Hold on to your hats. This speech could be the most important one in Barack Obama’s career. My coverage will be totally knee-jerk in response, a stream of consciousness. For me, what I hear tonight from my President will determine whether or not I continue to go by the name “Yo Mama For Obama”. I need to be won over again by President Obama’s intellect, common sense and socially compassionate guts. I need to see him call on the carpet the for-profit insurance companies, the finagling and obstructive politicians and the greedy, unprincipled insurance industry. I insist that our President cast aside empty bipartisanship and consensus in favor of enacting real health reform and benefits for the American people. I do not want to see a robust political process as the end product of this debate: I demand a working and fair medical system. Let’s see if Barack Obama will come through tonight or prove wrong my last two years of support for him. In summary and just to get “in the mood”, have a read of Maureen Dowd’s column in the New York Times:
With Dowd’s thoughts under our belts, let’s do it, always remembering that we need justice and a viable way of life for the children. It is always about the kids. It does not matter if the child is three years old or thirty years old. Once a parent, always a parent.
For the sake of brevity and with due respect for my rustiness at the keyboard, I will be referring to President Obama as PO.
Good eeeeeeeeeveneing, America! Lady O. looks gorgeous, but let’s get on with the show.
Ok. Kudos on “pulling this economy back from the brink”. Now its time to get it out of the mire, to offer our citizens the basic health care they deserve as human beings. Make believe I am from Missouri: show me.
Bingo! Our crisis is not only a hell hole for our uninsured, but also for the already insured, who, despite their policies, can be terminated at any time for (Can you believe this?) for actually getting sick. Additionally, the already insured are seeing premium increases by 25% to 30% a year. Do tell: even with the “trigger” proposal, when my premiums continue to go up at a ridiculous rate, who is going to “trigger” a fail-safe mechanism to protect me from usurious rates? Who am I gonna Call? Ghostbusters?
“The time for bickering is over”. Can we really believe that? Sounds reasonable, but will the opposition respect this rule of behavior and get on with devising a plan we all can live with —- or die without?
The new laws for medical care and insurance policies are being listed firmly. How can anyone, even the opposition, refuse to support these new rules?
PO finally said it: we all are deserving and should have available to us the exact same coverage that he and our lawmakers have. Can he live up to these promises and deliver?
I like the analogy of the cost of health care coverage with auto insurance. If people refuse to purchase coverage, there will be a hefty penalty to cover any expenses they may incur. Everyone has to pay their part. No free ride.
PO just faced down the liars, i.e. those propagating the falsehoods of “death panels” and health care for illegal immigrants. Did you hear the weak protests of the opposition? Pathetic response from a pathetic bunch of rabble-rousers.
Ya’ know, live-blogging about health care does not hold a candle to live-blogging the debates, the election or the inauguration. This is not so much fun.
We are now on to the public option. Actually, PO’s forecast that just a small number of people will use the public option is probably correct. I will throw out some numbers to you later on that issue. However, we need a public option mainly to rein in the greed and abuses of our private companies. Why is the opposition so adamant about any competition to private industry? The foolishness in the staunch stance against this public option has more to do with protecting big business than incurring more debt.
John Boehner looks like he is going a little pale. PO just reminded Congress about all the costs the prior administration took on by creating unpaid debt, by its policies, especially the useless war in Iraq. Quick: bring is some tanning spray for Johnny Boy.
Excellent point that this reform will not threaten or decrease Medicare’s benefits. PO will protect Medicare. Are our seniors so callous and selfish that they do want all Americans to have the medical care that they have, lest the seniors’ benefits might decline? Call me naive, but I do not think so. I think the fear mongers have instilled in the benefit-laden seniors an unnecessary scare just to allow our lawmakers and private industry to line each others’ pockets. Different tactics to reach the same old ends: more for the rich, less for the middle and lower classes.
I want to see PO stand on his word to call out those agitators who just want to maintain the status quo. I want to see them shouted down, cut off at the knees, at the first hint of inflammatory lies.
“The character of our country” is the most meaningful phrase PO used tonight. But he must act on it. Now he is calling Orrin Hatch on the hypocritical carpet for understanding the needs of our population yet denying fair and equal care available to all. PO did the same thing earlier with John McCain. “Sometimes government has to step in to help out the people”. Well said and so true. “Sometimes too little government is just as harmful as too much.” Again, well said and also true.
No more “kickin’ the can down the road.” He said it. PO is demonstrating hope and confidence in our system, in our government. And guess what? PO gave us the benefit of an optimistic outlook to get this reform through. To me, PO was damn emphatic about cutting out the crap offered by the opposition. Yet he would be open to listen to reasonable proposals from them.
Lookie who the GOP put up for the Republican response. Rep. Charles Boustany from Louisiana. A former physician. Obviously couldn’t cut it in the medical field in Louisiana so he went the next best route for personal gain: elective office. A wimp, a wuss, a nobody. He wants us to start all over on reform. Kickin’ the can? You betcha! And here comes the fear mongering, about out-of-control costs. No lesson learned here tonight. Well I guess he had his five minutes of fame.
Okay. We are done for tonight. My verdict? I am with PO all the way. He steadfastly stood his ground and said in no uncertain terms that we WILL get health reform this year. For those who object to equal care, they will be on the wrong side of history —- and a just, compassionate nation. We are going to get reform. My children and their children (?) will be treated as decent human beings. Lights, camera, ACTION right now.
And to all a goodnight.
With love and renewed hope,