Democrats Had Better Find Hiding Places

by: DaveJ

Sat Jul 25, 2009 at 13:45


I said it the other day, and I feel the need to repeat it: the public does not yet understand that the government is about to order people to buy health insurance, with their own money.  Yes, the government is about to order people to cough up hundreds of dollars a month each.

When the Republicans start using their toxic message-machine magic on this, and the public starts to understand that they are being ordered by the government to cough up a huge amount of money every month, Democrats had better have good hiding places, because things are going to get really bad out there.

This is the kind of policy that results when "centrist" Democrats give in to to the demands of Republicans and big corporations and the top 1% of the wealthy.  Instead of just taxing the wealthy and corporations at reasonable rates and using the money to provide We, the People with health care -- thereby vastly improving the economy for ... the wealthy and big corporations -- they instead come up with a scheme to order regular people to pay for health insurance because they don't already have it because they can't afford it.

This is how things work in the Post-Reagan era: The corporations and vastly wealthy get tax cuts.  We, the People get service cutbacks, increases in the retirement age, jobs outsourced, the infrastructure deteriorates...  When huge financial corporations get in trouble because they got too greedy the government salutes and says, "Yes, Sir!" and coughs up trillions in bailouts.  But when regular people can't afford insurance, the government as presently constituted comes up with a plan ordering them to buy it.

This fight over health care seems to be exposing the contradictions much more visibly than other policy battles we have had.  Against the background of the vast sums spent on the bailouts we have people in power telling us that it wouldn't be fair to insurance company profits to come up with a health care plan that provides great care to the public for a low price.

Who is our economy FOR, anyway? That is the question that my own blog asks.  Just asking the question takes your thinking in new directions.  

What can we do about this?  We need to fight for meaningful health care subsidies so regular people who do not now have health insurance will not have to pay for health insurance.  It is a simple tradeoff, really: every dollar in new taxes on corporations and the top 1% can be applied to a dollar of subsidies covering health care.  This will result in a more equitable, prosperous and healthier society -- and happier voters.

DaveJ :: Democrats Had Better Find Hiding Places

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I fear what we're going to get (0.00 / 0)
is an individual mandate with no public option. If this is what passes, I'm renouncing my American citizenship. I've had enough.

I think that won't (4.00 / 2)
I think there are enough progressives in the Congress to block that.  

A few years ago that is exactly what I would have expected, though.  It just fits the pattern of big-corporate control where big corporations get a law passed to require everyone to give them money.  And as a bonus the legislation would have imposed a fine on anyone who complained about the service they get, and the fine would go into a pool to give larger bonuses to the executives of the companies.

--

Seeing The Forest -- Who is our economy FOR, anyway? Twitter: dcjohnson


[ Parent ]
I will not fight for meaningful subsidies.... (4.00 / 1)
It will create another "welfare" system that americans will resent, and it will kill health care reform forever.  We need and can only afford single payer.  Everybody in and everybody pays.  

Until they put something worth a damn on the table, I'm done.   Every time I get on board and send money (more Democrats, public option) I get screwed by the very people who are suppose to be leading the fight for reform.  Everytime I think about how I gave money to Tester and Webb, I see red.    

Democrats can't govern.   Give Republicans 10 seats, and they can ram anything through.  


[ Parent ]
I fear being mandated to buy junk insurance (4.00 / 3)
What I think is the most likely scenario:

The mandate, combined with standards for care written by lobbyists, weak enforcement, and subsidies that will be framed as welfare and slashed, is going to mean that millions are forced to buy junk insurance just to comply (and guarantee a market for the insurance companies). Those millions are going to be worse off; at least now, you pay nothing and get nothing; with a mandate and junk insurance, you pay, and then get nothing.


I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  


[ Parent ]
This is exactly what is going to happen. (4.00 / 2)
People will gain nothing, and those that have something will now get screwed too.  And just like MA which has no cost controls, the premiums/cost will continue to sky rocket and people will resoundingly conclude that national health care doesn't work.  

[ Parent ]
Mission accomplished! (4.00 / 2)
To be fair, the administration wants to put in cost controls. However, they're not proven.

If they really cared about cost, single payer would be on the table, since it will save $350 billion a year in administration -- no CEO salaries, no profit, no call centers to tell you you're out of network, etc.

I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  


[ Parent ]
No subsidies?? (4.00 / 1)
I thought subsidies were included in these bills, and there was a sliding scale as incomes increased?

