Skip to main content

Why are the billionaires always laughing?

Because they know the corporate media will never call bullshit on their bullshit.

Why are the billionaires laughing?

It’s easy to laugh when the corporate press treats you as a glorious success instead of the epitome of a broken social order. Billionaires laugh because they know the corporate media prefers to fawn over them rather than hold them to account.

Today, we ask you to support our nonprofit, independent journalism because we are not impressed by billionaires flying into space, their corporations despoiling our health and planet, or their vast fortunes safely concealed in tax havens across the globe. We are not laughing.

We are hard at work producing journalism for the common good. With our Fall Campaign underway, please support this mission today. We cannot do it without you.

Support Our Work -- Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Every donation—large or small—helps us bring you the news that matters.

"Count us in!" said National Nurses United (NNU), which has been holding "barnstorms" nationwide to build grassroots momentum for single-payer. (Photo: National Nurses United/Twitter)

Jayapal Says Medicare for All Bill Coming in Two Weeks as Expert Calls Plan 'Astonishingly Strong'

The Medicare for All Act will come as some Democrats push ahead with half-measures that critics say would "not address the unsustainable cost increases" and cruelty of the for-profit status quo

Jake Johnson

In just two weeks, what is being heralded as an "astonishingly strong" plan to create a Medicare for All system in the United States will be introduced in the U.S. House.

With energized grassroots activists, more than 90 congressional co-sponsors, and public opinion all firmly on her side, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) announced on Wednesday that she plans to introduce her 150-page Medicare for All bill the week after next.

One healthcare justice organizer who has read a detailed overview of the bill said it should now be considered the new "baseline" for national single-payer legislation.

"Thousands of nurses and health care activists who participated in the National Week of Action are fired up and ready to do what it takes to pass the Medicare for All Act of 2019."
—National Nurses United
"Medicare for All is the solution our country needs. Long-term care, mental health services, women's reproductive health. All without co-pays or deductibles," declared Jayapal, who sent a letter to her House colleagues this week urging them to sign on to the legislation. "Join me in two weeks and let's make history with the Medicare for All Act."

Speaking to the Washington Post, Jayapal said she expects to introduce her bill with at least 100 original co-sponsors.

"Count us in!" said National Nurses United (NNU), which has been holding "barnstorms" nationwide to build grassroots momentum for single-payer. "Thousands of nurses and healthcare activists who participated in the National Week of Action are fired up and ready to do what it takes to pass the Medicare for All Act of 2019."

In an analysis of Jayapal's legislation and the broader fight for Medicare for All in Splinter on Thursday, single-payer proponent and health policy expert Tim Faust offered strong praise for the Medicare for All Act after reading an overview of the bill.

Noting that he is "generally inclined to distrust the policy gestures of elected officials," Faust wrote that—while not perfect—Jayapal's bill "appears to meet all of the criteria for a proper single-payer plan."

"It includes long-term care with a preference toward home health. It sets guidelines for care but lets doctors overrule them. It is, by all accounts, the first actual robust single-payer bill of the post-[Affordable Care Act] era," he argued. "If you are looking for a bill to call 'Medicare for All,' this is the one. It must not be permitted to be weakened."

"Only Medicare for All will bring down national health spending and guarantee healthcare as a human right for every American."
—Diane Archer, Just Care USA

While Jayapal's bill will be released as nurses and other grassroots activists mobilize in support of Medicare for All across the nation, it will also come as a number of her Democratic colleagues in the House and Senate are pushing ahead with Medicare buy-in plans and other half-measures, which single-payer supporters say would leave the fundamental cruelty and wastefulness of the current for-profit system intact.

After Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Conn.), and several other Democrats introduced Medicare buy-in legislation on Wednesday, Just Care USA president Diane Archer labeled such plans "Medicare for Some" and argued they would "not address the unsustainable cost increases keeping our commercial healthcare system from being as fair and effective as Medicare itself or the healthcare systems in place in other developed countries."

"Only Medicare for All will bring down national health spending and guarantee healthcare as a human right for every American," Archer wrote in a piece for Common Dreams on Thursday. "It does so by eliminating the profits, administrative waste and inefficiencies of commercial health insurance and using the collective bargaining leverage of all Americans to negotiate fair rates for doctors, hospitals and prescription drugs."

Faust emphatically agreed with Archer's assessment of the recent proliferation of buy-in bills, warning Americans to "look out" if lawmakers and 2020 presidential candidates "float a 'pragmatic policy solution' or talk about plans named something like 'Medicare Extra As A Service... For You!' (If they're polite, perhaps they will at least say they support 'Medicare for All' before announcing they'd be open to keeping the feet of private insurance companies on our throats)."

"These pathetic programs, which usually revolve around a 'public option,' are what happens when politicians understand the need for a massive change but lack the moral imagination to do anything but genuflect to existing structures," Faust argued. "They are, in reality, corporate bailout packages which do very little for you, but quite a bit for the Aetnas and the Sacklers and the Joe Manchins."

Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

'When We Organize, We Win': Ocasio-Cortez Joins India Walton at Rally in Buffalo

The two progressives joined striking hospital workers on the picket line at Mercy Hospital after the early voting rally.

Julia Conley ·

Fatal Film Set Shooting Followed Outcry by Union Crew Members Over Safety Protocols

"When union members walk off a set about safety concerns, maybe 'hiring scabs' isn’t the solution you think it is."

Julia Conley ·

New Whistleblower Sparks Calls to 'Crack Down on Facebook and All Big Tech Companies'

Hours after another ex-employee filed a formal complaint, reporting broke on internal documents that show the tech giant's failure to address concerns about content related to the 2020 U.S. election.

Jessica Corbett ·

'Catastrophic and Irreparable Harm' to Wolves Averted as Wisconsin Judge Cancels Hunt

"We are heartened by this rare instance of reason and democracy prevailing in state wolf policy," said one conservation expert.

Brett Wilkins ·

West Virginia Constituents Decry 'Immorality' of Joe Manchin

"West Virginia has been locked into an economy that forces workers into low-wage jobs with no hope for advancement, and after decades of this our hope is dwindling," said one West Virginian. "The cuts that Sen. Manchin has negotiated into the agenda hurt our state."

Julia Conley ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.

Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo