Letters to the Bouncy Banker...

Letters to the Bouncy Banker...
...from a struggling artiste.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Freedom From Want

Norman Rockwell
So is this one of those rare, populist moments that will benefit the democrats and not the republicans? The notion that income inequality as it stands is reprehensible is hard to dispute. For once it does appear as if the right is at a loss for words. Their outmoded charges of liberalism and socialism will now fail to penetrate the usually thin skins of the opposition as the true meanings of those words are taken to heart once more. I’ve never understood how it was that the right could hurl these words as insults and get away with it. The democrats have always showed a remarkable lack of backbone. Maybe now they are beginning to stand behind their supposed values. The issue of income inequality is one that the right has so vociferously painted as one of class warfare that their about face is remarkable. Cantor would now like to talk to the mob he slandered. Romney is now concerned about the plight of the 99%. Politicians of either stripe apparently now feel the frustration. Until they exhibit an interest in real change that empathy will appear hollow. The exciting part of all this is that the bland assumption that the have nots simply want what the haves have is clearly hollow. Their demands are reasonable. Freedom from want is not a new idea but amazingly there are those who have continued to mock it with impunity until now. Freedom from want is a human right albeit one that must be ever fought for, and people are now taking that fight to the streets once more.

Meanwhile on the health front more and more companies lay off workers to whom they owe too much (good benefits) replacing them with hungry workers to whom they can extend less satisfactory benefits and lower pay. So it is naturally time to address the healthcare gap once and for all. Do I need to point out that private health insurance is hard for most of the 99% to afford? The healthcare system as it stands tilts heavily in favor of the wealthy. Time for those without health insurance to wage a health war! A good and affordable healthcare system is something many, many folks could get behind once someone explains clearly and simply, once and for all, how they are being shafted by the system currently in place. Tying an individual’s health benefits to a job was never a great idea as it impeded the ability of people to grow their careers and move from one work situation to another concerned as they were by the possibility they might lose the benefits they have or be temporarily caught without. That amounts to a form of fear culture, something the right continues to extol as virtuous in every sphere. Fear, as far as they are concerned, drives the economy.

So, given that people have little choice re their health care insurance it seems now might be the time for everyone to drop their coverage, occupy the hospitals if they’re unwell, the headquarters of insurance companies if they currently are well and demand coverage for all or none.

I’m no expert. All I see is a wrong headed system with lobbyists so powerful any alternative to things as they stand have little chance of moving forward. Until someone stands up to the insurance companies nothing will change. This is just one of the many fronts where anger around income inequality is palpable. This insistence on change must be encouraged and cannot stop. The mantra must be healthcare for all.

It is positively boring to have to repeat the obvious again and again but in this culture as it stands we have no choice.

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