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.
 AP headline, within the past 10 minutes:

 Sebelius:  Obama OK with insurance co-ops.

"Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius says Obama still believes there should be choice and competition" in the health insurance market — but that a public option is 'not the essential element.'"

::

   Here at Daily Kos I've been trying to be all Paul Revere about this for the past several weeks, to get people to get out in front of these Craptacular Co-ops and deride and derail them before we got some kind of announcement like we've just had.  Dammit.

.
   It's been almost two months since I went round-and-round with a few people on this, e.g.:

   

    You argue, quite spuriously, that backing-down, capitulating to the Insurance Industry lobbyists, that saying, "Oh, well, I guess we'll just compromise on health care and maybe get behind Conrad's co-op 'compromise' with the GOP, blah, blah, milquetoast blah..." is, by definition, "operating within the confines of the office", whereas advocating for substantive change is not.

::

 I wish everyone would READ some background on the corruption and criminality Co-ops bring with them (and we're not talking about local farmers' market co-ops).  How these things get "captured" by the very industries they're created to bypass or compete with.

::

 I also been saying and saying that Obama's been telegraphing that he's about to throw the Public Option under the bus.  Many (hopefully most) saw that, but, unfortunately, too many haven't and have been in "shoot the messenger" mode.

 Damn.

UPDATE I:  I've removed the "Told you so" from the diary title.  It probably was not aimed at you.

UPDATE II:  Heh.  Because I can use a laugh.

bg
_______________

Originally posted to BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:22 AM PDT.

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  •  Tip Jar (324+ / 0-)
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    "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

    by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:22:20 AM PDT

    •  Code word for THE 101,000 DEATHS MUST CONTINUE (67+ / 0-)

      The crops have failed, we must have sacrifices..

      so that the cargo will return..

      the financial virgins must die.

      The order of things must be preserved.

      The world is laughing at us.

      THEY have REAL health care.

      When HMOs falsify, 'lose' or manipulate medical test levels or deny necessary tests, SICK people CAN'T get treated. That's becoming routine, It must stop

      by Andiamo on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:33:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I posted this below but it bears repeating (136+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
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        Obama's position and that of his cabinet has always been predicated on not referring to the public option as "essential", but rather insisting only on the end result it produces, in order to sound open minded to any alternative path that would reach that end, at least as long as individual houses of Congress are still crafting bills.  However, unless the Senate has a magic wand, it's not going to be able to invent such a path using co-ops or any other alternative to a public option, because no such path to the same results exists, even in theory.

        Consider, if Sebelius had said anything different - if the reporter had asked whether the public option were essential and she said yes - it would undermine the approach Obama has been using this whole time; is her refusal do to that really news, and really indicative of any sort of current trend in the administration, or is it just the sun rising in the morning?

        We have to be careful not to fall into Chicken Little mode here.

        Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

        by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:12:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Where will the money to make public affordable (8+ / 0-)

          come from?

          Because $320 a year per person is NOT GOING TO DO MUCH IF ANYTHING to make a dent in this huge gap.

          Crops have failed the insurers cry 'Just another year'. 'We demand the sacrifice'. 101,000 virgins 'so the nation will live'. They demand the sacrifice

          by Andiamo on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:16:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Respectfully, Andiamo, looking at the title of (86+ / 0-)

            this diary should tell you this isn't the place for you to be arguing against a public option.  While I think this diary is a reflexive overreaction to an AP soundbite containing zero news - frustrating, counterproductive, and completely beneath us - the one solitary good thing about it is that it at least reminds anyone from the White House who is listening that we all demand nothing less than a real and robust public option. Unless, of course, you'd like to rob this diary of its sole redeeming quality...

            Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

            by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:23:01 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Totally on target. (34+ / 0-)

              Sebellius was basically referring to the public option as just one piece of the puzzle in the big picture. Let's not get all aroused here. The Prez knows how to negotiate and get his way in the end. We saw this guy do the impossible and win a historic nomination. How quickly we forget.

