Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Keep CounterPunch ad free. Support our annual fund drive today!

Corporate Liberals vs. Single-Payer


I’m an Arab American.

If I listen to the leadership of the Arab American organizations, I’m supposed to be proud of my fellow Arab Americans who make it in American society.

So, for example, the Arab American Institute promotes all Arab American politicians – no matter their political persuasion.

At its annual dinner, the American Task Force on Lebanon gives awards to the likes of Darryl Issa (R-California) and General John Abizaid, former head of the U.S. Command in Iraq.

A couple of years ago, the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee gave an award to National Public Radio’s Diane Rehm, a prominent Lebanese American.

Rehm’s a corporate liberal.

She’ll espouse corporate Democratic Party liberalism – but won’t go out on the limb for the American people.

Take the issue of health care reform.

Fifty million Americans are without health insurance.

More than 22,000 Americans die every year from no health insurance.

The underinsured are dying too.

That’s why, according to recent polling, the majority of the American people want a Medicare for all, Canadian style, single payer health insurance system in the United States.

The majority of doctors want it.

The majority of health economists want it.

But the inside the beltway political establishment – of which Diane Rehm is a card-carrying member – despises it.

They despise it because the private health insurance industry despises it.

Take Diane Rehm’s show this morning.

It’s titled “The Politics of Health Care Reform.”

On the show, three guests:

Corporate Republican, corporate Democrat, and corporate reporter.

Joseph Antos of the American Enterprise Institute. (No to single payer.)

Ron Pollack of Families USA. (No to single payer.)

And Laura Meckler of the Wall Street Journal. (No to single payer.)

Was a single payer system ever mentioned on the Diane Rehm show this morning?

Yes, once.

But not by one of the four Washington insiders.

As usual, it was raised by a listener.

Mark Joseph e-mailed in to the show to say this:

“Is health care a necessity and a human right – or a luxury to be sold for profit? The debate is whether our government should provide us with the best health care that medical art and science can provide, or should a few special interests be allowed to continue to get wealthier by exploiting human suffering and need.”

Antos gave a mindlessly ideological response – “Don’t go to your doctor if you think he’s exploiting your human suffering.”

As if we had a choice.

Meckler rephrased the listener’s question as – To what extent does the government have a responsibility to provide health insurance for its people?

And she answered it, against the preponderance of the evidence, with – “I think there’s probably a consensus in this country that there is not support for a single payer system that you see in other countries –  with the government as the insurer for everybody. I don’t think we are going to see that. But there are things in between that and nothing at all.”

Pollack didn’t address single payer on the show, but he has publicly joined hands with the health insurance industry to oppose it.

Why did Rehm stack the deck against single payer?

Because she wants to be a player – against the interests of the American people.

Nothing to be proud of there.

On the brighter side, I am proud of a group of West Virginia belly dancers.

On Monday, March 31 at noon, they will be protesting outside the Martinsburg, West Virginia offices their Congresswoman – Shelley Moore Capito (R-West Virginia).

Capito – like Rehm and Pollack and Meckler and Antos –  knows what the deal is on health care reform.

And against the interests of her constituents, she sides with the insurance industry and chooses to dismiss single payer out of hand.

So, I am proud of the belly dancers.

They will be protesting for single payer.

They are calling the event “Shake it Up for Single Payer.”

The event is being sponsored by, which has put up a Shake it Up for Single Payer poster on its website.

(Poster at:

Print it out.

Plaster it in the neighborhood of your local member of Congress.

Time to shake up the status quo.

RUSSELL MOKHIBER is editor of the Corporate Crime Reporter. He can be reached at:



Russell Mokhiber is the editor of the Corporate Crime Reporter..

More articles by:

2016 Fund Drive
Smart. Fierce. Uncompromised. Support CounterPunch Now!

  • cp-store
  • donate paypal

CounterPunch Magazine


October 26, 2016
John W. Whitehead
A Deep State of Mind: America’s Shadow Government and Its Silent Coup
Eric Draitser
Dear Liberals: Trump is Right
Anthony Tarrant
On the Unbearable Lightness of Whiteness
Mark Weisbrot
The Most Dangerous Place in the World: US Pours in Money, as Blood Flows in Honduras
Chris Welzenbach
The Establishment and the Chattering Hack: a Response to Nicholas Lemann
Luke O'Brien
The Churchill Thing: Some Big Words About Trump and Some Other Chap
Sabia Rigby
In the “Jungle:” Report from the Refugee Camp in Calais, France
Linn Washington Jr.
Pot Decriminalization Yields $9-million in Savings for Philadelphia
Pepe Escobar
“America has lost” in the Philippines
Pauline Murphy
Political Feminism: the Legacy of Victoria Woodhull
Lizzie Maldonado
The Burdens of World War III
David Swanson
Slavery Was Abolished
Thomas Mountain
Preventing Cultural Genocide with the Mother Tongue Policy in Eritrea
Colin Todhunter
Agrochemicals And The Cesspool Of Corruption: Dr. Mason Writes To The US EPA
October 25, 2016
David Swanson
Halloween Is Coming, Vladimir Putin Isn’t
Hiroyuki Hamada
Fear Laundering: an Elaborate Psychological Diversion and Bid for Power
Priti Gulati Cox
President Obama: Before the Empire Falls, Free Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal
Kathy Deacon
Plus ça Change: Regime Change 1917-1920
Robin Goodman
Appetite for Destruction: America’s War Against Itself
Richard Moser
On Power, Privilege, and Passage: a Letter to My Nephew
Rev. William Alberts
The Epicenter of the Moral Universe is Our Common Humanity, Not Religion
Dan Bacher
Inspector General says Reclamation Wasted $32.2 Million on Klamath irrigators
David Mattson
A Recipe for Killing: the “Trust Us” Argument of State Grizzly Bear Managers
Derek Royden
The Tragedy in Yemen
Ralph Nader
Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think
Norman Pollack
Centrist Fascism: Lurching Forward
Guillermo R. Gil
Cell to Cell Communication: On How to Become Governor of Puerto Rico
Mateo Pimentel
You, Me, and the Trolley Make Three
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
October 24, 2016
John Steppling
The Unwoke: Sleepwalking into the Nightmare
Oscar Ortega
Clinton’s Troubling Silence on the Dakota Access Pipeline
Patrick Cockburn
Aleppo vs. Mosul: Media Biases
John Grant
Humanizing Our Militarized Border
Franklin Lamb
US-led Sanctions Targeting Syria Risk Adjudication as War Crimes
Paul Bentley
There Must Be Some Way Out of Here: the Silence of Dylan
Norman Pollack
Militarism: The Elephant in the Room
Patrick Bosold
Dakota Access Oil Pipeline: Invite CEO to Lunch, Go to Jail
Paul Craig Roberts
Was Russia’s Hesitation in Syria a Strategic Mistake?
David Swanson
Of All the Opinions I’ve Heard on Syria
Weekend Edition
October 21, 2016
Friday - Sunday
John Wight
Hillary Clinton and the Brutal Murder of Gaddafi
Diana Johnstone
Hillary Clinton’s Strategic Ambition in a Nutshell
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Trump’s Naked and Hillary’s Dead
John W. Whitehead
American Psycho: Sex, Lies and Politics Add Up to a Terrifying Election Season
Stephen Cooper
Hell on Earth in Alabama: Inside Holman Prison
Patrick Cockburn
13 Years of War: Mosul’s Frightening and Uncertain Future