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September 28, 2009

Comments

I don't understand one of your last sentences. Why would it be reasonalbe to criticize Obama for trying to keep AARp and the hospital lobbies on board with his program?

But yeah, completely depraved, those Republicans on the Hill. That's not a news bulletin anymore to anyone except the corporate media.

It is a nice surprise that the Post had a decent article. I guess they will have to compensate now with three or four stenography pieces on behalf of Republicans.

I think the idea is that you can't get the type of cuts you need (esp. in care delivery) w/out making bigger cuts to hospital reimbursements, etc.

I do wish the whole healthcare reform bill had been funded by redistributionist taxation rather than relying so heavily on proposed "curve-bending" in Medicare. If the Medicare reforms are workable and worth doing on their own account, they could have been handled separately.

You could easily fund this bill with a bump in the high-bracket income tax rates and some other progressive tax changes (the estate tax & fund manager income being treated as capital gains would be two promising targets).

I think the attempt to fund it with cuts was part of the pre-capitulation strategy in an attempt to get Republican votes - which I sincerely hope has been proven to be a total dud, as any idiot could have predicted. Now that you see Republicans opposing the very clauses that were added to appease them it really ought to be very obvious that they aren't people you can negotiate with that way (or maybe at all).

If FDR had operated this way, well, we'd probably still be in the Great Depression.

"If FDR had operated this way, we'd probably still be in the Great Depression."

Plus, half the country would be speaking Japanese and the other half German if he had appeased America's enemies.

I agree, Jacob, that the health reform should be funded fully by taxes, but I think it should be a dedicated tax, like the Medicare tax, which should also be raised.

You said, "it's hard to recall a more brazen and cynical act of hypocrisy". You mean this week, right?

I agree, Jacob, that the health reform should be funded fully by taxes, but I think it should be a dedicated tax, like the Medicare tax, which should also be raised.

I agree that taxes are a great replacement for insurance premiums. VAT would probably work better as a substitute for all of our payroll taxes. VAT isn't perfect, but it is less regressive than payroll taxes. I'd be happy to cover better-Medicare-for-all, Workers' Comp, OASDI, unemployment, and new child benefits with it.

I agree that taxes are a great replacement for insurance premiums. VAT would probably work better as a substitute for all of our payroll taxes. VAT isn't perfect, but it is less regressive than payroll taxes. I'd be happy to cover better-Medicare-for-all, Workers' Comp, OASDI, unemployment, and new child benefits with it.

Why that's not socialism, that's full-fledged communism. It may even be un-Christian... /snark.

I think people will look back at this as the time where Obama could have rammed through full fledged health care, but had a failure of nerve and held back. Then, it might be seen as the Civil Rights Act of 1957-the timid, toothless but necessary precursor the real CRA of 1964. We'll see.

Yes, i'm sure a more ambitious bill would have been able to attract a CRA64-like 73 senate votes, which would include senators like mcconnell and hutchinson.

Mabye it would be better, if Obama were the mobster his GOP 'detractors' like to paint him. A few horse heads in GOP beds (replacing the alive boys and dead girls*) could do wonders.

*OK, most mistresses are still alive

No one despises the Republicans and their braying asses at Fox, et al. more than I. But, in the spirit of keeping one's enemies closer, we have to acknowledge the mythical allure of their "small government" BS.

Those of us who despise them must try to see the world through their eyes, in order to effectively counter their myths. In their idealized view, the America they live in is a small town on the frontier, beset by Injuns and Outlaws and Desperado Escaped Slaves, all of whom threaten their fragile sense of order and communal solidarity.

They believe that their highly-localized community can just stick together and look out for each other, without any gummint byoorocrats sticking their noses into anyone's business. Heck, if old cowboy Sam breaks a leg ridin' herd south of Cheyenne, we all know old Doc'll fix him up without makin' out like some Shylock demanding his pound of flesh. Give old Doc a good bottle of Rye and it'll all be settled and we can git back to Miss Kitty's Saloon and get the piano player going again.