As a recently unemployed 54-year old male with decent financial savings, I'm more than willing to pay monthly for health care provided it is real insurance (will pay when I'm sick or hurt), is reasonably priced with several options, is transportable if I move, and can be dropped if I get a new job with good health benefits.  

What I can't handle is a ~$1400.00 COBRA payment per month to cover three family members after the 65% subsidy (thank you to the stimulus package!) and my severance benefits end within nine months from now.


You got it right (0.00 / 0)
Dave just keeps complaining the subsidies don't cover people who make $100,000 a year.

[ Parent ]
??? (0.00 / 0)
Where does that come from?

--

Seeing The Forest -- Who is our economy FOR, anyway? Twitter: dcjohnson


[ Parent ]
The subsidies are WAY too little (4.00 / 1)
They are so little that a person making something like $43,000 would "only" have to pay $4700 a year.  But a person making $44,000 would have NO subsidy.

--

Seeing The Forest -- Who is our economy FOR, anyway? Twitter: dcjohnson


[ Parent ]
It just boggles the mind (4.00 / 5)
how short sighted the Democrats are. I honestly just...don't...get it. Writing it off as them simply being corporate sell outs for campaign dollars doesn't seem cover it because the way they're going, they won't even be able to get reelected.

Don't even get me started on how brain washed our society has become about class and wealth. God forbid we should ask the rich to pay even a modicum of their fair share to a society in which they benefit so greatly. Sadly, any request for even the merest of crumbs from the rich and corporations is painted as "soaking the rich", and the non-rich have been thoroughly conditioned to believe it.  


The Democrats really glommed onto this "mandate" idea... (0.00 / 0)
...which is a republican idea, promoted by Mitt Romney and a bunch of Republican governors and governor hopefuls, like our favorite guy, Ken Blackwell of Ohio...

Why democrats glommed onto such an idea is beyond me... Their belief is that if more people are in the pool, insurance costs will be lower.  That may be true in a truly competitive market, but health insurance is not competitive at all!  Insurers will simply eat up the lower costs as profits...

The only benefit of something like this is that many people who are eligible for public assistance, but aren't receiving it find out pretty quickly and sign up.

Other than that, it's quite a disaster...

Surprisingly, it does poll well for some reason... I don't understand why...

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
I used to be against the mandate (0.00 / 0)
until I read columns by Paul Krugman, who is the opposite of some weak-kneed centrist Democrat, which explained that mandates were necessary to keep people from coasting by without insurance and then jumping in for the free ride when they need it.

Now obviously Medicare for All would be a much more elegant way to solve this problem, since the "mandate" would be automatically applied through payroll taxes that can be controlled by the government (and by extension, the people) instead of through premium rates unaccountably set by insurance companies.  Plus there would be no fine, which is the most ridiculous idea in health care ever - the idea that the government would punish people for not having insurance by taking away money instead of giving them insurance is just so stupid, and it's an example the way conservative-run government makes people's lives harder and turns people against government, thus fulfilling the conservatives' original goal.

Absent Medicare for All, a mandate is necessary to keep costs down but any mandate without adequate subsidies and a public option would be nothing more than unnecessary hardship, and should be voted down.


[ Parent ]
A mandate (4.00 / 2)
is the worst way to do a necessary thing.

[ Parent ]
The only good thing about the health care legislation (4.00 / 4)
that Congress will eventually pass -- predictably without a public option -- is that it will screw enough Americans financially (by forcing them to buy private insurance whose premiums, co-pays and deductibles will continue to skyrocket) to create the hardened opposition -- and possibly a winning third party -- that both political parties and their corporate financial backers deserve.

Seeing Democrats join hands with Republicans in refusing to put on the table the single payer option preferred by a majority of Americans, and then jettisoning or eviscerating the public option, will provide irrefutable evidence to the American people that influence peddling legislators have sacrificed the popular will to their special interest financiers.

It is a horrifying spectacle watching our elected representatives refuse to provide under-insured and uninsured Americans the same insurance they provide themselves, while thousands of them die every day for lack of access to medical care.

Regrettably, it is also the most effective way to demonstrate to the American electorate the need to re-invent our democracy so that the people are sovereign, not special interests and lawmakers whose blatant conflicts of interest induce them to sell out their sick and dying constituents.

