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View Diary: A Very Candid Krugman: "Economists Themselves Are Confused" (127 comments)

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  •  That assumes that the current situation... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Virginia mom, MichaelNY

    was inevitable. I don't think it was. If the right tools had be used and the traps had been avoided, they'd probably be doing better than 10+ points.

    •  It was inevitable (0+ / 0-)

      Touch healthcare and you die.  There is no coinsidence that Democrats and Obama's poll numbers plummeted when he started trying to push healthcare.  

      •  I think if they had explained more clearly... (5+ / 0-)

        that people are getting what they say they want in polls, then things would be in better territory. Instead, the Democrats got down into the weeds and ignored the public conversation.

        I think people would be incredibly happy right now if they didn't have to worry about rescission or preexisting conditions, and they had a public option to head to if their current insurer started ignoring their needs.

        •  That is a fantasy (0+ / 0-)

          None of those things can pass even with huge Democratic majorities.  Changing healthcare is a hugely unpopular topic.  Obama got burned on it, Clinton got burned on it and so did Truman, who was accused by Republicans and many conservative Democrats as siding with Communists for supporting universal healthcare.  

          •  Eliminating rescission and... (4+ / 0-)

            pre-existing did pass both chambers of Congress. A public option passed one of the chambers, and if reconciliation had been used, I think it could have passed the other chamber.

            Maybe changing health care is hard to do in some abstract sense, but if the Democrats had spoken more clearly about the individual specific issues that people wanted them to tackle and hadn't fallen into all of the idiotic legislative traps they let themselves get pulled into, I firmly believe that we could have a legitimate health care reform law today.

            •  Obama deserves the blame for this (0+ / 0-)

              If he had more than just a pea-sized brain, he would have been pounding on Democrats 24/7 to pass a bill.  Instead, he pretty much sat around not caring.  He was the problem and I suspect he will rightly pay for it when he goes down in history as a failed President.  

            •  It's wrong to speak about this in the past tense (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              PsychoSavannah

              A public option passed one of the chambers, and if reconciliation had been used, I think it could have passed the other chamber.

              It still could pass, in theory. In practice, if it can't pass the Senate by Reconciliation now, it probably couldn't have passed before Senator Brown of Massachusetts' election, either.

              However, BrianZeske sure seems like a Republican provocateur here.

              •  I've honestly become completely and utterly... (0+ / 0-)

                ambivalent on the issue. The President and Congressional Democrats completely screwed the pooch - I don't see any way that the House passes the Senate bill without a reconciliation fix. Waldman talks about how a quick reconciliation fix could happen, but that's only in the lala land where Democrats have the balls to use the tools they've got.

                Honestly, it's like the questions we used to ask about Bush. Are the Democrats incompetent? Do I simply not share their agenda? I don't know, I don't totally care. The system is broken, and given the ignorance of the American public and the unwillingness of Washington Democrats (for whatever reason) to forcefully challenge the status quo, I don't see how anything is going to change any time soon.

                I'll be out in the streets cheering and raising cash for the DNC itself if the the HCR debacle somehow gets turned around and I get my pony, but I just don't see the path. Ditto on at least half a dozen other proposals that ought to be basic common sense.

                As for Mr Zeske, you could very well be right. Or he could be in league with folks like me. I honestly can't say I think he's shown his cards one way or the other, but if he's just here to rile people up or something, I'll let folks take care of him when he does.

                •  Money corrupts (4+ / 0-)

                  That's the answer. The so-called "moderate Democrats" in the Senate are paid agents of the insurance and banking industries. But while "We suck less than the other party!" is not much of a slogan, we do have to remember just how much worse the Republicans were when they were in control. We can and should be angry, but we can't be apathetic.

                  P.S. On a much less important note, if you want to know about Zeske, just look through all his posts.

                  •  Yea, his concern trolling... (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    is becoming more pronounced with every post.

                    And yes, I agree that money is the problem. The only answer I've come up with is publicly financed campaigns, but it seems like everyone else around here would rather tinker with free speech, which I'm sure won't bite us in the ass.

                    I don't think the problem is solely with moderate Democrats, though. The party leadership had every chance in the world to take the health care bill out of the hands of folks like Baucus, but they instead opted to let him and his ilk slowly kill the whole thing. Especially in the Senate, I blame so-called progressive Democrats just as much as I blame moderates for this debacle.

                    And not to worry, I'll still vote with my party come November. Even great men like Moyers and Greenwald will admit that while the Democrats are a total mess, the GOP is worse on absolutely every count.

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