On Prophecy and Policy: To Not Refuse the Gift of Speech

In recent weeks I've written about capitalism and the Occupy Wall Street movement. I often get frustrated with the conversations posts like those generate. And the frustration isn't always about how those posts get co-opted by the snap-judgment polarities of the current political climate in America. (Though I do try to resist those polarities. In the aftermath of my post on capitalism I had people to my right worried about what they saw as a defense of socialism. To the left of me I had people worried about my defense of capitalism. So everyone had something to be angry about. Job well done?)

No, my frustration has more to do with the disjoint between prophecy and policy. I think it's clear that the current political and economic systems are hurting people. And yet, from a historical perspective the current political and economic systems have done the world great good. I, for one, don't want to wind the clock back.

The point being that it's difficult to transition from the clarion call of prophecy to concrete policy proposals. I know something is awry in the world but I struggle with finding the best way forward. Take the health care issue in America today. Should we repeal the Affordable Care Act, going back to having millions of Americans, citizens of the most affluent nation in history, without access to basic health care? Or should we perhaps go further, having a single-payer government-run system like we see in Europe? Or should we keep the current system, a system that works with private sector insurance providers (a system, incidentally, once championed by Republicans)? What, in short, is the best way forward? Surely we should try to do something to get every American access to basic health care. People suffer without it. And as good neighbors we should care about that suffering.

For example, close to my home is a Planned Parenthood. And Christians are regularly out front protesting about abortion. Props to them. But my guess is, based upon the demographics of the protesters (anti-abortion Christians in West Texas), that few of them are supportive of the Affordable Care Act. Which is a bit of a head scratcher for me. Don't we want these young women and the children we want them to bring to term to have access to affordable health care? Shouldn't we structure our social contract to deincentivize abortions? Shouldn't we love those children after they are born as well? Why does the Christian's interest in the baby last for only nine months?

In short, there are many ways our social contract is death-dealing. Ways that transcend the current platforms of both political parties.

(See, I'm stepping on everyone's toes again. My apologies if I've gotten you angry. I'm not trying to.)

But it is very hard to know, from a policy stance, what the best solution is in these various situations. (For example, there are host of rejoinders to my pro-universal-health-care + pro-life vision above.) This is one of the frustrations with the OWS movement. OWS may be very good at pointing out the problem but they've struggled with providing a solution. And for my part I share a similar feeling of frustration trying to connect the dots between prophecy and policy.

And that demoralizes me and makes me want to give up.

But I read something yesterday from Rowan Williams that made me feel a bit better about all this. From Williams's book Resurrection:

The Spirit opens our mouths for the dumb, in prophetic declamation and in patient and undramatic educative work. If we are to make a convincing job of naming the helpless and oppressed, we have much observation and analysis to do: if the Spirit gives utterance to us, it may be by freeing us from the paralysis induced by the complexity of the situation, so that we can risk a statement--knowing we invite denial, refutation or dismissal. The last thing a Christian should be eager to do is to minimize the moral unclarity and situational nuances of human relations; but the capacity to make articulate (even if, inevitably, provisional) judgement must not be stifled. We must allow ourselves to be given a language for this judgment by our trust in the faithfulness of the Spirit we invoke: we speak and act in the conviction that the Spirit can and will act creatively through our responsible decision--whether or not it is objectively "right" or adequate. The Spirit may work in debate at least as much as consensus and we shall have done something if we have only initiated such a debate.

So in the Spirit, in the hope of grace, we are enabled to give voice to our judgement and discrimination, to name and identify both victim and oppressor. Our responsibility is two-fold: not to speak glibly or hastily, pressed by doctrinaire, or merely fashionable, influences; yet not to refuse the gift of speech when we believe ourselves to have discerned the identity of the victim.

