44 years ago today Medicare was signed into law by President Johnson with President Truman looking on. Johnson signed Truman’s original application form as a witness and called him “the real daddy of Medicare”. The irony is that the same old voices that tried to scare America into not making Medicare a reality are doing the same with universal health care. Same. Exact. Playbook.

By all accounts Medicare has been an overwhelmingly popular program with the American people. As Barack Obama hilariously noted this week, many people say to him “I don’t want socialized health care!…but don’t you dare touch my Medicare!”. That sounds like something coming out of Sarah Palin’s Amurica doesn’t it? The American people also want healthcare reform this year. It’s pretty clear.

And so on this 44th anniversary the irony is that the same old conservative scare tactics and fear mongering is hard at work. Ronald Reagan sowed the seeds of his conservative icon status on this fear and loathing. Ronnie lent his voice to the 1961 Operation Coffee Cup Campaign against “Socialized Medicine”:

Ronald Reagan: ?[I]f you don?t [stop Medicare] and I don?t do it, one of these days you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children and our children?s children what it once was like in America when men were free.? [1961]

Are we Socialists yet? Are we telling stories about what it once was like to live in America where men were free? How did Ron Reagan’s arguments work out? What GOP leader is ready to repeal Medicare?

So Happy Anniversary Medicare! We’ll keep the bastards at bay!

[ht TP]

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