As the Right in the US froths at the mouth about the “Affordable Care Act” (ACA), and while the dogmatic so-called Left (i.e., Democrats) defends it at all costs, the actual Left recognizes it for what it truly is: more fundamentalist capitalist legislation.
In an interview with a democratic socialist, titled “What Do Socialists Think of Obamacare?,” Michael Smerconish conveys what the real Left thinks about Obamacare (emphasis mine):
“Obamacare cannot be considered socialist in any way,” according to Greg Pason, the national secretary for Socialist Party USA.
“The ACA program relies on private health insurance companies to manage health services,” Pason said. “A socialized system would not include ‘health insurance,’ but would be an actual national health-care system which would be publicly funded through progressive taxation and controlled by democratically elected assemblies of health-care workers and patients.”
He’s right. Under the ACA, health insurance in America is still being delivered by private practitioners and paid for by private insurers. In fact, the vast majority of Americans who receive their health insurance from employer-paid plans will see no discernible change in their coverage or delivery, and need not access the exchanges.
The US is the only country in the industrial world that does not have socialized medicine. And, it also spends more than twice on health care than the average OECD country.
This is not a coincidence. Private health insurance is incredibly inefficient. It is an industry devoted, above all, to making money, not to treating the sick. When health insurance companies have to pay for medical care—i.e., when they have to provide the service they are purportedly supposed to provide—they consider it a “loss.”
Here is a map of the many countries with scary socialist (*ghost noises*) universal health care:
Obamacare will ensure that more Americans have health insurance. So what? Now insurance companies can steal even more of our money and continue to deny coverage.
The Democratic Party fails to understand the difference between health insurance and health care. The former often denies the latter.
Single-payer is the solution to this crisis, not mandatory private corporate health insurance.
As I have written before:
That, “Obamacare” is not universal health care, by any stretch of the imagination; that it leaves at least 30 million Americans uninsured; that, instead of combatting the hellish privatized nightmare of a health“care” system (“system” meaning industry, in our case) that is destroying our country and economy (and bringing us, our health, and even our lives down with it), The Affordable Care Act ensures the continued existence and exploits of the very moral-less, starry-eyed (starry meaning dollar-sign) corporations responsible by forcing Americans to purchase health“care” from them—none of that is mentioned. It’s all off the table, because it’s all taboo. You can’t criticize Emperor Obama. Explaining that Obamacare is just another bailout, just another subsidy for corporate chaos, … is “helping the GOP.”
While the proto-fascists that comprise the Right in this country march around with risibly absurd signs saying things like “Welcome to the United States Socialist Republic,” comparing the ACA to socialism and other nonsense, remember that Obamacare is exactly what they wish for: privatized capitalist tyranny.