Monday, November 23, 2009

Ask Stonekettle Station About Healthcare

Today’s search phrase:

Why don’t liberals understand the concept of limited resources?

Are you kidding me? 

Geez, I dunno. Maybe because they’re too busy trying to keep you conservative wankers from either bulldozing or blowing up the entire planet? I mean, if I had to guess.


This is one of several hundred search hits I’ve had this weekend – all obviously related to the healthcare debate.

Once the healthcare bill passed the House, boy the anti-liberal googling started ramping right up.  Then came the Senate vote this weekend – and that’s when I really started seeing the ZOMG! panic and bewilderment.  

I find the outraged consternation on the conservative side of the aisle amusing. I find the ignorant “we must take back America for real Americans (because as you know healthcare = NAZI!)” rhetoric stupid.

But, seriously here folks, when conservatives start talking about “limited resources” and how liberals don’t understand the concept I’ve really got to throw down the bullshit flag. 

It is Conservatives who seem to have no damned concept of limited resources – especially when it comes to the environment, or energy, or Soldiers lives for that matter. It’s only when it comes to taking care of their fellow human beings that they suddenly want to talk about conservation and husbanding of resources – and by resources what they mean is money.  See, it’s ok to spend shitloads of money on tax rebates and stealth bombers and faith based initiatives, but it’s not ok to spend money on things like healthcare or taking care of your neighbors. Conservatives seem to find no irony in the fact that they can move entire armies and all their equipment across three continents in less than two weeks in order to prosecute a war, but can’t get emergency supplies to hurricane survivors on their own coasts in anything under a month.  Conservatives seem to find nothing wrong with shooting abortion doctors, but then completely wash their hands of any responsibility for the impoverished and needy children who surround them every single day in this country. They throw a can of beans or expired peas into the food drive box at work and think that’s enough, they’ve done their part for world hunger.

Conservatives are suddenly talking about limited resources?  As in what? We can’t pay to take care of our own countrymen? So then what? Fuck ‘em? Is that right?

We built trillions of dollars worth of nuclear bombs and we were ready to kill every single living thing on the planet for freedom and democracy – but we can’t spend a dime to make sure our own countrymen have access to a doctor?  What the fuck were we preserving our way of life for then?  I look at conservative bumper-stickers stuck on the back of $70,000 Hummers and Lincoln Navigators and monstrous gas guzzling Ford pickups and these are the people talking about limited resources?  It’s not just that they can’t afford any more taxes, it’s that there aren’t even enough doctors to see all the poor people who will suddenly have healthcare. There will be lines and long waits. Doctors, these are the limited resources we’re talking about right?

I find this way of thinking morally bankrupt and it’s one of the principle reasons that I am no longer a member of the Republican party.

Back in the 1930s, when the liberals on Capital Hill and the White House were pushing Social Security through Congress, it was the same stupid arguments, from the same stupid selfish people.  Conservatives said it would bankrupt the country, it would put good god fearin’ insurance companies out of business, it was socialism, it was Marxism, it would free women and minorities (swear to God, this was an argument against Social Security – it would free woman from dependence on men, and it would give minorities the same retirement insurance as whites, which might give both women and minorities funny ideas), blah, blah, same shit different century. Conservatives stood on their principles and voted against the Social Security Act at every turn.

They lost.

And Social Security insurance became a national program available to everyone.

Nowadays, there are damned few retired conservatives who don’t get a Social Security check every month – so much for their vaunted principles. So few conservatives reject Social Security based on their conservative principles, in fact, that the percentage is indistinguishable from zero.

I predict that it won’t be long before the same is true of universal healthcare.


  1. Same thing in the 60s with medicare.

    I'm still trying to figure out how George and Ben got the Constitution through in the first place, and yes I have read the Fedralist papers.

  2. "But the people are clamoring for us to stop this take over of healthcare"

    You know, until the Public Option is actually explained to them and then 70% support it (Gallup.com). I think that's within +/- 3% of a fucking huge majority.

  3. I think perhaps the most offensive aspect of the conservative opposition to Universal Health Care is the "fuck you, I've got mine" point of view.

    It's just so morally reprehensible - how can they live with themselves?

  4. Couple of points before the neocon world descends on this blog like the Germans attacking Pearl Harbor.

    1. I don't know how to fix the U.S. healthcare system. I only know that it needs fixing, desperately. Those who argue that the status should remain quo are misinformed, to put it charitably.

