Saturday, July 15, 2017

Mississippi is on the Verge of Being Screwed by the Republican Health Care Bill

So far, only two Republican senators have announced that they will vote “no” on Trumpcare: Rand Paul and Susan Collins. If they are the only two that vote against it, then the vote in the Senate would be 50–50 and VP Pence would break the tie.

We live in the poorest state in the union. There are a lot of people receiving Obamacare that wouldn’t have coverage otherwise. Now many of those being covered will lose the insurance they got just a short time ago.

An all-male committee drafted the bill in secret and sprang it upon the full Senate (and the nation) to be voted on with no hearings and precious little debate. Medicaid, long hated by Republicans, will be on the way to being gutted. Twenty million people will be unable to afford insurance under the Senate bill, either because they have a preexisting illness or the premiums are too high.

It is a remarkably bad bill, even for Republicans. You would think that Mississippi’s senators and representatives would be sensitive to the needs of a large portion of its citizens, but don’t look for any support from them.

Our two senators, Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker seem to be keeping quiet, and it is obvious that neither one of them has the gumption to think for themselves, for they support a law that deprives many Mississippians of the health care they need but will be unable to pay for if the bill passes. The same goes for three of our four representatives. Bennie Thompson, whose district is mainly the Delta, is the only representative that voted against the bill when it was passed by the House.

Mississippi has been politically sick for a long time. Racial prejudice, openly practiced here for hundreds of years, has gone underground, but barely. Whites, in particular, are so determined to keep blacks down, socially and economically, that they are willing for their state to remain at the bottom by almost all measures of welfare.

This reminds me of the Indian monkey trap. Trappers cut a small hole in a coconut just large enough for a monkey to insert his hand. Then they put a nut in the coconut and fix it to the ground. When a monkey encounters the coconut, he thrusts his hand through the hole and grasps the nut, but when he tries to pull his hand out, he finds that he cannot remove his hand while holding the nut. Even when the trapper approaches, the monkey will not let go of the nut and is easily captured.

That’s us, white Mississippians. We are in a racist trap from which we could easily liberate ourselves by simply dropping the nut — those prejudices that trap us. Our senators and representatives have been remiss in not explaining to us how Trumpcare is supposed to improve the health of the citizens of this state, black and white. They have been remiss in not fighting for every penny from the federal government that will improve the lives of our state’s citizens[1].

There is a good reason why the federal government should subsidize states like Mississippi. Without all the help we get, we wouldn’t be able to buy goods from the wealthier states, and their economy would suffer in return. The more prosperous states support the less prosperous through federal taxes so the latter can buy their products. Cut off this recycling process, and Mississippi would end up like Greece, only worse, but that is a subject for another article. [2]

  1. Providing health care to non-citizens (including illegal aliens) is a good idea. No one wants sick people around spreading disease, and that’s exactly what happens when health care is denied to a segment of the population. Look what’s already happening in areas where parents are refusing to allow their children to be vaccinated. With too many unvaccinated children in the population, epidemics can get started.  ↩
  2. For an introduction to the Greek crisis, see this interview or other videos on YouTube with Yanis Varoufakis, former finance minister of Greece.  ↩

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