Thursday, November 16, 2006
They have no shame
Nov 16, 2006
And I mean all of them--certainly almost all of them. I'm speaking of the political class.
And the exceptions are well known to us. They know who they are. Thank you, John Conyers--and a few others.
Maybe the greatest gift the new Democratic majority can bestow on the American people is a collective sense of shame, how we as a nation have failed so many, so miserably in so many ways.
The same Democrats who refused to call a pig a pig. That is, refused to call Mr. Bush what he is--a liar. They sidled, and slipped and contorted themselves and the best they could come up with for six long bleak years was that he misled the American people.
No Democrats, he lied.
Now it's time to use some equally harsh language--like the word shame when it comes to addressing the myriad national tragedies that afflict this once proud nation.
In order to fix the problems, you need to feel deep and profound shame. We have no time for more niceties and euphemisims. Nothing less then the stark and bitter truth will suffice.
So you all can fight amongst yourselves about Murtha or Hoyer, but you know something, most Americans look at you and don't know whether to laugh or cry. Because they are so fucking desperate for someone to emerge as a leader and look into the television camera and start talking from the heart and from the gut.
Who among you will start to show some shame for the tragedies swirling around us?
Last night I had to write a diary about Lee Kinchen a woman in Louisiana who is unable to obtain desperately needed surgery. Why? Because she is an uninsured American citizen.
Why did I have to write this, because you refuse to stand up for the American people. Because you feel no shame.
You can read it here:
Some Americans, like this lady, can't wait for the Dems to act
I feel overwhelming shame that I had to write this diary. Do you politicians reading this feel the same shame as I feel? If you don't, go away, leave, you are not fit for anything much less public office.
Do you feel shame that bloggers are carrying your water and doing your work, because we feel the shame that somehow eludes you?
Read this diary, do you feel shame?
[updated] Save a Life: Please help Lee Kinchen
Then this morning I woke up and found in my email a likely reason why Ms. Kinchen cannot obtain Medicaid.
I suppose because her care is costly and Medicaid is being privatized to for-profit HMO's. It's profits before people.
"[M]any states are moving aggressively" to place more Medicaid beneficiaries in HMOs, and more than one in three beneficiaries now receives care through a private insurer, the Wall Street Journal reports. As a result, some companies that contract with Medicaid are growing rapidly. For example, Centene reported nearly 1.2 million members from Medicaid and $1.5 billion in revenue in 2005, up from 142,000 members and $200 million in revenue in 1999. States that contract with HMOs to manage Medicaid "often calculate what they would spend on Medicaid patients directly and pay the HMOs a per-patient premium below that amount," giving HMOs an incentive "to keep their costs under the premium because they keep the difference as profit," the Journal reports. Medicaid costs nationwide are not growing as quickly as they were several years ago, according to a recent report by the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, although it is "unclear how much HMOs have contributed" to the trend, the Journal reports. Some doctors and patients say the insurers offer inadequate services. According to the Journal, Medicaid HMOs "restrict medical tests and use of prescription drugs" and also "spend the money they get from states on items that don't have an obvious connection to patients," such as executive compensation, entertainment, political contributions and profit for shareholders. Jerry Flanagan, health care policy director for the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, said, "What's really happening is we're giving less money for far, far fewer services." However, executives maintain that "their profits are justly earned and don't come at patients' expense," the Journal reports. Ruben Jose King-Shaw, a former CMS official who joined WellCare's board in 2003, said HMOs "deliver a good-quality product at a reasonable price." King-Shaw said states often require HMOs to achieve quality standards such as high rates of vaccination that were not met by traditional Medicaid (Martinez, Wall Street Journal, 11/15).
I feel such deep shame reading this.
Political class, does this make you feel shame? It makes me feel intense shame.
Kaiser faces charges in patient 'dumping' case