Thursday, August 20, 2009

Random Thoughts about Health Care


We just played at the Edmonton Folk Festival up in Alberta, Canada. Great festival,smoothly run and one we wish we could play every week forever.

I made it a point to ask the Canadians how they felt about their health

photo Alan Budd

care and the answer was uniformly positive, even effusive, with tales about how people had been spared bankruptcy and death by it. Not one negative word. The Canadians thought we were rubes to be so afraid of what they have.

It has been the same experience as we have traveled and worked in the UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Holland, Scandinavia. Not one horror story. Sure, you may have to wait six months for non-emergency surgery if it involves a very specialized type of care, but you can also get really good quick treatment in the most out-of-the-way locations as well.

This swill that the right wingers are peddling about this subject is irritating when it is merely ignorant and makes me mad as hell when it is cynical and calculated, as in the case of Ms. Palin, that most despicable of humans, or William Kristol, whose ego long ago eclipsed his sense of decency. Or in the case of John Mackey, whose wealth and power have turned him into a selfish, nasty little man. I won't go back to Whole Foods, John, and thanks so much for your sense of mercy and kindness to us little guys down here at your feet.

I am literally living proof of the necessity for humane, affordable health care. I have been dealing with cancer now for thirty years and I won't go into the financial details now, but let me be clear: if it were not for the fact that I have access to health care, I would be bankrupt (or rather, my family would) and dead. I am uninsurable; I have pre-existing conditions. Apparently the Republican Party is ready to cast me and all the others like me onto the ice of greed and let us float away into the darkness. If John Mackey thinks that be eating food from his grocery store would keep me from any of these problems, then he is a fool.

I am tired of shallow thinking, lack of understanding, and loud nonsense about Hitler and Socialism. Americans had better lift this country up out of this petty little mire we are in, and fast, or we won't have enough left to cry over one of these days.

Kimmie Rhodes and Joe at the Edmonton Folk Festival
photo Alan Budd

6 comments:

Gary said...

nicely put.

Fox News has all the blue-hairs' panties in a twist. Hearst all over again. We have such short memories...

I grew up on UK's health service. Nothing but praise from me. Funny how free dentistry doesn't seem to work, tho....

Thanks for the soup article, too!

garyrwise [google me!]

Anonymous said...

Obama is working for Wall street.
Pay attention to where the money goes. Sorry the Republicans are probably just as rotten too...

Where does your hope lie?
kind regards.

Linda said...

Well put. I have been wondering why Washington hasn't been talking about the successful health care systems in other countries: how they work and why they work.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Kimmie Rhodes and Joe! I am continually amazed and frustrated that the left, for lack of a better label, is not discussing the Canadian and various European health care systems. It might at least calm the more intelligent and reflective 'opponents'.
What do we do next????

Michele said...

Right on, Joe. And tell garyrwise that blue-hairs are no more, and if he's talking about us over-60s, remember we were flower children before he was born.
Great cool-dude photo at the Festival.
Love, Chele

Jacqueline said...

Thanks for the soup article, and health care topic. We, at Here's Life Inner City NYC are hosting an event called "Dine In" to feed 7,000 families in the NY metro area a Thanksgiving feast.
Typically a meal out cost $40.78 per person. We're asking you to cook at home for one night, and donate what you save to this cause before Nov. 4th. One box is $36.71, and food is delivered to hungry families just in time for Thanksgiving. Each Box of Love feeds a family of six and includes a ham or chicken along with vegetables, potatoes, juice, yams, apple or cranberry sauce, bread, fruit, dessert, and more (http://bit.ly/gBu8Q). Thank-you for your blessings!

Warm Wishes,
Jackie (for HLIC NYC)

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