U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., let his emotions run away with him on the floor of the U.S. House last night in the middle of the President’s health-reform speech. “You lie!” he yelled out at one point, pointing a finger, unable to contain himself. He has apologized. The outburst was inappropriate, he said.
But Wilson was acting the way a lot of Americans have been acting this summer, people upset and determined to shout down talk of reform, no matter the setting. Some of those people, turns out, are employees of the health industry and were being paid in effect to stop the movement for reform. Wilson too is being paid by the health industry. As is the case with so many members of Congress, some of Joe Wilson’s top campaign cash contributors are health-industry corporations and lobbying firms.
Wilson’s top donor this year? The American Hospital Association, which is lobbying hard on behalf of more than 5,000 hospitals across the nation against any reductions in Medicare payments.
Among Wilson’s top twenty-five donors: Blue Cross Blue Shield, CareCore (a healthcare management company), the American Society of Anesthesiologists, the National Association of Retail Druggists and the American Dental Association.
What’s Joe Wilson so angry about? He’s paid to be angry.