Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Waiting For Bi-Partisan Godot

Article Analysis Assignment

First, read a news story from the newspaper or the Internet.  Answer the following questions regarding your news story: 1) What is the main issue, who are the main actors being discussed;  Then, choose one of the assigned articles you read for this week.  Answer the following questions regarding the assigned article: 1) What are the basics of this article (who, what, when, how, why, etc.);  2) What is the overall main point the author is trying to convince you of?  3) Do you agree with the author’s argument?  Why?  Why not?   Finally, tie together your news story with what you learned from the assigned article, textbook readings, podcasts, videos, etc. for this week.  Type your answers in the box below using your own words, no outline or bullets, complete sentences and paragraphs, single-spaced, full-page. 

This week I chose the article “Ballot Battle Brews…” because of the Hybrid Democracy article we were assigned and the point the authors make re: the need for initiatives to have ‘bipartisan support.’ I want to be convinced, but I cannot be as of yet, and the ‘Ballot Battle Brews…’ article explains why. The main actors are the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the California Hospital Association, and the issue at hand is their disagreement over the Fair Healthcare Pricing Act (which would cap any hospitals’ ‘gross charges’ at ‘no more than 25% above the actual cost of providing care’). The fact that you can go to the emergency room, as I did recently because of a severe headache brought on by multiple severe concussions, and be charged $21 for an aspirin, etc., shouldn’t take ‘bi-partisan support to correct, and it should surprise no-one that the CHA is planning to spend more than 10 million dollars in a counter-advertising effort, through a group called…wait for it…Californians for Initiative Abuse. Because when these profiteers feel threatened, the best they can do is scream about how this is another scheme where the ‘Union’ is ‘just trying to increase their membership’ --as if that were a crime and $300 crutches weren’t. If Californians sat around waiting for a ‘bi-partisan’ bill that would fix this, we would be doing the same as praying for rain. Which is to say, wasting time. Not only do I disagree with the authors, I think the right amount of partisanship is necessary, particularly from groups that would fight against such clear exploitation of California’s neediest.


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