Krugman, Pearlstein on Republicans' Health Care "slander," "misdirection," "do nothing"

Friday, February 26, 2010

Steven Pearlstein and Paul Krugman sum up my feelings about the Republicans' pathetic performance yesterday at the health care summit.

Steven Pearlstein, referring sarcastically to Republican "leaders," writes that the "most important thing Republicans think is that if there are Americans who can't afford the insurance policies that private insurers are willing to offer, then that's their problem -- there's nothing the government or the rest of us should do about it." He quotes Eric Can'tor, who yesterday said that Americans were only "allegedly" wronged by the health care system. That pretty much sums up the Republican attitude right there; "I've got mine so screw you." Or, as Pearlstein puts it, "For Republicans, the uninsured remain invisible Americans, out of sight and out of mind." Maybe we should call them the Ostrich Party?

Paul Krugman sums it all up, writing that this entire debate is ending right where it began, "with Democrats offering moderate plans that draw heavily on past Republican ideas, and Republicans responding with slander and misdirection." The bottom line, according to Krugman, is that "House Republicans don’t have anything to offer to Americans with troubled medical histories," other than "to afflict the afflicted, to make the lives of Americans with pre-existing conditions even harder." Of course, all this flows naturally from a morally bankrupt ideology in which the poor and vulnerable are annoyances who should be scorned as "getting what they deserve."

Sadly, that's the "Grand Old Party" these days -- "slander," "misdirection," and "do nothing." Needless to say, this Eric Can'tor/John Boehner GOP is a far cry from the party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Rooevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, even Richard Nixon or George HW Bush. Unfortunately, today's Republican Party has become the party of no - no ideas, no leadership, no compassion, no integrity, no shame, no...well, you get the idea. Personally, I'll support the party of "yes" (on making life better for the American people) over the party of "no" (except to corporate welfare and restrictions on people's rights) any day. How about you?

UPDATE: Also see EJ Dionne's article, which begins, "The Republicans simply don’t want to pass comprehensive health-care reform. Dionne also argues, correctly, that "Now it is absolutely clear that the only way health-care reform will pass is through majority rule in the Senate, otherwise known as the “reconciliation process."