Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Arc of the Moral Universe is Long, But it Bends Toward Justice

Here's what the new health care law provides American citizens in its first year:

*Insurance companies will be barred from dropping people from coverage when they get sick. Lifetime coverage limits will be eliminated and annual limits are to be restricted.

*Insurers will be barred from excluding children for coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

*Young adults will be able to stay on their parents' health plans until the age of 26. Many health plans currently drop dependents from coverage when they turn 19 or finish college.

*Uninsured adults with a pre-existing conditions will be able to obtain health coverage through a new program that will expire once new insurance exchanges begin operating in 2014.

*A temporary reinsurance program is created to help companies maintain health coverage for early retirees between the ages of 55 and 64. This also expires in 2014.

*Medicare drug beneficiaries who fall into the "doughnut hole" coverage gap will get a $250 rebate. The bill eventually closes that gap which currently begins after $2,700 is spent on drugs. Coverage starts again after $6,154 is spent.

*A tax credit becomes available for some small businesses to help provide coverage for workers.

*A 10 percent tax on indoor tanning services that use ultraviolet lamps goes into effect on July 1.

Communism!  The Soviet Union has taken over America!!  Who's that over there..?  Is that...it is!  It's Zombie Kruchev, rising from the grave!  Zombie Kruchev is attacking the countryside...oh noes!!1!

Now, to all our conservative friends...don't you feel silly?  Wasn't health care reform a big mess over nothing?  There is a very simple reason why Republicans are so vehemently opposed to President Obama's health care reform - the American people are going to love this.  It's going to take a while, and the Democrats have their work cut out for them, but once the details of health care reform become known, they will become very popular with the voters.

The Republican Party had a choice to work with Obama, to influence the direction of the health care bill, to contribute concrete and useful ideas for the better of the nation.  Instead, they threw it all away and bet everything on nihilism.  They followed the drugged rantings of Rush Limbaugh, and the comical paranoid theatre of Glenn Beck.  Death panels!  Communism!  Gov'mint takeover!  Freedom!  Wolverines!

Where did that get you?  Who does such a scorched-earth policy benefit?  How does this benefit the nation and its citizens?  Does such paranoia and fear make us a better people, a kinder people?  No.  It is a failure.  As Dr. King promised, the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.  Hope will always triumph over fear in the end.  Obama's great victory is a triumph for justice and equality for all Americans.

And as Andrew Sullivan loves to say...meep meep.

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