Friday, March 06, 2009

75 years of lies from conservatives on healthcare

History sometimes is just one big circle. Take for instance, the national debate on healthcare. As far back as 1935, there are numerous examples of health-care reform opponents reflexively lobbing the charge "socialized medicine" at any and all progressive reform proposals.

Media Matters, always on alert to counteract the sea of lies that issue daily from the right, cites 16 seperate cases over the past 75 years where conservatives have stymied progressive attempts to enact health-care proposals offering universal healthcare, time and time relying on the clich├ęd claim of "socialized medicine."

Speaking to a specific instance on February 27, when Rush Limbaugh dusted off this well-worn canard, Media Matters notes:

Rush Limbaugh claimed during his February 27 morning radio update that "[t]he Obama budget ... funds the relentless drive toward socialized medicine" -- a statement that is neither accurate nor original. In fact, as the Urban Institute wrote in an April 2008 analysis, "socialized medicine involves government financing and direct provision of health care services," and therefore, progressive health-care reform proposals do not "fit this description." The analysis also noted: "Similar rhetoric was used to defeat national health care reform proposals in the 1990s and, with less success, to argue against the creation of Medicare in the 1960s." Indeed, a Media Matters for America analysis found that dating as far back as the 1930s -- with respect to at least 16 different reform initiatives -- conservatives have attempted to smear those proposals by calling them "socialized medicine" or a step toward that inevitable result.

So much for Rush's own claim of being "the truth detector."

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