Media Scoundrels Against Universal Coverage

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Media Scoundrels Against Universal Healthcare

by Stephen Lendman ( – Home – Stephen Lendman)

America has the world’s best healthcare system – based on the ability to pay. It’s the only developed nation without some form of universal coverage.

The world’s richest country spends trillions of dollars raping and destroying other countries. Billions annually go for corporate handouts.

Most Americans are way underinsured for their healthcare needs, tens of millions uninsured or dependent on woefully inadequate Medicaid.

The cost of healthcare in America is double what citizens of other developed countries pay, increasingly unaffordable for millions.

My “free” Medicare costs a fortune, including necessary supplementary insurance for adequate coverage.

Expensive dental care is excluded. So is nursing home care if needed, along with prescription drugs without woefully inadequate Part D coverage.

Republicans and most undemocratic Dems support marketplace medicine, prioritizing profits over affordable healthcare for everyone – a fundamental human right along with food, shelter and clothing.

Media scoundrels support the notion of healthcare as a commodity to be sold like toothpaste and most everything else. Like for most politicians, government-sponsored universal coverage is anathema.

Admitting most Americans support it, The New York Times expressed opposition, saying “moving to a single-payer system from one dominated by employer-paid health coverage would be a big leap, and in any case the political climate is clearly not ready for it.”

Nonsense! It was “ready” decades ago, notably during the New Deal, Fair Deal and Great Society years. Add Richard Nixon, unrecognized as a social liberal, no US president since him.

He once agreed with Franklin Roosevelt’s definition, calling “(a) liberal a man who wants to build bridges over the chasms that separate humanity from a better life.”

By comparison, the Clintons, Obama, and Trump are right-wing neoliberal scoundrels, one-sidedly supporting monied interests over social justice.

Nixon supported universal healthcare. Congressional opposition prevented it. As a teenager in the 1920s, his younger and older brother died.

Their illnesses sapped his parents’ resources. As president, he backed universal healthcare, despite all his cabinet members opposing it.

He proposed a plan requiring employers to provide coverage for their workers, was against a government-sponsored program like Medicare and Medicaid, wanting the system remaining in private hands.

The phony progressive, imperial war supporting, corporate friendly Nation magazine deplorably headlined “Medicare-for-All Isn’t the Solution for Universal Health Care,” saying:

Universal coverage supporters “failed to grapple with the difficulties of transitioning to a single-payer system.”

Rubbish! If all developed countries and dozens of others moved to some form of universal coverage, the only thing preventing it in America is political spinelessness.

Nation magazine’s article featured misinformation and lame excuses against universal coverage.

It falsely claimed it would halve the income of doctors. Eliminating costly bureaucratic billing procedures and hassling with insurers alone would likely compensate for modestly lower fees.

Polls show around half of US physicians favor single-payer. National Nurses United, the leading nurses’ union, strongly supports it. Hospital procedures would be simplified, lowering costs, benefitting patients.

If Medicare, despite its inadequacies, works for retired Americans and others qualifying, transitioning easily when initiated, so could extending its benefits to everyone – lack of political will alone preventing it.

Insurance and drug industry bandits, not consumers, would lose out under universal coverage, no longer able to rip off people for profits.

Nation magazine claiming shifting to single-payer coverage “would cause serious shocks to the system” is utter nonsense.

Americans deserve the world’s best healthcare system for everyone – based on need, not the ability to pay. Nothing short of universal coverage is acceptable.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.