              Don't throw rocks if you live in a glass house? Trust me, I live behind bullet proof Glass.

              by occult777 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:13:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  But he needs to know that we've got his back. n/t (8+ / 0-)
                •  no (29+ / 0-)

                  You protect the back of the person protecting you--if you feel that person has gone over to the dark side--the Goldman Sachs side--you push, not protect, that back.

                  I'm finding being disappointed by the one I loved to be less annoying than being raped by the one I hated.  But, that's not real progress--just less pain.

                  •  I see "having someone's back" (5+ / 0-)

                    as meaning to give them support.  I think that pushing someone who has gone to the dark side would mean to be "on someone's back".  

                    We will see for sure who has gone to the dark side when the healthcare reform bill is voted into law.

                    •  push (18+ / 0-)

                      I meant we should be pushing him to the positions he promised--he's lost his way.

                      •  Absolutely push, pull or drag n/t (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        DixieDishrag
                      •  He has not lost his way AT ALL. (11+ / 0-)

                        I don't know if you remember this, but Obama's campaign was not just what he promised to do if elected; it was what he promised to do IF WE WORKED WITH HIM.

                        Remember that phrase?

                        We sat on our frigging butts for so long, and got so used to abuse of executive power and the nonthinking of our legislature fr 8 horrid years that people have forgotten what it means to actively engaged with our PUBLIC SERVANTS.

                        That's right, public servants. We are supposed to harangueing these people, they way we got people to vote for Obama- by rallies, kncking on doors and making phone calls. That's what a few of my neighbors are doing here in Washington County- and that includes my dear redneck friends, who know what it is to lose money to medical emergencies.

                        Funny how that works.

                        To Recap:

                        Obama and the admin 8 months in, has helped stabilise the economy, signed Lily Ledbetter into law, captured and killed pirates, had Bill C. free innocent journalists, has Hillary C as the Iron Lady, distributing stimulus money so that some key investments are being made on roads, bridges, and economic incubators, helped stabilise the credit market in the USA, made it easy for ready families and singles to buy a home ($8K tax credit) and is actually still working, instead of cutting brush on a pretend ranch.

                        •  well (19+ / 0-)

                          He doesn't need our help for executive orders--how about eliminating don't ask, don't tell, how about releasing torture pictures, how about looking into no bid contracts to Halliburton, the AG dismissals, etc.  Before he got sworn in, he appointed Geithner--Goldman Sachs man at NY Fed.  

                          •  How about (28+ / 0-)

                            continuing renditions, using signing statements to cherry pick legislation, bailing out Wall Street while Main Street suffers, refusing to divulge the names of White House visitors (flying in the face of campaign promises for transparency in government), refusing to honor a very explicit campaign promise to investigate and prosecute those in the previous administration who broke the law, ... Oh, I give up.

                            I campaigned for him, and I voted for him, and I would vote for him again because the alternative was and still is unthinkable. But he has greatly disappointed me. The actions have not matched the golden rhetoric.

                            Pre-9/11 thinking: When we captured terrorists instead of creating them.

                            by DixieDishrag on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:04:43 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm disappointed but not greatly surprised. (4+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            ciganka, Square Knot, CMYK, xavier110

                            I did not actively campaign for him until after the primary.  I was nervous at the time about his "let's all talk to each other" approach to getting legislation through and also about his ties to Goldman Sachs and other financial interests which were well known at the time.  So this is not at all surprising to me.

                            However it won't affect what I do.  I will continue to fight for those things that we desperately need in this country.  I can only hope that my President will also fight for those things.

                            Democracy is not something you believe in or a place to hang your hat, but it's something you do. You participate. If you stop doing it, democracy crumbles.

                            by wave of change on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:39:31 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I agree (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            melo, ciganka

                            I campaigned long and hard for John Edwards until he withdrew. Now I shudder to think what would probably have happened if we had nominated him. But in terms of politics, his are pretty much identical to mine.

