Thursday, August 2, 2012

Deaf And Dumb

It should be no surprise to anyone who knows our staff members, or anyone who read our commentary Wednesday, that we far prefer the substance of the new detailed study about Mitt Romney's tax plans, over the ridiculous noise of the Chick-fil-A brouhaha.

In short, our opinion on the Chick-fil-A mess is simple: If a CEO's job is to make their company successful, rule # 1 should always be don't alienate ANY potential customers with your personal beliefs. That includes not donating corporate funds to hate groups of any kind. Any executive that  violates their professional duties so blatantly with personal opinions has committed professional malpractice, and should expect the negative reaction of shareholders and offended customers alike.

That said, anyone who expects corporate CEOs to like and respect all the same people that they do needs their head examined. Corporations don't care who you love. They just want your money.

Now that we've warmed up by taking on those more concerned with the image of their chicken vendor than taxes, it should be noted there are people who continue beating their own drum - loudly - about another subject with significantly more substance: health care in America.

In case you missed it, a study released by the University of Nebraska Medical Center this week found that the number of uninsured Nebraska residents grew significantly - by 67% - from 2000 to 2010, before the Affordable Care Act had truly taken effect. During that same time, Nebraskans with employer-based health insurance dropped by nearly 10%.

For anyone who is more concerned with the substance of responsibly managing their health care needs instead of obsessing over the politics of image, the results of the UNMC study confirm that the President's health care law came to be when Americans and Nebraskans needed it most.

What's more, according to the latest poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation,  Americans also believe - by a double digit margin - that President Obama is more qualified and more able to control the cost of health care than Mitt Romney. Two-thirds of Americans would also like to see Obamacare used to significantly expand Medicare.

All this data came down just as the next phase of the Affordable Care Act clicked into effect on Wednesday.

The next phase of the law requires insurance companies to refund millions of dollars that those companies had previously been wasting on frivolous costs like "administrative expenses", instead of spending customer premiums on patient care.

The next phase of the ACA law also requires insurance companies to finally treat women's preventative health services equal to that of men. Unsurprisingly, activating that part of the ACA law didn't prevent some religious zealots from continuing to fight the pyrrhic battle that we've discussed previously (more than once), with insane comparisons between allowing women access to birth control being on the same level as 9/11 or Pearl Harbor.

To those idiots who continue to bang their fearmongering drum, deaf to facts and dumb to the world, we have the same level of contempt for you that we do your chicken sandwich-focused brethren.

Americans - including your fellow Nebraskans - need access to health care. Thanks to President Obama and the Democrats, they now have it. Put down your drum, shove your chicken sandwich in your mouth, and when you need to go to the doctor, be glad your fellow citizens can now afford to do so too.

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