Michael Moore is making quite a splash in Washington with his new film, Sicko. I have yet to see the film, but I think that one of the key takeaways from the documentary on the sorry state of American health care is that in Cuba, comprehensive quality health care is considered a human right.
Cuba gets much wrong — but after Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, Haditha, and frankly 47 million uninsured Americans with no health care — America has a diminished level of moral credibility to stand on when criticizing illiberal regimes. Today, Cuba is exporting doctors whereas it used to export revolution and weaponry. Without getting too deep for the moment, just ask yourself which country in the world tops the charts on exporting armaments and revolution.
Here is an article by Sarah van Gelder that explores the issue of health care as “right” and focuses on what Cuba has been able to do.
It is interesting to note that tonight’s guest blogger, Representative Jane Harman attended the Washington screening of Michael Moore’s film and supports dramatic change and reform in the terms of America’s engagement policies with Cuba.
In other US-Cuba news today, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) called America’s current policy “wrong-headed” and introduced legislation in the Senate calling for an end to trade and travel restrictions with Cuba. Congresspersons Charlie Rangel (D-NY), Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) and Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) joined Baucus in arguing for an overhaul in US-Cuba economic policy and introduced companion legislation in the House and Senate.
— Steve Clemons