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38 thoughts on “On Prophecy and Policy: To Not Refuse the Gift of Speech”

  1. Richard,

    It seems to me that this time of year is a reminder that God is in the midst of our tragedies and messes, our joys and charity, speaking to us and through us in our own words that mimic God's way.  It is mysterious that the infant Incarnate Word in the feed trough is speechless and must receive voice from this mucked up world.


  2. Is the tool of government (coercive power) the right tool to bring to bear on these problems in the first place? I am a liberal in many ways, but I recognize that government policy is not a magic wand that will provide all our needs if we just use the right magic words.

    In the case of health care, I suspect that anyone looking for a solution needs to begin by figuring out why American health services and pharmaceuticals cost 2-10x as much at the source as they do in other developed countries with equal or superior levels of medical technology and infrastructure. In Japan, for example, the cost of an X-ray (pre-insurance price) is less than $100. I hear the same thing costs as much as $1000 in the US without insurance.

  3. I agree about the use of power. One of the paradoxes, it seems to me, about the health care issue is that by trying to keep insurance in the private sector we have to have an individual mandate. One advantage of having a public health care option as in Europe is that you wouldn't need a universal mandate. True, such government-run health care would involve money. But if we reduced military spending I'd think we could pay for it without raising taxes. I mean, we have a lot of nuclear bombs. No one is going to invade us.

  4. If I'm putting the best construction on everything, imputing good motives to both points on the political spectrum, it really seems that we are at a fundamental divide.  Both groups say they are addressing the call to justice in the most just way.  The left wants rising government action.  The right wants much less filled in with private action.  I don't see how that gets reconciled easily.  The original American solution was federalism and lots of open frontier.   You voted with your feet.  To me interestingly that was similiar to the reformation solution - "cuius regio, eius religio", whose region, his religion.  If you wanted to be Catholic, walk to the nearest Catholic prince.  If you wanted to be Lutheran or eventually Reformed walk to those regions.  Fundamental questions - if the US Supreme Court allowed say Texas to do want it wanted on moral and social issues like abortion or school funding (i.e. if the Texas legislature and Court said this is good for Texas and we posit it is constitutional and the US Supreme Court refused to hear it) where would people go?  Would the accountability being pushed down to someone you very well might know (a state rep, a school board member) be a good thing for the republic?  It is easier to imagine the flip world - its called Massachusetts. Full Health Care, large government, etc.  Are people moving to MA?

  5. In trying to make any sense of where we should stand, as the world we thought we knew seems to fall apart, a useful stance is to paraphrase the advice from Deep Throat and "follow the love"

  6. "Should we repeal the Affordable Care Act, going back to having millions
    of Americans, citizens of the most affluent nation in history, without
    access to basic health care?"

    The fact that you can ask this question is proof you do not know what you are talking about.  During my 30+ years in the healthcare industry, I was not aware of a single person in the USA who did not have access to free medical care (most hospitals, Medicaid, SSI, free clinics).  That is one reason why our healthcare costs are greater here than in Japan.  The American taxpayer has been subsidizing the uninsured since 1965.

    As for a solution to our current crisis, in order to address it you would have to engage or become a part of those awful "principalities and powers".  I don't see how you can have it both ways.  You must make a choice.

  7. Richard,

    I needed to hear that quote by Rowan WIlliams.  I have really been struggling lately about OWS and having the sense that it has slipped it moorings... perhaps, I've thought, they are not for me.  They seem too focused on process and fighting city hall, and not enough focus on Wall Street.  But I can see that if might be perfectly OK for me to speak "whether or not it is objectively "right" or adequate. The Spirit may work in debate at least as much as consensus..."
    Thanks for the bit of inspiration...from the paralysis induced by the
    complexity of the situation, so that we can risk a statement--knowing we
    invite denial, refutation or dismissal.


