Saturday, September 29, 2012

Lou Dobbs' "War on the Middle Class" 6: Education and Health Care

In my latest reading of Lou Dobbs' War on the Middle Class: How the Government, Big Business, and Special Interest Groups Are Waging War on the American Dream and How to Fight Back, I read the chapter on education, and started the chapter on health care.

On education, Dobbs (like Arianna Huffington in Third World America) articulated views that span the political spectrum.  Dobbs laments that a lot of government spending on education goes to bureaucracy rather than improving education, and yet Dobbs believes that teachers should be paid more because higher pay will attract quality teachers.  At the same time, Dobbs is not for paying teachers more based on seniority----the system that many teachers' unions endorse----but rather he believes in merit pay.  Regarding higher education, Dobbs is critical of cut-backs in student loans, the inhibition on loan consolidation, and the increase in the student loan interest rate.  (This book was published in 2006, which was during the Bush II Administration.)  And Dobbs is also against government cutbacks in job training (but Republicans usually respond that they're against wasteful duplication of job training programs, not job training itself).

On health care, Dobbs criticizes President George W. Bush for focusing on Social Security and how federal courts handle moral issues rather than health care, which is of concern to many Americans.  Dobbs notes that the American health care system is driving people to bankruptcy, even as the oppressive bankruptcy law that was passed under George W. Bush (due to the influence of special interests) strips bankruptcy of its status as a refuge!  Dobbs also does not care for the prescription drug benefit because it offers seniors choices, yet it does so in complex language and thus many seniors do not understand their options (and, according to Dobbs, the government officials who are there to help seniors in this communicate inaccurate information).  Meanwhile, health insurance companies profit from this "benefit".  Dobbs lays into the boogeymen of both the right and also the left: the trial lawyers, the pharmaceuticals, and the health insurance companies.

2 comments:

  1. Say, James, I can't figure out how to email you...I wonder if you would be interested in reviewing my latest book? John's Gospel: The Way It Happened is a sequel to Revelation. I have Advance Reader Copies available, let me know if this interests you!

    Lee Harmon
    The Dubious Disciple

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Lee! Yes, I'd like to read and blog through that. Please send me an e-mail at jamesbradfordpate@yahoo.com, and we can make arrangements.

    ReplyDelete

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