    2. While opinions differ on how to fix the current system, the parties both agree that it needs to be fixed. Don't believe me? Go check out Sen. McCain's pre-November 2008 election site and look at his position on healthcare reform. Today's Republican standard-bearers would like us to forget that the party was pro-reform a year ago. My memory works better than that.

    3. I don't know how to fix the U.S. healthcare system, but I know somebody who does. Check out this blog entry (one of several) from somebody who's been in the medical insurance field for 25 years, as a consultant, executive, and broker. He has some good ideas; I wish somebody was listening.


  5. Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?

    Don't stop him, he's on a roll...

    Nick wins the Internet today for working an Animal House ref into the heathcare debate.

  6. D-Day: War's over, man. Wormer dropped the big one.
    Bluto: Over? Did you say "over"? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!
    Otter: Germans?
    Boon: Forget it, he's rolling.
    Bluto: And it ain't over now. 'Cause when the goin' gets tough...
    [thinks hard]
    Bluto: the tough get goin'! Who's with me? Let's go!
    [runs out, alone; then returns]
    Bluto: What the fuck happened to the Delta I used to know? Where's the spirit? Where's the guts, huh? This could be the greatest night of our lives, but you're gonna let it be the worst. "Ooh, we're afraid to go with you Bluto, we might get in trouble." Well just kiss my ass from now on! Not me! I'm not gonna take this. Wormer, he's a dead man! Marmalard, dead! Niedermeyer...
    Otter: Dead! Bluto's right. Psychotic, but absolutely right. We gotta take these bastards. Now we could do it with conventional weapons that could take years and cost millions of lives. No, I think we have to go all out. I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody's part.
    Bluto: We're just the guys to do it.
    D-Day: Let's do it.
    Bluto: *Let’s do it*!

  7. Didn't mean to derail the thread, Jim. It's actually a pretty darn important topic. Not sure I would have made it my Top 3 priority but it would have been in my Top 10 for sure.

    That said, I saw Animal House in the summer between my senior year of High School and freshman year of college. Care to guess how my freshman year went?

  8. I was thinking along similar lines yesterday, actually: how I've sort of started tuning out Republicans' comments about how "stupid" it is to entrust people's lives and health to government bureaucrats because the very next talking point on the Repub agenda will be something about defense spending or getting tough on crime. I'm not sure how you get from "government employees can't be trusted with life and death decisions" to "so let's give them more guns and ammo and freer rein with less oversight."

    You end up thinking that at least hardcore libertarians get a point for consistency with this kind of thing. I mean, hardcore libertarianism is all kinds of batshit crazy, but they at least work their finals up to a "D" by having the same attitude towards the armed forces and police that they have towards public streets and highways or whatever: that it's all evil and stymies the individual and is an evil of collectivism, blah, blah, blah.

  9. I really enjoy reading your blog, after I followed a link here a couple of weeks ago. I've looked through alot of your past entries, and I find I tend to agree with you on most things.

    I have not understood why people can be against Healthcare Reform. We can spend trillions on a war oversees, and yet, we have people dying at home from illnesses and injuries that are treatable! It's truly mindboggling that those people want to turn their backs on the people they're supposed to represent.

  10. Tom Tomorrow nicely points out another disconnect in some people's thinking on the matter.

  11. There really is nothing new though, is there. When the UK established it's National Health service after the war the initial support from the British Medical Association was very positive. Until, that is, they discovered the the government of the day had no intention of creating an insurance scheme that would pay doctors whatever they felt like charging. Then, all of a sudden, it was a terrible thing that would bankrupt the nation.

    Like now when "the people" who are "clamoring for us to stop this..." are probably the same people making millions from MHOs and other such organisations.

  12. You know I meant "HMOs"

  13. Steve, try to remember. When they say "The People" they mean "Straight christian upper-class neocons".

    Anyone who disagrees with them is a filthy commie liberal, tragically deluded at best and subversively malicious at worst, and in no circumstances warrants being listened to.



Comments on this blog are moderated. Each will be reviewed before being allowed to post. This may take a while. I don't allow personal attacks, trolling, or obnoxious stupidity. If you post anonymously and hide behind an IP blocker, I'm a lot more likely to consider you a troll. Be sure to read the commenting rules before you start typing. Really.