Wednesday, July 29, 2009

'Down With Socialism Healthcare!' Is It Really That Bad?

Universal healthcare to all! Doesn't seem like a bad plan does it? We Canadian's seem to be getting along pretty good with it. Then why is it such a terrible and unspeakable idea for most American Republicans?

President Obama's idea for a healthcare system reform, I thought, was admirable. He is REALLY trying to change things and not just gloss over the problems while he is in office like... well....GW -cough- However, Republican's aren't prepared to let Obama help thousands of people that have to wait for service or have to pay hefty fees for medical procedures... oh no, they have pulled no stops in their criticism. For instance:

On they report that during a Colorado rally against Obama's healthcare reform a person was quoted as yelling:

"Obama care is sicko" and "our troops did not fight and die for socialism."

And then you have Republican 'tall tales' like the one about Shona Holmes, from Canada, who supposedly received horrible healthcare service for her supposed cancer. The GOP has made her into their spokesperson against the healthcare reform. She has turned into the one example for the whole of the Canadian healthcare system. However, Video Cafe ran a nice story which debunks the whole story, and shows what lengths Republican's are going to discredit the healthcare reform.

What I think really gets the public is the link the Republican's have drawn to socialism (Although the Times provides some very good reasons as well). For many Americans, socialism is what they fought against in wars, and it was deemed a taboo during World War II and the Cold War. People associate it with Hitler and the U.S.S.R. communism. They do not see that they are giving in to stereotypes and how they have been conditioned to respond to concepts such as socialism.

Like Dean Baker points out in his article , referring to the proposed healthcare system:

"The program's huge price tag is equal to about 0.5 percent of projected GDP over the next decade. The Iraq war at its peak cost more than 1.0 percent of GDP."

So what do you think seems to be the more productive move? Support a system that will eventually help people receive the health services they desparately need because they cannot afford them in the present system OR fund a war that is sending troops needlessly into harms way where they are being injured and killed? I don't really think this is a hard decision. Republicans need to look at the long term 'big picture.'