Story in today's Milwaukee JS talks about the events leading to State Senator Kathleen Vinehout's (D-Alma) support of the Healthy Wisconsin plan which passed the Senate but will be smothered in the state Assembly.
The article relates how Vinehout and her husband, who own a farm, made the choice so many have to make and went without health insurance for 23 months. During that time her son had an emergency appendectomy last fall and they ended up refinancing their farm to cover the $10,000 bill.
Chances are many of us have or could find ourselves in this situation if nothing is done about our for-profit health care system. But what's the reaction from the GOP?
"Senator Vinehout's story is heartfelt," said Republican Sen. Ted Kanavas of Brookfield. "But their plan is completely misguided. They've decided to blow up a health care system that is the best in the nation."
Instead, Republicans back what they call a "consumer-driven model" of health care reform in which Wisconsin residents would get more information, compare costs of procedures and insurance, and make informed choices that would cut health care costs.
Really Ted? A health care system that is the best in the nation? Maybe you meant to say the most expensive in the nation. Considering your tech background you seemed to be just what we needed and someone who gets it, even if you are a Republican because that is all we can expect from Brookfield.
But your votes against stem cell research, lukewarm support for the UW system and tax cuts at all cost show you want to be a made man in the eyes of your GOP Senate bosses and that you are unable to lead your constituents.
The desperate pleas by the GOP to keep the government from reforming this mess we call health care are only making you and the rest of the Wisconsin wingnuttery draw low sarcastic chuckles from the rest of our population -- the majority -- who know better.
This idea of "consumer-driven" health care is only a lame sideshow to divert from the real solutions. Many health care decisions have to be made in emergency situations, making the notion of "shopping" for health care idiotic, made even more so by the complexity of the purchase. Also love the lunacy that somehow a person can save up for cardiac surgery.
This is snake oil. The purest you can get.
The GOP can win the battle this session by blocking the remedies to this system that does not have you in mind. But they will loose the war in 2008 when smart Democrats who want to go to Madison in swing districts throughout the state nail their opponents to their opposition towards getting the insurance companies off our backs.
The system should exist to serve the people of Wisconsin, not the other way around.