Home > Uncategorized > Super-uber-mega, filibuster-proof majority of Americans oppose Senate health plan

Super-uber-mega, filibuster-proof majority of Americans oppose Senate health plan

We heard a lot during the last campaign about returning the government to the people, about governing on behalf of the majority, and not the rich few. You still hear Democrats say the American people want health-care reform. And they are exactly right, but only in a very general sense: Americans do, in fact, support health-care reform, and perhaps even some sort of public insurance, some larger role for the federal government.

But they oppose this plan. They oppose this way of fixing American health care. And not just a plurality or a slim majority, but a super-uber-mega, filibuster-proof, vast majority.

So why is the Republican position — that we should stop, scrap this bill, and start over — so bad? Does 61% of America – in addition to congressional Republicans – also remind Senator Harry Reid of those who opposed slavery? How arrogant he must be to have such confidence in a plan that is less of a plan than it is a hodgepodge of concessions tossed on some oak conference table! That’s what we’re talking about here! This isn’t the product of decades of academic research; this isn’t even the product of a single day of academic research – by professors of health policy, or experienced policy-wonk PhDs – into how to devise a complex system so it will most efficiently care for 305 million people. This is patchwork, makeshift jerry-rigging. And he wonders how people could possibly oppose it? Actually, he doesn’t; he knows why: because they’re racists. How dare racists question Harry’s health-policy credentials. “Don’t they know I’ve done this all my life? I write health-care policy for hundreds of millions of people all the time!”


It seems to me that, politically, Democrats stand to make huge gains, enormous strides, in public support by saying, simply and humbly, “Look, we have no doubt that the majority of Americans believe this system is whack, but we promised to protect the majority, not dismiss it; we promised to govern for them, not despite them. So we’re going back to the drawing board because we’re confident that there are things we can work with the Republicans on fixing to lower costs, increase access, and improve the quality of health care in America.”

But that won’t happen. Democrats have so convinced themselves of their paternal role that they are quite literally (an over-used word, but I picked it carefully) acting like parents do with wayward children. We all heard it when we were kids: “You’re upset now, you’re mad at me now, but I was your age once and I’ve lived a long time since and I know what’s best for you. You might not see it now, but you’ll thank me later for this. Trust me.”

The difference is, trusting one’s parents is typically the only option. If you’re grounded, you’re grounded; if they won’t give you the keys to the car, you’re not going anywhere.

But us? Well, we’ll all be heading to our local voting precinct in about a year, and from the looks of it, it really ain’t gonna be pretty for our paternalistic politicians across the Potomac.

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