The duly elected representatives and senators of the United States of America are closer than ever to passing the most sweeping government reform in recent history if not the history of the Union. It happens to have to do with health care, or more specifically, exactly how much the federal government will have re-shaped and absorbed the medical profession in this country. According to Rueters:
The bill would significantly change the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare system that almost everyone agrees costs too much and leaves too many people without medical coverage. For the first time in U.S. history, citizens and legal residents will be required to purchase a health insurance policy.
Federal subsidies will be available to help them afford coverage. The subsidies will be available for people with incomes up to 400 percent of the poverty level, about $88,200 for a family of four. The poverty levels for 2009 is $22,050 a year for a family of four and $10,830 for an individual.
So, unlearned ones, in typical government fashion it requires more in premiums than taxpayers can afford and then taxes taxpayers more to subsidize the overpriced offering. Or perhaps we just borrow the money and tax future taxpayers, since they will be more healthy thanks to the miracle bill.
Now that each and every Democrat in the senate has agreed to support the proposed legislation before the body, and there being insufficient Republican and Independent opposition even to filibuster, all that remains is a compromise between the House and Senate versions for the American people to be on the hook for more money than Solomon enjoyed in all his splendor.
Now, personally, I expect that presidents will try to promote their own agenda and work very hard to get it passed. Our current president has made multiple impassioned speeches for a health care plan to be put into place, saying it is shameful for us not to have a nationalized health plan. Others seem to believe that it is a civil right to have affordable health care if not a birthright.
At last count the Senate version of the bill was over 2,000 pages long (it can be viewed in part at senate.gov). The next step, according to Georgia Senator Saxby Chamblis’ office, is final Senate approval of some version of the bill. As there are substantial differences between the House and Senate versions, a joint House/Senate committee would then be responsible to hammer out an agreement (which, if form holds, will combine all of the spending and program increases to make everyone happy, while excising nothing).
The last Democratic holdout, Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson, finally joined the rest of the compromisers this weekend thereby gaining big benefits for the cornhusker state, according to CNN,
As a part of the deal, the federal government will pay 100 percent of Nebraska’s tab indefinitely for expanding Medicaid for low-income Americans.
Must be nice work if you can get it.
While Nelson’s fellow Nebraskan, Republican Sen. Mike Johanns, was displeased with the general idea of “carve-outs” (also known as bribes), saying:
There should be no special deals, no carve-outs for anyone in this health care bill; not for states, not for insurance companies, not for individual senators.
All of the special deals should be removed. If the bill cannot pass without carve-outs, what further evidence is needed that it is bad policy.
clown senator, Harry Reid, thinks they are okay. After all, if everyone is taking bribes then it’s okay for everyone to take bribes, right? Said Reid,
If you will read the bill…you will find a number of states are treated differently than other states. That’s what legislation is all about: compromise. We worked on different things to get a number of people’s votes.
In other words, we did a lot of prostituting. By the way, Mr. Reid, I’d love to read the bill; unfortunately thomas.loc.gov will not let me download it yet. My guess is that it will be voted on before the people even have an honest chance to know what is in it.
Even with all this hoo-lah, excessive spending and endless borrowing, the thing that bothers me the most is the senators and representatives no longer vote the desires of the the people in Districts 13, 5 and 62 or in the state of Georgia. The role of government is not to do what the gathered 500+ believe is best for the people, but to carry out the will of the people. In the biggest decisions of the last few months (the first bailout package under Bush and Paulson) and now the health care package, the majority of the population opposed the passages, while the politicians either did pass it (the former) or seem dead-set on doing so (the latter).
The one thing I am not advocating is the rule of the mob, since the republic is built on the rule of law. Absent the law, however, it is the responsibility of the elected ones to listen to their electors and act on their direction, which our senators and representatives seem incredibly unwilling to do. It is in this way that government is both of and by the people. As it is, our government is a ship of fools, sailing toward a house of cards, crewed by a bunch of whores.