Sunday, August 23, 2009

Can Obama’s Healthcare Reform Heal Ignorance?

The heat that is being generated over President Obama’s healthcare reform is more intense than x-rays being shot at a tumor. In a way, I’m not surprised. Healthcare goes right to the heart of two hot button issues: survival and money.

Survival can be parsed out into individual survival depending on the quality and amount of healthcare available, survival of a healthcare system, survival of health insurers and survival of the financial health of the United States.

Money can be viewed from various perspectives: what comes out of an individual’s pocket, what comes out of the government’s pocket and what comes out of the health insurers’ pockets (or their shareholders’ pockets.)

No wonder there is so much confusion and anger, fear and uncertainty. There are those who will argue that the media is fanning the flames by focusing on the loudest of the loud at “Town Hall” meetings. It is a possibility, I suppose. But it strikes me a bit as kill the messenger.

What really strikes me is how much exaggeration and distortion is going on. It not only strikes me, but angers and offends me because it is un-American. I think that is why I’ve waited to speak out. I’ve been trying to figure out and bring order to what I’ve been feeling.

It also strikes me at how little the public understands or, perhaps more to the point has made an effort to understand. One would think that with an issue this critical to so many, more people would take the time to read more on the issue. That would cut short the efforts of the distorters. Americans pride themselves on being self-reliant. This would be a great time to reinforce that principle and reach one’s own conclusions rather than being spoon fed rhetoric.

The best way to come to a reasoned decision on any issue is to read the positions of those at different ends of the spectrum, a few in the middle, ponder and then decide.

Toward that end, I’ve pulled together 10 Web sites that post very divergent views on healthcare. The list is just a bit of what is available. You can start with the White House site at

In alphabetical order, here are the other nine:

Happy summer reading.

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