Healthcare reform: Leaving a bad taste

January 31, 2011

Politics

By Wally Northway

There once was a company that was looking to launch a new brand of dog food. Everything looked promising — good brand name, attractive packaging, solid demographics and high marks from prospective customers.

And it fell flat on its face. Why?

It tasted terrible. Dogs simply hated it.

I believe that to be a true story. If not, the healthcare reform legislation is as good of an example of end-user revolt as the dog food case.

Dressing up legislation might get it out of committee, even to the floor and passed. But when the slick packaging and all the spin is stripped away, it must stand on its own merit in the public arena.

So far, healthcare reform might be standing, but it’s hunched over trying to avoid all of the incoming heavy flak from disgruntled voters.

Grousing from the right was expected and has not disappointed. Pot shots from the left and center, though, leave one wondering whether former conservative Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, et al, are going to get their way and see healthcare reform killed before it takes a good first breath.

An avowed left-leaning Mississippian, who had been a longtime proponent of healthcare reform, recently vented his spleen on the issue. He said, “This is not what I wanted. This isn’t healthcare reform. It’s just a bunch of political posturing.”

Many elected officials who have a “D” after their name are trying to put as much distance between themselves and healthcare reform/President Obama as possible. Perhaps most are just trying to save their political necks. However, many just don’t believe it is the right course to take even though they voted for it originally, not unlike those who voted for the invasion of Iraq then, with more information at hand, disavowed it.

It appears healthcare reform proponents are starting to get shouted down. One problem they have is the legislation is so new and so massive that they are ill-prepared to argue its merits as they see them. They too often seem unsure about the legislation’s potential impact. All of the spin and opinion polls are now gone leaving them to tout what seems a big loser with many end-users (voters).

It tastes terrible. They simply hate it.

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