When asked what books he has read recently Donald Trump gave one of his now customary indecipherable answers which seems to amount to it having been a difficult one to read because it was a colouring book and he hasn’t finished it yet.
The shame of having an illiterate and ignorant President of the USA is that he is unable to as the well known expression goes learn from the mistakes that history reveals.
So is there any wonder that he is making the same mistakes?
The answer of course isa resounding no.
This has never been better demonstrated than in his absolute failure to deliver on one of his major campaign promises to scrap what in the USA is known as Obamacare and replace it with, in his own words a ‘great’ public health policy known as Trumpcare.
Incidentally the correct name of Obamacare is the Affordable Care Act which was designed to address an issue that has plagued American politics for decades.
What history books on public health policies reveal is that it isn’t something that any nation has been able to develop and implement overnight, and certainly not within the 60 days that Donald Trump and the Republican Congress attempted.
We in the UK are seeing the erosion of what is one of the foundations of a civilised society, namely the National Health Service that provides the people with health care free at the point of need.
Of course it isn’t actually ‘free’ because the taxpayer is funding it as part of a universal and systemised public health provision.
What Donald Trump would have learned had he read about how the NHS came about is that it wasn’t dreamed up overnight but came into being after years of careful consideration and investigation into what initially was looking at a comprehensive hospital care for the population.
This developed into how to provided a comprehensive health care but even then it wasn’t until after WW2 that it actually came into being through the NHS Act of 1946.
It then took another two years before it was actually implemented in 1948.
I still think it strange that my older brother born in 1947 was born in an era without the NHS and that I was the first in 1949 to be born under the NHS.
What the USA Republicans didn’t and don’t recognise or understand is that for universal health care to work it has to be accepted as a basic requirement of a civilised society and in their rush to push ‘Trumpcare’ they clearly abjectly failed to convince the US public.
Donald Trump hasn’t helped himself, as in many other cases that we can now see, by stupidly promising, during his campaign that he would “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act on “day one.”
It was as we now know a promise that not only was unrealistic but was also a deliberate and intentional promise that he and his team knew they were unable to deliver.
Arguably there were some of the Congress Republicans who complained about Obamacare for 8 years who actually had no intention of delivering an alternative and were just playing politics with the healthcare of the nation.
Is there any wonder everyone was confused about the policy as it was presented to Congress.
The President certainly was and yet he and Paul Ryan decided that they would go ahead right up to the point where their own team of Republicans in Congress let it be known they wouldn’t support it.
So what is left from this debacle that many saw coming simply because they had the ability to read and learn what has happened in other countries.
Put simply the fourteen million Americans who would under Trumpcare have lost their insurance cover next year will not now lose it.
The 24 million Americans who would have lost their health insurance by 2026 are safe.
For the time being.
The Trump Republican budget proposals are in turmoil because the proposed savings from the implementation of Trumpcare was an important element in being able to pay for other policies.
The first test of one of the Donald Trump major policies and promises has failed, and failed miserably.
Millions of Americans now know that their President doesn’t really understand or care about the health of the many aged citizens who were amongst the 14 million who would have lost their healthcare insurance.
And so the USA have been left with what to them is a basic problem of political philosophy around the issue namely an irrational fear of state intervention in health care for the nation.
The problem has existed for so long that it was not only amazing but also quite amusing to see the President of the USA who had all of the answers whilst on the campaign trail suddenly announce within days of taking office that “no one knows how difficult the problem of health care is.”
Has he never read a book on the subject?
Can he even read?
Has he never thought that there may be a way of delivering health care that is possible and acceptable to the majority if not all of the people of the USA drawing on elements of the best examples from around the world such as their near neighbours Canada?
Or even further afield, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
The problem is for this to happen Donald Trump will need to have patience and take the time to read and understand what happens elsewhere, something he seems intellectually incapable of doing.
But here’s the rub.
Surely as we see time and time again in his utterances and lack of vocabulary Donald Trump struggles with linking together even basic English hence his unintelligible answer to being asked what books he is reading.
But surely someone else in the White House is capable of reading.
That said and judging by those that Donald Trump has surrounded himself with it certainly leaves a great deal of doubt.
Good luck USA.
You are going to need it.