By Ben Cohen
The NY Times is reporting that the Obama administration's health care bill is taking shape, and some form of government provided insurance is most definitely on the table. This is going to irritate the hell out of the Republicans who only want to use tax payers money when there is no accountability involved (eg. the billions of dollars chucked at the military industrial complex, the banking system and all the energy companies that fund their campaigns).
Their cries that 'Government is taking over health care' is falling on deaf ears. Why? Because most people WANT government to take over health care. Given the utter failure of the private sector to provide decent health care to the majority of people, it's not difficult to see why.
The Obama plan won't be the best plan, not by a long way. A single payer system works well everywhere else on the planet, and there's no reason it can't work in America. But the insurance industry has its filthy hands all over government and is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to policy formation. The best we can hope for is access to a medicare/medicaid type program that utilizes the power of the government to negotiate fair prices with pharmaceutical companies and hospitals.
I for one will immediately cancel my account with Blue Cross (mostly out of principle) and sign up for the government run plan. If enough people do, we can drown out the insidious insurance companies that have bled working people dry for so many years. They won't go with a bang, but as people realize the benefits of socialized medical care, they might evaporate over time with a whimper. And that's good enough for me.