I mentioned, in my State of the Blog post, that I was working on a draft about a controversial subject. It’s not a draft anymore. It’s a post bitches!

I have to admit: I’m part of the problem. Despite being a voter and someone who tries to keep up on what’s going on in the world, I don’t understand the current healthcare reform proposal at all. It’s not a lack of intelligence (I hope) or interest in the subject. It’s more a matter of devoting the time to understanding it. I don’t even understand my current insurance, so it’s hard to tackle a complex proposal of reforms.

I’m part of the problem because I think most people are like me. The evidence is overwhelming that people in this country are hungry for a complete overhaul of our healthcare system, from how we’re insured to how much care and meds cost, to how we balance providing care for all with maintaining a system that can still research the biggest, baddest health problems. I believe this is true of people of all political perspectives. We may disagree on how to overall the system, but there is agreement that a new system is needed. However, it’s hard work trying to figure out what’s going on in Washington, and people find it easier to spend time with their families and friends, watch entertainment and sports on TV, or just tune the Washington rancor out.

In general, I support the idea of overhauling our system. I’m very fortunate to have excellent health insurance that gives me access to the best care available. But I have relatives and friends who, because of bad luck or bad health, have no coverage. It’s hard not to be scared about what could happen to those people if a health emergency presents itself. I imagine most of my readers have family, friends, neighbors who are in the same situation.

Yet I still haven’t gotten into the details of what’s being proposed and counter-proposed. I can’t have a meaningful discussion about what’s going on because I don’t know what’s going on. And I think it’s people like me who are turning this into a circus, not the handful of nutjobs at the extremes who are getting all the attention. If the majority of people of all political views who want our system to be radically changed would speak up, those nutjobs wouldn’t be controlling the debate. The politicians wouldn’t be able to distort, demagogue, and rely on fear to motivate voters. Rather, they’d have to actually address the issues at hand.

That is where President Obama has done a poor job. I think he looked at the numbers, how they crossed political lines, and recalled from the campaign how important health care reform was to most voters, and expected those people to carry the debate. Thus, he stepped back and allowed the opponents of his plan to dominate the discussion. That quickly morphed from simple Washington partisan politics to the circus that has been taking place at townhalls across the country in recent weeks. Had he been more forceful sooner, I don’t know if the radical opponents would have seized control.

I don’t necessarily believe that his plan is correct. Remember, I don’t know all the details. But it’s been maddening listening to the debate be over things that don’t exist or matter – death panels and “keeping government out of Medicare” are two examples – rather than an actual effort to make our health care system better.

With that lengthy lead-in, I thought I would link to this rather basic overview of what is being discussed in Washington. I have a feeling most of my readers, whether conservative, liberal, or politically agnostic will benefit from reading it. I know I did. It may not change your view of what should or should not be done, but perhaps it will inform your opinion a bit.

<a href=”http://squashed.tumblr.com/post/166890864/pros-and-cons-of-the-healthcare-reform-proposal-s”>Pros and Cons of the Healthcare Reform Proposal(s)</a> –
<blockquote>Can someone explain to me, or point me in the direction of a website that can explain to me, in a clear, 10-yr. could understand, nonpartisan matter the elements, pros and cons of the proposed HealthCare reform?</blockquote>