June 28, 2004

Through the Looking Glass

I just tuned in to the Sunday C-SPAN showing of Prime Minister's Question Time to hear conservative Tory leader Michael Howard lambasting Blair because the British National Health Service isn't as good as the health service in France and Sweden. (France and Sweden possibly have the best healthcare systems in the world, based on overall quality.) Now, Blair went on to say that the conservative party's real policy was to take money out of the NHS to subsidize private health care (Hey, guess what? In Britain, if you want to pay for private care, you can. No one forces you to use public services if you don't want to.), but that's not the point.

Can you imagine a top Republican attacking a Democrat for not properly supporting the public health service? Probably not. That likely has something to do with the fact that you can barely find a Democrat to even defend the idea of a public health service. (OTOH, the British public would skin their politicians alive if they thought they didn't support the NHS. Americans barely seem to believe that they have the right to ask for one. Coincidence? I think not.) This is how far to the right the center of this country is. The conservative party in Britain is more liberal on healthcare than the ostensibly liberal party in America.

A cookie for the first journalist to have a blinding revelation and notice this in public.

Posted by natasha at June 28, 2004 05:27 AM | Health/Medicine/Health Care | Technorati links |