But I don’t think it would have been in bad taste for members of the press–especially those who cover health care–to point out, as did San Francisco Chronicle columnist David Lazarus, that the president was attended by a team of physicians who made a house call, that they were government employees and that it cost the president nothing. That, of course is how it should be for a president; free medical care for himself, his wife and his daughters come with the job.
But when the president told an audience in Cleveland that “people have access to health care in America; after all, you just go to an emergency room,” he might have thought about his coming procedure and connected the dots to the millions of Americans who don’t have colonoscopies (and risk cancer) because they have no insurance. Or reporters who know how crowded emergency rooms are when their kids need help in the middle of the night, might have reminded him or one of his spokespersons of the realities of health care without house calls.
So I wonder if anyone in the press or on his own staff points out to him that he and every member of his family, including George H.W. and Barbara Bush, have been cared for by government-run health care for as long as they’ve been in public service. And they’ll have government-paid health insurance and care for as long as they live.
No one would seriously object to providing government-paid health care to the president, his family and other government officials, even Vice-president Cheney. They are all entitled to health insurance and it’s mostly paid for by the public. But in addition to their insurance, lawmakers at the Capitol as well as White House officials have doctors on call, and a military or government hospital is available, for the flu, a broken bone or a colonoscopy. And as far as I know, these officials, from the president on down, have not complained about government-run health care–for themselves.
To their way of thinking, the finest of everything, on the taxpayers, is merely their due for all the hard work of being the Ruling Class. The peasants? Fuck 'em.