Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Free Advice to Democrats on Health Care

I know Senator Reid has been itchin to hear what I have to say. Fortunately, for him and the other Dems, this time I wave my consulting fee. First off, I don't get the Health Care legislation. I read lots of stuff from folks I respect and come away with very different takes on the effects (cost control, access, etc). My bias is to health care reform and increasing access, but this bill seems to spend lots of money without making the necessary "hard choices."

Nevertheless, I really don't get the Democrats marketing. They keep pushing the sob story, describing case upon case of people getting screwed by the system. This effort works if you are in favor of reform (or have gotten screwed before), because the stories of pain and suffering concur with your predispositions. However, if you are ambivalent about reform these stories seem a bit pushy, forcing you to buy something because you feel bad, not because it is in your best interest.

Instead of guilting folks into supporting reform, Democrats should tell the American people* that health care reform aligns with American values. They should say something like this (note Sen. Reid, don't write it at 6:30 AM):
America is a country of entrepreneurs, full of people who want to start a new business or begin a new career. America is great because it rewards risk and does not restrict individuals access to success. However, our current health care system is a stone around our necks, limiting our chances for a better life. Because our health care is tied to specific jobs Americans have to make unnecessary sacrifices if they want to start a new business. Or they have to take the job they don't want, only because it offers health insurance. With Health Care Reform Americans can be American and take risks for success.
 Fancy the language up, and *BOOM* a much better message. Your welcome.

*I love that the media refers to politicians speaking to the "American" people. This implies that at times the representative from Sheboygan is sometimes speaking to other people, like Canadians or perhaps Croatians. 

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