About those rabble rousers…

I haven’t made it out to attend any of the town hall meetings, though the idea is intriguing, and one will be held in my area (more or less) later today. I find it so incredible that many have denounced these grassroots protests as being organized by the Republican party or special interests or the pharmaceutical companies or worst of all “egged on by talk radio,” according to Senator Arlen Specter.


Why is it that anyone who protests anything to do with the current administration is labeled more or less a robot of one (small) arm of the media, while anyone who is pro administration is never said to be under the influence of the massive mainstream media?

Why is it that anyone who protested the war or foreign policy or President Bush in general was never labeled anything but an American exercising his/her right to free speech?

Why is it that those who protest the health care proposal are said to be victims of “scare tactics” that are misrepresenting the facts, though many protesters can cite the pages of the bill that are particularly frightening?

Why is Congress voting on such massive, sweeping change that affects every American (except themselves, of course) rather than the American people themselves?

Americans have the right to be afraid and to express that fear. They have the right to protest what they feel is endangering themselves and our country. They have the right to challenge their elected officials, who, after all, are supposed to work for them. I mean us. I mean me.

In the end, of course, it’s all about “me” — for every one of us. Me. My family. My health. My life. My future.

That’s really what people are shouting about.

I hope they never stop.

We have enjoyed so much freedom for so long
that we are perhaps in danger of forgetting
how much blood it cost to establish the Bill of Rights.
~ Felix Frankfurter


  1. proud member of the mob said,

    Wednesday, August 12, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    These so called “public servants” (more like public leeches) would have been tarred and feathered a few hundred years ago. The image of Snarlin Arlen covered in feathers really makes the concept worth bringing back. The Dems are trying to rush this through before the sheep wake up and stampede the countryside. I’m glad it’s happening. The more the White House and Congress react the more it signals their worry. LETS GO MOB!

  2. WritingbyEar said,

    Wednesday, August 12, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    Thanks, mob member. I don’t understand how the proponents say “it doesn’t mean this or that,” but aren’t specifically answering parts of the bill that DO say this or that. If the bill is that unclear or subject to various interpretations, it’s way too dangerous to be a law. And it has to be 1,000 pages why?

  3. Thursday, August 13, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    I don’t get it.
    How can you be “pro life” and not support the most
    life affirming service in the world; helping the sick?

    Do you know you are working for the big health care lobbyists?

    Rick Scott, Ex-Hospital CEO, Leads The Campaign Against Health Care Reform


    Scott, a multimillionaire investor and controversial former hospital chief executive,
    has become an unlikely and prominent leader of the opposition to health-care reform
    plans that Congress is expected to take up later this year. While disorganized Republicans
    and major health-care companies wait for President Obama and Democratic leaders to
    reveal the details of their plan before criticizing it, Scott is using $5 million of his own
    money and up to $15 million more from supporters to try to build resistance to
    ANY government-run program.

  4. WritingbyEar said,

    Thursday, August 13, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Appreciate your comment Christian Liberal. Still don’t see how anyone can argue with what’s actually printed in the proposed bill. (I keep hearing, “Well, no, it doesn’t mean THAT…) Again, if it’s ambiguous enough to be able to be interpreted multiple ways, I don’t want it. And why does it have to be such massive be-all-end-all change at once?

  5. robbie said,

    Thursday, August 13, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    You sure don’t get it, Christian Liberal. How does a nationalized healthcare system help the sick? It’s proven in countries with socialized healthcare that service AND quality goes down, especially for those on the “lower rung”. The US already has coverage for all. You cannot be denied service from a hospital……that is why they remain non-profits when in fact many make millions! Those of us with insurance already pay for those who do not because the reimbursements from the insurance companies make up the difference when the hopitals charge the insurance companies.

    The founder and architect of the Canadian plan just issued a statement last week that “his” government-run system should be stopped and Canadians ought to return to private insurance. Now that’s an endorsement.

    And where is the talk of cost containment in this huge “reform” House bill 3200?

  6. WritingbyEar said,

    Friday, August 14, 2009 at 10:59 am

    Oh, and Christian Liberal, how many millions are the left putting up to support the health care plan?

  7. RL said,

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    Okay, so I’ve got questions, based on what everyone is talking about here. How about completely decoupling insurance from employers, so that employers cannot offer health insurance as a benefit. How about legislation that forces every individual to buy their own private insurance? Would that work? I’m asking honestly here, I really want to hear your opinion.

    Also, it is true that we all have health care by default (via emergency room) whether some citizens are paying for it or not. If nothing changes and we leave the system as is, one could argue that fewer of us will be able to afford insurance, leaving a smaller, albeit richer, segment of the population to pick up the tab for the rest of us–right? Do we want the Bill Gates of the world picking up our tab? Isn’t this situation a disincentive for some people to continue to try to pay for their insurance–when they know somehow things will be taken care of? Doesn’t that kind of potential outcome fly in the face of being an independent, American citizen that can take care of oneself? How can we not end up in that quagmire?

  8. WritingbyEar said,

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    Well, as one who has been paying for her own insurance for 10 years, I’m all for decoupling insurance from employment. Employers would have to increase salaries, though, to compensate for their savings — would they do this? And it wouldn’t help people who work but don’t get health insurance, or address the problem of how people who don’t work pay for insurance. Or that health care costs in general are so darn high.

    Really, I don’t have any good answers. I just know what I DON’T want.

  9. RL said,

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    I guess I’d like to see more discussion about this decoupling notion. If employers aren’t allowed to provide insurance, whether they raise salaries or not, it should have a ripple effect through the system. Insurance companies will have to completely rethink what they charge to individuals if they want customers, in turn insurance companies would pressure health care providers to be more efficient and cost effective. What to do about what doctors should be paid? Don’t have an answer for that one, but I don’t want the profit motive to drive their care-giving. What I would like to see is for all of us to be able to shop for insurance coverage the same way we shop on Amazon.com, open rating, lots of commentary, lots of competition.

  10. WritingbyEar said,

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009 at 1:32 pm

    I am with you that the near-monopoly in insurance needs to change. Competition is always a good thing. And more portability — I shouldn’t have to start from scratch if I change employers or move to a new city or state. Why couldn’t insurance companies set up reciprocal arrangements with insurers in other locales to “share” preferred providers and to extend “in network” privileges and such. (Lord knows BC/BS is everywhere…) May also allow national companies like UHC to better compete with the local monopolies.

  11. robbie said,

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009 at 2:03 pm

    There are three issues the government could change to institute real reform without a government program and they could do it overnight.
    1. Tort reform – this cost is huge to everyone and it’s out of control.
    2. Allowing insurance companies to sell their policies everywhere (the Pittsburgh area has only 5 companies to choose from where there should be 100). Mandating everyone to buy health insurance like car insurance could cause policy prices to plummet based on shear volume.
    3. Don’t mandate double coverage. Currently, ALL businesses must carry worker’s comp insurance – health insurance for 8 hours while working. Then those businesses offering regular health insurance duplicates those 8 hours while adding the other 16. This is just stupid and costly for everyone!

  12. WritingbyEar said,

    Thursday, August 20, 2009 at 9:16 am

    Oh so logical, robbie. That’s why it’s not happening!

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