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Behind Trumpcare’s Facade

This Week in the Narrative 26

Nigel Clarke

It is to be expected that the entities which benefit from oppression will not sit idly by in the face of growing social activism, and increasing unrest within the population.

Look around the United States. People are taking to the streets for numerous causes under the umbrella of ‘dissatisfaction with a broken system.’ The 1% is certainly asking how much longer they can tell the 99% to eat cake while using their considerable resources to maintain their position.

Establishment backlash to this unusual period of engagement can come, and is coming, from many angles; most explicitly through government representatives, and the mainstream media.

This week, as President Trump’s latest healthcare proposal made its way through the House of Representatives, mainstream media presented the story in a predictable manner.

Similarly to the first attempt at ‘Trumpcare,’ the majority of coverage was devoted to the clash of personalities; Trump and Ryan and smoky back rooms, the ostentatious opposition by establishment Democrats.

Very occasionally, certain outlets would slip in the most surface level of detail; namely, uncontextualized numbers.

We were told upwards of 24 million people would lose their coverage, without being told how or why this was the case. Many sources were especially vigorous in their condemnation, rightly so perhaps, of the program’s tax cuts for the rich – reported as exclusively for those making over $200,000 per year – without explaining where the cuts would come from, and how this might tangibly impact someone not making enough to get a tax break.

Unfortunately, as the saying goes; “The devil is in the details” – perhaps more literal here than usual, depending on your opinion of Trump and the GOP. Beyond personality conflicts and mainstream media talking points lurks a horror which permeates the wants and desires of an establishment power structure struggling for control.

Consider the tax cuts for the rich within Trump’s healthcare, created mainly through cuts in services for the poor and middle class.

New enrollment in Medicaid would be effectively stopped in 2020 through the ending of funding for any newly eligible people; meaning if you turned 27 after that point and were thus off your parent’s coverage, Medicaid would not be available to you, neither if you experienced a sudden drop of income or access to insurance, such as in the loss of a job.

Further complicating matters is that ‘Trumpcare’ would allow insurers to (once again) consider a patient’s pre-existing conditions when deciding on a premium to charge. In their benevolence, Republicans included the ‘continuous coverage provision,’ which stipulates higher premiums can’t be charged unless the patient has a lapse in their insurance for more than 63 days. Again, a sudden loss of insurance, such as in the loss of a job, would for many people assuredly mean a lapse of more than 63 days.

Picture yourself as a worker at a meat-packing plant. Would you lodge a complaint about unsafe work conditions and risk getting fired if you had chronic health problems (perhaps from working there) – pre-existing conditions you might say – and your employment meant your ability to obtain health insurance?

Picture yourself as the member of a union going on strike, realizing that every day closer to 63 was another day of leverage for the company you were negotiating with.

‘Trumpcare’ would also allow states to opt out of so-called’ essential health benefits’ – a group of medical services insurers is obligated to cover; things like emergency services, prescription drugs, mental health services, pregnancy and newborn care, and a host of other services for children.

It is chilling to see this direct threat not only to the individual but to the individual’s children.

Would you leave work to ‘Occupy,’ or ‘Fight for 15,’ or to show solidarity on Mayday, if your child had health issues requiring medical treatment?

Bernie Sanders constantly says, “people are working longer hours for lower wages.”

Tax cuts aside, this is exactly the goal of Trump’s healthcare; to coerce people into silence and compliance regarding their declining working conditions and wages through the carrot of barely adequate health care. Nose to the grindstone or risk death … your children too.

It is this implicit oppression which is most crucial to understand when discussing the current attempts at health care with friends, coworkers, acquaintances. Unsurprisingly, this is exactly what is furthest from the mainstream narrative.

While mainstream media presents pro-wrestling style personality politics, the establishment power structure uses health care as a soft front for the dismantling of worker’s rights, and the suppression of an increasingly agitated population.

Quote of the Week:

Nigel Clarke


Read More This Week in the Narrative

Week 25: A New Home

Week 24: The Impregnability of Disaster

Week 23: The Mother Of All Bombs

Week 22: It’s War … Again


Written by Nigel Clarke

Writer and notorious vagabond. From the frozen north. Follow Nigel on Twitter @Nig_Clarke.

Nigel Clarke is a Writer for Progressive Army.

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Behind Trumpcare’s Facade