Monday, March 22, 2010

We're sick but not dead -- thanks in part to Joe Lieberman
Mike Rappaport

Many commentators, such as the excellent Mark Steyn, have pronounced us dead (or European).  And we may one day be dead, but not yet.  Why?

The Democrats did not pass a Medicare national health care bill over the weekend.  They passed a regulatory, Rube Goldberg monstrosity, but not free health care that would be difficult to take away.  Instead, their bill will do much to make private insurance ineffective, raising costs and decreasing efficiency.  If it takes effect, this may lead to the next step of a Medicare type plan.

But such a plan was not part of the bill.  If the Health Care Law is allowed to take effect in 2014, there will be a big debate about whether the right response is to repeal it or to go towards national health care.  That means there is at least one more big battle.

And the good guys have one big advantage.  When private insurance goes bust, no one will forget that the Republicans told you so.  Yes, the Democrats will claim it is due to private insurers, but it will be a hard argument to make.

And for this, the good guys owe a debt of gratitude to the only reliable kind of Democrat -- an ex Democrat.  That is, to Joe Lieberman, who said no to the public option in a way that Bart Stupak could never imagine.  If there was a public option in this bill, then we would be much closer to doom than we are.

Will the Republicans be able to repeal this before it takes full effect -- or after it does?  I don't know, but, as I said the other day, don't assume this is impossible.  The Democrats have played with fire, in a big way, and they may be burned.  And Moe Lane does a great job of showing how unprecedented things have been this past year.  

What the forces of small government need to do is not to give up, but to fight.  That means supporting the Tea Parties.  That means standing strong against Mitt Romeny and his Romneycare.  That means supporting someone like Mitch Daniels for President.  If they do, there is still hope. 

https://rightcoast.typepad.com/rightcoast/2010/03/were-sick-but-not-dead-thanks-in-part-to-joe-liebermanmike-rappaport.html

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Mike Rappaport
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Comments

I've actually come around to this line of thinking today:

(1) The government did not takeover the health care system. The system remains in private hands; it's just more expensive. I think I can live with this for the time being.

(2) The Democrats just gave away a huge, life-or-death issue that consistently provided them with an electoral advantage.

(3) Everything that now goes wrong in the health care system belongs to the Democrats, fairly or not. The Democrats' ability to demagogue on this issue is gone. And things will go wrong because of this bill.

The question: will Republicans screw it up?

Posted by: Still Hopeful | Mar 22, 2010 10:19:38 PM

"When private insurance goes bust, no one will forget that the Republicans told you so."

If private insurers go bust, the inevitable result will be a single payer system (such as an extension of Medicare). What is the likely alternative; massive government subsidies to revive the defunct corporations?

Posted by: Floridan | Mar 23, 2010 6:27:30 AM

interesting! the Democrats' ability to demagogue on this issue is gone.

Posted by: mike | Mar 25, 2010 7:02:00 AM