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View Diary: What Democratic leadership failure looks like (337 comments)

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  •  Bull. (10+ / 0-)

    The fault lies not in those who point out that the emperor has no clothes.

    The fault lies with the lack of proper attire on the part of the emperor.

    Even if the collective netroots and base had joined together to all sing the praises of victories in name only, the oh-so-important independent voters would have still seen the abysmal lack of results by our representatives.

    Saying that calling legislation such as health care the craptastic failure that it's turning out to be is the root of the problem, and blaming the activists who were writing and calling our legislators daily to try to get them to do a better job is absolutely and completely putting the cart before the horse.

    We are not some giant collective spin machine.  Especially here.  We are supposed to be a reality based community.

    And the reality is that we've been mopping a hell of a lot harder than our legislative representatives.

    The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

    by JRandomPoster on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:01:43 AM PST

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    •  Double Bull the Emperor is nicely dressed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OIL GUY

      FDL was full of crap, and so are the so called critics.  For example Kos started his bullshit boycott because perceived lack of action on DADT.  Well come to find out during that time the President was staring down generals and telling them that this was a policy he would end.  What was his reward a boycott.  Yeah lets be a reality based community and drop the bull, the President is on our side, and spending 6 months supplying rec listed diaries for Redstate was some stupid shit.

      My leader is Barack Hussein Obama the finest President this country has ever elected.

      by Adept2u on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:05:36 AM PST

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      •  Ah - it didn't take long... (12+ / 0-)

        ... for you to immediately bring out the FDL line - because, you know, anyone who thinks that the Senate health care bill is a fraud and a corporate handout as opposed to providing anything resembling a foundation for further health care is part of an evil FDL conspiracy, right?

        And of course, you assume that the emperor in the analogy refers only to President Obama.  You seem to be so set on defending him that you don't seem to see the collective failures of our Democratic leadership.

        And - as one canvasser, donor, phone banker and volunteer to another: we can't do it all.  At some point, those we work to send to Washington to do the bidding of the electorate have to do their jobs.  They have to roll up their sleeves and get to work.  They have to be willing to take risks, to be bold and to hold the lines for what we work to send them to Washington for.

        The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

        by JRandomPoster on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:13:01 AM PST

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        •  I totally reject your characterization (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          OIL GUY

          of the Senate bill.  Is Bernie Sanders' 10k free clinics or the wellness or the mamorgrams, or the coverage, or the subsidies to the poor, or the medicaid expansion, or the ad infinitum a hand out to corporations?  How about the 85% premium to benefit, how about the codification of the patients bill of rights, how about the first time ever gauranteed right to at least coverage.

          No public option?  What about the option run by the office of personell management, so yeah maybe i used a shorthand in saying FDL and if you're offended by it I apologise, however I will not accept the bullshit meme that the Senate bill is as you describe.

          My leader is Barack Hussein Obama the finest President this country has ever elected.

          by Adept2u on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:18:31 AM PST

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          •  nobody said that the bill was a pure play. (4+ / 0-)
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            itsbenj, 3goldens, wsexson, Uberbah

            the fact that the bill does some good, along with a lot of bad is no defense. federally-qualified clinics and medicaid waivers have been established through stand-alone legislation before. there's no reason why the sanders provisions cannot be introduced separately.

            Years from now, the children of DLC-ers will sit around campfires telling stories about what happened to Martha Coakley in 2010.

            by output on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:25:07 AM PST

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          •  If you want reform... (6+ / 0-)

            ... you have to change something fundamentally.

            The Senate bill does not.  Rather, it strengthens the status quo.  It puts the insurance companies in the position of too big to fail.  And combined with the SCOTUS decision, they are now in a position with their millions of mandated customers to lobby for deregulation of the new system, but keeping the mandate.

            And you think that the Democrats are going to want to change things up and fix the bill after it's passed, after they've already declared victory?  Or that the Republicans are going to want to do anything but further help their corporate partners and sponsors?