  8. It's funny, I just watched part of Andy Stanley's "Recovery Road" series. Not that I think Andy Stanley has all the answers or is always right or anything, but something that he was talking about jumped out at me when reading thing. Granted, he wasn't talking about health care at all; he was talking more about the financial mess. But he put down a basic foundation that he beleives comes from lessons gleaned from reading the Bible. In short, things he beleives that God cares about. A "biblical" approach, if you will, though of course that's a loaded term. One of the things he suggested was using the power of our vote to put elected officials in who  cared more about fixing the situation than staying an elected official. We could tell - if there are any at all- which  candidates those are because they won't make promises to us, but instead require things of us. They'll not point fingers or soothe us by saying that the recovery won't hurt, but instead bite the bullet, promise us that recovery will hurt, but that the end result will be rainbows and butterflies. And then they follow through on it. And yeah, they probably won't be re-elected.

    Now, I'm not saying that Andy Stanley's approach is problem-free or anything like that. I'm not saying that it's the only way or even a way. But I did love the practicality of it. It reminded me that the average follower of God needs help from others to know just what to do with the day-to-day life and the gospel. We can talk and debate, but the vast majority of us need someone to say, "And this is how it could potentially look, practically, in your day-to-day life, by doing such-and-such."And yeah, the words often get elevated and held up as idols and then there's a whole host of problems it creates, but I think the intent is to give theory (blogged ideas about health care, for example) and actual life (real people with real health care issues that don't fit into our theoretical boxes) a place to merge so that people can actually be helped.

    I think that's what Richard is calling for, some place where theory and actual life meet and merge so that real actual lives are changed. And I think if we pay attention to that place where mergers happen, and we focus on the thought that if the gospel isn't good news to all then the gospel isn't good news to any, then we just might be getting somewhere.

  9. I want to be as respectful and polite as I can be, because I'm not sure the tone or message you intended here. But I won't pretend that I didn't read it and recoil at what seems to me to be arrogance and willful ignorance. Again, I really don't want to be mean or nasty. But c'mon... 30+ years in the healthcare industry and not *one* person without access to health care? Ah, I'm trying very hard here to be polite. My name is Ethan. I do not have access to free health care. Hospitals, Medicaid, SSI, or free clinics. Perhaps if I lived in an area of the country where a free clinic existed within two hundred miles of me I would have access to health care, but I don't. I'm quite sure that I'm not the only person in this country in this situation. A thought: perhaps the reason that you, in the healthcare industry, did not encounter anyone like me was because we can't afford to wak through the doors.

    So we bite down and bear it. And sometimes we die.

    I have known someone who died because of it.

    So yeah, I'm still trying to be polite, because it could be that I just vastly misinterpreted what you were saying and the manner with which the language you chose conveyed your message. If that's true, I'm sorry and just ignore me. But if it's not, then *please* consider for just a second that maybe you don't know everything, and that maybe one or two other people in the world just might know one or two things.

    And also, stop being so rude to Richard.

  10. Owning one's assumptions and being honest. That's all I ask for.  I am sorry if I have a "tone".  Why was nothing said when Richard called one of my beliefs "hallucinatory"?  I do not know about every situation in the world, but I personally was not aware during my career of any adult, other than one who was mentally ill and actively avoiding treatment, who did not have access to free healthcare, and I dealt with both patients and agencies from all over the country.  Children who went without did so due to the negligence of a caregiver or parent, and that is a tragedy for which I have no answer, other than the state becoming the parent.

    I do not see how a person can point to the evil inherent in the "principalities and powers" of this world and then in almost the same breath advocate for the manipulation of these entities for the good of Mankind.  We have seen the enemy, and he is us.

  11. "The American taxpayer has been subsidizing the uninsured since 1965."

    This is no doubt true for those eligible for Medicaid and SSI, and for those with access to free clinics.  However, it should also be noted that much "free" care to the uninsured is paid for by those who are insured (via higher costs), not through taxes.  Do you have any information on the breakdown between these two?

    And, as Ethan notes, there are those who do not have access to free care, or--more likely--do not know that they have access to free care (doctors and hospitals are certainly not going to publicize the fact that they treat uninsured patients for free).

