Ok, ok… settle down… settle down… Extinguish those torches, give me the matches and put those pitchforks back where you found them. Allow me time to explain myself and then, if you don’t agree, you can set me on fire.
Nobody likes The Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare. Nobody. Not just conservatives and teabaggers, mind you; nobody likes it. We’re all progressives here. Let’s be honest with one another, folks. Let’s lay our cards on the table. American’s freakin’ hate Obamacare. 56% of them want it repealed. Why? Well, because the Obama administration made a complete pig’s breakfast of the marketing. They couldn’t sell fire to cavemen, ice to Bedouin, or gasoline to Hummer owners.
That doesn’t mean that the law doesn’t have some objective merits, but, in the end, it’s a over-complex hodge-podge of rules, regulations, mandates and give-aways to the private insurance parasites that it needs to die on the steps of the Supreme Court Building. I know this sucks. I know it will be a blow to all our egos, well, those of us who thought Obama would bring real change to the White House instead of the Caspar Milquetoast approach his administration has taken to governing the nation. But the ACA is a debacle and I hope that SCOTUS shoots it down.
Journalist Lindorff hates it too.
The act, pushed through a Democratic Congress by President Obama in 2010, is a disaster, a cobbled-together set of measures that was fatally corrupted by the insurance lobby and other parts of the nation’s medical-industrial complex, which leaves millions uninsured, continues to tether workers to their employers like indentured servants, and undermines the Medicare program, which should be the cornerstone of a real health reform.
It’s long-past time to disintermediate the private insurance industry, what Lindorff calls the “real Vampire Squid.” Only a single-payer system paid for with a progressive tax extension to the current Medicare tax will deliver on Obama’s promise to insure as many people for the lowest cost. As other industrialized nations have discovered over the years, single-payer is the best and only way to control costs and ensure that every citizen has access to affordable, quality healthcare.
The reality, which both the political leadership and the corporate media have studiously avoided discussing, is that if the US were to shift to a system in which every person was covered by a well-funded Medicare program such as is currently available to every citizen over the age of 65, the total cost of healthcare for the nation — currently about $2.9 trillion per year — would be massively reduced, as would the cost of health care for nearly all individuals, with the exception of those politicians and wealthy executives, and perhaps a small group of workers in highly unionized professions, who have their entire family insurance coverage paid for by the taxpayer or by their companies.
If this means that we get 4 years of R-money ™ and the country slips back into recession, then that’s the sacrifice we’ll need to make to get a decent, affordable healthcare system. So I hope that SCOTUS can find the courage to obliterate Obamacare and force us back into a corner where the only viable option becomes the single-payer system we so desperately need.