“Compassionate Conservative” Bush Tells Poor Kids to Go to Hell!

So, check out this bit of hubris from George W. Bush, the worst president in US History. This was from the beginning of his press conference yesterday…

Good morning.  In just 10 days the State Children’s
Health Insurance Program, known as S-CHIP, is set to expire.  This
important program helps children whose families cannot afford private
health insurance, but do not qualify for Medicaid to get coverage they

I have strongly supported S-CHIP as a governor, and I have done so as
President.  My 2008 budget proposed to increase S-CHIP funding by $5
billion over five years.  It’s a 20 percent increase over current levels
of funding.  Unfortunately, instead of working with the administration
to enact this funding increase for children’s health, Democrats in
Congress have decided to pass a bill they know that will be vetoed.  One
of their leaders has even said such a veto would be, "a political

Let’s stop there for a moment.

Bush is referring to Rep. Rahm Emanuel, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, who, when asked by the New York Times about the political implications, said, “If the president signs the bill we present to him, it’s a major
accomplishment…. If he vetoes the bill, it’s a
political victory for us. Public opinion polls show strong support for
expanding kids’ health coverage.”

You know, as much as we would like to think politics is somehow a dirty business, and that we are all above it, we live in a constitutional democratic republic, and politics is how things get done. The problem is, Bush pretends he’s not a politician. After 13 years in political office, more than half of that as president, George W. Bush hasn’t figured out that he is a politician. Actually, that’s not true; he knows he’s a politician; he’s just hoping we won’t notice.

As we continue with this crap fest, please make note of the fact that the "Outsider Decider" Bush himself announced a threatened veto of the bill, which in itself is a "political act;" one that he wouldn’t do, were he not expecting some sort of "political victory" himself.

As if this weren’t irresponsible enough, Congress is waiting until the
S-CHIP program is just about to expire before getting a final bill
passed.  In other words, members of Congress are putting health coverage
for poor children at risk so they can score political points in
Washington.  The legislation would raise taxes on working people, and
would raise spending by between $35 billion and $50 billion.  Their
proposal would result in taking a program meant to help poor children
and turning it into one that covers children in households with incomes
of up to $83,000 a year.

Check out his use of the word "irresponsible" above. Isn’t that funny, coming from him? After all, this is a guy who only vetoed one bill in his first six years in office — against stem cell research — while the Republicans in Congress were leading the country off the edge of the cliff.

Here are the facts of the matter here; you tell us who’s being "irresponsible."

The S-CHIP bill, as proposed, would increase from $25 billion now, to $60 billion OVER THE NEXT FIVE YEARS. Yes, folks, that’s $1 billion per month to make sure that all children have health care. And the best part? Every dime of it will be paid for with an increase in the cigarette tax.

This is a guy who gets nearly $500 billion every year in defense money, and then STILL asks for more money, just to pay for the Iraq Occupation. Oh, but not for body armor for the troops; that would suck. And that money he keeps asking for to keep the occupation going will be paid by our grandchildren. Right now, it’s being financed by the Chinese.

The proposal would move millions of American children who now have
private health insurance into government-run health care.  Our goals
should be for children who have no health insurance to be able to get
private coverage, not for children who already have private health
insurance to be able to get government coverage.

What I’m describing here is a philosophical divide that exists in
Washington over the best approach for health care.  Democratic leaders
in Congress want to put more power in the hands of government by
expanding federal health care programs.  Their S-CHIP plan is an
incremental step toward the goal of government-run health care for every

This is the sign of an absolutely irresponsible politician, and a
leading indicator as to why he’s so incredibly incompetent. The issue
isn’t what might happen down the road; you have to deal with the problem as it exists now. And the fact of the matter is, there are millions of children in this country, who don’t get proper health care because the system as it is currently simply doesn’t allow it. The current S-CHIP program doesn’t cover enough people, and Bush’s suggested $5 billion increase over 5 years still won’t cover all children.

If every politician took this approach to every issue, no bill would ever be passed, because there are always  potential consequences to every law. That’s why many laws — like this one — only extend the program for five years. If it doesn’t work, you have room to adjust it.

