Yes We Canadian! -- The Public Option

I love words. And, fancying myself a bit of a wordsmith, I pay particular attention to things like sentence construction, grammar, artful phrasing and syntax. Not to mention euphemisms and/or outright verbal distortion.

We have been hearing a lot lately about a key ingredient to the President's proposed National Health Care bill - the ‘public option.' Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi stated adamantly in the press last week that passing a health care bill without a public option...is not an option.



Maybe I'm being paranoid, but it almost sounded like a threat.

This appears to be the lynch-pin for the president's proposed health care package. And though Health & Human Services Secretary Sebelius hinted that the administration was not necessarily married to the notion of the public option, she swiftly recanted her statement after having returned from the woodshed. Apparently annoyed that people were actually paying attention to administration members' statements, and under the cover of self-righteous snark, Ms. Sebelius flung a swipe at the media with, "...must've been a slow news day," and proclaimed that there was no change in the president's policy. The public option was still prominently a part of the plan. We were obviously brainless douchebags for thinking otherwise.

I must pause here a moment for I am lost in blissful reverie, picturing that closed-door damage-control conversation between Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod.

What would a giggling fly on the wall sound like?

I amuse myself to distraction daily listening to White House press briefings and counting the new phraseology emanating from the President's hapless mouthpiece, Robert Gibbs. I think I read somewhere that Mr. Gibbs' prior position before the White House gig was as spokesman for Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory, but I may be mistaken; check me on that. One thing is certain; this administration is chock full of clever little word craftsmen. Want to gain favor with the lefties in your party? Rename War on Terror as Overseas Contingency Operation. Suspected terrorists are now innocent detainees, in bad need of taxpayer-funded Caribbean vacations. A catastrophic and irresponsibly monstrous spending orgy by a new Democrat administration is termed a ‘massive debt inherited from Bush.'

And socialism is called The Public Option.

Hey, if I didn't know better, I'd think...yeah, that sounds pretty good. Options...that means choice, right? And choice is good, yeah? (Except of course if it's choice for parents to determine where to send their kids to school, then choice is bad! Man, it's hard to keep up.)

It's such an innocuous term - Public Option. Sounds non-threatening, and so very enlightened. Like Affirmative Action. So positive and..well, affirmative. Yes. Yes, Affirmative, YesssssssWeeeeeCaaaaaaanadian.

I just listened to an orthopedic surgeon from British Columbia tell Bill O'Reilly, that the problem with the Canadian health system is access. Too many people wanting treatment and too few doctors. And that's in a population of 30 million. What will our system look like with this single-payer set-up in our population of ten times that of Canada?

Yet the President and the Speaker of the House are telling us daily that a single-payer system will provide better service for all and drive down costs.

Now...I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I know when someone's talking out their butt.

As a pre-med dropout who bailed from pursuing a medical career largely because I was warned about an ever-increasing government intrusion into the medical industry, I must ask you: What will motivate a young, bright college student to apply to medical school?

Altruism?



I would venture the following advice to anyone who would like to get a clear idea of what is the best way to proceed with improving our health care system: Ask the doctors. Ask the medical personnel. Ask the hospital administrators. Ask the nurses. Hell, ask the patients! Ask the people who are most affected by this proposed catastrophe of a bill. Ask the senior citizens, who will be most immediately affected. The answer comes back nearly unanimous: They hate this bill.

Those who don't live in gingerbread dreams and marmalade skies know what this bill portends - with its massive spending, bloating of the federal bureaucracy, and turning one-sixth of the American economy over to the federal government. It means massive disorganization, massive waste of resources, fewer doctors willing to put up with an ineffective needlessly convoluted system, with less competition for goods and services, hence poorer quality, and ultimately -- less personal control of your own life.

But the President says he'll ‘let you retain your own health care insurance.' Isn't that nice of him? He'll let us keep something that we already pay for, that is ours. So magnanimous of him.

It is useful to occasionally ask yourself the question....who works for whom?

Everyone like magic? Watch closely; for sleight of hand can turn a leader into a jailer. Don't blink. They say 'trust me, it will all be fine.' And yet they admitted this week that they had underestimated their projected 10-year deficit by 1.9 TRILLION DOLLARS. 'Oops,' they said. 'My bad.'

Yeah...and all of us right-wing nut jobs getting all worked up. Like a couple trillion dollars of debt to our kids and grandkids is any kind of big deal.

The problems with our health care system is that we've got too much government involved in it, not too little. Endless debates over ‘whether we can afford it' are moot. A watered down version of a bad bill is still a bad bill and needs to be killed dead.

Socialism-light...is still socialism.

I'm not hoarse anymore. I've spent the past nine months or so screaming at the top of my lungs -- fun things like, 'The emperor has no clothes!' and 'He's a socialist community organizer and Saul Alinsky acolyte!' and 'No he can't, he really really REALLY can't!' The police have been called to my house only twice, something about a public disturbance, but in the end the neighbors sort of just got used to it. (Like living close to the train tracks. After a while you don't even hear it anymore.) And I did get to engage in a couple of protracted socio-political discussions with my local gens d'arms, and though unamused, they both times let a simple admonishment suffice. (And here's a shout-out to Harvard Professor Gates: the key element here is that at no time did I mention anything about either officers' mother. Just an FYI.)

But I don't scream anymore. Though it did serve to stimulate my circulatory system, gave me a good cardio workout, and also raised my singing voice four octaves. (I'm a baritone, but can now sing Stevie Winwood, and for that I'm grateful to Obama.) But I must say this; with what I've seen come out of this administration the past seven months...I wouldn't trust them to run my kid's lemonade stand, much less the heretofore uncontested best damn health care system in the whole freakin' world.

Cash for clunkers?

In today's non-logic of destroying a perfectly good used car so you can trade it in for $4,500 of taxpayer's money...I'm wondering what would be the clunker trade-in value for one grossly inexperienced and vastly overrated community organizer?

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