I'm going to put this as simply as I can: Americans will not have serious health care reform until there is a major mass movement behind it. Since when can we expect the politicians in Washington to enact something that would endanger or put of business entirely a multi-billion dollar industry like private health care? Just because it's the right thing to do? Just because it is what the country desperately needs?
Dream on. It's time for health care activists to get into the streets and show the politicians they mean business. Otherwise prepare to lose this round of the fight.
Whatever legislation is enacted by Congress will be far short of what is really needed. As I said in an earlier post, quoting former New England Journal of Medicine editor Arnold Relman, it is going to have to get worse before it gets better. Isn't that always the way?
Update: A Senate panel is close to coming up with a plan... that won't change much of anything.
More thoughts. As many here know, all of this talk about how much health care reform is going to "cost" is a total distraction from the truth of the matter. The answer is that a health care plan that included a public option would save Americans on the average a great deal of money, not cost them anything more. That's because wage earners and their employers would no longer be obliged to hand over the huge amount of money now given to profit-driven health insurance companies, which rake off huge administrative costs and profits.