Thursday, September 10, 2009
The Huffington Post
I loved Pres. Obama's speech. It rallied dispirited Democrats, reassured disenchanted independents and intimidated Republicans. He called a lie a lie, and pledged to call out the right-wing thugs if (well, when) they continue lying.
The President shone a spotlight on the sin of rescission -- the process by which insurance companies protect their profits by dumping customers when they get sick. This outrage has been under-covered by the media, but congressional hearings revealed that just three insurance companies have kicked 20,000 customers off their plans. They included the woman President Obama referred to tonight, whose aggressive breast cancer was denied treatment because she once had acne. The congressional hearings uncovered documents proving that the insurance companies had saved themselves $300 million by kicking those folks off -- and insurance bureaucrats got bonuses and promotions based on who they dumped. This is an outrage. If Sarah Palin wants to see a real-world death panel, she should look no further than the corporate insurance executives whom she and her fellow Republicans so zealously defend.
He made the case for a strong public option -- but did not threaten to veto any bill that doesn't include one. He plainly wants to maintain maximum flexibility to do as much good for as many people as he can. He paid warm tribute to the patron saint of health care, the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, whose departure has left a black hole in the Senate. And he put the lie to the Republican line that somehow the party that created Medicare is out to destroy it, by pointing out that the GOP has a proposal to end Medicare as we know it, and turn it into a voucher program. (For what problem, by the way, are vouchers not the GOP's answer?)...(Remainder.)