So, when I heard the news...I did what I think Ted Kennedy would have like me to do as an every day Jane Doe American: I read the bill (pdf). All of it.
Officially H.R. 3200, it is the bill known commonly as the Health Care Reform Bill. I know now that it's not merely 1000 pages, but 1017. Only a few hundred pages more than the longest Harry Potter book. This isn't as good a read, but I devoured it just the same.
I know now, for myself, not because I've been told, but because I read it for myself that there is no mention of death panels.
Any citizen - can read the bill. Such is the power of the Internet that I can take the time to read and comprehend the same information available to anyone and everyone. The Internet is the great equalizer of information. It's all out there. All you have to do is connect the dots.
All you have to do is read.
So the Democrats have come up with 1017 pages of proposed health care reform. It left me feeling satisfied and with a few questions. But most of them come from protecting our identities, medical histories and private data. But as to what this administration is attempting to accomplish with health care, it would be a benefit to every American, not just the privileged few - namely those we elect to represent our interests.
I also read the Republicans overly simplistic 4 page rebuttal that they claim is their better plan. Seriously, where did they find the time to write four whole pages between kissing Limbaugh's ass and letting the bullshit of Hannity and Beck fly? If the devil is in the details, then the Republican image is that of angels as they claim that the reform they never bothered to institute and still don't really feel is necessary, but all right, since you're whining about it, here's a plan we slapped together and by the way, if we manage to defeat the Democratic plan, there's no way in hell you're getting any sort reform, but here it is anyhow.
I suppose the Dems will use Ted Kennedy's death as some sort of rallying point - pass health care as a memorial - do what they should have done.
"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." That the hour of Ted Kennedy's death is convenient to the cause of healthcare, hopefully will not eclipse the true patriot and statesman he was.