Monday, August 24, 2009

JMO - Response to RNC

I read today's editorial column by Michael Steele, Chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC), about "Protecting Our Seniors", except he didn't say how to protect them as he kept firing bogus shots at the President and Democrats in Congress of what he says is "their" healthcare reform plan. I say bogus because he doesn't supply any facts because there aren't any facts to cite. The healthcare reform work is still being debated in Congress and no one has released any one specific plan which he can use as evidence.

He lists a number of claims about the Democratic plan except those claims aren't true. Nor the President or any member of Congress has said they support what Mr. Steele says. And as we should know and practice in discussions, ideas are put on the table for the purpose of discussion. We all know everything will be negotiated and compromised with the healthcare reform bill, with some inclusions of Republican provisions and amendments. And this will be the bill presented to the President.

And we all know now, that weeks, if not months, away. Nothing is cast in stone, or words as absolute part of the bill. Mr. Steele is simply speculating and espousing fear-mongering rhetoric many other republicans have already spouted, and which has been disproven. Mr. Steele only added his flavor to the rhetoric.

Mr. Steele's column lists five points he claims the Democrats will do to seniors by imposing a worse government benefit and managed program than seniors already have. The problem is that not all seniors have a good, let alone great, plan, and why we wouldn't be here if it weren't for the Republicans runnning things in Congress (1994-2006) and the White House (2001-2009).

It was the Republicans who fucked seniors with their healthcare. And why we need reform. And pointing fingers now at the Democrats won't change history. Mr. Steele better look in the mirror first with his criticism about healthcare and then ask where were the Republicans when reform was needed and wanted.

No one doubts the Democrats will pass a plan that does everything right, and especially right over the coming years. We forgetting our history. We should focus on incremental changes using a good foundation. Lay the foundation first and then build on that over the next 8 years or so with updates and upgrades to our nation's healthcare system.

And before you simply dismiss my view as just one of many citizens over the Chairman of the RNC, consider that I've spent 32 years of my life working for the government, first as a Vietnam-era veteran and the rest as a government employee. In between I didn't have health insurance. I was lucky nothing serious happened. And as I did for 28 years, I still have the government (active/retirees) healthcare plan.

I have first hand experience with a government run healtchare program. And it works. Really, not the rhetoric the Republicans cites as failures, but what is a success for 8 million active and retired government employees. And there are many more state and local employees with their government run programs which work. That is what the Republicans don't want you to hear and know.

And with that what we don't need is more Republican bogus rhetoric. You don't have to stand in the cow pasture to know it when you see it. And if Mr. Steele has ideas, let's hear them. But let's not point fingers and assess blame until we see the final bill. And by the way, Washington Post columnist also seems to take offense at Micheal Steele's piece.

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