Nancy Bordier is the author of Re-Inventing Democracy The book can be read free online by clicking here.

A prototype website illustrating how the Interactive Voter Choice System works can be accessed at Citizens Winning Hands.
                     


The only winning third party will be the teabaggers... (4.00 / 1)
If they manage to win anything... I'm getting tired of the "third party" talk... you can't have viable third parties in a winner-take-all system.  After 220 years of trying, it's pretty clear that third parties only dilute votes, and make an easier path for their ideological opponents.  The last third party to win any electoral votes was George Wallace in 1968.  The only "third party" to have held a seat in congress the past 50 years at least is Bernie Sanders.  

The constitution is simply rigged against third parties...  

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
A Third Party (4.00 / 2)
could actually come out a winner.

Voters have been abandoning the two major parties for years.

Independents represent 39% of the electorate. They are the single largest voting bloc.

Right now, the Democrats and the Republicans combined represent only 55% of the electorate.

The Republicans have 22% and the Democrats have only 33%, according to recent polls.

Many Democrats and Republicans are deeply dissatisfied with their parties but have no viable alternative at the moment.

But now that the majority of the American people are getting shafted by the two parties' botching of health care reform, a third party built around policies that a majority of the population favor could actually win, assuming of course that it is properly organized so that it can get its candidates on the ballot.

For example, a winning third party could be organized around:

a) the support of a majority of the American people for a single payer health care system

b) the opposition of a majority of the American people to the willingness of Congress and the White House to use taxpayer dollars to bailout big banks and investment houses

Such a party actually get a majority of Americans to vote for its candidates -- provided the party runs credible candidates who espouse voters' policy priorities like the two cited above.

If Ross Perot had kept at it, and not put such a dingbat on his ticket as a vice presidential candidate, he might have been able to create a viable third party.

If everyone just assumes that there is no alternative to the two party system and electing politicians who are beholden to the corporate special interests that fund their campaigns, where does that leave us?

Answer: with the plutocracy that is now running the country.

 


[ Parent ]
All Independents aren't same (4.00 / 2)
some are far right, some are far left, most don't want to be far right or far left.

So a leftish third party isn't going to win 39% of the vote because many of those Independents won't support it.  


[ Parent ]
What I mean (4.00 / 1)
is that with a mechanism like the Interactive Voter Choice System (IVCS), like-minded voters will cluster together around shared policy priorities and dynamic policy agendas that will be in constant flux and evolution.

Inherent in the system is a built-in consensus forming mechanism that will create voting blocs of people with shared policy priorities.

The members of these blocs, and the policy agendas of these blocs, will be determined by the voters, not by hold-over ideological baggage from by-gone eras that divide rather than unite the electorate around shared priorities.

If you start with the fact that 39% of the electorate has chosen not to belong to either of the two major political parties, coupled with the fact that many registered Democrats and Republicans are deeply dissatisfied with the parties, you have a fluid situation that, with the aid of the IVCS, can transcend the two party duopoly of our electoral and legislative processes.

I certainly understand the realism of your comment, but I just refuse to constrain my thinking about political possibilities to fit it into the current political party strait jacket.

It is the primary source of the ruination of our democracy and our economy, and the ascendancy of the plutocracy that is reaping windfall profits by pushing the living standards of American people into zones of discomfort and deprivation that we have never seen before.  


[ Parent ]
Woah, hold on (0.00 / 0)
Admiral Stockdale was a distingushed American.  His best days had long since passed, but I take offense to any honorable serviceman or woman being called a dingbat.  This man had gone through a lot on behalf of this country, and while he appeared to be medically cognitively unqualified to be President, he deserves respect all the same.  He is one of the most highly decorated Naval Officers of all time and the most decorated of all Vietnam POW's.  He was anything but a dingbat and I, as the Grandson of a WW2 Naval hero, take deep offense.  

[ Parent ]
Scratch the Word "Dingbat" (0.00 / 0)
I certainly revere all our patriots who served in U.S. Armed Forces, including my own relatives.

So let's scratch the word "dingbat" as being a disrespectful, off the cuff remark.

But I still remember being shocked when I heard Stockdale speak at the podium after Perot nominated him.

He sounded completely out of touch with the complexity of what was going on and the reality of being a heart beat away from the presidency.


[ Parent ]
Yes but it appears (4.00 / 2)
that he was in the early stages of Alzheimers, so that whole episode was Perot's fault, not his.  Remember, Dingbat=Palin, Alzheimers Afflicting Once Very Sharp Man=Stockdale.  We can agree on that.

