Thursday, February 25, 2010

Health care reform shorts:
Just get it done already!

serious-health-protesters.jpg
I won't be watching the President's talkathon today. I have stuff to do. Oh, I know, I can't really escape it; I'm sure I'll read oceans of commentary afterward.

At this late stage, I'm more and more realizing why I have become so furious during this process.

It's not the bill's near complete capitulation to the demands of the medical-insurance industry that makes for the worst of my bile. I don't like it that the White House apparently promised hospitals, doctors, drug companies and insurers that they'd do "reform" without costing them their profits. The "public option" was a fig leaf thrown to distract those of us who think provision of health care to all is a moral imperative -- and so easily discarded.

But, in the end, I think demanding morality from government is the people's business and our failure if we don't get it.

What has made me furious about this process is that the politicians we worked so hard to elect have managed the politics so poorly. That's what they are supposed to be good at: telling a story, rounding up votes, balancing multiple local and self-seeking interests, synthesizing -- and getting it done. The White House and the Democrats in the Senate have been abject failures at this work of politics.

They may yet pull it out, since we gave them enormous majorities with which to do it. But it hurts horribly to realize we had to work that hard to put in a bunch of inept fumblers.
***
I exempt Speaker Pelosi from this criticism. I have lots of quarrels with my Congresswoman, but she seems to be able to do the job of the politics of the House.

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