September 26th, 2009

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Dealing Death

Cartoonist Jim Morin shows us a real healthcare death panel, and Pat Oliphant unmasks another merchant of death.

Death Panel Not Advocating Violence, but...

(Both discovered via All Hat No Cattle.)

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I Think It’s When Somebody’s Sick

DJ Tom Clay created this audio mashup back in 1971. I hadn’t heard it for a long time, but I remembered it instantly.

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Not an Accident

Paul Krugman, on Real Time With Bill Maher:

These past thirty years, the Right in America has had two big things: it was Social Conservatism and Economic Conservatism. And “we’re gonna stop all of these, gayness and drugs and sex and miscegenation and all these things,” right? They’re gonna stop all that, and “we’re gonna cut taxes on the rich and we’re gonna deregulate and we’re gonna make it possible…”

And they’ve lost all the battles on the social side. America’s gotten more and more liberal on the social side. Won almost all the battles on the economic side.

That’s not an accident. That’s a question of priorities. They actually kinda like seeing the social liberals keep on winning, ’cause it keeps their base riled up, so they can win the other stuff.

2004 — anybody remember that election? Bush ran as the nation’s defender against gay-married terrorists, and then two days after the election he said, “and now I have a mandate to privatize social security.” Right? That will show you what it’s really about.

As a social liberal, I have a hard time accepting that people of my ilk have “kept on winning” on social issues. Maybe it’s true in the long term. I do remember that George W. Bush insisted we needed a Constitutional Amendment to ban gay marriage before the 2004 election, and dropped the issue immediately after the election. I remember reading some proponent of gay rights who said it showed that Bush’s heart was in the right place. Personally, I thought it showed that nobody should trust George W. Bush as far as they could throw the Washington Monument.

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Not Just An Economy

I’ve been catching up on a backlog of TV programs I’ve recorded but not yet watched. I just watched a film called Money-Driven Medicine that ran last month on Bill Moyer’s Journal. (I thought you could watch it online, but it’s not working for me. Don’t miss seeing it if you get a chance. It’s educational, and moving.)

The narrator introduces a Harvard professor of medical economics named Rashi Fein by quoting him:

We live in a society, not just in an economy.

That’s a good point, I think. It should be obvious, but somehow I think we’ve forgotten that fact in recent decades. It would be good to remember it from now on.