[ Parent ]
The only halfway successful third parties (4.00 / 2)
on the national level anyway, at least in the 20th century, ran to the right of the Democrats or the left of the Republicans.

The Blue Dogs would probably have more look as a third party than the progressives.  


[ Parent ]
A fully successful third party, in the 21st century... (0.00 / 0)
Would run close to the middle of the most important issues to the majority of the population, other than wedge issues.

For wedge issues, I predict that the 'Small Potatoes' (my fanciful name for the new 3rd party!) representatives from Blue States would lean towards liberal positions, and representatives from Red States would lean towards conservative positions. Don't see how it could be otherwise.

The big losers would be corporations, Congress critters that are corporate whores, and, eventually, K-Street.

We'll still have lots of stuff to argue about! Just like "some animals are more equal than others" (as in Orwell's Animal Farm), some Small Potatoes will always conclude that they are righter than other Small Potatoes. :-)

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[ Parent ]
You're talking a populist party (4.00 / 1)
a populist party would not get the votes of progressives because they were have to adopt non-progressive positions if public opinion dictates.  

[ Parent ]
Yes and no (0.00 / 0)
The country is progressive wrt some issues, not with others. In terms of health care, it is definitely progressive, so in this case, populist = progressive. Not so with other issues.

If progressives prefer to vote in a way that ensures their ever-increasing enslavement to plutocrats, that's their right. However, I would hope that most would not "make the perfect the enemy of the acceptable", so as to get the plutocrats off of our backs. However, in order for them to have that choice, a viable transpartisan strategy, almost certainly aided by a mechanism like Nancy Bordier's invention, have to enter the scene.

Perhaps you would be less of a purist if you had a serious and expensive medical problem, and no health insurance? Perhaps you would be less of a purist if somebody you loved was in that boat?

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[ Parent ]
Populist also (0.00 / 0)
equals deficit hawks, the public is very concerned with the deficit, which is largely why single payer is bound to fail, there's no way to make it deficit neutral.

then there's social issues like gay marriage, gun control and the death penalty where the country is clearly NOT progressive...they would have to respond to those issues and will no doubt lose progressives over that.  


[ Parent ]
The Interesting Thing (0.00 / 0)
is that until voters have the opportunity to define their policy agendas across the board, we have no idea what a complete profile of the electorate's preferred policy options will be.

I predict that the false dicotomies and ideological contrivances that the two parties have used to divide up the electorate will simply fall by the wayside.

We will have a dynamic portrait of where American voters stand, a portrait that will be in constant evolution as their preferences shift to reflect changes in their needs and wants, and changing conditions and circumstances.

Even better, by continuously resetting the nation's policy priorities, voters will keep their elected representatives alert and on their toes to see where voters are headed.

No more of this disconnect between the electoral shams we are forced to put up with and the rogue legislatures that set off in directions totally inimical to the popular will.



[ Parent ]
Sanders is an actual independent (0.00 / 0)
Meaning he is of NO party.  But Joe Lieberman was elected from the Connecticut for Lieberman Party, so he is an actual bona fide third party-elected Senator (though he's not registered as a CfLer and media sources always refer to him as an "independent" even though he calls himself an "independent Democrat").

Senator Jim Buckley won from the Conservative Party in 1970 because the Republican and the Democrat split the liberal vote.


[ Parent ]
What are your thoughts for forging a 'truce' between disaffected Dems and Repubs? (4.00 / 1)
This question will become more significant if the final healthcare bill is a real bomb.

Your invention would provide a mechanism for allowing disaffected Dem and Repub rank-and-file to a form 3rd party voting bloc. However, I'm not aware of any terribly successful transpartisan movement(s), that already exist, to form 3rd parties, which would have some sort of ideological or pragmatic philosophy behind it and which has the proper focus of taking power by taking Congressional seats.

I'm not suggesting that you necessarily be involved in such a movement, but since you have degrees in political science, I am wondering what your thoughts are in this regard.

I find it distressing that there doesn't seem to be any widespread movement to either create a transpartisan alignment which will encourage strategic voting and party-hopping (the parties in question being the Democrats and Republicans), or a widespread movement which is designed to funnel disaffected Democrats and Republicans into a 3rd party. (I prefer the former, for the near term future, but whatever works better is fine with me.)

