Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Health Care Debate Focuses on Legal Immigration

Will Health Care Debate Offer Fix to Corporate America's Cheap Labor Junkies?

Will legalized immigration mainline a cure-all for corporate America's smackheads? Today's New York Times article Health Care Debate Focuses on Legal Immigrants by Julia Preston reports that bipartisan lawmakers are “wrangling” over how much health coverage “to provide for immigrants who have settled in the country legally.” The article only mentions Latino immigration and not other legal immigration from countries like India who might also be eligible for subsidies under the debated health care reforms for legal immigrants. Meanwhile, Microsoft today announced it has cut an additional 800 jobs, up from its previous estimate of 5,000 by 2010 in the company's round of layoffs. An MS spokesman said positions being eliminated “will affect staff internationally and in a range of business units.” As local U.S. unemployment rates rise and millions of people lose Cobra benefits, how will the current health care debate for reform help millions of unemployed/underemployed citizens and immigrants (legal and illegal) obtain access to affordable health care?

Let's face it. Corporate America wants cheap workers, who tend to work better if they're healthy - especially when corporate America can get U.S. taxpayers to pick up the tab while still holding onto  hard won tax shelters, cuts and cheap labor loopholes. The NY Times article reports that Latino leaders are exclusively worried that Congress “might quietly cut back benefits” for legal immigrants, and provides this health policy analysis below:

They don’t want to get on government benefits because they don’t trust the government and they don’t want to do anything to damage their chances to become citizens,” said Sonal Ambegaokar, health policy analyst at the National Immigration Law Center, an immigrant advocate group in California.”

What health care provisions will be made for H-1B visa holders who are laid off and don't go home? (here is a global health insurance 800 number.) As cheap labor lobbyists in California would vigorously attest, removing the proposed five-year wait for Medicare and Medicaid that was first imposed on legal permanent residents as part of the federal welfare overhaul in 1996 would greatly help the state's neo-frat boy feudal slave lords complete their purge of dreadful American middle class citizens from employee payroll and benefits roles:

 “Some Republicans favor excluding immigrants who have been legal permanent residents for less than five years, as well as all illegal immigrants. Democrats broadly agree that illegal immigrants should be excluded, but many want all legal permanent residents to be able to participate inproposed {sic} health insurance exchanges and receive subsidized coverage if they qualify.”

Leave it to the physicians, who are our communities' first line of intelligent and compassionate defense when it comes to truly understanding the vital need for an accessible and affordable health care system for all. U.C.L.A.'s Dr. Michael A. Rodriguez explains here:

They may have conditions that don’t get identified and infectious diseases that could be prevented that put the public at risk, and they may need to use higher cost hospital services when other services become inaccessible.” 
How true. People get sick, regardless of make, color or creed, and no human being should ever suffer the indignity of being denied access to quality health care. Who will pay for it? Will corporate America's cheap labor junkies start opening their wallets? Isn't it time to bring back the 91% tax rate or will this tab be picked up via looting what's left of the American middle class?

The most important lesson to be learned from our leading economists is this: Healthy serfs make for happy feudal slave lords with even healthier, heftier, mud flap-sized bottom lines. For every one American citizen who is replaced by 4-8 cheap, imported workers, 89,000 champagne corks are popping inside boardrooms and brothels all across the state of California, creating more jobs for derivatives beast creators, pseudo-technocrats, displaced hookers, and the French liquor industry. Not to mention Afghanistan's poppy field entrepreneurs.
Like the old Irish song goes:

When immigrants' eyes are smiling, feudal slave lords' are smiling the hubris halls of Woodside, you can hear the laughter roar...”

Party on, plebes!



Anonymous said...

You are so right to suggest bringing back the 91% tax rate.I also can't believe that even having a discussion about leaving some (legal vs. illegal) immigrants out of the equation for health care would even happen.ALL humans have a right to health care, everywhere, and labeling human beings as legal or illegal is so cold.

2Truthy said...

Thanks, anon.

The sheer inhumanity of a country that would even make such distinctions as 'legal' and 'illegal' when it comes to a person's need for health care is astonishing. As I have written, people get sick and I don't care who they are or where they come from - it is the antithesis of any civil society to deny a living being treatment, or to create a class system for its delivery based upon race, creed, or country of origin. This is why I express the need to return to the 91% tax rate; if corporate American is OK with importing too many workers from abroad (legal and illegal) it should pick up the tab for their health care and their families, too. And for the rest of this country's citizenry displaced by such inhumane hiring practices.