                            I always liked Obama, but I was scared by his desire to reach into the abyss for bipartisanship where it obviously doesn't exist. He was never far enough left for me -- in a perfect world, I would have supported Kucinich, but I knew he couldn't get elected. So, Obama it was. And I don't regret it -- out of the choices we had, he was head and shoulders above anyone else who had a realistic chance of winning.

                            Now, I think the only hope we have is to try and hold his feet to the fire. He needs to feel intense pressure from the left. That might not work either, but it's the only chance we've got at this point.

                            Pre-9/11 thinking: When we captured terrorists instead of creating them.

                            by DixieDishrag on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:21:44 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  If Obama (7+ / 1-)

                            wants to achieve his two main goals, which are healthcare and energy reform, he doesn't have the time for, or need the distraction of, dismantling the status quo on some of these relatively important but frankly lesser issues. It came out within the past few days that Obama privately said he's willing to be a one-termer to get these things done. And getting them done doesn't mean half-assed reform that's going to fall apart over 10 or 20 years, it means an overhaul.

                            People who still cling to their pet issues in the middle of this healthcare battle obviously underestimate the gravity of doing this kind of legislation. All these issues are not equal. All the but-but-buts about torture and gays are distractions that are keeping my healthcare from me, just as much as the town hall teabaggers are. That might sound selfish, but I only get one goddamn life, and I don't want to spend what's left of it fighting to make sure I can go to the doctor a few times a year. No one should want to.

                            The bonus is that both these major issues are deeply tied to other important ones like the economy. They will create jobs, decrease pollution, stimulate growth in things other than Wal-Mart, extend the sustainability of human life on this planet. Hurrah.

                            -5.88, -6.00 When the ELGIs are defeated, the GWOT is over. -- Richard Clarke

                            by Porfiry on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:55:46 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Hide rate abuse (0+ / 0-)

                            Nothing whatsoever wrong with this comment. Yalin, please reverse.

                          •  asdf (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            wilderness voice

                            I wasn't going to say anything...I thought I'd just let the smallness speak for itself. Thanks for your support, though.

                            -5.88, -6.00 When the ELGIs are defeated, the GWOT is over. -- Richard Clarke

                            by Porfiry on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 02:23:59 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  This is convential DC wisdom (0+ / 0-)

                            Unity for healthcare, then after we get good a good healthcare program, which in my books must include a public option, Obama can take on the other issues.

                            If Obama came right out doing those other things that we would like to see done right now, he would not get healthcare passed.  

                            My instincts tell me that many, many people without healthcare do not vote, this may be where he gathers more for the base and can push other things through.

                            It really is how politics work and I really hope this is the strategy that is in the works.

                          •  Because an executive order can easily be (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            jonimbluefaninWV

                            reversed when the next President comes into office.

                            I like President Obama. I think I understand his vision for the country and I'm all in.

                            by Blogvirgin on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:27:09 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  face (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Yalin

                            Why wash your face, it'll get dirty again.  Exec orders work immediately--I was taught to right a wrong asap.

                          •  This President is trying to make permanent. long (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            sebastianguy99, jonimbluefaninWV

                            lasting change, transformational. Some understand that, some don't.

                            I like President Obama. I think I understand his vision for the country and I'm all in.

                            by Blogvirgin on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:45:25 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  both (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            chase

                            So he should do both--exec order followed up with a law.

                          •  How about his promise to renegotiate (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            CMYK

                            drug pricing?

                            Obama, on his campaign Web site, has vowed to repeal the ban that prevents the government from negotiating with drug companies, estimating it could result in savings of up to $30 billion for patients

                            .

                            Whoops! I found that here: Big Pharma opens wallet to Dems Liberals have lost their reputation as the long-standing foes to drugmakers as party lines become blurred with McCain.

                            Democratic senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are the top recipients of donations from the pharmaceutical industry, according to The Center for Responsive Politics, a non-profit, non-partisan research group in Washington, D.C. Meanwhile, donations to Sen. John McCain, who was recently endorsed by President Bush as the official Republican candidate, pale in comparison.