    Your broad personal statement ("I was not aware of a single person...") may be true, but to refute Richard and to inform policy you need to be able to back it up with statistics about the uninsured and the various options available and utilized.  Until then, you might want to be more gentle in your opposition.

  12. My old professor Fred Carney said that the real task of ethics is to unravel the dilemmas. One thing I wish many fervent Christians could recognize is the difficulty of such issues as life and death and quality of life in America. Many Christians have been seduced into giving one-dimensional answers to multidimenional problems. In these morally contingent climes the quest for consistency is difficult indeed. I loved the sign about love and power. The great Church of Christ preacher George Baily often used such conviluted axioms in his sermons. And how refreshing to read quotes from contemporary saints such as Rowan Williams! Alas, consistency is a very elusive virtue for activists trying to keep their heads clear!

  13. The only totally government-run health care system in Europe is in England, where only a very few doctors are not employed by the government, and the ones who are "private" are viewed as quacks.  To my knowledge, the rest of the countries with large economies have "individual mandate" insurance systems, usually with not-for-profit insurance companies, with the costs thereof divided variously between employers, employees and everyone's taxes.  Anyone can see any doctor, and the doctors are not state employees, so it is hardly "socialized medicine".  Otto von Bismarck was the first to put widespread health care into place in Germany more than 100 years ago; Bismarck could hardly be called a "liberal"!.  In Europe they don't have as big an anti-tax reaction as we do here; they still have a concept of the public good, which we seem to have lost along the way.

    Having two close family members in the military, I think we have to be very selective about what we cut.  Cut waste, yes; stop getting involved in land wars in Asia, yes.  But, for example, military wages aren't so great, esp for soldiers with families, so I would be against anything that would negatively affect their pay when on active duty.

    Unfortunately, with all the blather that's being spouted in DC and by the current crop of candidates, we can't hear who (if anyone) is making sensible policy proposals.

    And I do agree with your post, and with what Rowan wrote.


  14. Richard
    brings to mind the way we look at issues.
    big objective Ones,that not one of us has any control over.
    so we all get to vent,put our two cents in to the comfort food of the day,and go on with the ride.
    you know that ride...don,t you?
    we all have A TICKET.
    "Christians" and everyone want government to be ethical...i won't even use the word moral!
    come on, barney frank!
    an outdated sociological engineering project that started in the 30s,
     has come full circle to a waist of time and financial ruin.
    Oh yes!
    Just keep believing that A gov. will be able to legislate and regulate ethics.
    and make life BETTER FOR ALL.
    I really don't get it at all,are we all just retarded OR NUTS.
    what is the tipping point for adequate representation.
    time to get off the ride !
    start again
    with FRESH morals and ethical Christians.
    kinda like the new covenant in a lot of ways is Morally ethically superior to the old.
    ya know divine nature.
    god's economics put into praxis.
    by each of us    
    start a new bank.
    start a new store
    start a new school
    with god's GOOD PEOPLE!

    But that might just be TOO subjective of an endeavor.
    require a new paradine or would that really be and old and forgotten one .


  15. When people camped outside St Paul's cathedral in London to protest against capitalism, politicans sneered, local church leaders in the pockets of the corporations threatened legal action to move them on, most ignored.  Only Rowan Williams articulated their emotion into a range of well-considered, ethical policies.  He was accused of arrogance by some - of walking in and taking over.  But he was just practicing what he preached in the extract you quote.  His example challenges me to identify the victims of injustice in the systems I'm a part of and to act as advocate when the opportunity arises.  If there is such a thing as a biblical stance, this must be pretty close to it.

  16. For those who missed it, in my post on capitalism Sam wrote: "We now have a president who is hell-bent on bringing about the collapse of our entire economy." And I said the statement was hallucinatory.

