Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A Bright Spot in a Dark Debate

As I lament the creeping socialism that "universal" government-run "health care" imposes on us, I have found a bright spot in the story that truly encourages me. For maybe thirty years now, Democrats have hidden their "pro-life" counterparts from the public. I have found it strangely hypocritical this past week that the news media has talked about Republicans "purifying" their ranks. They've talked about the demand for conformity in that party. However, I've seen Republicans from both side of the "choice" issue allowed to speak at the national convention. I've seen Republicans on both sides of abortion ethics appointed to cabinet positions and other posts.

When was the last time a pro-life Democrat was allowed to speak at the Democratic National Convention? When was the last time a Democratic president appointed a pro-life advocate to any position at all. The Democratic party has hidden this group and pretended they did not exist. Oh, I knew they did. For many years, my own district was represented by an excellent congressman, Charles Stenholm, a Democrat who is pro-life and spotless in his ethics. He was finally run out by Tom DeLay's Republican gerrymandering a few years ago, which is a shame. He represents the best side of your own father's Democratic party.

When Al Gore was a freshman senator, he was pro-life. Richard Gephardt was a pro-lifer as well. Both suddenly became "pro-choice" when they tried to get the national Democratic nomination. The party would never allow a pro-lifer to represent them. So why does the media throw a fit when the Republicans stand on one issue as well?

But all that aside, this health care debate has brought great encouragement to me. The House bill passed because the party allowed pro-lifers from their own party to overhaul the abortion language. Now the bill is in the senate, and it is pro-life Democrats who are saying they will not support a bill with taxpayer-funded abortions in it.

I am excited to see a pro-life dimension being brought to the Democratic party. In fact, I would vote for a pro-life Democrat over a pro-life Republican in any election, because the Republican may or may not be sincere. In my state, which is currently "red," Republicans sing the songs they are expected to hear. George HW Bush himself became "pro-life" in order to be Reagan's running mate, but there was never any real commitment there.

It has been refreshing to see these Democrats for Life show some muscle. I am hoping that this work with the so-called "health care" bill will encourage them to use that newfound power. Democrat or Republican, America needs to stop killing its young. If the Democrats are the ones that lead the way, I will campaign for them.

Republicans who think they have a lock on my vote simply because I supported Reagan had better think again. I don't vote for a party; I vote for values. As I see a Republican party that had the momentum from 1994 to 2006, and did nothing, I see no reason to blindly support them. When they had the house, the senate, and the White House, they whined about Democratic "obstructionism," which really lost them points.

I look forward to the return of the Democrats my grandparents knew, those pre-Roosevelt Jeffersonian Democrats who knew that states can take better care of themselves than Washington can, and who spent only what they earned, and gave no one an "entitlement."

Thanks to the Democrats who are standing up for what they believe and for the values of the people who elected him. The uppity media calls them "blue dogs." I call them "Democrats with a backbone."

Thursday, November 5, 2009

An Addendum to My Last Post

I have hesitated to use this story because it is so sad, but decided it was necessary; if we have universal "health care" forced on us, this story is going to be repeated over and over. Here is my new reason why universal "health care" as Dr. Pelosi wants it will not work:

Government-controlled health care takes away the last remnants of humanity and courtesy.

I don't know how much of a syndicated AP news feed I can cut and paste in one blog, so let me summarize most of it. Scott Hawkins was a student at California State University in Sacramento. For reasons unknown and unexplained, it appears he was beaten to death by his roomate. He was taken to the UC Davis medical center where he was pronounced dead five minutes after arrival. This perhaps implies that he was already dead when he arrived. Do hospitals get to charge when a dead person shows up? I'm not sure. But I certainly know they can charge for a live one. Officially, Mr. Hawkins was "alive" for five minutes there. How much did the "care" they gave him cost? Only $29,000. No more. Twenty-nine-thousand dollars, about five thousand a minute, to do what Dr. McCoy did for free: "He's dead, Jim."

Now let's add insult to injury. You fill in the gaps for the next few minutes. A call to shocked parents who thought their son was safe in his dorm room. Now he's dead. We can all imagine what the loss of a son would be like: the questions, the grieving, the feelings that follow.

What they didn't expect was a bill. A bill from the UC Davis medical center telling them that they could do nothing more for their son because he was "maxed out," and that those parents owed them over 29,000 dollars. The bill also said that they were "indigent," not paying what they owed. The grieving parents called the hospital billing department to clear things up. They were too grief stricken to talk, actually, but amidst all the sobbing, finally got the message across.

Was there an apology from the hospital? I will let you be the judge (here is the direct quote from the AP wire):

A spokeswoman for the hospital says the bill was a mistake - it should have gone to an insurance company.

There you have it. Hey, it was all a mistake. We were going to stick it to the insurance company. Five thousand dollars a minute attending to a person who may have already been dead. But it's okay. We were going to raid someone's insurance plan for this. Sorry we sent it to a real human. We meant for it to go to accounting. By the way, do you have their address?

Some day, in Nancy Pelosi's dream world, we will all have "insurance." Then, doctors won't have to be civil with anyone. We won't discuss the condition of the patient. We will bill him "minutes" like lawyers currently bill "hours." All the money, after all, comes from the limitless, gigantic pool of wealth that the "government" must have somewhere. Oh, there will be paperwork, but that creates "jobs."

To Mr. and Mrs. Hawkins, the grieving parents, I can only say how sorry I am for the loss of your son. I wonder if any "health care providers" offered condolences. Doctors used to do that, you know. Back when you wrote them a check for their services, or gave them cash before they left your house. Back when health care meant a doctor you knew in a building you recognized that existed in your town. People used to live a long time back then, too; one doctor could treat a patient, and cure him. But medicine is a big business now. Everybody needs a network. And when the government gets into it, it will be bigger. Broke, but bigger. Just like the Post Office. And Amtrak. And the Social Security Adminstration.

You'd think that someone could add at least one rider to the omnibus "health care" bill that is being debated now. Maybe add a buck fifty per case for a Hallmark card. After all, they could stick it to the insurance company for, maybe thirty bucks. Fifty if someone signed it.