October 5, 2009

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The Real Enemies of Health Care Reform

The real enemies of healthcare reform are delays, nitpicking, and special interests. And not just the insurance companies either! Every group who has any possible axe to grind wants something special written into the legislation—which is the number one reason why HB 3200 is already over 1,000 pages! Lawmakers must find the courage to ignore lobbyists of all persuasions (and the hundreds of millions of dollars with which they are trying to buy votes) and vote their conscience. And as for those who say things are moving too fast: please! We have been trying to reform health care for 50 years…

And as for those who find it necessary to scream and holler and disrupt and verbally abuse anyone who doesn’t agree with them—all in the name of ‘their’ constitutional right to free speech—all I can say is the same right applies to all of us, not just to them. They have a right speak, but in a Democracy, so do all the other people in these town meeting—and so do the elected or appointed representatives who have taken the time to at least try to hear what constituents think. Presumably they are allowed to ‘hear’ only the loud-mouthed rabble who have no respect for anyone—certainly not their fellow citizens. This is not majority rule; this is mob rule. And it is the death of Democracy.

I was wrong when I said that delays, nitpicking and special interests are the real enemies. They are merely fellow-travelers. The real enemies are the citizens who have no respect for citizenship and the responsibilities that entails, which is civil discourse.

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