation and his style of delivery (It’s got to be passed immediately or the world will end as we know it!), he revisited all the talking points of the issue.
In fact, he did everything but parade Janeane Garafalo around to remind us that anyone who fails to support this legislation immediately is simply a tea-bagging rednecked racist who can’t stand having a black man in the White House.
Senate Republican Whip Jon Kyl of Arizona sets the record straight in his reply:
To that, I would add the following in response to Obama’s speech.
“This is an issue that affects the health and financial well-being of every single American and the stability of our entire economy.”
All the more reason not to rush this process. Remember how you rushed to get Crapulus One (the stimulus package you immediately shoved down our throats when you took office) passed? It had to be right away, you said. And it still hasn’t started to do its work, at least not down here at ground zero. How about a unique approach, Mr. President? How about taking the time to get it right?
It’s about a woman in Colorado who told us that when she was diagnosed with breast cancer, her insurance company – the one she’d paid over $700 a month to – refused to pay for her treatment. She had to use up her retirement funds to save her own life.
Sad story, indeed, if it’s true. So she had a lousy insurance company and they ought to be targeted. Not the entire health care industry. But I can counter that with the story of a high school friend, who moved to England when she married. At the age of 55, four years ago, she discovered a lump on her breast. By the time the government run health care (i.e., socialized medicine similar to what you’re touting) got around to helping her, the lump had gone from pre-cancerous to inoperable, as it had spread to other areas of her body. She died as a result of not having timely access to quality medical care… something we already have in this country (which is one reason so many Europeans choose to come here and pay for it. They can get treatment before it’s too late).
It’s about a man from Maryland who sent us his story – a middle class college graduate whose health insurance expired when he changed jobs. During that time, he needed emergency surgery, and woke up $10,000 in debt – debt that has left him unable to save, buy a home, or make a career change.
And what do you think will happen when, under your proposed plan, a 67-year-old man is rejected for treatment for colon cancer because it’s considered a waste of money by the government pencil-pusher who’s trying to stretch the limited funds available?
Mr. President, your solution on everything so far seems to be “throw out the old system entirely and replace it with my system!” I’m sorry sir, but this is one American who is putting his foot down and stating publicly that you have not earned my trust, and you may not throw out Democracy and the Free Enterprise System as We the People know it.
It’s about every business forced to shut their [sic] doors, or shed jobs, or ship them overseas. It’s about state governments overwhelmed by Medicaid, federal budgets consumed by Medicare, and deficits piling higher year after year.
I’ve spoken with numerous small business owners who have assured me that, if your Medical Deform legislation passes, they absolutely will have to shut down. They will not be able to afford the program you envision. And that is from people who have run small businesses for 20 years or more. When you, President Obama, have been able to successfully run any kind of small business – yes, including a lemonade stand – for a few years, than you may come and talk to the American people about how you know what we need in this country to help small businesses. Until then, you’re running a quart low in the credibility department.
This is what the debate in Congress is all about: Whether we’ll keep talking and tinkering and letting this problem fester as more families and businesses go under, and more Americans lose their coverage. Or whether we’ll seize this opportunity – one we might not have again for generations – and finally pass health insurance reform this year, in 2009.
This scare tactic approach is losing its impact, Mr. President. You’re starting to sound like the boy who cried, “Wolf!” You’re basically saying, “Pass this bill or it will be generations before the next opportunity.” No sir, that wolf won’t hunt any more.
Now we know there are those who will oppose reform no matter what… And I know that once you’ve seen enough ads and heard enough people yelling on TV, you might begin to wonder whether there’s a grain of truth to what they’re saying. So let me take a moment to answer a few of their arguments.
First, the same folks who controlled the White House and Congress for the past eight years as we ran up record deficits will argue – believe it or not – that health reform will lead to record deficits. That’s simply not true.
I want to be very clear: I will not sign on to any health plan that adds to our deficits over the next decade. And by helping improve quality and efficiency, the reforms we make will help bring our deficits under control in the long-term.
With all due respect, Mr. President, not a chance!
Your own Congressional Budget Office reported last week, that your proposed program would result in “a net increase in the federal budget deficit of $239 billion over the 2010-2019 period.” And while you claim that would be off-set by preventative health measures, that, sir, is complete speculation. And that is why you cannot be trusted with our economy or our health care reform. You lack any comprehensive understanding of the complexities of the healthcare system; just as you lack understanding of the economy.
The good news is that people who know the system best are rallying to the cause of change. Just this past week, the American Nurses Association, representing millions of nurses across America, and the American Medical Association, representing doctors across our nation, announced their support because they’ve seen first-hand the need for health insurance reform.
Yes, you do have a way with unions, don’t you? Tell me, Mr. President: Do you plan to take over the medical equivalents of General Motors and then fire their CEOs? Will investors take it on the chin again as you sign over assets to the unions as you did with UAW? Is that the next step in your journey? What comes after ruining the American medical system so admired the world over?
The opponents of health insurance reform would have us do nothing. But think about what doing nothing, in the face of ever increasing costs, will do to you and your family.
No, sir. I think of what rushing into an ill-advised reform package for the medical industry will do to the American economy, not to mention what it will do to the well-being of the individual.
Which leaves me with one final, important question: This time, do you intend to honor your campaign promise and allow the American public (as well as Congress) a minimum of five days to examine this legislation online before you sign it? Or is this of such driving urgency that once again, we shouldn’t be allowed to see it before you commit us, our children and our grandchildren to pick up the tab for yet another disastrous idea?