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corporate dominance | health

Wyden and SEIU Choose Corporate "Health Care" Over Single Payer

Don't be fooled: Ron Wyden does not support single payer. "...it makes them look like they are accomplishing something when in fact they are accomplishing nothing. These legislators are gutless, and the SEIU is giving them cover."
Published on Tuesday, June 26, 2007 by Corporate Crime Reporter

California Nurses' DeMoro Says SEIU on the Side of the Bosses
The Corporate Crime Reporter
Michael Moore has made a great movie.Sicko.
Everyone should see it.
And take the kids.
The movie's message in a nutshell - we need single payer.
In the United States.
But Senate Democrats are trying to co-opt the message.
On Capitol Hill today, SEIU held a rally for a couple of hundred health care workers.
The group was addressed by six Senators.
None support single payer.
Senator Ben Cardin (D-Maryland) - does not support single payer.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) - does not support single payer.
Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) - does not support single payer.
Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada) - does not support single payer.
Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Missouri) - does not support single payer.
Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota) - does not support single payer.
We asked Dawn Lee, a spokesperson for SEIU, whether SEIU supported HR 676 - the single payer bill in the House.
She said SEIU takes no position on that bill.
SEIU - does not support single payer.
At the SEIU rally, all spoke in favor of "universal health care."
That is code for - keep the insurance companies in the game.
Single payer would take them out.
Martese Chism was at a similar rally in Chicago last month.
Chism is a registered nurse at Cook County Hospital in Chicago.
She also sits on the board of the California Nurses Association (CNA).
CNA is pro-single payer.
Chism was attending an SEIU rally in Chicago in support of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's "universal health care" bill that would keep the insurance companies in the game.
Chism says that the SEIU members who gathered for the rally were being actively misled by SEIU.
"SEIU members are being led to believe that universal health care means free health care for all - single payer," Chism told Corporate Crime Reporter. "But it doesn't mean that. It means keeping the insurance companies in the game. I had to leave because I couldn't take it anymore. The insurance companies and SEIU are misleading people."
CNA executive director Rose Ann DeMoro is a touch less subtle.
"Rather than being on the side of the workers, SEIU continues to be on the side of the bosses," DeMoro told Corporate Crime Reporter. "And it's a disgrace."
"And the problem is that SEIU is giving cover to these Senators - it makes them look like they are accomplishing something when in fact they are accomplishing nothing. These legislators are gutless, and the SEIU is giving them cover."
DeMoro is using the movie Sicko to generate public support for single payer around the country.
Unfortunately, the powers that be in the Democratic Party are working - with SEIU and other unions - to undermine public support for single payer.
And soon, Michael Moore too will have to choose.
Between single payer - and the corporate Democratic Party's candidate for President.
That candidate will be - if past is prologue - opposed to single payer.
And the question will remain, as always - which side are you on?
2007 Corporate Crime Reporter

Unfair criticism 28.Jun.2007 15:04


This analysis of Sen. Wyden's plan and the motives of SEIU is really unfair. Yes, Wyden's plan is not single-payer, but it makes enormous strides in proposing a great deal of regulation that will, number one, not allow insurers to reject anyone for coverage and premium rates wouldn't be based on medical history. The faults are that it doesn't substantially put limits on profits or costs, but it attempts to control costs by first and foremost getting everyone covered so expensive ER visits are reduced, and it forces health plans to focus more on prevention and chronic diseases. The bill also eliminates employer-sponsored coverage.

What advocates for single-payer must ask themselves is: Do you want single-payer, whereby the only difference is how the money flows or do you want government-run health care where the government acts like an insurance company? I believe the answer isn't government-run, and most polls show people are highly skeptical of the government's ability to get into health insurance what with the excellent job it's doing managing the insurance for our returning soldiers.

Without government-run, single-payer is simply a different way for the money to flow. Even if the government is the single-payer, the money will still come from individuals, businesses and government sources. So saying single-payer is really the same as an employer and individual mandate as long as it reaches affordable, universal coverage.

In the end, Wyden is on the right track. We've got to keep insurers in the game because they have the infrustructure in place (provider panels, medical directors, etc), but they should be used as contractors in the same way the government uses Medicaid fully capitated health plans. Look at those plans. They don't make very much profit, at least no where's near, say, Regence.

SEIU fights tooth and nail for average people, especially to control health care costs and hold the industry accountable. Don't believe any different.

to clarify 28.Jun.2007 15:47


To clarify my last post. I do believe we need single-payer so the contracting situation I describe above is possible. Without controlling the purse strings, government has little to no power.

Make Up Your Mind 29.Jun.2007 14:17

Dr. Feelgood

If you want single payer, then you must oppose the corporatists Wyden and SEIU.

Single Payer at its heart is any of a set of universal coverage schema that require the government to act as the collector and payer of funds. It does not require that politicians like Wyden will be making health care decisions, although it does require that profit-motivated insurance company clerks will not make those decisions.

Your right-wing, Wydenist argument that government can't be trusted ignores the fact that insurance companies are even less trustworthy. Single payer systems can be set up to create policy boards that require outcome-based research, thereby continuously refining medical practice in ways that raise our incredibly poor current outcomes and decrease costs at the same time. The idea that insurance companies are necessary for this is as stupid as the belief that our current militarism is necessary because we would otherwise be unable to defend ourselves (probably also a Wydenist argument).

Sign up for Dr. Don McCanne's "Quote of the Day" on single payer:  http://two.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/quote-of-the-day

See Michael Moore's "Sicko".

Read anti-corporate literature.

Get your head out of your hillary.