Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Governor Rick Perry at NCSL

Rick Perry spoke to the National Council of State Legislatures this morning. His platform could be summarized as Bush Re-do: Cut taxes, cut social services spending, cut regulations on corporations. The nation wants to do this again, because it worked out so well the first time?

With the increase of Republican majorities in legislatures, including the influx of Tea Party Republicans, many of the presentations at NCSL have turned decidedly to the Right. For example, I attended a panel on health care this morning that was entirely about states opting out of the Affordable Care Act. There were ten panelists, and by my count only one was saying anything positive about ACA.

That's not to say that there are not problems with ACA. For example, the insurance industry made out like bandits and the pharmaceutical industry didn't go away paupers either. However, these folks were simply wanting to throw out ACA and return to "free market" health care. One panelist said, "People should have the freedom to buy health care with their own money". Yes, and the homeless should have the freedom to dine al fresco. Seriously, the free market has left about 50 million Americans without health care. If you work in one of the millions of low wage jobs that does not provide benefits, your freedom of choice amounts to food or health insurance.

This will be my last day reporting from the Lone Star State, it's back to the First State tomorrow.

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