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The Single Sentence in the President’s Tax Compromise Presser that Reveals All

So I pass a signature piece of legislation where we finally get health care for all Americans, something that Democrats had been fighting for for a hundred years, but because there was a provision in there that they didn’t get that would have affected maybe a couple of million people, even though we got health insurance for 30 million people and the potential for lower  premiums for 100 million people, that somehow that was a sign of weakness and compromise.


HE passed it, not “we” or “Democrats and Democrats only”

Consider the hubris in that statement. But I am willing to take it at face value. He passed it, and we got the bill with the parameters that HE wanted and that HE and his White House negotiated. Those parameters included trading away the public option early on, even though he pretended to continue to publicly support its inclusion long past the time he personally knew it was an impossibility. Quite honestly, if I were President Obama, the very last thing I would be reminding people and carping about is the failure of the public option.

He then further denigrates it as only affecting “maybe a couple of million people”(!) Really? Then why did you make it a centerpiece of your reform and say you not “not sign a bill” that didn’t include it. Wasn’t it supposed to be the one thing that would keep private providers honest and provide real competition in the marketplace? You know that marketplace where health care providers STILL enjoy their anti-trust exemption? Wouldn’t that have benefited EVERY single person looking for coverage?

Who are these 30 million that you think you have covered? My understanding is that the figure of Americans without healthcare has actually RISEN given the fact of rising unemployment and that PREMIUMS HAVE RISEN and the fact that the temporary COBRA co-pay has ended. (THAT might have been a good thing to fight for) Also, the “high risk pools” that were supposed to cover Americans who have been denied insurance due to pre-existing conditions has also turned out top be a farce and is covering a fraction of people who would have been eligible. The issue? Cost. It is too damn expensive. Turns out that’s a good thing since the whole program is fatally underfunded anyway if more had been able to use it. Gee, do you think they knew that few would actually qualify AND be able to pay and there was no great need for funding. But, hooray everyone, we have the “potential” for lower premiums. ?????? Wasn’t lowering costs the whole point of reform in the first place? Anyone remember debates where people discussed their different plans to “potentially lower costs” ? Me neither.

President Obama, since you are claiming all the credit for this horror of healthcare “reform”, are you also willing to claim the blame for its shortcomings? Are you willing to admit that you basically pretended to feel one way in public and then did everything you could behind the scenes to disembowel your own supposed preferences? You did the same thing with drug re-importation. Are you also not getting enough credit for that?

And you know what, I agree with the sentence you uttered before you spoke the one I have highlighted.

“This is the public option debate all over again.”

You’re right. Tax compromise IS the “public option debate all over again. And all the same dynamics are in effect. You pretend to be for one thing while you work feverishly behind the scenes to obtain something completely different, and label it a successful “compromise”

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