    To Sam's criticism ("I do not see how a person can point to the evil inherent in the
    "principalities and powers" of this world and then in almost the same
    breath advocate for the manipulation of these entities for the good of
    Mankind.") all I can say is that the post never advocated the manipulation of anything. I floated a variety of options about the Affordable Care Act (repeal, do more, stay pat) without advocating anything specific. In fact, the whole post was an expression of personal frustration about wanting to help suffering people but struggling with what to do policy-wise.

  17. I don't disagree with anything here. I hope wiser people than I (like you) keep up the prophecy. But I see a deep disconnect between what you would call "policy" and what I would call "action." You seem to start from the assumption that we get people "access to basic health care" through complex (and possibly ineffective) legislation. But what if we get people access to health care by treating the sick? You seem to assume that pro-life Christians should support the "Affordable Care Act"--about which I know nothing. But you may miss the fact that pro-life Christians are, by the hundreds of thousands and millions, providing actual care (of all kinds) to expectant mothers. There is something jarring, and in my mind not quite persuasive, about the prophetic call to Pass a Law to Force Rich People to Contribute Money so a Government Program will Love My Neighbor as Myself. There is something natural, and healthy, and hopeful, about the doctors (and others) who are actually treating people--perhaps rejecting as a worldly lie the notion that only the government can care for the poor.

  18. I stand by my statement about the president.  His policies and complete lack of leadership have caused many businesses to stop all hiring until after the next election cycle, in large measure due to the chilling effect of Obamacare.  Greater minds than mine have called him "The worst president in our lifetime", and I agree.

    I see your point about personal frustration, as I too am "demoralized".  In your remarks, however, you used the old 1960's bromide about spending less on defense so we could spend more on healthcare, and then you said -- "No one is going to invade us".  They already have.  They have attacked, killed, and now their stated goal is our extermination.  I think a strong defense is at least as important as universal healthcare.

  19. To sharpen the piont about the "bromide," which presumes that every dollar spent on defense is a dollar NOT spent on health care...no, unfortunately, with the current Beltway mentality - on both sides of the aisle, to be sure, but accelerated rapidly since Jan. 2009 - there is no such thing (alas) as zero-sum federal budgeting.  Whenever a new spending "priority" emerges, we spend our children's and grandchildren's money on it rather than taking it out of existing line items.  So the "bromide" is a false (and therefore misleading) choice.  qb

  20. "I know something is awry in the world but I struggle with finding the best way forward."

    You are reading my mind (and heavy heart)!  And we can't exactly sit back in a cool, detached, philosophical manner to figure out what's our next best move, because we're in the thick of the struggle that is 'Life As We Currently Know It'...

    Here's my latest disillusionment with our politics:  Our elected officials in Congress have private access to what amounts to insider trading information, and in fact have traded on that knowledge, with no legal penalty.  Did you hear about this on the news?  There was a 60 Minutes expose.  Now there is a bill which is proposed to make this illegal.  So, is it any wonder that our government has an image problem (namely, corrupt)?  If an elected official isn't corrupt going in, what are the chances that he/she won't be corrupted once immersed in the Washington world?  It makes me both sad and mad (not at you, Dr. Beck -- at the situation).

  21. Of course this line of thinking is true and good.  But in our good-faith efforts to entertain the prophetic ideas and give them their proper due in light of the Cross, should we not be sure to evaluate proposed policies not only on their ostensible INTENTS (which we can always for sake of argument stipulate as honorable, even when the preponderance of evidence suggests otherwise), but also - and more importantly - in light of their historically demonstrated and/or likely future EFFECTS?  Does not empirical evaluation have a prominent place at the table?

    Heavens.  So-called "poor" people here in Amarillo, as one may independently verify by driving through any number of neighborhoods around the school in which my award-winning wife teaches, are driving their public-lunch children to school in some mighty impressive vehicles that get parked in front of some disproportionately substandard housing.  Not for a minute do I begrudge them their vehicles per se...but those vehicles are being paid for by [inherently fungible] money that would otherwise be available to buy food for lunch or to improve the roof over the children's heads.  Is there *nothing* wrong with that picture, leastwise as it pertains to the actual (vs. ostensibly hoped-for) effects of public policies?

