What exactly is Obamacare? Call Congress now while they decide!

President Obama is barnstorming the countryside, urging Americans to get behind health care reform.

Republicans, predictably, have gone into full lunatic mode. To hear it from them, any government involvement in health care means we’ll be standing in endless lines while Stalin himself rations out medical treatment.

But what exactly is Obama’s health care plan? Did you know that it might become mandatory to purchase health insurance? And that might mean billions more – including our tax money, through subsidies – directly into the hands of the insurance companies, who will still be left in charge?

“Public option” sounds good as a slogan, but the shape it takes is up for grabs, and the idea is under ferocious attack in Congress. The last thing we need, as Pennsylvania State Senator Jim Ferlo said in an inspired speech at this afternoon’s single payer rally at the Capitol, is “some bullshit, watered-down public option.” Yet according to all news accounts that is exactly what is happening in both the House and the Senate right now.

For an excellent discussion on what health care reform currently is – or might become – listen in on Bill Moyer’s recent interview of two of the top women medical journalists and editors in the country.

And then call into your Representative and Senators at 202-224-3121 (the Capitol switchboard) and demand what the former editor in chief of the New England Journal of Medicine and so many other doctors, nurses and experts across the country say we need – single payer health care. (H.R. 676 in the House, S. 703 in the Senate.) Even though these bills won’t pass, the more pressure we can create for a truly public system, the better the outcome will be for any “public option.” And you’ll have the glorious feeling that comes with speaking the truth, and asking for what you really want, and we all need.

20,000 Americans die each year for lack of medical care.

An estimated one million Americans face bankruptcy each year due to medical expenses.

Enough is enough. Call you members of Congress today at 202-224-3121 and demand what the majority of Americans want and need – single payer health care.



p.s.  – As a special treat, watch as The Daily Show’s  Jon Stewart hoists arch-conservative Bill Kristol on his own petard on the subject of health care. While the quality of care our veterans receive is actually not what it should be, it’s delightful to watch Stewart catch Kristol in saying that the government can run an excellent health care system – and that the rest of us don’t deserve it.


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