I don't often write politics here; I would hardly describe myself as a-political, but my levels of information intake and activism pale in comparison to many of my friends.
Still, its been with interest I've tracked the Health Care Reform bill and debate surrounding it. Precisely because I'm one of the people that Obama wants to help. I'm not the most heart-wrenching story, granted, but it's been about 10 years at least since I've been able to go to a U.S. doctor. I had more comprehensive coverage as a student-visitor to the U.K. than I have here. For the most part, I've just made the best of it and in my more health-conscious moments hoped that the old "apple-a-day" adage is true.
For most of our lives, this has been true with regards to my parents. As Dad said "there were a lot of times we just had to give you some aspirin and hope it got better."*
So, on the surface I'm glad that the health care bill passed the House of Reps. I don't love doctors, but I'd like to go. But I'm kind of scared.
I'm not scared that Obama is going to plunge the nation into a socialist welfare state akin to Communist Russia or whatever. I'm not really that scared that right-wing reactionism will prompt actual attempts at secessionism or what-have-you, either.
But. Watching the way the parties have been batting this bill back and forth, the complete lack of actual discussion (nothing new, really) and level of public frustration, I'm not convinced anything good can come. From my heady days in Youth and Government, I know it takes one poorly worded line to change the entire meaning of a bill. And Max Bacchus has written a 1,000 page epic. You don't have to be a let-them-eat-caker to approach that with caution.
What I'm afraid of is that a bill will make it through that's been gutted by republicans and saddled with impossible and impractical retaliatory provisions by democrats. And that when it finally passes, in whatever form it is, Obama will sign it because he has to. He's created a situation in which its political suicide to not sign a bill that comes through. And we'll be left with a system that costs taxpayers a shitload of money, creates loads of new bureacracy, endangers existing practices and after all that I still won't be able to go to the doctor.
That. Is what I'm afraid of.
*I still have some un-fond memories of the doctor's office.