  22. And if people *were* moving to MA, what would that say to you, MarkP1971?  What are the odds that people who are here in the U. S. illegally are trying however possible to move from Alabama to San Francisco, that is, from an immigration-enforced state to a sanctuary city?  Policies of any significance very seldom if ever fail to elicit feedback, that is, compensating changes in human behavior that respond to incentives created by those policies, whether those incentives are explicit (rarely) or implicit (more often).

  23. If they were moving that would be fine.  Heck, no one less than the GOP front-runner says universal Health Care is/was right for MA.  The bigger point is that a state seems about the right size to actually maintain a social contract.  Alabama would like the borders enforced which is a valid power of a state.  The problem is when a social contract from MA or San Francisco is being enforced on a people who have a completely different view of the good.  You can debate if that other view is good.  But you can't do that by saying they are evil.  Which is what both groups do today.  Federalism allows those to play out.

  24. Good post and good quote! I would say, even with the lack of clarity about the core issues, there are many opportunities to be prophetic. To one way of thinking, it is important to remember that by world standards: we are the 1%. To another way of thinking, the abuse of power in the face of non-violent protest is inexcusable. 

    There are other opportunities as well. The great thing about prophetic words is that God's answer may not be a direct response the question we are asking. He has his own agenda.

  25. Cleanslate

    You have perceived something about OWS that a lot of people don’t seem to realize – that they are refusing to become part of the status quo and follow the usual path into politics and the ways of this world.  

    Collectively, they are a lot more like the Old Testament prophets, standing out against the establishment and its injustices – not ever fitting in.  

    Even more, I was amazed to hear one of them say, as if it were the most normal thing in the world, that when the police, or other authority figures directed homeless, disturbed and despairing people towards their camps (in order to cause them inconvenience and disruption), he said, “they come, and we take them, it doesn’t matter who they are, we take them!”  Now that really reminded me of Jesus saying, “Whoever comes to me I will not cast out.”  This is the spirit of Jesus.  And we know he didn’t try to get political power either, or influence the political powers.  Yes, that is salvation, happening right in our streets and parks.  

    And now I hear that OWS are getting the same response from the powers that the prophets, and even Jesus himself, received: they must be stopped.  In London they are being called terrorists by the police, equivalent to FARC and Al Qaida. http://uk.news.yahoo.com/police-include-occupy-movement-on-%E2%80%98terror%E2%80%99-list.html  And you know what happens to terrorists, and those who associate with them or support them in any way. That’s exactly the word that was used to describe Jesus, and you know what the powers did to him.

    So you say, “And then…”  Well, and then, something completely different!

  26. Richard, the Williams quote is intellectual nonsense meant to inflate his ego. I read that twice and still have no idea what his actual point was. People such as he pontificate to impress, not educate.....

  27. I have no idea about his ego. He wrote that book a long time ago. It's not a comment about current events. I think he's just saying that we need to speak up for victims even if we don't have all the answers in hand. If we wait to speak until perfect, non-debatable solutions are in hand we'll never say anything.

  28. I think the above quote could be summed up as "the Spirit moves us".  To do what is right, to right the injustice, to help those who need it etc.  A good quote.
      As many others I know, I am not sure exactly what OWS stands for, or what it is going to do (except sleep over night in parks).  From what I take of it, it is a reaction to the employment situation and a reaction to the incomes of various people.  What people seem to forget, is that in just about every society and every time, those very rich people have ways of staying very rich. 
      Some comments I have:
      Do you really, really want a government run health care system?  Talk to anyone who has dealt with government bureaucracy and you may reconsider your position.  I have, several times and it isn't easy.  Oh, you can get what you need, after a lot of paper work, phone calls, refiling forms, making sure every dot is in the right place etc.  If you thought your insurance company was a nightmare....
      I have seen a lot of people who make a lot more money than I in life, do a lot more with that money than I can with mine.  Not all the "greedy rich" are greedy. 
      I sense that the current unrest is very selective. I don't see any protestors sitting at the doors of 1% Hollywood or sports stars.
      I understand the need to help the poor.  But not all poor are oppressed.  Item:  Woman lives in her van.  Reason? She doesn't get along with her husband, children or relatives.  She is not homeless by life, but by choice.  (I also suspect mental health issues, another thorny issue.
     The government has been warring on poverty longer than the war on drugs.  It has not reduce or eliminated either.  Quite telling in itself.

