Blessing must arise from within your own mind. It is not something that comes from outside. When the positive qualities of your mind increase and the negativities decrease, that is what blessing means. The Tibetan word for blessing … means transforming into magnificent potential. Therefore, blessing refers to the development of virtuous qualities you did not previously have and the improvement of those good qualities you have already developed.
― Dalai Lama XIV
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
A brief summary of health care in America
Senate leaders have gone to extraordinary lengths to keep their health care bill secret, and the media has been too accommodating of the secrecy.
The Senate is rushing to pass a health care bill within the next three weeks — a bill that would rewrite the rules for one-sixth of the economy and directly affect tens of millions of Americans. Yet prominent media coverage of the story has slowed to a trickle in recent weeks.
I understand why it’s happened. Republican leaders have taken the radical approach of writing a major bill behind closed doors, with no hearings, public markups or any of the usual legislative process. It’s hard to cover a story without public developments. Meanwhile, the Russia scandal has offered almost continuous fireworks, with Jeff Sessions’s testimony being the latest.
But the media is still making a mistake. It’s our job, after all, to distinguish between the obvious and the important. Russia is both obvious and important. The health care bill is hidden and important.
“Why is this barely getting coverage in major news outlets?” Rick Hasen, a legal scholar and political scientist, asked yesterday on Twitter. “One would think real possibility of 23 million people losing health care coverage would warrant page 1 coverage in major papers, networks.”
Similarly, Jeff Stein of Vox tweeted a chart showing that mentions of “healthcare bill” on cable television have plummeted in recent weeks. The topic also received relatively scant coverage in the run-up to the House’s surprise passage of a bill last month — a bill estimated to increase the number of uninsured by 23 million.
And Chris Murphy, a Democratic senator from Connecticut, tweeted (albeit not specifically to the media): “My advice today: focus 10% of your attention/outrage on Sessions testimony, 90% on the secret health care bill that is speeding to a vote.”
Some of the most powerful health care groups opposing the bill have responded meekly to the lack of public hearings, as I wrote yesterday, while much of the media has been distracted by shiny objects elsewhere.