Tuesday, September 13, 2011

GOP Candidates Opposed To The Idea Of Public Sector Medicare and Medicaid

Former Florida Rep. Alan Grayson delivering his famously charged 2009 House floor speech saying, "The Republicans want you to die quickly if you get sick."
Near the end of the GOP Presidential debate last night CNN's Wolf Blitzer, the event's moderator, posed the hypothetical question to Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas):
What do you tell a guy who is sick, goes into a coma and doesn't have health insurance? Who pays for his coverage? "Are you saying society should just let him die?"

In immediate response to Blitzer's question several people in the Tea Party audience shouted an enthusiastic "Yeah!" cheering the death of that hypothetical uninsured man.

After the audience shouts of yeah, let him die, Paul offer his explanation of how this was, more-or-less, the choice in a free society. He said that local community organizations and non-government institutions can fill the void that the public sector [Medicare and Medicaid] is currently playing.

"We never turned anybody away from the hospital," Paul said of his volunteer work for churches and his career as a doctor. "We have given up on this whole concept that we might take care of ourselves, assume responsibility for ourselves ... that's the reason the cost is so high."

Paul's answer ignores the fact that the reason that the Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid programs were created was because churches, local community hospitals and other private social institutions were not taking care of the sick who had no money for care -- and people were dying. Civil society before the age of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, in fact, had the attitude expressed by the last night's debate audience members - Yeah, let them die...

HuffPost asked Grayson what he thought of the crowd cheering for the death of the uninsured man. He writes:

My speech was about the fact I had been listening to the Republicans for months, and they literally had no plan to help all those millions of people who can’t see a doctor when they’re sick. So I said, in sort of a wry manner, that their plan was "don’t get sick." All I really wanted to do was just call attention to the stark absence of a Republican plan. But Fox, trying to take the heat off Joe Wilson and Sarah Palin I guess, transmogrified that into a charge that Republicans want to kill people.

What you saw tonight is something much more sinister than not having a healthcare plan. It's sadism, pure and simple. It's the same impulse that led people in the Coliseum to cheer when the lions ate the Christians. And that seems to be where we are heading -- bread and circuses, without the bread. The world that Hobbes wrote about -- "the war of all against all."

Grayson's comments on the House floor:

A personal comment about the "Let them take responsibility
and die" philosophy.

No comments:

Post a Comment