It has become readily apparent to just about everyone with the exception of a few senators, one being Harry Reid, that the Health Care Reform effort in the United States Senate is both a disaster and effectively dead. At every turn the Republicans in the Senate have obstructed the progress of any meaningful reform, trying to ensure that the status quo will remain. The health insurance industry would see a financial windfall from millions of customers forced to purchase health insurance at whatever price they want to charge if the current Senate bill were to be passed into law. This is simply unacceptable.
Dr. Howard Dean said in a radio interview on Wednesday that it is time to KILL this BILL. “This is essentially the collapse of health care reform in the United States Senate. Honestly the best thing to do right now is kill the Senate bill, go back to the House, start the reconciliation process, where you only need 51 votes and it would be a much simpler bill.” If Democratic leaders cave into Joe Lieberman they’ll be left with a bill that’s not worth supporting.
But the failure of the Senate to address the need for meaningful reform does not fall squarely on the heads of Republican senators. No, we have conservative Democrats like Max Baucus, Ben Nelson, as well as that so called maverick senator from Connecticut and representative of the Joe Lieberman Party to thank for helping it along.
But most disappointing of all, we have our President, Barack Obama to thank as well. It is clear that while President Obama campaigned on the platform of real health care reform, once elected he stopped his campaign and has failed to lead. He and his administration have caved in to the health insurance industry executives. He has provided little to no direction, no pressure, and no change at all.
And weâ€™re really not talking about a lot of loose change. With 308 millionÂ Americans it works out toÂ about fifty-cents a day for every person in the country. Yeah, thatâ€™s all it would cost. For the sake of comparison, annually we spend three times that amount to fund the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan and more than twelve and aÂ half times that amount forÂ this past year alone to bail out Wall Street bankers.
One of the best known songs of the Great “Republican” Depression “Brother Can you Spare a Dime”was written in 1931 and released just prior to the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Made famous by Bing Crosby and Rudy Vallee, the song was viewed as the anthem of the shattered dreams of the era. As we now endure this current economic recession, and our shattered dreams of Change, this song seems to be strikingly relevant.
So to Barack Obama and the United States Senate I have just one question.
Brother, can you spare five dimes? Just fifty-cents a day to fund health care for all?
Below is a video of the song Brother Can You Spare a Dime as sung by Rudy Vallee.