Kansas governor, Sam Brownback, is typical of so many radically conservative GOP politicians these days. He, and they, seem to take great pleasure in bashing the poor and disabled. In a recent statement about Medicaid he said that permitting an expansion of Medicaid would be “morally reprehensible” because it could provide assistance to able-bodied adults who choose not to work.
Well, my mother worked her entire life, mostly in factories. At age 50 she went to nursing school and became a LPN and worked until retiring at age 65. Like millions of working Americans she ended up with not nearly enough savings or net worth to cover her needs in retirement, especially after some major medical issues.
After her savings were exhausted my brother and I picked up the ball and carried it until it became financially impossible to continue doing so. We then did what many families are forced to do, turned to Medicaid for relief. As powers of attorney we signed whatever assets she possessed, which were few, and along with Medicare and a supplemental insurance policy we got her to the Pearly Gates as comfortably as possible.
Statistically my mother represents the majority of Americans, people who work, do everything they can to support themselves, but for any number of reasons just can’t pay for everything, especially medical expenses and long-term residential care.
In any system, private or government, there are imperfections and inefficiencies. There are people who learn the ropes and scam the system. But while they represent a small minority the Sam Brownbacks know that a part of human nature is to envy or resent someone getting something they don’t get. So the Brownbacks preach the word that Medicaid is for the lazy and the cheats in order to gain the backing of those Americans who are motivated by emotion and not logic and knowledge.
One does hear voices in the Republican Party saying the party should stop bashing the poor but obviously assholes like Brownback are having nothing to do with that.