I realize that starting a powerful transpartisan movement would be easier if your invention, or something like it, was already in place. However, things are what they are, and it seems like a damn shame not to funnel the frustration of voters into positive channels, starting yesterday.

Having heard a Gary Null program this week, wherein he fielded a call from the audience who was another small businessman (and neither were happy with what they can glean of the healthcare legislation), a very logical place to get support for both a trans-partisan movement, and perhaps your invention, also, is from groups of small businessmen. It's my understanding that these guys are the largest sources of new jobs, and I think most people bear them no ill will, quite unlike transnational corporations which have plunged us into a race for the bottom and just love to ship our best jobs overseas.

In terms of getting the above-described transpartisan movement going, the recently announced delay by the Senate in delivering healthcare legislation could be a good thing - it affords additional time to organize a transpartisan movement, before whatever healthcare legislation is eventually passed.

I may be mistaken (not having carefully read the text), but the transpartisan analyses/efforts described in Voice of the People: The Transpartisan Imperative in American Life seem to all be of the nature of looking for a common ground position on various issues, taking the best of what they deem is available across the political spectrum, and then somehow selling that to lawmakers in Washington. Who, we agree, are largely already 'sold out'. I.e., the authors don't seem to have any strategy either for forming a transpartisan voting bloc, or for forming a viable, transpartisan 3rd party - either of which will FIRE crappy Congress critters by depriving them of the seats. It seems that they are still thinking in terms of just lobbying  as political action. (After they develop transpartisan policies on an issue-by-issue basis.) I.e., they seem to want to operate like clones of Al Gore.*

Thus, the fear that some lefties have that efforts to build a 3rd party throwing things to Republicans seems justified, though their approval ratings are still in the toilet.

* To their credit, they do have some political astuteness. E.g., in p. 98, they say

From a transpartisan perspective, we think it is not useful to spend time here trying to restate the substantive issues. We prefer, rather, to shift and focus only on possible political solutions. We do this because, unless proposals for solutions have a chance to play politically, they are irrelevant. That is where most proposals are today, which explains why they are going nowhere.


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[ Parent ]
Brace yourselves (4.00 / 1)
In a spurt of inspired, but goofy madness, the following just occurred to me. I suggest anybody reading further sit down, first, and take a few deep breaths. :-)

The new transpartisan party, which is strongly pro-small business, can be called The Small Potatoes Party. And the motto, of course, will be "A sackful of small potatoes can bean any bankster, and his kept Congressman, in the head - each and every time."

OK, back to work.

435 Dem Primaries 2012
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[ Parent ]
This is a great comment, Metamars! (0.00 / 0)
My first response to your comments is that Congress's health care reform fiasco is creating such furor in the electorate that it is creating just the climate of opposition to the plutocracy that is needed to topple the two party system and its corporate special interest backers.

My second is that if the Interactive Voter Choice System (IVCS) were not on the drawing board, the odds of creating a winning third party would not be very promising.

The main reason would be the difficulty if not the impossibility of forging a consensus among the organizers as to its platform. Diverging priorities would create schisms that might well prove unbridgable.

In stark contrast, the IVCS provides a workable mechanism for building a consensus among any number of voters who articulate their policy priorities and use its tools and services to contact other voters with statistically similar priorities.

The invention enables any number of voters to create socio-political networks around shared policy priorities. Voters with shared policy agendas can easily create one or more third parties to participate in local, state or federal elections.

Since IVCS has statistical tools that enable voters to create winning voting blocs of any size, the whole problem facing third parties being built from above, that of deciding what will be the party(s) platforms, is eliminated from the get go. The planks of the blocs' platforms will be decided directly by the voters at the grassroots, who will also choose what candidates to run on their platforms and party lines.

So technically, the invention makes it feasible for U.S. voters to build a third party around the policy priorities that a majority of them favor, like support for a single payer system and opposition to government bailouts of insolvent banks.

Basically, the IVCS ends the two party political duopoly as we have unfortunately come to know it.

Let me note in closing that the IVCS obviates the problem of political fragmentation.

Voters who use it will receive invitations to create/join a variety of expanding socio-political networks with evolving policy priorities. They can shift their membership at any time to join larger, more inclusive networks whose agendas are statistically similar to their own. These networks can become big enough, in terms of number of voters, that they can win not only Congressional but also presidential elections.

