What I find most powerful in Obermann's commentary on the (failed and failing) attempts at health care reform is the passion of his rhetoric: he speaks not only from the heart of an American social conscience, but most poingantly from the heart of one who has experienced and seen the worry and hurt and sorrow and pain of this country's health care system. It is for this reason that I wish to encourage everyone to listen to the hour-long "special comment" he offered back in October. His words are as vital to hear now as they were more than two months ago. There is so much I could say about his remarks: about how they left me nearly tearing up as they compelled me to recall what it was like four years ago dealing with the doctors at the bedside of my own dying brother. But such reflections must still wait, their rawness still too new even after so much time as passed and the extraordinary comfort of so many has been offered.
I think it's also appropriate for us to recall this comment now for two additional reasons: medievalists will not fail to hear Obermann putting to productive use an analogy with the English Courts of Chancery, and literary critics will not fail to attend to Obermann's powerful evocation of the Victorian era's social conscience, Charles Dickens, and his beloved (and today overly sentimentalized) novella A Christmas Carol, which was published on 19 December 1843.
Embedded below is only the first six minutes of Obermann's commentary. See here to watch the remaining parts, or here to stream the entire episode.