                            Obama maintains a slight edge over his Democratic rival, with $181,000 in Big Pharma donations through Jan. 31, compared with Clinton's $174,000, according to the center. McCain is far behind with $44,000.

                            Should a "progressive" Dem blog dwell in the safe zones of a tame party, or should it drive a tame party to break out?

                            by NYCee on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 05:30:00 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  An addition to your excellent recap ems97007? (4+ / 0-)

                          Gave a much needed spark to the auto industry - Ford is adding shifts to produce more cars thanks to cash for clunkers program  

                          President Obama isn't perfect - never will be. But I believe he was the best choice we had on the ballot in 2008 and I believe he has, at the core of every decision he makes, the country's best interests at heart.  

                          Thankfully he is also incredibly intelligent and can work through the complex clusterf&*k he was left with by the Chimp in Charge that ran (destroyed) the country for the eight previous years.

                          I don't believe whatever the final bill on healthcare reform is will be perfect either.  But I do believe it will be a gigantic leap forward in solving the healthcare crisis. I also trust the President will make certain that at minimum it is just that - a gigantic leap forward. May not take us to the finish line, but we'll be a darn sight closer than we were or would have been with a John McCain or HORRORS Sarah Palin in office.

                        •  YES HE HAS LOST HIS WAY (29+ / 0-)

                          Howard Dean pointed out yesterday that without the public option, Americans don't have a choice and American choices cannot be used over time to reform the health care system.

                          The co-op approach has been tried with Blue Cross/Shield which folded into Anthem which is just like any other insurance company. They are too small.

                          I get really pissed off at BHO when he screws around like this trying to be nice when this important issue is on the table.

                          At the Netroots Convention we were told several times that we are needed. It looks like BHO does not need us. We gave up the single payer and retreated to the public option. No more give backs!

                          •  I haven't given up today. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            xavier110

                            It seems like my feelings come and go on exactly what is going to get done. What we get from healthcare will most likely determine those other things that we find disturbing.  

                            My DC friends have told me to first get healthcare - which will energize more people.  I am willing to wait, but I want to see delivery.

                          •  Frankly, (7+ / 0-)

                            (and get out your donuts, folks) BHO has, quite frequently, said/implied/enlisted others to communicate quite clearly that he doesn't need us.

                            Seems kinda ironic to start talking about "dancin' with the one that brung ya" but it appears that here we are.

                            But honestly I'm not surprised. The thing is, how do we communicate that bringing the country "together" means including us, too?

                            Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                            by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:37:35 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Can you clearly, and concisely (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            dmh44, oldmilitant

                            List where that has been said?

                            Because, frankly, you are full of crap if you cannot.

                            It's one thing to go to a convention. It's another to organize and work for issues. It seems that Republicans can organise and work on individual issues, but many progressive simply don't want to, and take great pleasure in seeing their perfect, perfect, perfect ideals crushed to the ground.

                          •  do you really think (4+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            melo, moiv, alizard, CMYK

                            that Emmanuel said what he said a couple of weeks ago totally and completely on his own? That's one example.

                            Pick up almost any copy of The Nation in the last couple of months and you'll see it too.

                            Honestly, this has been a pattern since the campaign: some person associated with the campaign then, the administration now, says something and then Obama, appearing to be above it all, comes along and walks it back, to a degree, to sound 'conciliatory.' But it's backfired on the healthcare issue, and they have totally, utterly lost control of the message, only in part because it's a very complex message that doesn't lend itself to soundbites, excpet "47 million uninsured" and that one has worn itself out.

                            Bob Sommersby (sp?) of The Daily Howler was on a local radio show the other day and he pointed out that the Dems have had 16 years since the last debacle to plan for this, to come up with a message, a plan, and they totally dropped. the. ball. That's not Obama entirely. As for getting up and fighting, it really hasn't been clear what we, on our side, are fighting for this time, because no one's been very clear on that either.