It will re-invent democracy by empowering voters to either reinvigorate and democratize the two party system, if they choose to work within it, or to supplant it with a dynamic, voter-driven, consensus building process that selects, runs and elects to public office candidates chosen by voters rather than political parties beholden to special interests.      

 


[ Parent ]
Thanks, but I'd like to hear more about a parallel strategy (4.00 / 1)
E.g., Chickering and Turner (authors of Voice of the People) are leaders in what I'll call 'transpartisanism'. Why not alert them to the fact that you are working on implementing a mechanism for transpartisanism to work much more effectively, and ask them to recruit friends and family to sign on to, say, an online letter of intent to explore transpartisan political action (beyond mere lobbying)? You could elaborate on the crappy health care bill in the works as a case in point as to why citizens need to be preparing to jump on the transpartisan train as soon as it pulls into the station. Chickering and Turner could also highlight some of their work on other issues.

Some of the people that Chickering and Turner network with may turn out to be social investors. That can't be a bad thing. :-)

From where I sit, it's a slam dunk that, even if we "build it, and they will come", it will save time if we send out some press notices about what we intend to build. Certainly, you agree that not wasting time is highly desirable...

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[ Parent ]
I think you got it backwards (0.00 / 0)
I seem to remember several polls asking about this very issue, should everyone have to pay premiums and the overwhelming response is Yes.  Believe it or not, but a good chunk of America thinks that the 47 million uninsured are simply deadbeats feeding off the system.

Selling health insurance reform as a handout has always been probelmatic with empathy challenged Americans.  Selling it as a way of saving trillions of dollars and making everyone pay (ala income taxes) is the path to Single Payer.


Not if you call it single payer (4.00 / 1)
People are not just turned off by the words "single payer' they get scared by it.

Use "Medicare For All" instead.  People know Medicare and love it.  Everyone under 65 wants it.  If you use those words most of your battle is already won before you even start.  But when you say "single payer" you have to overcome people's befuddlement at what you are talking about before you can even get started.

--

Seeing The Forest -- Who is our economy FOR, anyway? Twitter: dcjohnson


[ Parent ]
That may be true inside the beltway (0.00 / 0)
and when I started posting on this, like a year ago, I would have said exactly the same thing. But when you say "people" are befuddled, you have to ask yourself which "people" you're talking about.

At the grass roots level -- and by grass roots I mean just that, and not AstroTurf -- there's no problem at all. Letters to the editor, Obama house parties, demonstrations, signage, civil disobedience, all of that: No problem.

Now, inside the Beltway, and in the chattering classes, there is a problem with the term: And that is exactly because the "little single payer advocates" are consistently excluded and censored.  Of course they're not familiar with the term: They suppressed it!

In fact, the proof there's no problem comes from Obama's town halls: There's always a single payer question, and you can bet, given the nature of our famously free press, that if there were a bunch of audience members looking bewildered and scratching their heads they'd have cut right to it.

You might also consider that there's a natural reluctance by people who've actually been fighting this fight to have their discourse altered by the "progressives" who've screwed up public option so badly and put some years of work in jeopardy. Eh?

I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  


[ Parent ]
Truly horrible framing from "progresssives" (0.00 / 0)
The current bills are means-tested and subsidized.

means test + subsidy = welfare.

Not do you ACCEPT forcing me to buy insurance with my own money, you set me up on a losing battlefield, as the subsidies get cut and cut and cut.

There's a saying in the Navy: You can't buff a t*rd.

Single payer solves this problem: Everybody in, nobody out.

And single payer can be shown to save lives and money!

I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  


This I agree with (4.00 / 2)
means test + subsidy = welfare.

Despite my complaint above, this I agree with.  Programs that help everyone are much more popular and politically secure then programs that help the poor.  The current bills have two components, those that help everyone (community rating, cost savings, etc) and those that help the poor (means tested subsidies).


[ Parent ]
That's what Patrick Moynihan used to say... (0.00 / 0)
Programs that help everyone are much more popular and politically secure then programs that help the poor.

He was very adamant about it, and his analysis makes very good sense...  That's why he was adamantly opposed to means-testing social Security...

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!


[ Parent ]
Same guy who once said (0.00 / 0)
"There is no healthcare crisis in this country" in 1994.

He was the Evan Bayh of the '90s.  


