Delay and his repug cronies are quite simply in denial, if not dissembling, about the true "health" of our nation. It's obscene, or irresponsible at best, when they throw out the bogey-man of "socialism" any time they want, which is to purposely frighten people that this spectre is tantamount to storm troopers knocking on your door. Examples of so-called "socialism" already institutionalized in every single community are fire departments, police departments, the libraries, the public schools....how the hell does universal health care of the sort found in every industrial country, and even many more third world nations, pose a collapse to the "American Way"...Of course the threat is to the pharma monopolies, for-profit hospitals, and bloated horse tick-fat insurance companies and their enabling legislators they finance with the mad money they bilk from consumers every step of the way. THAT is the threat they care about. "Socialism" and "anti-Americanism" has been rolled out every time these corporate whores stand to lose any inch or penny of their ill-gotten gains. Delay and Company are the filth of this country's political elite. They don't deserve the time of day, let alone any respect for their political arrogance. It extends to every cranny and corner they darken. -MS
This post, written by Ali Frick, originally appeared on Think Progress
Speaking in the UK yesterday, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) predicted that if a Democrat is elected president in 2008, he or she would seek to install a universal health care, similar to the system in Britain. This possibility "received thunderous applause." DeLay claimed that, under the U.S. system, "no American is denied health care":
By the way, there's no one denied health care in America. There are 47 million people who don't have health insurance, but no American is denied health care in America.
The audience, understandably, greeted DeLay's preposterous claims with "derisive laughter," according to the AP. A recent report showed that for the sixth straight year, jobholders continued to see a decline in employer-provided health insurance, with 38 states seeing "significant" drops in benefits offered by employers.
Observers estimate that anywhere from one to 18 percent of Americans are denied health insurance because of pre-existing health conditions. These conditions can range from heart disease to high cholesterol to yeast infections to being too skinny. A few examples of Americans who were denied health care:
Texas resident Shirley Lowe was denied health care because her breast cancer was diagnosed at a medical center rather than a clinic receiving federal cancer-research funds.
New Orleans bus driver Emanuel Wilson was denied health care when the government refused to pay for his chemotherapy because he had had a job that had provided insurance -- a job he lost after Hurricane Katrina.
Thousands of 9/11 workers who worked at Ground Zero were denied health care when the federal government approved woefully inadequate funds to address the permanent health problems, such as sinusitis and asthma, associated with work at the site.
As Michael Moore's film "Sicko" showed so clearly, millions more Americans who have health insurance are denied the care they need due to insurers' "cost-cutting strategies."
Ali Frick is a Research Associate for The Progress Report and ThinkProgress.org at the Center for American Progress.