The movement to save Medicaid from the Republican chopping block continued on Tuesday, with actions happening on the ground and on social media, just days before the House of Representatives votes on the American Healthcare Act (AHCA), the GOP's answer to the Affordable Healthcare Act (ACA), or Obamacare.
My letter to local editors in Vermont on Healthcare:
We may not have wished for it but we are, once again, in the midst of a debate and struggle to cover everyone with true universal healthcare. “Access” to health care is completely meaningless unless supported by structures that will make health care equitable, dignified, truly affordable and available to everyone in the United States from “cradle to grave”. Between Obamacare and now Ryancare (AHCA) there exists the only plan that will truly cover every man, woman and child without co-pays, without deductibles. This is the system enjoyed just to the north of us in Canada—Improved Medicare for All or Single-payer Healthcare.
Libraries throughout Vermont are hosting educational events on Single-payer and every person of goodwill understands that to live in a decent society we need to cultivate the common good, the common welfare. To that end, every community in Vermont and in the US is encouraged to organize locally in libraries and other venues such as churches, synagogues, mosques, town halls, health centers.
The following resources/contacts are provided to facilitate this drive to true universal healthcare:
What is Single-Payer Healthcare or Improved Medicare for All?
How to Finance Single-Payer:
The Healthcare Movie that should be viewed everywhere, watch a trailer:
For expert physician speakers:
Together we can and will make truly universal healthcare available to all, a plan to place the patient front and center and not the for profit health care industry.
It’s a sad joke that these people pretend to want to do something about waste in the health care system when the overhead in Medicare and Medicaid is around five or six percent. Before the ACA, overhead was as much as half of overall expenditures (profits, executive pay, marketing costs, lobbying costs, massive administrative waste, etc.) in the private health care industry, even now it is at least 20%. They actually make the massive waste in the private health care market worse, and some of that waste will go right into their pockets. Economic waste transferred into political and human waste. These people have no ideas, and that is going to be obvious very shortly to most of the country. Their only aim is to loot. However, the Democrats are a big pile of nothing. They are led by the same pathetic, weak and corrupt losers that have led to the party’s collapse, they refuse to relinquish power and they think they will get back into power by just waiting for the backlash. Well, it ain’t going to work out for them, more importantly, for us. No one wants to give Schumer, Pelosi, Booker and the Clinton/Obama crew any power. What is likely to happen is that the country will continue to hate both parties, the hate will probably grow, and people will simply not vote. If that happens, and that is where we are headed, we will be led by an extreme minority party with little popular backing, no matter who wins.
Everyone decries one party states when they make it impossible for other parties to emerge. Is that somehow less bad when a two-party state does the same exact thing? If they didn't make it so hard for a national third party to emerge they'd already have been swept into the dustbin of history.
I got the same results.
The Road to Healthcare for All.....
We would have excellent healthcare if the politicians who make the decisions would have to abide under the same healthcare as everyone else.....As long as they have their own healthcare benefits unlike the rest of us, then we will all suffer under a sub par system......Make the politicians and their families take the healthcare offered to the rest of us.....
And oh yeah,, what the hell is going on with Ivanka Trumpp getting security clearance?...why is this happening...oh yes, DaddyTrump....
It would be nice to have universal healthcare with the same offered to pols. Let's remember that nothing is for free- but we do need to get the actual costs of medical care down. Doctors also should not be expected to work for free or sliding scales. If they want to volunteer then that is up to them. I am an older person who actually existed before medicare and medicaid. What did we do before these systems? Perhaps we also have to look back as well.
People don't have to buy into the two-party system if they really want to see change. You would think the reason that very few people vote third-party is that they don't want to see change but are more comfortable with this red team-blue team war that has been going on for so long. Other nations have more than two parties in power so Americans really only have to blame themselves for not organizing enough and being more brave. I for one will continue to vote for the Green Party or similar party that advocates for single-payer healthcare.
Every dollar spent on Medicaid by state government should go toward "free" college.
Every dollar spent on Medicaid by the federal government should go toward Medicare part E.
Medicare 4 ALL!
Great. Now get Medicare for all 218 votes in the House and 60 votes in the Senate. Oh, we need a new president too and when red states challenge it, likely a new Court. Who cares though right? Only through mass pain will progressive nirvana arrive.
Single payer systems cost less, have better outcomes, much lower social costs. This isn't debatable, our system has far more waste than single payer systems. The overhead in private insurance is much higher than the public parts of our health care system. Single payer is the best way to reduce costs. Pretty simple. Some issues are complex, this isn't one of them.
