Sunday, August 30, 2009

Health Care Reform And Public Defenders

I'm one of those sitting back watching the health care reform debate and shaking my head. So many lies, so many idiots. Not a single intelligent debate is to be had anywhere.

The town hall meetings are an orchestrated joke. That the media claims some of these screaming nuts are actually "scared of what's going to happen to their health care," is a disgrace. Not one of these chanting nut jobs has read any health care legislation or knows a single detail of possible reform. They're no different than the people standing at the polls on election day who for a sandwich and a few dollars are touting a certain candidate, and wearing their shirt.

So maybe we can have a somewhat lucid debate here.

Let's agree that the rich will always have better everything. Better cars, better food, better housing, and they'll get richer (the rich get richer, that's how you say it, right?)

Now when it comes to lawyers and doctors, that's a matter of perception.

When celebrities and general "rich" people "get off," it's only because they "paid for justice." If any celebrity or "rich" person was represented by any of our great public defenders, we would, well, not know what to say.

We, meaning the same idiots that are paraded into town hall meetings, assume that private lawyers are great and public defenders suck.

We also assume (we meaning those ignorant maniacs attending town hall meetings) that our health care is great (if we have it) and anything else, well, will kill us.

So here's my question, bear with me:

When someone is arrested, they have options. If they can't afford a lawyer, one will be appointed to them (you all watch Law & Order, you know). If you can afford one, hire one. Certain lawyers are in private practice. Some are in private practice but take court appointed cases, and some work as full time public defenders.

Why can't we have a health care system like this?

The government creates a basic health care plan. It's not great, but it's there. They open a few hundred clinics across the country and staff them with doctors (some of the 50% of doctors who say they want out of medicine because they're not making money) Pay those doctors a decent salary.

Then, have some doctors sign on to take some of these patients in their private practice. These are akin to the private lawyers that take court appointed cases. The doctors that don't want to participate, can take care of the "rich" that have health care policies.

I know this is a terrible idea and there's 1,000 reasons why it will never work, but one thing I've noticed through this entire debate is that no alternative plan has been proposed. I assume then that those against health care reform just want things to stay the same. Yes? No?

Brian Tannebaum is a criminal defense lawyer in Miami, Florida practicing in state and federal court. Read his free ebook The Truth About Hiring A Criminal Defense Lawyer. To learn more about Brian and his firm, Tannebaum Weiss, please visit

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