                            I'm no perfectionist, but I will say that a bad reform bill, one that puts a mandate and the onus on individuals without regulation of the insurance companies, will be far worse than what we have now. Without a good, toothy public option or without strong regulations on exclusions for pre-existing conditions or for recission, it will be more deform than reform. I'm not saying that that is what's coming, but I've seen nothing at all to convince me that anyone, in the Congress, in the White House, is doing anything to fight for those issues. Everyone is doing too much "go along to get along."

                            There is no leadership.

                            Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                            by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:28:19 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'd like to believe all is well, and BHO (4+ / 0-)

                            is just being cagey.  As part of a progressive movement that's been burned too many times to count, I have trouble being so trusting.

                            "What we have is not a system. It's a health care catastrophe with an organization around it." -- Dr. Carl Olden

                            by gtnoah on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:42:34 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Well, once again, Kossacks ignore Gore Vidal (7+ / 0-)

                            Gore Vidal warned you all, but you REFUSE to listen:

                            Vidal wrote in the 1970s:

                            "There is only one party in the United States, the Property Party...and it has two right wings: Republican and Democrat. Republicans are a bit stupider, more rigid, more doctrinaire in their laissez-faire capitalism than the Democrats, who are cuter, prettier, a bit more corrupt—until recently... and more willing than the Republicans to make small adjustments when the poor, the black, the anti-imperialists get out of hand. But, essentially, there is no difference between the two parties."

                        •  And got a good SC nomination passed (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          oldmilitant, Square Knot, xavier110
                        •  no offense (0+ / 0-)

                          but you are really whistling through the graveyard here.

                      •  Where is the President's support on this issue? (5+ / 0-)

                        As far as I can tell we have been arguing amongst ourselves and letting him carry the load.

                        He cannot do this by himself.
                        Why do you think they have termed it Obamacare? Because it looks like he's pushing it as opposed to us demanding it.

                        Those who are against any Health Care Reform at all have been far more active with their meetings and demonstrations and calls to the Congress than we have been. At one point they were outcalling us 9-1.  We have been active on the internet, but that is not knocking doors, calling Congress etc.

                        We need to step up our game and get involved or this is not going to happen.

                        I like President Obama. I think I understand his vision for the country and I'm all in.

                        by Blogvirgin on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:24:46 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                  •  Rape by any other name... (4+ / 0-)

                    Is just a few nuances away from

                    still the same?

                    Spousal rape, for instance?

                    You can add Obama's secret deal with PHARMA/lobbyists (like fucking Tauzin - Internal Memo Confirms Big Giveaways In White House Deal With Big Pharma). Instead of keeping promises to us, he threw the key out the WH window to this sweetheart (deal recipient) of his, who crouched below it, as per the plan, under cover of night. That is the chapter, in this sad tale, of how he threw drug negotiations or Canada buys under the bus. (Please, Progressives, ignore that under-the-bus-thrower behind the curtain, aka your president!) Froomkin re Obama's derelict "transparency".

                    (This is why I was highly skeptical of him as a campaigner... I smelled a ploy more than a true promise when he preached his holier than thou - contrast to Hillary - take no lobbyist on board "ethic."... Lol. Never rang true. And turns out the bell was functional.)

                    See: campaign promises re drug negotiations, but dont forget to follow  the $$$ (if you dont want to get lost) - Big Pharma opens wallet to Dems/Campaign 08

                    A gag-worthy morsel:

                    Campaign crosshairs are also focused on the Bush administration's ban on drug-price negotiations between the government and drug companies. This ban was included in the 2003 Medicare Modernization Act. Removing it could result in lower drug prices, which would put the squeeze on pharma sales.

                    Obama and Clinton have clearly stated that they oppose the ban on price negotiations.

                    "[Clinton] has been very much against the non-negotiation ban, said Gene Sperling, her economic advisor, as well as former director of the National Economic Council for former President Bill Clinton. "She feels that that puts the government in a worse position than a big company."