  29. Come on, man.  Why begrudge those who live in "sub-standard" housing of their luxury?  After all, when you and I fellowship, you and I could use the money we spend on microbrews to give to the poor.  But that would make them lazy and entitled.  And so let's keep drinking our beer and feeling, uhh, smug(?).

    Bless our beer anyway!

  30. I believe the prophetic call is to Pass a Law by Which We Can Recognize Our Shared Humanity and Together Provide Care for Each Other That We Cannot Provide Singly. 

    Yes, the care given by individuals is natural, and healthy, and hopeful. But it isn't enough by a long shot. I believe it is natural, and healthy, and hopeful for us to want to do this together as well.

  31. Qb, I'm not sure why Richard didn't read what you wrote here--it's a fact which (I think) can't be disputed that all of this was happening "on both sides of the aisle" (didn't start in 2009) and yet has "accelerated rapidly since Jan 2009." You are therefore playing fair by implying Richard's point (they didn't start with Obama) without completely ignoring the fact that Obama (with a Democrat congress, during a recession) did of course accelerate the deficits.

  32. Life, Liberty, Property govern policy, High and low.Things get a little clearer is you ask yourself the question: Who owns the talents? The God of Love gives talents from heaven and he expects us to profit him in their use as we see fit.
    As soon as any institutional power or authority requires us to share our talents as they see fit, the voluntary offerings cease being a free will offerings and become a requirement of the law, governed by the fear of death, instead of love.It is no longer the Master giving and taking talents, but one of His workers.
    In giving freely of others talents, they call themselves the benefactors, and name roads and bridges and grants after themselves.

  33. Let ol' qb help you out by pionting you to a few "sensible [health-care] policy proposals" that are being offered by some of those who object stridently to BHOcare and the unmitigated mess it is making of our health insurance system.

    {BTW, I can't find the post or comment in which Richard said it, but I'm pretty d@mned certain he thought he was calling our bluff by saying we had not offered any alternatives to BHOcare and therefore had little standing to criticize it and call for its repeal. Of course, that charge simply wasn't true then, and its not true now.}

    A physician in Congress, Tom Price of Georgia (aaaiiighh! A Republican and therefore a mouth-breather!), has offered HR 2300, for example. If you are REALLY interested in a counterproposal by someone who ought to know what he's talking about given his pre-Congress vocation, then start by pionting your browser to


    and then follow up as needed for more detail.

  34. qb,
    I was a big fan of Sen. Olympia Snow and was really sorry she retired. I don't consider Republicans "mouth-breathers" but the hyper-right wing of the party is the tail wagging the dog right now, and would rather shut down the government over ideology than actually legislate.

    I'm interested in anything a medical doctor has to offer. I skimmed the bill. 1) It's too complicated for people the tax credits might help, and the tax credits to offset insurance costs don't do a thing to keep costs down. It repeals the Affordable Health Care Act - that's a nogo for me. ACA doesn't go far enough, but it's something. It's not going to make a mess of our insurance system; anyway, how can you say that when most of it hasn't gone into effect yet? What has gone into effect has helped my children, who got a couple of extra years on our policy.

    2) Why are you commenting on a post that is nearly 2 years old?

    That's all I'm going to say. Be well.


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