Motherfucker. Peter Shumlin, the only American governor to make a halfway credible stab at single-payer health insurance, just threw in the towel on Green Mountain Care. In so doing, he showed all the honor of the French military capitulating to the Wehrmacht, minus the mitigating factor of continent-wide armed aggression by a revanchist German empire.
God help us. This means that Mitt Romney is functionally the closest thing the United States has ever had to Tommy Douglas, and every state and territory in the Union, with the debatable exception of Massachusetts, remains half a century behind Saskatchewan in the provision of basic government services for constituencies that have been robbed blind and given shoddy medical care by a criminally rapacious private hospital and insurance system, the baroque likes of which didn’t yet exist on either side of the border when Tommy Douglas implemented Medicare. Saskatchewan, by the way, shares a land border with two of our states. #TheMoreYouKnow.
All of this is more than most Americans know about Saskatchewan. It’s no wonder we have such a sorry-ass, self-dealing government. Medicare was expanded throughout Canada on fairly short order after its launch in Saskatchewan, so it’s not like there aren’t six other provinces and the Yukon Territory whose land borders with eleven of our states serve as hermetic seals against public policy that isn’t corrupt to the bone and contemptuous of life and health. While we’re on the subject, there’s something about Vermont that Mr. Shumlin should find very embarrassing. Hint: it lies to the north and isn’t too keen to speaka the English.
That’s right. There’s single-payer health insurance within an hour and a half drive of the Vermont statehouse. This is supposedly our most socialistic state, one whose southern border is closer to Ottawa than to the District of Columbia, and its governor just shit the bed in a half-cocked attempt to introduce across-the-board socialized medicine.
Let’s not sugarcoat any of this: we are a really fucking stupid nation. We’ve been brainwashed by racketeers. Here we have a state whose capital is a couple hours’ drive from Montreal, so it’s not like in-person consultations on best practices involve Wow Much Travels, plus it has a relatively fit and healthy population and one of the strongest, most intact civic traditions in the country. And its governor has his thumbs up his ass on the implementation of the sort of basic social insurance program that a carpetbagging Scotsman successfully introduced in Saskatchewan half a century ago.
As I’ve said before, if the Mounties aren’t watching, you can walk there from Derby Line. But first you have to want to take that fucking walk.