The last thing we want is havin' to kow-tow to some east-coast bureaucrat by fillin' out forms begging him to pay the bill. By God, that's just Red Socialism, plain as a cactus in the desert.

Those of us who despise them must try to see the world through their eyes, in order to effectively counter their myths.

If you were really serious about the effort to enlighten others about the small government/libertarian mindset, your post would come across as a serious effort to do something besides ridicule those who disagree with you.

I think he's spot-on about the emotional triggers activated by the 'narrative' of the nutball "right"; but why listen to me? Learn something about myth for yourself. To help you along, 'the only good indian is a dead indian' is very much part of the myth AK gives voice to, just as 'the Jewish problem' was a central part of the National Socialist narrative.

NOT co-incidentally, both led to horrific conclusions.

If you were really serious about the effort to enlighten others about the small government/libertarian mindset, your post would come across as a serious effort to do something besides ridicule those who disagree with you.

It would still not make those views any less ridiculous, however.

This is the internet; we've heard more about the libertarian mindset than we ever wanted to, or even thought was possible. It's just that, having heard it, we reject it.

Actually, I think AK is pretty close to the reality. Sure he/she stretches it in his/her example, but sometimes it needs to be stated in an exaggerated way to be understood.

The basic concept of self and small community reliance is what drives much of the conservative libertarian thinking. What I would add, however, is that this is very limited in that this mind set works on a self-denial basis when it comes to the services they really take for granted which can only be derived from larger government.

My younger son, to my consternation, was a big fan of O'Reilly several years ago. He still considers him the best of the Fox lot (which is probably correct) but no longer views him as a totally rational person. He would talk to me about the "good old days" when people would gather together to help their neighbors in times of crisis and when they didn't need government intervention.

As he has gotten older he has come to recognize that the world we live in is too complex for that to happen on a large scale. True, some groups do help and do things for others. But the complexities of the world we live in dictates against bthe mid-set that AK describes.

Enlightenment takes time and in these latter days of the Republic, as in a half-hour situation comedy, we've got maybe 23 minutes left (excluding commercial breaks; this ain't PBS) for joke, laugh track, joke, laugh track, etc. before the show is canceled.

I'm all for shedding light, but all that seems to happen is alot of scuttling for more darkness from the rump end of what used to be the Republican Party.

Ridiculous deserves ridicule. Ironic inversion with a yahoo cowboy astride it, slapping it with his hat, riding it all the way down to the big finish -- like Slim Pickins at the ending of Dr. Strangelove.

For God's sake, stop all of the fighting. This is the War Room.

I wrote a post at Angry Bear the other month called "Somewhere Pete G Peterson is Weeping"

The guy has spent the last two decades trying to whip up hysteria about the "Entitlements Crisis" caused by Social Security and Medicare and that is our duty to back a "Bi Partisan Commission" to restore "Intergenerational Equity" in the name of "Fiscal Responsibility" (all three are essentially trademarks of PGP). In fact Pete went as far as committing $1 billion (yes and that is a 'b') to set up the Peter G Peterson Foundation whose sole goal is to kill Medicare and Social Security by slashing their benefits.

And now his Republicans have turned on him by using Medicare as a scare tactic? They just totally screwed up the message he has been selling through Concord (he co-founded it) and the movie I.O.U.S.A. The message is that Boomers now entering Social Security are selfish bastards out to bankrupt America and we shouldn't hesitate to kick them off the retirement security gravy train. And here are his boys getting all weepy about Medicare.

This guy wrote a billion dollar check to underwrite a big piss-athon on the graves of LBJ's Great Society and FDR's New Deal and now some boneheads are turning around and spraying on his shoes. What's a reactionary billionaire supposed to do now?

Some Republicans are probably waking up to the hash they have made in their seventy-five year campaign to roll back the New Deal. The plan was to kill Social Security during an attempt to roll back Medicare. Take Medicare off the table and Social Security becomes bulletproof, nobody being willing to take it on without the protection given by what is an unsustainable Medicare system. Michael Steele and some Senators have set PGP's program back, and maybe for years and 80 something Pete doesn't have years to wait.

Sorry Pete, better luck next life.

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