[ Parent ]
Pat "blame-the-poor" Moynihan was a necon hero... (0.00 / 0)
...and hired some of the worst of the worst of that ilk for his staff.

[ Parent ]
Welfare (0.00 / 0)
"Welfare" as a bad thing...  It is striking that the idea of government taking care of the citizens is a pejorative.

--

Seeing The Forest -- Who is our economy FOR, anyway? Twitter: dcjohnson


[ Parent ]
"Everybody in, nobody out" (0.00 / 0)
Now that's framing that works.

Single payer framing as it happens.

I have to say that anybody who's surprised that welfare is an ineffective frame can't have been paying attention for the last half dozen or so presidential electoral cycles.


I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  


[ Parent ]
"Everybody in, nobody out" (0.00 / 0)
Now that's framing that works.

Single payer framing as it happens.

I have to say that anybody who's surprised that welfare is an ineffective frame can't have been paying attention for the last half dozen or so presidential electoral cycles.


I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  


[ Parent ]
I don't mean to put words into DaveJ's mouth (0.00 / 0)
but my take on what he said was that the negative framing of welfare is not surprising so much as very unfortunate, and we liberals need to work on reversing that negativity.

[ Parent ]
Well, it's not "striking" to me (0.00 / 0)
Seems like a completely normal part of the discourse.

I am in earnest -- I will not equivocate -- I will not excuse -- I will not retreat a single inch -- AND I WILL BE HEARD.  

[ Parent ]
Right (0.00 / 0)
Thank you.

--

Seeing The Forest -- Who is our economy FOR, anyway? Twitter: dcjohnson


[ Parent ]
Not only that (0.00 / 0)
but Republicans will have at their disposal Obama's own primary-time opposition to mandates, including his Harry and Louise-style mailer.  

"...including his Harry and Louise-style mailer. " (0.00 / 0)
Yeah, but Obama has the original Harry and Louise on his side for this plan. Gee, I wonder why?

[ Parent ]
Funny thing about the (0.00 / 0)
whole partisan divide; I know many on both sides that vote mainly out of tradition.  For instance there is an anti-abortion pro gun Democrat I I know who votes for Democrats because "That is what my Daddy did".  Then I have a young neighbor, about 26 and female, who is pro choice, pro healthcare, and pro most anything else liberal but is literally a card carrying Republican.  Why?  Because that is how she was raised.

Take John Lennon's song Imagine, apply it to political labels, and what would you have?  A center of voters more progressive than what is currently representing them.  I do not know what to make of Obama.  Some say he is a liberal, but he seems to sabotage the most liberal of ideas so he can take conservative elements and incorporate them into liberal ideas and call them bipartisan.  My sense is that this country is made up of a fanbase similar to those of professional sports.  People seem to follow the team because that is their hometown, or because they like a certain player.  

As the block of independents grows, it is clear to me homers are dwindling and being replaced by player fans.  Yet this block that continually votes against their own core ideology puzzles me.  Maybe this is what we need, less loyalty to the team, and more to the players.  Loyalty to Sanders, and Waxman, and screw Nelson and Conrad, Democrats or not.  After all, it is easy to go to a ballpark and wear another team's hat and pretend to like them, as the latter two seem to do, but another thing altogether to sit through a 10-0 blowout just to cheer for Albert when he comes to the plate.  Or in Obama's case Konerko.  

My question about Obama is this, when it comes to his favorite player, (healthcare) if his team (Democrats)trades him (fails on reform) will he stop going to the games (punish disloyal Democrats) or will he continue to be a spectator at a stadium with ever dwindling attendance.(voter engagement)?  And finally, who would you rather have at this point having influence over healthcare?  Ben Nelson or Charlie Crist?  If you had to choose?  A fair, but uncomfortable question.


[ Parent ]
This was done in Ohio for automotive insurance. (0.00 / 0)
In order to ensure that every driver has motor vehicle insurance, the state passed a law mandating that drivers have it so they may legally drive.  Get caught driving without it, and driving privileges are revoked and - depending on the situation - fines and even imprisonment are included in the penalty.  This, while doing absolutely nothing to make actual insurance affordable, is what passes for reform.  It's the same thing this so-called "public option" would do for health insurance.  What about the millions of Americans, like me, who are out of work and can't pay for insurance?  What about the millions of underemployed Americans who can't afford it?



uh, read the bill? (0.00 / 0)
obviously not, otherwise you're questions would have been answered.


[ Parent ]
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