There's no denying that US health care is FUBAR.
It has everyone up in arms. The problem is, you have your zealots, fearmongers, and FUD-meisters out there all over stirring up the pot for whatever reason. Mostly money & power.
I personally don't want the current bill because the US congress is just plain out of control. We have two crowds here:
1) the "we won the election, so fuck you, we're going to do whatever we want, and if you don't agree with us, you're a heartless astroturfing bastard, and we won the election, so fuck you, we're going to do whatever we want" crowd,
2) the: "help, help, we're being repressed, we need your money so we can get in charge again and say 'me, too' like we did the last time" crowd.
These are the same crowds that BOTH freely admit they don't read or understand what they're voting on, and the bill in question seems to be changing every time someone finds something they don't like or that gets bad press (and this is the bill that was supposed to pass no matter what). It isn't health care bill per se that is being protested, but a statement of an absolute lack of faith in our elected representatives. Calling the protesters 'unamerican' or treating them like their concerns are false is just fueling that mistrust and turning it into voter rage. These are people in their 60's -- they Just Don't Protest here. Given that reconciliation was boldly proposed as a way to sneak full-blown cap & trade into law, there's very few in the center or the right that believes anything said anymore. If you can do it for one and are proud of it, why not the other? If you can say with a straight face that "we won, you lost, get over it" to people with this level of rage, you may find out that you have a lot fewer friends than you thought you did. In the US, it's all about the undecided middle.
It's no wonder people are getting upset and saying stupid stuff. I do enjoy Obama whingeing like a little girl about being protested, though. The irony is quite enjoyable, but, then, I have the sound of a heart breaking as my ring tone, so I guess I *am* a heartless bastard. Hard to believe that Bush II manned up better, but if you go back in time, his words about protesters were "they have a right to do it".
Every health care system has its good and its bad points. What you Brits have would never work in the US, but that's not a bad thing -- just a fact. We have issues queueing up, and that won't change. Ever. That's the main initial miscalculation that BO made (but impugning the character of people protesting is major fail -- he could have handled it better, but he didn't). We'll get health care right eventually. In the meantime, a lot of people are going to whine, badmouth each other and act like a bunch of idiots, while their elected representatives clean up financially/get elected. Try not to take it personally. It's just like the monkey cage at the zoo -- fun to watch, but watch out for flying turds! (it kind of surprised me that that particular turd made it all the way across the Atlantic).
AC, because I'm watching out for turds and am closer to the monkey cage. PH, because she needs free health care.