I don't think our system has anything to do with people not being brave. Our system isn't like other systems and the two parties have gotten together to make third party challengers, at least in presidential elections, very difficult. You could just as easily argue that one party states elsewhere stay as they are from a lack of bravery. Sometimes, there are massive institutional barriers and people aren't yet calling for revolution. So, things just get worse, the parties prove they have no solutions to our problems, and the system itself continues to lose legitimacy.
As far as the general public is concerned, they've already exited both parties. The Democrats and Republicans were both approaching support from half of voters about a century ago. Now, they combine to get slightly more than half the country to identify with either of them. Given what is coming for us environmentally and economically, something will break.
It's been well known by pollsters for years that while party identification may not be as strong as it used to be, voter preferences are. Most conservatives vote Republican, most people on the more liberal side vote Democrat. More to the point, party identification versus no-party identification does not equal a different outcome. We could identify by red and purple, but it's the makeup of a Congressional District and a whole host of other factors that lead into policy making. You simply aren't going to get very far at the moment if you want to ban all fracking in an Oklahoma congressional district, for example, whether Democrat, independent, or Green.
Good point, LL+in+Exile, no need for anyone to try to blunt it.
Good points, JoanRobinson, no need for anyone to attempt to undercut them.
Obamacare Lite is going to pass with less than 60 votes.
The "pro-business" Democrats should take notes.
I still strongly believe that people need to be more courageous in supporting third parties. I think all of us have seen and heard the refrain time and time again that one is just throwing their vote away when voting for a third party. That sentiment comes from fear of losing to the other team, which is understandable, but appears much less effective in getting the right people to represent you in power.
Yes, there are institutional barriers but that is a bit of an excuse when there is much more poltiical freedom in the US than in many countries. It's not like one can't call up their neighbors to ask them to vote Green or stand around in various places asking people to sign petitions for propositions. Yes, there are obvious barriers to the presidency but the only way that we are going to get better representatives in government is through widespread, concerted mass mobilization and education of the voters.
Have you seen this NYTimes article. Its pretty good:
Very cool story.
Well, a large percentage of the public doesn't vote. In fact, the last presidential election had the lowest turnout in 20 years. The 2014 was the lowest turnout in the post WWII era. So, lots of people not only don't identify with either party, they've given up even bothering to vote. If we were watching this exact situation in another country, we'd see it for what it is. A failed political system that may not be able to reform itself from within, a system corrupt to the core with no popular legitimacy. There is also a large and growing gap between public policy and popular opinion, and the public agrees with the left on a wide range of issues (not for ideological reasons, but who gives a damn?). In fact, if you look at who doesn't vote, the poor vote far less than those with more money, and they (not surprisingly) take positions on issues well to Clinton's and Obama's left on a wide range of issues. Independents supported Sanders far more than the rotten alternatives in both parties this last election.
To your point about fracking in Oklahoma, not every issue of the left will work in every part of the country, although the actual left certainly could create a good narrative about renewable energy providing far more jobs in the medium to long term than any carbon based formed of energy, especially one that results in massive negative social and environmental externalities. However, do people in Oklahoma want public education dismantled? Do they look at what even the Obama administration was saying regarding automation (that as many as half of all jobs can be eliminated in the next few decades via automation) and think nothing should be done? What could the right possibly offer them? Are they support dismantling Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security? Is there a lesson to be learned for people in favor of single payer? Are they okay with corruption in politics? Your candidate of choice, Clinton, might have been, but they aren't. Fact is, the Democrats don't offer things that would appeal to them as working people, just fluff, Russia, and we aren't Trump.
The problem isn't guts though. If you go to your neighbors and ask them to vote Green, they might ask where the Green Party actually is in their lives. When progressive and radical parties in other countries organize people and grow, they are involved in their lives and struggles. They are present in their communities, they offer concrete alternatives. Can the Greens say that? I realize, as a supporter of Stein this last election, what their alternatives are, but how many people out there in the country do? It certainly can be built, but it hasn't been. As of now, people will ask what the point of voting for Greens, Libertarians or Socialists is for roughly the same reasons they'll ask what the point of voting for Democrats and Republicans is. Politics, parties, are far removed from their day to day existence, and none of the third parties have changed that in any substantial way. I think the best way to build a left of center third party is to follow the Kshama Sawant/Ty Moore model. Run locally in a city council seat, for an office at the state level, even in some national Senate and Congressional races where the left's ideas aren't being offered. Building a national third party is very difficult, but isn't needed when running in local races. The only way it would work is if there is strong community organizing going on. Do that all over and we might be onto something.