Whats in the Health Care Bill

Below is the first of a two-part series on the Democrats bill, HR 3590 – the health care reforms.

Health care reform in the United States has finally arrived.

After years of debate, President Barack Obama signed HR 3590 into law on March 23rd, 2010, heralding a new chapter in health care for millions of Americans.

The Democrats are ecstatic over the win. But is this really a victory for the American working class?

Lets take a look.

Health Care Reform’s History:

Health care reform, or “Obamacare” as it’s sometimes called, has its roots in Hilary Clinton’s own health care battle of the 1990’s. But it may surprise you exactly where in that debate its major ideas come from.

No, it wasn’t Hilary’s legislative proposals which inspired Obama’s  reformation – it was in fact Republican proposals which formed Obama’s health care overhaul. Specifically, it was a health care strategy first articulated by the conservative think tank the Heritage Foundation. You can still read the original plans here and here.

Notably, amongst its original supporters were Richard Nixon, George Bush senior and even Mitt Romney.

Amongst their proposals were the creation of an “individual mandate,” and the founding of “insurance exchanges” – both of which are now pillars of the Democrats’ reforms; but originally, the republicans supported them as good “free market” alternatives to government entitlement programs like Medicare.

This is precisely why Obamacare passed where numerous other health reform efforts failed. It was a good, free market option that CEO’s could get behind. “Government is,” after all “the shadow cast by big business over society,” as John Dewey once remarked.

That being said, lets take a closer look at the contours of this new silhouette on the next page.


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