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Politics & Power

What's new on The American Borders Forum this week? Preview pane at the bottom of the page.

The Public Option Ė What One Side Is Forgetting To Mention

If you watch CNN or other cable networks you likely have seen a lot of ads from groups like Conservatives for Patient Rights opposing the "public option" that cite long waits for healthcare in other countries with public insurance programs. What they donít mention in any of those ads are all of the Americans who have had care delayed or denied by insurance companies under the current system. They offer options of making it legal for insurance companies to sell products across state lines to increase competition but still nothing about preventing the insurers from denying needed care to patients. So how are delays caused by governmental bureaucracy worse than delays and denials caused by corporate greed?

Tens of thousands of Americans have been adversely impacted by decisions made by their healthcare insurance providers. Americans have lost their homes and had their children go hungry because a corporate bureaucrat made the decision to deny coverage for needed medical treatments. Too many people have literally died because needed treatments were denied them by health insurance companies protecting their profits. For decades the American people have seen how the "private option" has worked out for many of their friends and family members. We have also seen that Medicare and Medicaid have provided healthcare to our friends and family when they have needed it. At the same time private insurers have failed to provide adequate coverage to their customers in need social medicine has existed in America with a pretty good level of success.

The question then becomes whether we should believe that either private insurers will suddenly find compassion or that socialized medicine in America would suddenly go from having some issues to being completely inadequate to care for the people it serves if the "public option" does or does not pass. The truth is that insurance companies stand to lose billions of dollars if any kind of real healthcare reform passes. If a good "public option" is part of the equation then they will have to actually treat their customers better to avoid losing their business. Americans should welcome anything that forces the insurance companies to be more compassionate in providing healthcare to their customers even if that means stock values for the companies go way down.

Profit margins will go down for insurers if comprehensive healthcare reform passes. Thatís a good thing. The profits of private health insurers have come at the expense of everyone else. From the patients being denied care to employers watching their premiums go up faster than inflation every year the record profits of the insurance companies have come at the expense of everyone they touch. Short of passing laws outlawing pretty much everything about how health insurance companies do business the creation of a public run alternative is the only logical way to serve the actual healthcare needs of the American people. The healthcare insurance industry will fight tooth and nail to avoid losing the sweet deal they've had for decades. There is no way that minor tweaks of the system are going to fundamentally change the mindsets of insurance companies making billions by denying care and raising premiums.

Under current rules being the victim of domestic violence is a "pre-existing condition" for which someone can be denied care. Being an expectant father is a "pre-existing condition" that can prevent you from getting health insurance. None of the healthcare reform bills currently floating around Washington puts a cap on premium increases or guarantees treatment for illness if the treatment is deemed to be "experimental". These bills without a public option that is open to all are simply window dressing to give the appearance of making positive changes to the system. There are virtually no laws in place or proposed in these bills that truly protect the American people from being mistreated by insurance companies purely to improve their profit margins. There are no motivations on the part of the insurance companies unrelated to profits in this debate. The insurance industry has lobbyists working on every level to defeat real reform and is pushing their agenda with deceptive ads that depict the "public option" as some form of socialism. These same companies have willingly accepted government money on a regular basis and had no problem with socialized subsidies when they worked in their favor.

When you see the ads telling you that the "public option" should be dropped, ask yourself who gains and who loses if the people have a guarantee of comprehensive health coverage. If insurance companies have to compete with the government they will be forced to provide superior care in order to overcome the price differential with the public plan. That is good for consumers. There is no need to worry about the survival of the insurance industry. It will survive no matter what options the government puts into healthcare reform. With all of the big corporations in America under the control of less than 5% of the population, there is no danger that they will suddenly go under if they have to compete with the federal government. The people deserve to win a fight against corporate greed once in a while and this fight is life and death for Americans. We need to make sure that what comes out of Washington is a win for the people not for the insurance companies. A public option is not socialism any more than Social Security or Medicare are. Corporations are not going to protect us against corporate greed in the administration of our healthcare. That is what government is for.

Troy Wilson-Ripsom - Staff Writer| Give your feedback on this article. | Click icon to Digg this article



Get Involved

Do you sit and yell at the TV when politicians come on? Do you shake your head sadly whenever you see a homeless veteran? Is that all you tend to do?

It's time to put up or shut up America. We all love to talk about how we could do things better or how we would do it if we were in charge. Well, it's time to put your money where your mouth is. If you can think of it, you can write it down. If you can write it down, you can type it. If you can type it, you can e-mail it and if you can e-mail it, you can send it here.

We at Reform America are committed to giving voice to anyone who wants to put their ideas out there to make our nation a better place. As the readership grows, we are able to take those views to a wider and wider audience. Grassroots campaigns begin with voices speaking out. You have opinions. Voice them. We aren't about conservative or liberal. We aren't about pro-this or anti-that. We're about Americans and the First Amendment. Reform America is about politics by, for and of the people. You are the people. You only need to speak up. America is listening. Send your article to: stories@reform-america.net



Have You Been Downsized Due to Outsourcing?

For several years now we have listened to some within the business community tell us that America can't compete on a global scale unless they send our jobs overseas where they can be done cheaper. The question becomes, if we don't have good paying jobs here, how can we sustain our own economy? We want to hear from you. Have you lost your job? Have you been forced into a lower wage job due to outsourcing? Has outsourcing been a success for you? Did you end up in a better job?

Tell us your story so we can make sure the politicians see how outsourcing really impacts the workers who are backbone of America. Send your story to stories@reform-america.net





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