            There is no kernel of a foundation for a new system.  This is not like Social Security or Medicare, where a different system entirely was started up.  This is simply a cementing of the status quo into mandated law.  And that law does not prevent people from going broke from health care costs; it forces people to buy insurance but does not do anything about the premiums or co-pays.  In other words, it forces people to buy garbage that many will not be able to afford to use.

            And free clinics?  That's a nice consolation prize - but that isn't what we set out for when we campaigned and worked for reform, now is it?  That isn't a game changer.  It's not reform, and it's just a shiny cheap prize to keep attention off the fact that we aren't getting health care reform - we're getting a legally mandated set of corporate overlords who have dominion over our health care, with little chance of changing it.

            The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

            by JRandomPoster on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:25:11 AM PST

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            •  Good points all. (5+ / 0-)

              The Senate bill should not become law without substantial changes.

              Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

              by maxschell on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:29:26 AM PST

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            •  Status quo? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              maxschell, OIL GUY

              85% premium to benefit
              No cancellations
              No pre-existing conditions
              Kids may stay on parents plan
              Defined benefit levels in 3 govt controlled plans
              codified patients bill of rights

              Here's an idea and I wonder why no one ever mentions this.  We are a capitalist society and it sounds like there would be a niche for a green insurance company so to speak.  There wouldnt be any need to advertise as it could go on the exchange that is in the Senate bill.  Americans could choose to go with it.

              My leader is Barack Hussein Obama the finest President this country has ever elected.

              by Adept2u on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:30:03 AM PST

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              •  Great idea re: green insurance. (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Uberbah, JRandomPoster

                Unfortunately the bill does not provide for any relevant changes to the existing private insurance system, which has been constructed over the years to benefit the exiting private insurers.

                One solution to this could be to remove the antitrust exemption, which the Senate refused to do, but Pelosi is pushing.

                However, even this measure would not be a corrective, because it requires the intercession of the DOJ and as we know, during Republican administrations the DOJ is corrupted.  I would wager that a Republican DOJ would be unwilling to break up insurance trusts.

                In addition, while all the benefits you mention are important, they would also require enforcement/litigation to be meaningful.  

                For instance, I have personally litigated "ERISA" disputes over medical coverage.  Access to courts is an essential aspect of at least two of the benefits you cite, "no cancellations" and "no denials based on pre-existing conditions" (I paraphrased the last one).  The Senate bill does not sufficiently enable the access to courts that would be required to vindicate these rights.  They are therefore rendered "formal" rights that will not be effective or worthwhile.

                In return for these shiny objects, we are committing to fork over billions of dollars to the private insurers, who will then put it right back in the pockets of our enemies, who we agreed elsewhere are "batshit crazy".  

                I do not think this is a recipe for success of our party or for the good of our nation.

                Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

                by maxschell on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:42:39 AM PST

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              •  Yes, and worse. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                maxschell, MindRayge, Uberbah

                So, let's take a look at some of your points.

                With reference to the 85% premium to benefit - the only impact this will have is that premiums are going to go up across the board, as are co-pays.  This isn't going to reduce costs - in fact, it's going to do the opposite.  Do you really think that they're going to cut profits or executive salaries to make these goals?

                No cancellations and pre-existing conditions:  it doesn't matter if you are allowed (well, forced, really) to buy insurance that you can't afford to exercise.  Furthermore, care will continued to be dictated by cost: people will be forced to take the cheap and risky routes first.

                Kids may stay on parents plan:  ok, another nice shiney prize.  So we basically mandate the kids into early adulthood, instead of actually giving them a public option or medicare buy in.  We are still keeping the middleman here.

                Defined benefit levels in 3 govt controlled plans:  well, so it's not health care for all - it's still a tiered, class based layered system.  In other words, we manage to keep healthcare based on what you can buy.

                At the end of the day, all of this is just shiny wrapping to disguise the fact that we aren't getting reform.  We are being sold a bill of goods.

                This is not what was campaigned on, and this is not the health care reform that helped see President Obama elected and got the majorities that we (are supposed to) have in the House and Senate.

