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September 21, 2007


I rather like Chris Dodd's view on the President's threat to veto S-CHIP funding:

"While he reportedly plans to call for up to $200 billion to continue a war that his top general can't even say is making the country safer, George Bush is rejecting the idea that we would spend less than one third of that amount for the health of America's children.

"That says all that needs to be said about this President's priorities."

Of course, that's a bit unfair: Bush is vetoing this bill not because it's too costly, but because giving uninsured children health coverage will make them dependent on the teat of the state, and we don't want the little parasites nursing at the Department of Health and Human Services forever.

But a point of clarification: Though Bush is constantly complaining that "Congress has made a decision to expand [SCHIP] eligibility up to $80,000," and that children whose parents make that much shouldn't get health insurance, or should have to pay for it out of their allowance, or something. But as the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities found, "at least 85 percent of the otherwise-uninsured children who would gain coverage under the bill have incomes below states’ current SCHIP eligibility limits." In other words, the new funding isn't going to expand the program's cutoffs so much as allow it to fulfill it's current obligations, which, for now, it lacks the money to actually do. If the compromise S-CHIP bill passes, the states will be able to reorient the program to covering all children beneath the cut-off, rather than keeping quiet to effectively ration -- yes, ration -- the coverage.

But that's the reality of Bush's position. It's not so much his funding preferences that are at work. Rather, his ideology called for the government to pursue a hopeless war that's killed thousands and triggered a sectarian civil war, but is outraged by the idea of the government helping children attain health coverage.

Ah, compassionate conservatism.

September 21, 2007 | Permalink


There's no profit to be had in giving health insurance away to poor children. But war is always a good time to do business.

Posted by: Stephen | Sep 21, 2007 11:03:12 AM

one has to give credit to the administration for maintaining a kind of libertarian/authoritarian duplicity that can't possibly be self-consistent and in most cases simply boils down to purposefully making those choices that do the most harm, all while still getting a third of the country to go along with them.

Posted by: Cody | Sep 21, 2007 1:32:44 PM

I want the state to pay for MY health insurance, too. And my housing. By God, food is a necessity and I need some kind of entertainment to keep me from going insane.

Hillary? Hillary? I need it all, bebe.

Posted by: El Viajero | Sep 21, 2007 10:27:18 PM

El Viajero is doing class right wing troll'ing - change the subject! change the subject! They know they can't justify Bush's veto so they must bring up "booga booga" straw man arguments. Lame. Go back to Free Republica where you belong.

Posted by: RobertSeattle | Sep 25, 2007 12:44:18 AM

btw El Viajero,
the government is already paying for all those things for you, and so am i.
Farm subsidies
School subsidies,
Housing subsidies
Media subsidies
except the top tier gets the cream and we get the crumbs.
an oh yeah, why aren't you over 'in country' defending your right to be stupid?

Posted by: paul | Sep 25, 2007 4:36:34 PM

Hey El Viagro! If you want the state to pay for your health insurance, get elected to Congress. If you want the state to pay for your housing, quit your job and go live in a shelter. If you need some food, there's plenty of "Reagan cheese" down at the foodbank. There's plenty of abundance in this fine country. Remember what Saint Ronald said: "There's no hunger in America."

Posted by: wad spicer | Sep 26, 2007 2:29:06 PM

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