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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Big Bad Rush is frightened too

by digby

I'm so enjoying the 1% squirm over the Olympic celebration of British National Health Care. David discussed the specifics in this post this morning, so I'm just going to share my pleasure at Rush Limbaugh's confusion:

Okay, I jabbed Kathryn in the ribs and I said, "That's how the libs want all of us to live. That's where global warming --" Minus the smokestacks and the pollution, they want to get rid of modernity. Anything modern, get rid of it. That's when the planet was not being destroyed. I know, Industrial Revolution. But in terms of simple, non-technological, no electricity, that's what the extremists of the environmental movement want. Of all the things of historical note in Great Britain, United Kingdom, the things they chose to highlight about themselves in that opening ceremony scared me more, because that's a free people basically honoring socialism and collectivism. The ChiCom people had no choice. They are under orders and under guns. In the UK a free people decided to do it.
Imagine that. A free people honoring the fact that they don't have to die and leave their families paupers if they happen to get sick and can't work. Shocking.

By the way, Rush is a liar, (in case there was any doubt.) He insisted that the British hate their health care system. If 70% satisfaction is defined as hating their health care system, I guess he might be right.

Moreover, these Brits hate our "exceptional" form of health care with a passion:

Britain is now embroiled in a healthcare argument of its own, prompted by a proposed shake-up of the NHS. And the phrase on everyone's lips is "American-style," which may not be as catchy as the "death panels" that Palin attributed to socialized medicine but which, over here, inspires pretty much the same kind of terror.

Ask a Briton to describe "American-style" healthcare, and you'll hear a catalog of horrors that include grossly expensive and unnecessary medical procedures and a privatized system that favors the rich. For a people accustomed to free healthcare for all, regardless of income, the fact that millions of their cousins across the Atlantic have no insurance and can't afford decent treatment is a farce as well as a tragedy.

But critics here warn that a similarly bleak future may await Britain if a government plan to put more power in the hands of doctors and introduce more competition into the NHS succeeds — privatization by stealth, they say.

So frightening is the Yankee example that any British politician who values his job has to explicitly disavow it as a possible outcome. Twice.

"We will not be selling off the NHS, we will not be moving towards an insurance scheme, we will not introduce an American-style private system," Prime Minister David Cameron emphatically told a group of healthcare workers in a nationally televised address last week.

In case they didn't hear it the first time, Cameron repeated the dreaded "A"-word in a list of five guarantees he offered the British people at the end of his speech.

"If you're worried that we're going to sell off the NHS or create some American-style private system, we will not do that," he said. "In this country we have the most wonderful, precious institution and also precious idea that whenever you're ill … you can walk into a hospital or a surgery and get treated for free, no questions asked, no cash asked. It is the idea at the heart of the NHS, and it will stay. I will never put that at risk."
It's good that Rush is scared. And the fact that he's scared of America's greatest ally in the GWOT and other international adventures is just frosting on the cake. We know the French hate us for our freedom, but it's pretty clear that everyone else in the world thinks we're not much more than a colossal throwback banana republic at this point. Not that Rush cares about that. But he seems to be worried that this virus could threaten his own perch in the .001%. Isn't it pretty to think so?