Friday, June 29, 2012

Is Democrats glee over healthcare ruling whistling in the dark?

Soon after the Supreme Court's ruling upholding Obamacare the emails from Democratic groups started flowing. "So this is what victory feels like" crowed Daily Kos. MoveOn sent out their usual petition this one thanking Obama for what I don't know, and asking for money to support Democratic candidates in support of the health care law.

 Nancy Pelosi crowed in a tweet that it was a victory for the American people and some nonsense about it being Ted Kennedy who influenced the outcome from beyond ( had Kennedy been alive he would have scalded Obama for dropping the public option).

 The problem is this isn't what any real Democrat or progressive or liberal or doctor or anyone with any grasp of the issue of healthcare reform was saying back in March of 2010 after Obama committed what was probably the grossest most flagrant sell out of a promise by a president in American history when he capitulated and caved in to health insurance lobbyists and dropped the public option behind everyone's back even though the Democrats had the votes in congress to pass the public option.

 The reason it was behind everyone's back is that in true Obama style, he never publicly told anyone what he did. He never said he changed his mind. He never tried to make a case for dropping the public option and trying to convince people that his bill was better. He didn't of course because it wasn't better it was a giant step backwards and a gutless capitulation and that cant be justified. But the next time Obama held a town hall meeting on health care, without explanation or acknowledgement by Obama, the banner hanging in the hall was changed from "HEALTHCARE REFORM" to " HEALTH INSURANCE REFORM". As soon as I saw that change and saw that Obama wasn't addressing it I knew he had sold out to someone, was pulling a fast one and was hoping no one would notice.  No one did,especially the blind mice known as the press.

At the time of the vote on what is now called Obamacare, Democratic senators like Tom Harkin and Bernie Sanders who votes with the Democrats, when asked what they thought of the health care law they just voted for were clearly angry and disappointed. All Harkin could say, was "it's better than nothing". Sanders said the same but was a bit more critical.

 Howard Dean, a physician, former governor of Vermont,Democratic presidential candidate and former Chair of the DNC, said only days ago before the court ruling that he hoped the court struck down the individual mandate and the reason is that's its a poor substitute for a public option or medicare for everyone either of which could have been passed when Democrats controlled congress.

 In fact before the original vote on Obama's health care bill was cast, Dean said publicly the bill should be junked because it was in fact, a piece of junk.

 Pelosi herself during the healthcare debate when Obama floated the idea of dropping the public option said the public option was "the centerpiece of healthcare reform". Democrats in the House said they might not vote for a healthcare bill that did not contain a public option.

 This is the junk that Democrats and Democratic support groups are now pretending to celebrate. A bill that, in 2010 wiped the Democrats out of the House because they didn't deliver the public option that was promised and that every poll showed an overwhelming number of people wanted.

 To be clear, had the public option been passed, not only would its constitutionality never have been in question, but it simplified healthcare, reduced healthcare costs ( Obama's law will increase costs from 5% of gross national product to 9%) reduced the deficit by $160 billion, and would have allowed the government to establish any parameters it wanted for a government health program. Which means that private insurers had two choices which would have eliminated the need for 2700 pages of legal mumbo jumbo -- they could follow the provisions in the public option like dropping pre-existing conditions or annual caps in order to compete and keep customers, or lose them to the public option.

 Instead what Obama's mandate does, contrary to the "Polly wanna cracker" parroting of Obama's spin by Daily Kos and others, is not get insurance for 32 million uninsured. What it does is get 32 million new customers for the health insurance industry instead of the way to real healthcare reform -- the public option or some kind of single payer system.

 But according to Daily Kos in their email, "this is what victory feels like". Which is why Democrats and support groups like DailyKos and MoveOn never get what they want.

This is victory only if you think like a perpetual loser, are willing to accept crumbs because you let your leaders walk all over you and  have seen Republicans walk all over them, are in deep denial about Obama and his presidency, and really have no idea what it takes to be a leader and achieve real accomplishments.

 For those people who think this is what victory feels like, this is what it really is:  whistling in the dark.


freespirit said...

Thank you for this excellent post, and for interjecting some sanity and honesty into this pathetic, ridiculous issue. People like Daily Kos and other Obama sites miss the essence and truth of every issue because they are interested only in framing their discussion in a manner that will be most advantageous to Barack. The Dem Party has lost its soul - traded it to Obama. Nothing left to do but to wait for Donna Brazille's "New Democratic Party" run by Barack and Jarrett to implode, taking the light weights like DK and MoveOn with it.

Anonymous said...

Amen Marc and freespirit.


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