Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Not So Different from the US

Crutches_and_Spice, an American, has some hard truths for Canadians. 

She responded to this comment: "23 years old and I've never lived through a school shooting in my country, I get surgery for free, as a queer person I'm a protected class. 

Here's her response (link): "For now! I would estimate it's going to take less than five years for your entire healthcare system to be privatized...

@crutches_and_spice Replying to @Brogan ♬ original sound - Crutches&Spice ♿️ :

And a commenter responded: "This seems the big 'if' - maybe Poly-Error could pull a minority, but I just don't see Cons pulling enough votes in 905 to ever get majority." 

And C&S's response to that (link): "You're concerned with the wrong party..."

@crutches_and_spice Replying to @holmskjellhylar ♬ original sound - Crutches&Spice ♿️ :

I have many of the same concerns. It's nice to think that Trudeau is nice, but he often looks very cosy with Ford. I feel like they're playing us with a good cop, bad cop shtick and that idea that the Libs will save Canada from the meanies is an illusion - Chomsky's been saying that since forever - but it gives me the tiniest bit of hope in all this bleakness. 

If he's not our knight in shining armour, then it's up to us to save ourselves collectively. 

And I have no idea how to do that. 

There's no point in complaining to MPs if they're all in on this - at best on either end on a neoliberal continuum from "let them be sick, hungry and homeless and remove LGBTQ rights" (gross) to "let them be sick, hungry and homeless and keep LGBTQ rights" (swoon), but definitely on that continuum. And I still maintain that that little bit on offer, not just LGBTQ rights but continued access to abortion and less racist, less ableist party should win (maybe NDP in Ontario next time). But we can't rely on government to help us. We have to educate the masses about the actual effects of deregulating industry, watering down rights,  privatization, and continuing to let Covid run wild. In a class discussing dementia and the elderly, I mentioned the neurological effects of Covid that will create a huge need for help with dementia for all ages, and this was brand new information for people. The general public still doesn't know the risks they're taking going to the grocery store unmasked.

I have no idea how to get the message out. I've been preaching to the choir for a long time.

Who are the people who are on board with Ford's privatization path? I literally haven't met any online or in real life. It clarified how tight my bubble is when he was re-elected. But I get it: Since the hospitals are full, because of Covid, and we want faster service, we should have a right to pay for it, and that will reduce the wait times in public hospitals. Except that simplification misses the fast downward spiral caused by shifting funding from public to private entities and a whole host of other issues. It's another Me First scheme that benefits a few at the expense of the many and brings out the selfish in people. When we get into survival mode, we'll be all id, fighting for our place at the front of the line. 

So many conversations about all this go nowhere, but sometimes I'm able to have an effect. I keep wearing a mask in public in the face of laughter or worse, but sometimes there's a moment of solidarity with another masker, or, on rare magical occasions someone sees me with my mask on and PUTS ON A MASK. And every little bit reduces transmission, which reduces the burden on the healthcare system, which will reduce wait times, which will take away all the perceived benefits of privatizing healthcare. In our era, we can fight the man just by wearing a mask!   

I don't really know how to fight. But I hope I can go out with kindness if I don't get too scared that my lizard brain takes over. 

(Also, on all the "Canada's better than the US" comments C&S is getting, here's a comparative look at how we fare. Pretty much on par.)


Cap said...

I suspect Crutches & Spice is right, we'll see privatized healthcare sooner than expected. The megarich don't want to pay taxes, and they certainly don't want to pay for other people's healthcare or even to keep others safe in general.

Neoliberalism is the order of the day, and whether your name is Justin, Pierre, Jagmeet or Doug, if you want power, you'll march to its tune. Neoliberalism is libertarian, it prioritizes the individual over society. Indeed, as Thatcher once said, "there is no such thing as society." What we once called society is merely an aggregation of atomized individuals, and individual identities are now exalted as absolute, even when they don't correspond to their objective attributes.

In practice this means the ultrarich will fight any restriction placed on them, whether that be waiting for healthcare, Covid rules that affect profits, or effective measures to wean us off fossil fuels. LGBT rights are safe. "Our owners," as George Carlin called them, won't accept rollbacks on their right to marry who they want or on men accessing and colonizing women's spaces, sports, scholarships and awards.

Marie Snyder said...

And now that neoliberalism is firmly entrenched, the next step appears to be to self-destruct. We've got unfettered-growth-on-a-finite-planet issues that we're fighting to ignorw. Is collapse and near extinction the only way out? It seems impossible to spur on a revolution or even muster a notable protest so long as wifi is working and people are sufficiently entertained.