You're Doing It Wrong

I've been following politics across the pond, and I have a question about Barak Omaba's healthcare reforms: Is he trying to fail?

He watered down the original proposals to get republicans on board - when he didn't need to do that to get the bill passed. He must also have known that whatever he gave away to the republican party, its major figures would always want more.

He watered the proposal down even more to get the right wing of the democrat party on board - when he didn't need to.

He's now given in to the wingnuts who don't know the difference between "being reimbursed for euthanasia consultation" and "being forced to kill your family".

Seriously, there was a section which detailed how you'd be reimbursed for the fee your doctor charged you to consult on the possibility of euthanasia for yourself or a loved one when terminally ill. Sarah Palin, Michael Steel, Michelle Malkin and the usual band of drivelling panicmongers managed to portray it as mandatory euthanasia and "death panels".

Or rather, that was their paper-thin excuse. They really opposed the bill because (a) they're partially funded by insurance companies who'd lose out if the bill passed and (b) it came from Barak Obama.

So, what in hades does Barak Obama think he's doing?

Do you remember Bill Clinton's first act as president? He tried to have the Don't ask, don't tell policy repealed.

It was never going to happen. The army opposed it, the republicans (obviously) opposed it, and the senate was against it. If Clinton thought he had a hope of getting rid of DADT, he was a damn fool living in a dream world.

But of course, Bill Clinton was no fool. Whatever else he was, he very aware of political realities. The only thing he had to gain by a move like that appeal to liberals by trying to do the right thing, and being heroically defeated.

It made him look like a left wing - but not too left wing - figure unfairly blocked by bigoted conservatives, instead of what he was, an old-fashioned conservative adept at making modern liberal noises.

That tactic, and others, worked. His veneer of center-left progressivism never really came off, even when signing away civil rights and authorising wiretapping against citizens.

Now, I have to seriously wonder whether Obama is doing something a little similar with health care reform. Is this about trying to look progressive, seem to be doing all he can for ordinary people, so that he can actually conduct business as usual?

Rather than actually doing what needs to be done because...he's been advised the country can't afford it?

Yes, I know it sounds a little crazy, and perhaps it is. You tell me. I don't think he needed to make any compromises at all, certainly not to the lunatic fringe who hate him for being black. So why did he allow the health care reform to be progressively destroyed by enemies who ought to be ineffectual?


  1. Don't count him out yet! He gave a brilliant discussion on the issue Saturday. He put perspective into the debate and called out those "death panel" idiots as being dishonest and misinformed. He's on the offensive. He's a smart man who knows the art of war. And he is making his move.

    Health reform is a complicated issue, and in America, where personal freedom and liberties often conflict with the greater good, the issue is never simple. But what's great is now that the idiots have been called out for being stupid and misinformed, intelligent debate can take place, because the panic has begun to subside and people are starting to ask for real information.

    Knowledge is power.

    How's your health care system working in the UK? Do you like it? What are some pros and cons?