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In a speech given to a town meeting in Washington, D.C. on April 26, Democratic Presidential pre-candidate Lyndon LaRouche launched a campaign to eliminate the Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) system, once and for all. In its place, LaRouche proposed the ``Right to Quality Health Care Bill,'' which calls for replacing the Nazi practices and philosophy of the HMOs with the principles of the Hill-Burton Act of 1946, which provided for supplying health care to people according to what they needed, not what they, or their insurance company, would pay.
This pamphlet is devoted to giving you the information you need to understand why eliminating HMOs is the first step to reversing the catastrophe of health care in this country, and to getting American citizens back into acting like citizens, taking responsibility for the general welfare of themselves and their posterity.
In his speech, LaRouche defined the HMO issue as an ``acid test'' of whether we're capable, as a nation, of returning the United States to a system of which we can be proud. Forget reform of health care, and class-action suits, he said. We need to end the existence of HMOs altogether. And this is why:
``The problem is the HMO law is evil, intrinsically evil! The only thing that will solve the problem is to cancel the HMO law; repeal it. End the existence of HMOs. Go back to the system we had earlier, a system under the Hill-Burton legislation, which is the postwar system, under which we improved health care.
``...[T]he purpose from the beginning, in 1973 when that bill [the first HMO law] was passed, the purpose was to cut the health care of the population. That was its purpose, by privatizing it under shareholder value rules.
``Now what's happened today, is that's become even more evil. You now notice that the CEOs and the profits of these major health-care firms, insurance firms, HMO firms, are the highest paid in their history. You have executives receiving salaries beyond belief for robbing patients of their lives! It's even worse. That if you look at an HMO provision, if you're a healthy person in the age group of say, between 15 and 50, or 15 and 45, with a health expectancy of that life, you may think that the HMO program will give you care. But if you're a person suffering an illness, or a person subject to the kinds of illness which tend to come on at the ages between 50 and 55, like hysterectomies and things like that, if you're subject to those risks, then you're on a list for elimination.
``Now, how do they do that? Well, insurance policies are fixed by actuaries, that is, people who calculate the statistical effects of certain kinds of things, certain diseases and so forth, on the population, and what'll happen to you if you do or do not get the right health care or right medication. What they have done, in order to increase the profitability of HMOs for Wall Street sharks, is to target African-Americans, other groups, senior citizens, and other groups for systematic increases in their death rates. Or what are called generally, morbidity rates.
``So there is not only an increase in the death rate, being engineered by HMO policies, but the death-rate increase is intentional! An integral part of the policies of the chief executive officers who run the HMO industry.
``Now these same people who run the HMO industry are now turning around, together with other lobbyists--like Heritage Foundation types--they are pouring masses of money into the Congress to buy the members of Congress. Therefore, if you take a list of the Congressmen who voted in support of HMOs against the attempt to clean this mess up, you will find most of them are receiving money from the people who are out to kill you! Is this not corruption?''
``Now, it's even worse. We have precedents for this kind of action. Go back to the 1930s. Adolf Hitler's regime had exactly the same policy. It was called `cut out the ``useless eaters.'' Eliminate the useless eaters.' You target some groups of people and say, `We've got too many of them.' So reduce their health care. It started in the medical institutions in Germany, among the mentally ill, other ill people who were hospitalized: `Cut 'em out! Accelerate the death rates. We can not afford to pay for them. Cut their health care. Get rid of useless eaters.' It was this policy which led to the death camp system in Nazi Germany, especially during the war years.
``That policy, that Nazi-Hitler policy, is being practiced today in the United States at an accelerating rate. And more and more members of Congress are backing it up. The majority, the current majority of the U.S. Supreme Court, also supports the philosophy behind this mass murder.
``So obviously, you have a problem. We have a problem. We have to clean out of the Congress every member of Congress who lines up in support of the HMO murder machine. Get 'em out! I don't care what else you vote for. Register to vote, and go out and vote these guys out of office at all costs. Your life may depend upon it! Or the life of a member of your family may depend upon it. Treat it like Hitler coming on, in the 1930s, before people began to see how bad it was. Stop it while you can. Register to vote, and vote. And vote these guys out of office, whatever else you do. Your lives may depend upon it.''
``Now you have other people talking about improving health care, eh? This includes people like Al Gore. He says he's got a health-care plan. He hasn't got a plan to do anything about this. He's like a guy who says, `We've got people suffering in the concentration camps. We've got to send them toothbrushes.' That's what Al Gore's proposed. `We'll send them some pills. We'll send them some toothbrushes.' But he's not going to challenge the system, which is the murder system.
``We have another former candidate, Bill Bradley, former Senator, fairly good-hearted man. He made a proposal, which is not as bad as Gore's--but Bill Bradley's a cautious man. He didn't challenge the problem. He was willing to give you medicine more generously than Gore, but he wouldn't attack the disease, and the disease is the HMO system itself.''
The solution, LaRouche emphasized in his conclusion, is a mobilization of the citizens themselves. He put it as follows:
``You represent the people, the posterity; your children, your grandchildren, are the hope of the future. The authority of goverment lies with your authority, the authority to demand that the Federal Government live up to its mandate of promoting the General Welfare, and doing whatever is necessary to promote the General Welfare.
``If you get out as citizens, and can begin to move your neighbors in that direction, you can take the power of government back. There is no establishment you have to beg to, to live. There are no big boys up there you have to crawl to. You, if you mobilize yourselves, are the ultimate authority. And the President of the United States, under our Constitution who you delegate, with the responsibility and authority to lead in seeing that that job is done for you. Both in our country, and in our relations with foreign countries.
``I think the health-care bill we've presented to you as a draft exemplifies both the issues, the state of mind, and the action which we must take now and mobilize for, to get our country back to what it was intended to become, and to realize that you're not just people who are supposed to beg at the back door of some big guy for community favors. But you represent, in yourself as an individual person, the repository of the highest political authority in the nation and the world: the individual person, whose vital interest is to have a government which efficiently defends the General Welfare.
``That's what you must be concerned about, that's what you must judge, that's the way you must choose your candidates. That's the way you must mobilize yourselves.''
--May 1, 2000
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