Thursday, August 13, 2009

healthcare reform and small businesses

One thing this mega-recession has proven conclusively is the irrationality of \"the market.\" Same here. Most small businesses will benefit from the healthcare reform currently in the works, yet I'd wager most small business owners think destruction awaits them.

They're wrong, but don't believe me--or anyone else with an axe to grind. If you get most of your information and talking points from partisan media, you're part of the problem. I don't care whether you're a Democrat like me or a Republican like my spouse.

And it's so easy to factcheck the claims made by both sides. Start with and The former has established itself as a well-funded, scrupulously nonpartisan source of truth about politicians' claims, and Politifact won a Pulitzer this year, and is just as nonpartisan. It has the added benefit of gauging not just truth or falsehood, but everything in between.

Politifact has revealed many an untruth or half-truth on the Demos' side, from Obama on down. But it's the Republican side's claims about healthcare reform that so often fall in the whopper \"pants on fire\" category.

It's like comparing an airport pickpocket with Al Capone, like comparing someone who's sliming you vs. someone who's coming at you with a chainsaw.

So even though there are no pure angels in this debate, overall, small businesses are better off siding with the Demos--and putting in their constructive two cents' worth on what they need from healthcare reform instead of blindly opposing everything.

As for the Republican was once a conservative organization, in the actual dictionary meaning of the word \"conservative.\" It was the party of Teddy Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Now both would be drummed out of the party. It has ethnically cleansed itself of centrists. The Demos are, speaking exactly, the distinct lesser of two evils.

One last point: did anyone notice there are other industrialized democracies on this planet--every single one of which has a more universal, more cost-effective healthcare system than us?

If we did nothing else but adopt any one of these countries' proven systems we'd probably do better than anything either of our parties has cooked up.

Take the Netherlands' system. It's based on heavily regulated private health insurance. Their citizens pay half what we pay for healthcare, even though their poorest are subsidized. Their population lives longer and healthier. And every single citizen of their country has their own private physician.

By the way, have you noticed that not one of these other democracies' electorates have dumped their system in favor of ours? Vast majorities of voters in all these countries overwhelmingly prefer their systems to ours. Some are socialized, some just regulated. Yet all beat ours. Every single one.

The Republican ads would have you believe these folks are praying for our system.

Liar, liar, pants on fire.


housemouse said...

I read your comment this morning and I thought "Now there's a sensible comment". I scrolled upward and realized why. Good article.

The Immigration forum is growing quieter by the day. Maybe if Obama tries out his amnesty proposals, things will heat up again. Or not.


Bob said...

Read your comment on the NYT editorial and followed the link here. Great points and I can totally relate. My parents are die hard Fox News watchers and claim to be conservatives. I like your approach and I'll have to try it.