Monday, March 22, 2010

Staten Island Says 'No' to Health Care

Staten Island's Rep. Mike McMahon was the only "No" vote on health care reform out of the New York City delegation.

In a sense he gave the island exactly what they wanted: blind obstruction.

It's no surprise that most of the island, although grossly misinformed, is decidedly against the president's health care initiative -- or any other initiative he has for that matter.

But now in the exegesis stage of the debate the Advance has decided to run a celebratory piece on McMahon's "No" vote.

Never mind that the paper has done a piss-poor job of explaining the bill and how it will affect Islanders, small businesses, hospitals, etc. Also, never mind the the paper has given saturating coverage to the local looney tune chapter of the Tea Party. But, to add insult to injury, they feed us this bullshit piece on reaction to McMahon's vote that cites such veritable sources as "mrbabydeema" and "Weepeople."

The piece also sights more legitimate sources like the Tea Party who said, wait for it, they won't vote for McMahon in November anyway -- even though he caved on their demands.

People close to the Dump have done reporting on this topic and the feelings from the mid-island business community was generally weary of this elusive plan.

Here is a sampling for Sept 09:

“My husband has his own business and he pays $2,000 a month for insurance. We’re hurting but I do have three kids. I don’t know what I’m going to get (if reform passes).”

- Pat Siringo, clerk at Uniquely Yours

“It’s not the cheapest but at least I have insurance. I am concerned about the effect this plan will have on seniors. I don’t want any more change; I’ve had enough change.”

-Lorraine Graziano, owner of S I Quick Print.

“My wife had to get a job at (Staten Island University) Hospital so I could get health care. I went for two years without insurance. But, if you work 20 years to get to a certain point with your business why should you be penalized (with higher taxes). It’s not right, I hope it doesn’t pass.”

-Michael DiGuido, owner of The Animal Pantry.

"He won't vote for it, and it won't pass. Financially it doesn’t make any sense. Staten Island is a conservative place in general. Staten Island can take care of itself.”
-Warren Crapo owner Crapo Realty
Every single business owner, the reporter tells us, complained about the rising costs of health care. However, every single business owner was strongly against health care reform.

Is there a disconnect here? Where are they getting their info? Fox News? The Advance? The Marketeer?

It'd be interesting to go back to these various business owners and see how they feel about the bill, now that it passed. Are they hopeful, scared, concerned, angry?

A companion piece on the health care issue also appeared in the paper: an epic, above-the-fold, front-page, Sunday piece that leans toward advocating "secession legislation."

Great, so let's remove ourselves further from the city. It's not like the 4 boros already look at us with the disdain of a red-headed stepchild. Let's capitulate this nonsense by advocating this ridiculous plan and desperately attaching it to the "national issue" of state sovereignty and tangentially the entire misguided and paranoid Tea Party movement.

The paper and the boro's embrace of this rabid ideological stance is wrong, not representative of the entire borough, and will only hurt us in the long run.

For a borough that put Mayor Bloomberg over the top in the last election, we have leverage. Let's use it.


  1. Republicans are against anything that might help poor people.

  2. A large problem for us all, on this island, is misinformation. We can't process info we aren't given, but some of us do look for the truth. check out local blog for an example.