Sunday, September 13, 2009

for what it's worth.

I want to talk about healthcare. Well, I really don't, but it's what has been on my mind lately. Except that everything I would say has already been said somewhere else (and blogged more eloquently here). So I'll say this: Thank God for the political process.

I'm glad we have a two party system. Healthcare is a complex issue, and both sides have merits. There are systemic problems that need to be addressed - I think we can all agree that health insurance needs to be reformed on several levels - but is the current plan the best way to do that? I really don't know. So I find comfort in the process - that so many people (politicians, at that), with all of their mixed motivations and philosophies, must come to an agreement before a change can be made. The debate - when it is over substance, not scandal - is good for all of us. I've been on the losing end of the healthcare issue, declining medical services due to their cost that would have made a significant difference in the length of recovery - and I'm a young and healthy. Where would I have been if I'd had a serious medical condition? Bankrupt, probably. As a society we need to consider how to best address the medical needs of not only the poor, but the entrepreneurs, students, ministers, part-time employees, small business owners - there is a sizable chunk of American society who is contributing to our overall good and is struggling to take care of themselves because of the astronomical cost of healthcare, and that is a serious question to address. A national healthcare discussion can only bring good things, in my opinion.

However, while I'm not one to typically complain about the media, in this moment, I think they - as a whole - are doing more harm than good to the healthcare debate. News is a business, and they are all - Keith Olbermann, Sean Hannity, Brian Williams, Yahoo!, all of them - are trying to make their money. In order to do so, they (all) play up controversy and speak to the lowest common denominator, so that a heckler in the President's address (whose actions speak for itself and really need very little commentary) becomes bigger news than the actual substance of the President's speech. It's crazy making, and we're all buying into it.

So there it is - my opinion, such as it is. Healthcare? Dunno. Politics? Thank God for them. Media? Palease.

Happy Sunday.

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