Monday, August 24, 2009   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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Our country's corporatized health care system is so uncaring that 76 percent of Americans tell pollsters it must be "fundamentally changed" or "completely rebuilt." But Rick Scott says uh-uh – what health care needs is more corporatization – and even Wal-Martization.

Rick who? He's the ex-CEO of the massive Columbia/HCA hospital chain and a laissez-fairyland zealot who is feverishly opposing Barack Obama's health reform ideas.

I say "ex-CEO" because his profit-above-all-else approach to running Columbia ran it into a very deep ditch – and got him fired in 1997. Among his "health care" tactics were overbilling Medicare, giving kickbacks to doctors who referred patients to his hospitals, and dangerously understaffing hospitals to cut costs. Columbia later pled guilty and paid $1.7 billion to settle fraud charges against it.

Yet, he's running TV ads and infomercials featuring him as a health care "expert." Scott's ads attack Obama with that tired, old bugaboo of "Government Run Health Care," and to coordinate his attack, he has hired the same PR hacks who ran the infamous "Swift Boat Veterans" assault on John Kerry in 2004.

Scott's television blitz features theatrical horror stories of "socialized medicine," direly warning that this is Obama's plan. Only... it isn't. Not even close. Private doctors, nurses, and others of our choosing would continue to provide our health care. The change that Obama seeks is merely in how we pay these practitioners. By offering a new "public option" we'd have the choice of sticking with an insurance corporation, or buying into a public insurance pool.

This is Jim Hightower saying... This disgraced ex-CEO is flailing ridiculously at the strawman of government-run health care – which no one has even proposed. To keep posted on Rick Scotts latest fraud, go www.healthcareforamericanow.org.


Obama Faces Foe on Health Who'll Spend, The New York Times, January 2, 2009.

Swiftboating Health Care Reform Center for American Progress June 1, 2009.

Swiftboating Healthcare Solutions May 11, 2009.

Take On Rich Lobbyists to Save Health Care Reform,May 5, 2009.

"Support For Health Care Overhaul, But It's not 1993," March 19, 2009.

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