Thursday, July 2, 2009

Disappointment Doesn't Cover It

And not just on this issue. Over everything.

"Disappointment Doesn't Cover It

Commentary By Ron Beasley

To say I'm disappointed in Barack Obama is an understatement. I'm beginning to think he has no ideology at all only a lust for political power. He has chosen to not prosecute or even investigate the criminal wrong doings of the Bush/Cheney cabal and in fact in too many cases continued down the same path. As we have reported here over and over his AF/Pak policy would make Bush and Cheney proud. He had the opportunity to take on Wall Street and the over inflated financial industry and failed to do so. He is making one mistake that George W. Bush never made - he's deferring to Congress and the US Congress can't really be trusted to do anything right.

And now we are seeing all of this at work in health care reform. Katrina Vanden Heuvel:

God I hope David Broder is wrong. "The President has told visitors," the Washington Post columnist wrote last week, "that he would rather have 70 votes in the Senate for a bill that gives him 85 percent of what he wants rather than a 100 percent satisfactory bill that passes 52-48."

There is a reason the United States has two political parties, they have different ideologies. This is not new - it's the same ideological conflict that John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were having over 200 years ago but as times changed it became even more pronounced. I think that both Adams and Jefferson opposed an American royalty/oligarchy. But oligarchs we have had and when they came to power the results have consistently been catastrophic. The oligarchs are driven by greed for both power and money. They gained control of the country in the early 20th century and the result was the Great Depression. It took an FDR to set things straight and things went pretty well until 1981 when Ronald Reagan and the oligarchs once again took charge. Once again the result was a massive failure of the economy. The oligarchs and their political allies the Republicans suffered massive losses in 2006 and 2008. Unfortunately Barack Obama is no FDR.

The Republicans claim that the health insurance industry won't be able to compete with a public plan. That's probably true since as Fester pointed out here they have no competition in most markets now and as Josh Marshall explains this little fact gets little attention. Seventy two percent of Americans support a public plan and that includes fifty percent of the Republicans. But what do we get from the Obama administration? This:

In an emailed statement to Bloomberg News, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said she’s open to the idea of dropping a public health insurance option in favor of a medical-insurance cooperative. “You could theoretically design a co-op plan that had the same attributes as a public plan,” Sebelius said.

The leading co-op proposal in the Senate, offered by Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND), does not share the attributes of a public plan. Instead, Conrad’s proposal would create multiple state or regional non-profits as a competitor to the private insurance market. As Howard Dean has said of this plan: “The co-ops are too small to compete with the big, private insurance companies. They will kill the co-ops completely by undercutting them, using their financial clout to do it.”

Bloomberg’s Al Hunt asked Sebelius, “[If] you’re willing to compromise on your notion of a public plan…what’s non-negotiable?” Sebelius responded that the final bill has to “have a comprehensive approach that lowers costs.

Change? Not so much - the oligarchs are still in charge.

Write your member of congress and tell them to vote no on any health care reform bill that doesn't include a strong public plan. Make it clear to Obama that we demand real change not bipartisan window dressing.