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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Mitt Romney and Health Care - Selling Hypocrisy

While Mitt and his wife Ann smiled enthusiastically during opening Olympic Game ceremonies in London, they also viewed an unexpected lesson on England's National Health Services, known to American right wing conservatives as socialized medicine.

Brits love their health care system enough to include its success in an entertainment version of the nation's history. Danny Boyle took advantage of an opportunity to educate the viewing world about his nation's roots as agrarian groups that evolved into an international melting pot, giving humanitarian credit to the National Health Service. .

Danny Boyle's brilliant production must have caused the Romneys to give thanks they weren't asked for their top of mind response to the pan-history production. Just imagine Mitt responding to a reporter with something like, "Gee, Ann and I really enjoyed the part about how British people love their National Health Service." Following Romney's fiasco comments, about whether or not Londoners were "ready" to host the Olympics, any critique about the opening ceremony would be like composting political disaster with dung from a horse farm.

Although Mitt Romney panders to right wing conservatives who slam health care reform as "Obamacare", he was the governor of Massachusetts who modeled the plan he's now openly criticizing.

Complicating Romney's health care communications was his lack of preparedness in a speech given during a visit to Israel, where he complimented the nation on managing health care costs. They do it through regulatory oversight provided by a health care delivery system built on efficiency, rather than on utilization. In other words, Israel provides health care for all its people by mandating they purchase insurance coverage, while providing a financial incentive to the insurers by keeping down the cost of covering the beneficiaries. Costs are controlled by keeping people well through public health initiatives and reducing unnecessary utilization of expensive elective procedures. Of course, it's true, rich Brits or Israelis, who want elective procedures, must pay for them out of pocket. But, what's wrong with that? Americans have the same plan, but we often pay twice, with extraordinarily high insurance premiums that hardly cover the cost of many procedures, forcing expensive co-pays.

When Mitt Romney finally gets back home, after photo-ops trying to be an international leader, the reality of questions he'll receive from the American press will inevitably be about how he'll roll back "Obamacare". He uses this line in stump speeches, so reporters must ask how he intends to recall a law that will benefit many Americans, especially when the Supreme Court ruled it Constitutional.

Romney must sell the hypocrisy of supporting health care reform as a governor, while complimenting Israel on it's efficiency under a mandated insurance purchase policy, while calling for an end to "Obamacare".

I don't think he should go there anymore.

But, here's an idea!

Rather than sell hypocrisy, Romney should invite Danny Boyle to the Republican National Convention, scheduled in Tampa Fla, to repeat his entertaining tribute to Britain's National Health Service. Nearby Disneyland could provide flying nurses, shown caring for the nation's tired, poor and infirm who will have insurance coverage under Obamacare.

Maybe, Romney could stand in front of Americans and claim ownership of Obamacare, so right wing extremists would finally learn something about how his model for the Affordable Care Act was created.

Instead of hypocritically criticizing Obamacare, Romney should boast about his leadership in bringing about health care reform in Massachusetts.

The Republican National Convention should open with Romney's gubernatorial portrait, now hanging in Boston's state capitol, where his health care reform law is painted, laying right next to his wife's photograph.

Getting back to the point, Romney is selling right wing hypocrisy when he stumps about repealing Obamacare. This horse is "out of the barn". Rather than selling hypocrisy, Romney should show leadership and educate right wing extremists about the value of health care reform.

Romney can't sell his hypocrisy for much longer. It's estimated 35.8 million viewers watched Boyle's tribute to Britain's National Health Service during the Olympic opening. It's possible this "educable" moment moved popular opinion away from the slander socialized medicine has experienced by right wing extremists. 

Whether Romney learned anything by watching Boyle's tribute is a question American media must ask when he's defending his hypocritical position on health care reform.



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