Thursday, November 10, 2011

Castles Made of Sand, Castles Made of Hot Air

This morning I was struck by a comment left on the The Week magazine site pertaining to an article about whether Mitt Romney's near-cloning of Paul Ryan's poleaxing of Medicare amounted to the resurrection of the Democrats' plan for a public option for healthcare. In addition to privatizing Medicare while handing seniors vouchers, which won't cover the cost of private insurance, Romney adds a public option to the mix, allowing seniors to retain the old Medicare as an option, but only to the extent that the cash voucher would allow. In other words, it's virtually certain that the voucher amount won't be able to pay for what Medicare provides today. The comment by nem0.n00ne on The Week read:
Yea Rick [another commenter], the secret of a successful business is to have your customer base die. That's a really brilliant business plan....... If you really believe that government civil service drones will take better care of you than the market, I suggest that you move to the reservation of any American Indian tribe without a casino and see what that does for your life expectancy.
Rick had said:
Uggh. The power of the market? Puh-leaze. It's in your insurers [sic] best interest that, if you get really sick, you die quickly. I don't want the "market" looking out for my health.
Okay, let's take a look at that. Our market-based solution versus a mix of market-based, single-payer, and government healthcare systems (click for larger version):

And to remind us of the outcomes (click for larger version):

And our life expectancy relative to our expenditures compared to other countries (click for larger version):

So, what I want to know is whether our friendly commenter at The Week would stand by his comment. The facts have been available for all to see that we shouldn't be comparing our healthcare results to Indian reservations. We should be comparing them to the rest of the world.

It's clear our system sucks. What's not clear is how we get the truth out.

Speaking of the truth, is there any in this new ad (supported by an ad by of $600,000) by Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS? See for yourself:

Here's the actual video stolen and misrepresented by Rove:

As Digby said in her reaction to the ad:
This isn't ideological. It's sheer lizard brain tribalism. I don't know if Rove has found the right buttons to push, but considering what we're seeing and reading from Fox and the Murdoch papers (not to mention the blogospheric fever swamps like Powerline) I'd have to guess they know their audience. The questions is whether there are enough of them to make a difference. Massachusetts is obviously going to be one of the battlegrounds.
 With Rove and unlimited corporate expenditures, it's looks like we've got to get ready for some real trench warfare. It used to be called politics. I'm not sure what we should call it now.

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