Tuesday, July 03, 2007

For those of you who support universal healthcare

Why don't you think this will happen here (via)?

I don't see the left addressing these issues and I wondered if Moore addressed the healthcare problems in Canada and UK in his movie? Evidently, he did not. From a Canadian reviewer:

Sicko is also completely lacking in journalistic rigour, presenting only the negatives of for-profit U.S. health care and only the positives of the government-run Canadian, British, French and Cuban Medicare programs. As always, Moore makes unsupported assertions and uses out-of-context edits. The film is not a documentary, if that term is to mean anything more than unvarnished propaganda.

Moore's many apologists, including journalists who should know better, give him a free pass under the "greater good" argument. Who cares if he's careless about the details or ruthless about his accusations? He's got a good heart! And he's funny!

These same apologists don't extend such courtesies to Moore's chief nemesis President George W. Bush, whom the filmmaker manages to present as both the dumbest man on the planet and a diabolical schemer. When Bush and his cronies fudge on the facts, it can only be due to the vilest of motives.

A hilarious Bush malapropism opens Sicko, but this time the U.S. president isn't the focus of Moore's animus, as he was in the terror satire Fahrenheit 9/11. The millionaire filmmaker is out to expose the "powerful forces" of American health insurers and their political allies, whom he charges exploit pain for profit. (They include Sen. Hillary Clinton, Medicare lion turned HMO tame tabby, one of the few non-Republicans whom Moore skewers.)

As violins wail on the soundtrack and Moore's hushed voice drips sympathy, we gape in horror at travesties of corporate medicine. A bankrupt Denver couple, drained of their life savings by hospital bills, is forced to move into a daughter's home. A car-accident victim, having been knocked unconscious, is refused compensation for an ambulance because she thoughtlessly neglected to get advance approval for the ride. A man with a severed finger chooses to lose the digit rather than pay the $60,000 it would cost to have it sewn back on.

These and many other sad and shocking stories are contrasted with scenes of the enlightened Utopias in other countries, where Medicare is "free" – if you ignore the fact, as Moore does, that high taxes and long wait times pay for that "free" care.


Maybe Moore should have included these stories for balance. Tell me that the Canadian system is better and more compassionate than ours. Both have their problems and it's disingenuous to ignore that fact.