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Joe BidenCongratulations to our presumptive Democratic nominee, Joe Biden!

Response to George II (Reply #87)

Sun Oct 27, 2019, 12:08 PM

188. Well, sure. Let's have a bit of history. In concept, a national health care plan dates clear back

 

to Teddy Roosevelt. It was in the Democratic Party platform in 68 when we nominated the Hube to run against Nixon after Bobby had been killed.

In 72 it was 'a system of universal National Health Insurance which covers all Americans with a comprehensive set of benefits including preventive medicine, mental and emotional disorders, and complete protection against catastrophic costs, and in which the rule of free choice for both provider and consumer is protected.'

In 76, Carter said, 'We need a comprehensive national health insurance system with universal and mandatory coverage' that would paid for by a combination of mandatory employer outlays and public tax dollars.

In 1980, it was 'a comprehensive, universal national health insurance plan.'

In 1984, we backed off even further with Mondale opposing the snake Reagan. We said, "The states must be the cornerstone of our health care policies,” and that the federal government would simply “assure that health care is available to all who need help at a cost we can afford."

In 88, the party platform promoted “a national health program providing federal coordination and leadership” but focused on restraining costs.

In 1992, Clinton defeated HW on a platform that maintained that all Americans should have universal access to quality, affordable health care—not as a privilege, but as a right.

However, after the policy defeat the Clintons experienced after Hillary failed in trying to create a national healthcare system in 93, we backed off again in 1996 to being 'committed to ensuring that Americans have access to affordable, high-quality health care.'

In 2000, the platform evolved to call for us to "take concrete, specific, realistic steps to move toward the day when every American has affordable health coverage” in a “step-by-step” approach. OK, 'all deliberate speed' is how I read that.

Then, in 2004, as we fell prey to the constant Republican screech about how taxes are always bad, the platform changed to say that we want to "help businesses cope with the skyrocketing cost of health care by reforming our health care system and cutting taxes to help small businesses pay for health insurance."

In 2008, the platform stated, "We believe that quality and affordable health care is a basic right” and promised “every American man, woman, and child be guaranteed affordable, comprehensive health care.” On the question of who would run the health care system, however, the Democrats steered clear of a government-run structure, stating: “Health care should be a shared responsibility between employers, workers, insurers, providers and government.”

Now, in 2008 I did observe Hillary Clinton during a debate refusing to answer the direct question about whether she saw healthcare as a right or a privilege. She was also famously quoted as saying, "Give me something I can believe in," when a group of doctors visited her to advocate single payer.

In 2012, Obama won again, and this time the platform was, "We believe accessible, affordable, high quality health care is part of the American promise, that Americans should have the security that comes with good health care, and that no one should go broke because they get sick."

Finally, in 2016, the platform said that Democrats believe that health care is a right, not a privilege, and our health care system should put people before profits. Then, it positioned the party to "fight to make sure every American has access to quality, affordable health care.” And, as I maintain, that change can be credited to Bernie's people on the platform committee to try and smooth over the massive rift in the party that happened during that primary. You and I were on opposite sides back then, if you'll recall.

OK, so now that we've looked at the history of the Democratic platform, we see that Americans are groaning under the tyranny of a for-profit system whose interest directly conflicts with providing the healthcare they need. Along with climate change, this issue must be addressed. Public sentiment has turned in favor of both.


First, here's the source of the history above: https://www.healthaffairs.org/do/10.1377/hblog20190815.209963/full/

As to the Dingells and Wasserman-Schultz, that may be, but they aren't national figures in the same way that a presidential candidate is, and certainly did not represent the party platform, as you have seen above.

Now we are once again fighting the good fight. Shall we have people over profit, or profit over people? Medicare for all is good policy because it would in fact cut costs, particularly of middle class people like me and my wife, who pay in a normal year around $19-20K for crummy, rationed healthcare with financially crippling copays. If we both have to be hospitalized in a single year, for God's sake, we have to cough up $6K. That's supposedly our 'maximum' out-of-pocket, but there is a loophole clause our HMO is inserting this year that states that some types of 'services' may not be included in the maximum. This HMO counts things like hip replacement as 'elective surgery' so they can cut costs by denying post-operative physical therapy.

I cannot say that I love Bernie, but I can say that I love the policies he introduced in 2016, and that he has fleshed out now. What I do love is his advocacy that this nation do the right thing for once and put people over profit.

We both know, George, that there are millions of dollars lined up against even a public option. Big pharma and for-profit health insurance will be fighting tooth and nail with all the dark money they can put forward. We already see this with the media focusing on asking Warren the gotcha question about raising middle class taxes.

Other posts give my counter argument in more detail, but in a nutshell, yes, taxes will rise, but people will no longer have premiums, deductibles, copays and coinsurance, so costs would actually go down. If she answered it like this, though, you know as well as I that ALL the media would trumpet out is 'Warren will raise taxes on the middle class!' The media is, after all, corporate-owned.

Of course, Medicare for All has the additional MORAL advantage of covering the 39 million Americans who don't have healthcare coverage at all as we speak here, now. And the additional 38 million who are considered 'under-insured.'

I mean, the ONLY reason we're even having this debate is fear of the dark money from pharma and health insurance corporations that will poison the debate. We're going to have to raise taxes anyway, and you know this too. The 2017 tax cut for billionaire parasites and corporations was the very height of fiscal irresponsibility, and the next recession will be a doozy, so our party will be forced into raising taxes at a time when the economy is in recession. But we will have to.

And, we will have to go against the very powerful MIC also, because we simply do not need to spend $733 billion on war, and we do not need 200,000 people on the ground in 167 countries. We don't. Silly me, I'd rather have healthcare than a space force.

I am supporting Warren now, by the way, because I did not like that many Bernie supporters refused to back Clinton when she was the nominee. That's not how we should roll. Plus, I think Warren is a bit more well rounded. Certainly from the standpoint of an economist, her policies are great, but she also has that sensibility to individuals Bernie seems to lack.

So there you have it, because I thought you deserved a thoughtful response.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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LineLineLineLineLineLineReply Well, sure. Let's have a bit of history. In concept, a national health care plan dates clear back
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