Arianna Huffington on Health Care
2004 former Independent Challenger for CA Governor
The president's budget axe fell on the elderly, the indigent, the ill, and the three million Americans currently receiving Medicaid's home health care.
The view that health care is a fundamental right is so well established that no one on the Right dares to seriously argue that the poor don't deserve health care. No, the Right will tell you that the free market and individual savings accounts will take care of everyone.
HUFFINGTON: Actually, SB-2, the John Burton bill, doesnít include cost controls. And thatís the problem with a lot of half-baked measures out of the legislature. I donít believe we should implement another bill which does not include cost controls and which also leaves over 3 million Californians uninsured.
BUSTAMANTE: Thatís true.
HUFFINGTON: Another half baked measure.
BUSTAMANTE: Well, not half-baked. Itís a good step.
HUFFINGTON: But ultimately, we need universal health care. The only reason we donít have it is because of the millions of dollars being paid by insurance companies and the medical industry to politicians and thatís ultimately the only reason.
HUFFINGTON: Everyone is against fraud. The real disgrace that the republicans and democrats are doing nothing about is the fact that you have over 6 million uninsured in the state, and we have children that have to go into emergency rooms just to get the basic care. That is a great disgrace. And that would be my highest priority, rather than simply all of this platitudes about fraud, [and what are the amounts for] the estimates coming out from suspect think tanks.
Sen. Wendell Ford (D, KY) wrung his hands over the possibility that increasing the cigarette tax would lead to reduced smoking. Thatís clearly an undesirable outcome, especially when youíve received-as Ford has-$94,773 from the tobacco industry. Trent Lott ($88,000 in tobacco contributions) even went so far as to call the president twice and warn that raising taxes on cigarettes was a ďdeal breaker.Ē
That the drug companies are acting out of pure self-interest is not surprising. But the drug industryís unadulterated self-interest is also governing public policy. Despite two years of complaints from public health groups, Gore remained steadfast on the industryís side until embarrassing public protests at campaign stops forced him to issue anemic defenses of his position. The protesters persisted, [eventually resulting in a] long-overdue change in the Administrationís position is directly traceable to them.
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Opinion Leaders on the Right:
Milton Friedman (Nobel Economist)
Rush Limbaugh (Radio Talk Show Host)
Ayn Rand (Author and Philosopher)
Heritage Foundation (Think Tank)
Opinion Leaders on the Left:
American Civil Liberties Union
Noam Chomsky (Author and Philosopher)
Arianna Huffington (Internet Columnist)
Robert Reich (Professor and Columnist)
Howard Schultz (CEO of Starbucks)
John F. Kennedy(President,1961-1963)