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View Diary: CENSURE: Rep. Joe Wilson (328 comments)

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  •  Oh, here's an nice whuppin for Addison Graves... (2+ / 0-)

    ...and indicates health care VA benefits being lapped up by Daddy and his son, who just announced for SC AG today, while voting against benefits for Iraqi Vets:

    Posted  Thursday, September 10, 2009 3:48 PM

    Joe Wilson's Dirty Health-Care Secret

    By Adam Weinstein

    Poor Joe Wilson. The conservative Republican representative from South Carolina stepped in it Wednesday night when he broke with centuries of decorum by screaming, "You lie!" at President Obama during his health-care speech to a joint session of Congress.


    Except that he's not─at least not when it comes to his, and his family's, government-run health care. As a retired Army National Guard colonel, Wilson gets a lot of benefits (one of which, apparently, was not a full appreciation of the customs, traditions, and courtesies that mandate respect for one's commander in chief). And with four sons in the armed services, the entire Wilson brood has enjoyed multiple generations of free military medical coverage, known as TRICARE.

    Yes, it's true. As politicos and town-hall criers debate the finer points of the public option, employer mandates, coverage for undocumented immigrants, and who's more Hitler-like, they seem to miss a larger point: the United States has single-payer health care. It covers 9.5 million active-duty servicemen and women, military retirees, and their dependents─including almost a 10th of all Californians and Floridians, and nearly a quarter of a million residents of Wilson's home state.

    Military beneficiaries like Wilson─who, as a retiree, is eligible for lifetime coverage─never have to worry about an eye exam, a CT scan, a prolonged labor, or an open-heart surgery. They have access not only to the military's 133,500 uniformed health professionals, but cooperating private doctors as well─whose fees are paid by the Department of Defense. It's high-quality care, too: surveys from 2007 and 2008 list TRICARE among "the best health insurer(s) in the nation" by customer satisfaction. Yet Wilson insists government-run health care is a problem.

    To be fair, Wilson has been consistent in his policymaking if not his personal life: according to his last congressional opponent, Wilson voted 11 times against health care for veterans in eight years, even as he voted "aye" for the Iraq War (during the debate on the war vote, he even called one Democrat "viscerally anti-American"─several times).

    He voted to cut veterans' benefits─not his own─to make room for President George W. Bush's tax cuts. He repeatedly voted for budgets that slashed funding to the Veterans Administration and TRICARE. And perhaps most bizarrely, he refused ─ repeatedly ─ to approve Democratic-led initiatives that would have extended TRICARE coverage to all reservists and National Guard members, even though a disproportionate number of them have served multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan─and many lost access to their civilian work benefits when they did so.


    What does that mean? Nothing─except that Joe Wilson was against government-run health care before he was for it. And now he's against it again. Just not when it comes to his own flesh and blood.

    Adam Weinstein, an Iraq veteran, is a freelance journalist. He is uninsured.

    2006 Sig: Obama 2008

    2009 Sig: "Thank you America." - Overheard from the rest of our planet.

    Facts are stupid things. -- Ronald Reagan

    by Dunvegan on Thu Sep 10, 2009 at 04:05:11 PM PDT

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