Sheehan’s cause was just. She spoke stirringly against Bush’s crimes in Iraq. Yet again and again she was dismissed by the neoconservatives as a George-Soros sponsored stooge (the details of that particular conspiracy evade me). The outcry against state takeover of medicine is in the best of traditions too. Yet the malpracticing media are discounting the fractious town-hall participants as proxies for corporate and political interests.
The job of the press is to report events, not blanket the facts with conjecture and interpretations that are absorbed into the narrative and serve to fuse fact with fancy. Moreover, it matters not with which organizations groups of demonstrators, left or right, seek solidarity. What matters is the case they present. The rest is ad hominem, which is where discourse in the US stands.
Cronkite died the other day; news coverage croaked a long time ago.
Meanwhile, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow stumbled on a “scoop” in the form of some online “memos,” and was intoning like a solemn commissar about corporate agents and their foot soldiers, all conspiring against state-mediated munificence. As she expounded ominously on imagined conspiracies that were really unremarkable events and associations, I was reminded of Glenn Beck’s delusional diagrams of multiplying giant ACORNS. (Beck before a blackboard, in turn, conjures Russell Crow as John Forbes Nash in “A Beautiful Mind,” minus the mind.)
Unlike comrade Keith (Olbermann), at least Maddow obeyed the journalistic imperative to interview one of the malevolent men mentioned in The Memos. And how delightful this corporatist turned out to be: “Do the oil companies fund us? No, Rachel, but I’d like to take the opportunity to urge them to support our impetus for free medicine.
“Americans with a bias for small government and big society! What next?
Sometime during the week, the Svengali shifted into campaign mode. B.O. took the time to mix it up at a town hall in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, during which he promised those invited into the charmed circle that it was not to the converted that he was preaching, but to a randomly selected group.Outside, the country was roiling — still is. Inside Barack’s Bubble the debate was flatlining like Nancy Pelosi’s brainwaves.
Speaking of whom, that frozen face and unsupple mind teamed up with Ring Leader Steny Hoyer (House majority leader) to label and libel 50 percent of Americans as “un-American,” in a USA Today op-ed, titled, “‘Un-American’ attacks can’t derail health care debate.”
Compounding their misleading conflation of the political will with the will of the people (“Health coverage for all was on the national agenda as early as 1912… Americans have been waiting for nearly a century for quality, affordable health care”), the dastardly duo dishonestly failed to mention a minor detail: The protests mirrored the polls. According to the latest USA Today/Gallup survey, “More Americans disapprove (50 percent) than approve (44 percent) of the way U.S. President Barack Obama is handling healthcare policy.”
Finally, at the time of writing, a breakthrough. Oh, the medicine of mercy! The tone on MSNBC took a turn. Anchors David “Shyster” and Tamron Hall inferred that the turbulent town hallers were a little simple, rather than “un-American.” T. Hall, who could never be called simple (her online fans vouch for the quality of her cleavage), believes “these people” ─ clearly aliens to a member of the “multicultural noise machine” ─ don’t know that Medicare and Medicaid are government-run; and they don’t get that insurance (a word she pronounces incorrectly with the emphasis on the first syllable) is a third-party entity.
Dear T. Non sequitur Hall:
From the fact that Veterans Health, Medicare and Medicaid are government-run, it doesn’t follow that transferring more of the medical industry into the same gulag is constitutional, insignificant, negligible, or unworthy of fighting.
From the fact that there are one too many mediating entities between doctor and patient, it does not follow that another ─ subject to all the wrong incentives ─ ought to be inserted.
There was one other thing that led our sleuth in a C Cup to “inform” her viewers that the mutinous multitudes were muddled beyond belief: Town hall attendees seemed to be harping on the proper role of government, and not on the minutia of the messiah’s medical plan.
Lo! Making a philosophical point instead of a utilitarian one ─ now that is dimwitted. Let me further dim the debate:
Demonstrators for a government takeover of medicine have a right to discuss their demands, but no right to enact these demands. As Yaron Brook of the Ayn Rand Institute put it, “Rights, as our founding fathers conceived them, are not claims to economic goods, but freedoms of action. There can be no such thing as a ‘right’ to products or services created by the effort of others, and this most definitely includes medical products and services.”
Protesters for a public plan have the right to seek out a doctor and pay him for his services; they have no claim to the products of his labor ─ and no right to enlist the State to compel third parties to pay for those products. This should help Tamron Hall (and her ilk), whose gaping vacuity is ameliorated only by an unbuttoned blouse.