Should health care legislation pass, it will be the deciding battle for the soul of America.
No one should be under the illusion that there are profits to be made under the aegis of health care reform. As Paddy Chayefsky said: "The world is a business, Mr. Beale..."
But the question of which profit-making agenda the American people should sanction -- one which emphasizes death or the other which emphasizes life -- is at the point of being definitively answered with the passing or scuttling of this legislation.
The highly profitable pursuit of war had defined America's soul for eight, cold years, that profit being accessible only to the few elite entities which have preyed upon the nation's desperate need to matter again. Years of unregulated activity led to corporate empowerment on a scale never before experienced, insinuating itself to the point of breeding a new kind of thought about what it means to be an American: patriotism = consumerism.
Too distracted by manufactured enemies, cowed by corporato-facist media bullies and overwhelmed by a tsunami of glittering toys, the citizenry allowed the thieves to thrive unopposed. A cultural coup had taken place. And the right wing rubbed its hands, licked its lips and robbed the nation blind of its treasure and prestige.
And its soul.
The next potential windfall, however, is in a new approach (new for this new century, that is). It is one which takes the public -- previously considered malleable, vulnerable chattel -- and places its psychological and physical well-being as the leading justification for making a profit.
The better Americans are treated, the healthier their lifestyles, the smarter they become, well gosh darn it, the more profitable the country will be.
To the millions who have evolved into consumo-bots, who bristle at the thought that America should in any way help its infirm, respect its elderly, care for its veterans, restore its educational institutions, have a responsible media, regulate the impulses for greed in business and in government, encourage community service, counteract the onslaught of corporate ideology, wage peace instead of war, the thought of health care reform passing is absolute anathema; the reality of its passing is further indication that their destructive doctrines are falling away like dead, lifeless leaves.
This is one war which, should health care win, will truly be profitable.