The People Vs. The HMO's
There's quite a lively discussion going on over on The Cincinnati Beacon about Michael Moore's Sicko and the state of medical care in the developed world in general.
The anecdotes of course are flying full force with one young lady describing a presumably typical situation with a a family in Canada sick child being taken care of for free and a family in the United States with a sick child being financially ruined due to a "$10/hr HMO customer service rep".
Don't EVER think of the person responsible for health care in the United States as being the fault of the $10/hr customer service representative that you talk to on the telephone.
The people responsible for the lack of health care in this country are boards of directors and executives who make amounts of money that would shock you and who lead lifestyles that would cause you to never stop throwing up if you knew about them.
But, ultimately, I think Michael Moore is right that the ultimate responsible entity for the United States being the last nation in the western world without universal health care is we, the people.
You see, the boards of directors and the executives that make such sickeningly large amounts of money are TOTALLY dependent on us. If we don't buy their products and borrow their money, they are just out of luck.
But, no, we don't have a spine.
We don't take to the streets.
We don't go on general strikes.
We don't do ANYTHING to effectively get the message across that we're literally sick and tired and that we're not going to take it any more - at least not on this issue of whether or not we actually find it acceptable to be forced into financial ruin to provide proper care for one's children.
In doing some more research on this issue, I have found out that, thank goodness, there are at least FOUR members of the House of Representatives who have grown a pair on this issue - John Conyers, Dennis Kucinich, Jim McDermott and Donna Christensen. They have introduced a bill called H.R. 676 that would expand the current Medicare system to cover EVERYONE.
Now, if I were you, not only would I start calling my US House member and insisting that they help this bill pass, but I would start surfing the Campaign Finance Database, finding out who is bankrolling my local representative, and, as much as possible, REFUSING TO DO BUSINESS with any person or entity who has financed my representative's campaigns until H.R. 676 is passed into law.
Collectively I honestly believe we can do this.
If only we have the will.
If only we truly do believe that we shouldn't have to take care of our children through the bacnkruptcy courts.
Or ... worse yet ... sit back and watch them die because some executive might not get a fifth vacation to Europe that year ...