But think of the unmitigated balls it takes to call a bill that provides money for children’s health care — one that is fully funded by cigarette taxes, by the way, while he’s asking for hundreds of billions of dollars in money that we don’t actually have, to keep throwing down the rat hole that is the Iraq Occupation.

But beyond that, there is a lie here, and that is the bullshit story that imagines a whole slew of people dropping their kids from their health insurance and putting them on this health plan, because it’s "free." I won’t do that, and I can’t imagine very many others will do that. For one thing, while it more than doubles the amount of money in the S-CHIP system, right now that program has barely enough money to cover those who are below the poverty line. It would be up to the states as to who it covers, so his assumption that it will cover kids in families making up to $83,000 a year is, to put it mildly, pulled straight out of his bicycling ass.

But even if a few states or metro areas did cover that much, so what? If both parents in a family are working and making $83,000 a year, and no other health insurance is available to them, I say their kids’ health is too important. Not only that, but the kids who would need a lot of health care are going to get it anyway, and someone will have to pay for it.

The fact is, though, that there are places in this country where $83,000 for a family with more than two children doesn’t really stretch very far. And he doesn’t say how much assistance they’ll get, anyway. You know why? Because the states determine the details in the S-CHIP program. He has no way of knowing how they’ll spend the money, or to whom they will offer benefits, because the guidelines haven’t been set yet.


Oh, but his diatribe gets better…

I have a different view.  I believe the best approach is to put more
power in the hands of individuals by empowering people and their doctors
to make health care decisions that are right for them. Instead of
expanding S-CHIP beyond its original purpose, we should return it to its
original focus, and that is helping poor children, those who are most in
need.  And instead of encouraging people to drop private coverage in
favor of government plans, we should work to make basic private health
insurance affordable and accessible for all Americans.

Here we are with the Social Security privatization argument once again. It’s crap, people; there are simply some things that should not be dependent on how much money you happen to have, and one of those is health care. You shouldn’t be forced to stay sick just because you or your parents are poor. And if he’s so concerned about making sure everyone GETS all of this so-called power, then what the hell have he and the Republicans been doing for the last 14 years, since they killed Hillary Clinton’s original plan? Oh, by the way, that plan? It wasn’t "socialized medicine." All of the power was in the hands of individuals and insurance companies were in the loop. Her original plan — and the one she put forth this past week — kept the insurance companies in the loop, and put all decisions in the hands of doctors and patients. And everyone in the country paid into it; imagine that.

Do you know the last Republican who even put forth a health insurance plan for the country? Richard Nixon. And you can thank him for those HMOs we all love so much. But since our health care system has been in crisis — and the crisis is ongoing and getting worse — the Republicans have done nothing to fix it. Think about it this way; Bush is vetoing a plan fashioned by Democrats to get more people insured. What else has he proposed to fix the problem?

Oh wait… there’s more…

My administration will continue working with Congress to pass a
responsible S-CHIP bill.  In the meantime, Congress has an obligation to
make sure health insurance for poor children does not lapse.  If they
fail to do so, more than a million children could lose health coverage.
Health coverage for these children should not be held hostage while
political ads are being made and new polls are being taken.  Congress
must pass a clean, temporary extension of the current S-CHIP program
that I can sign by September the 30th. And that’s the date when the
program expires.

I’ve instructed Secretary of Health and Human Services Mike Leavitt, who
has joined us today, to work with states on ways to mitigate the damage
that would result if Congress allows this program to lapse.  Our goal in
passing legislation should be getting something done for those in need,
not getting nothing done so politicians in Washington can claim a
political victory.

See, this is Bush’s "the buck stops somewhere else" approach, once again. It’s not his responsibility for vetoing the bill; it’s Congress’ fault for making him veto it.

And then there are the usual scare tactics. Don’t fret, parents of poor children; this program won’t lapse, unless Republicans filibuster the bill to extend it for a few months while they work things out.

The bottom line is, how many more people will George W. Bush, self-proclaimed "Christian" sacrifice, based on his stubborn insistence that all taxes are wrong, and that his ideology is more important than poor children and the men and women in our armed forces?

I do understand why impeaching this crew will be difficult, but we have to try, if for no other reason than to give people the sense that the government still works…


Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2007 The PCTC Blog