Health Care as Infrastructure
This is how we have to hit health care. Certain Republican factions are never going to agree that health care is a human right. They are ideologically rigid and doctrinaire and would rather watch their grandmother die of rabies than admit that she has a right to care. And there are those less extreme who are nonetheless queasy about anything remoting smacking of socialism. This is why infrastructure is the way to frame the issue. Nobody says that providing electrical service or telephone lines or paved roads to remote and unprofitable consumers is socialism. Our society recognizes that the greater good of our country - not only the humanitarian good, but also its economic vitality and domestic security - relies on a populace that is civilized, educated, and which participates equally and freely in the commonweal.
“Since the Federal Power Act of 1935, the FPC and now FERC has been charged with ensuring that wholesale power sales and transmission service be offered at rates that are ‘just and reasonable, and nondiscriminatory.’” (UT Austin Energy Institute, The History and Evolution of the U.S. Electricity Industry.) This is the approach we should adopt with health care.
Email or write (postcards) to your senators asking them to recognize that due to its immense complexity and cost, and because of its importance to the functioning of the nation, health care should be considered an infrastructure issue - an issue too important to be left to the mercy of profiteering and cost-cutting. Sick people, addicted people, medical bankruptcies, lost work days, orphaned children, chronically under-producing citizens - all of these problems arise when health care is not universal, and all detract from the health, strength, and virtue of our republic.
Senate contact info: www.senate.gov