                This is not what we made calls and donations to get passed.  Rather, this is a bill written by lobbyists for the insurance industry with some shiny consolation prizes thrown in so you don't realize that you're trading the farm for some cheap nicities.

                And this is not what the independent and middle of the road voters want.

                This is a fiasco and a disaster, both politically and in terms of actual health care improvements.

                The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

                by JRandomPoster on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:44:58 AM PST

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                •  I'll adress your points one by one (0+ / 0-)
                  1.  There is no benefit in increasing premiums if you must increase benefits by the same amount, that cant be a profit driver you'd have to find ways to keep shoveling money out the front door.  It's purpose is not to reduce its cost its purpose is to make sure Insurance companies are not just taking premium dollars while reducing benefit.
                  1.  There is no mandate to purchase what you cannot afford and in fact are very generous subsidies for those who cannot afford it.  You do not at all speak to the fact that people who now cannot get coverage at any price will be able to under the Senate bill, you know those 45K Americans Grayson was discussing.
                  1.  I don't think the kid who had asthma, or cancer or anyother of the thousands of childhood diseases thinks its a shiney bauble that his 23rd birthday isnt a death sentence.
                  1.  The defined benefit is 60% of cost 80 and 90 I believe, and it will be a gauranteed performer that wont throw you off when you use it, I'd say one hell of a nice step forward

                  At the end of the day its the HealthCare StepOne Act of 2010 and let's get er done.

                  My leader is Barack Hussein Obama the finest President this country has ever elected.

                  by Adept2u on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 10:57:12 AM PST

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                  •  Rebuttals: (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    1.  Cost will be aggregated across all policies.  We'll still be paying the executive salaries, the lobbyist fees, and shareholder profits to the middle man between us and our health care.  Similarly, any excise tax will be inherently shared with policy payers whose policy does not have such a tax added, as the cost of the non-excise tax policy can be escalated while the cost of the excise taxed policy can be slightly undervalued.  Overall, all we've done is set up a more efficient machine for the insurance industry to make profits.
                    1.  Too many folks will have to go broke to get the subsidies and get on medicaid.  And setting up clinics is a different ball of wax than setting up a true national health care system.
                    1.  They move it up to 26.  It's not a fix - it's a stay of execution.  It is not a solution.
                    1.  And when the insurance companies use all their mandated profits to lobby without restriction?  When we get another Republican Congress, as someday we will, who thinks that everything needs to be de-regulated so it can thrive?

                    At the end of the day, we aren't really changing much except for legally empowering the health insurance companies.  And you call it act one:  well, unless we actually get a real foundation to build upon, there won't be an act two.  And what they're trying to pawn off on us is not a real foundation by any stretch of the imagination.

                    The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

                    by JRandomPoster on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 11:43:10 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  One other thing: (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    Regardless of whether you are right (and - really, I hope you are, but my engineer's mind looks at the plan and the politics, and cannot force itself to accept conclusions that are not supported by facts) - the voters aren't seeing it that way.

                    Rather, they are seeing capitulation and failure to deliver what was promised.  And the more they learn about the Senate plan, the more discouraged they become - especially when what they don't see is the Democratic leadership fighting very hard a lot of the time.

                    Maybe there is some hope to be had in the Senate Plan.  But - it's not enough.

                    A lot of folks were willing to accept a certain level of compromise.  But what they are seeing is that the Democrats in power have traded away one thing after another for something else which in turn is then traded away.

                    It's not too late to fix this bill and get it passed.  But if the bill that is before the Senate passes now, it will mean a massive loss for the Democrats.  And there will go your Act Two.

                    The inadequate is the enemy of the necessary.

                    by JRandomPoster on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 11:49:28 AM PST

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        •  Conspiracy - No Stupidity - Yes (0+ / 0-)

          God has no religion. - Gandhi

          by OIL GUY on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 11:06:37 AM PST

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      •  a noun, a verb, and FDL (0+ / 0-)

        I'm a part of the reality-based community, not the personality-based community.

        by Uberbah on Wed Feb 03, 2010 at 02:41:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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