                    Obama, on his campaign Web site, has vowed to repeal the ban that prevents the government from negotiating with drug companies, estimating it could result in savings of up to $30 billion for patients.

                    He admonishes against letting the perfect be the enemy of the good, when it comes to selling progressives on selling out (ditching what we want, often things he promised) yet he has his own perfect, and it is becoming increasingly obvious that it is the enemy of our good.

                    Obama's perfect? To work something out with the rightwing on board, to make them a part of it to make it a more balanced "perfect" (what a good egg he is!) Trouble is, they already have been running the ship, weighing it down with their crap. Yet, as they keep weighing it down in their favor, he keeps throwing us over the side, to keep it afloat. He keeps buying what theyre selling. This, when it is they who need to be thrown off, needed to be thrown off in the first place... long long ago.

                    Obama acts like the elementary school teacher who lets the bullies be in charge because being included in the running of the classroom will be transformative. Bullshite. It aint elementary school, and it aint college, professor!

                    Nader is right here (Hold your fire, Nader haters - I do think it is best when I listen to facts, wherever I find them) ... and he is not alone -- as he told Amy Goodman, we have a "concessionary", not a "transforming" president. Even mostly supportive Robert Reich are right. Obama is selling progressives out, as we see with his prioritizing in shaping policy.

                    Onward Ship of State! (To fucking what kind of a nip and tuck bs mess NOW?)

                    He has reached my last nerve, as another diarist put it recently, and so, why the fuck shouldnt I just give up fighting for this damn concessionary public option over the preferrable single payer, when he obviously doesnt see even the public option folks as at the table? So, back to I want single payer! just like Helen (been there, done that, seen a lot) Thomas does. There. What's the cost to tilting at that particular windmill, when Obama has made public option yet another windmill? Might as well tilt at the best windmill out there.

                    Should a "progressive" Dem blog dwell in the safe zones of a tame party, or should it drive a tame party to break out?

                    by NYCee on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:07:02 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  Then you don't have anyone's back (0+ / 0-)

                    Therefore you aren't to be trusted.And if you can't be trusted then you too are part of the problem.

                    It takes two to build and maintain trusting relationships whether personnel, business, or political.

                    The ease at which many who claim the label "Progressive", or "grass roots", withdraw their supposed support is not suggestive of people who should be counted on in the first place. Winners don't handicap their best weapon in the middle of the fight, losers do.

                    This fight is much bigger than Obama. We don't fight for Obama, we fight for advancing a set of principles. Now if we aren't mature enough to understand that it is going to take a long time to change all that we wish to change, then we have no chance.

                    We need all pushing in the same direction right now. There will be plenty of time to bitch and whine and cast aspersions once we win, which we shall do this Fall.

                    "Most people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so." ...Bertrand Russell

                    by sebastianguy99 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:47:53 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  To "have someone's back" mean that you are (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  StateofEuphoria

                  walking in the same direction.  

                  "What we have is not a system. It's a health care catastrophe with an organization around it." -- Dr. Carl Olden

                  by gtnoah on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:30:34 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Bill Clinton told NN that he needed us to make (3+ / 0-)

                  him "Do the right thing" on DADT.

                  I think that is crap but I'll take him at his word.

                  Tell the White House and your congresscritters to do the right thing.

                  Don't leave anything on the road.

                  "In politics, what begins in fear usually ends in folly." ---- Coleridge

                  by captainlaser on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:37:36 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Like he had ours when he negotiated with Phrma? (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  frandor55, Yalin, CMYK

                  A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

                  by AJsMom on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:08:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Yes always, but renew single payer and let chips (0+ / 0-)

                  fall.

                  Keeping an open mind is good unless your brains spill out. Bertrand Russell

                  by catchnrelease on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 05:47:19 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  "Just one piece of the puzzle" is (10+ / 0-)

                how Obama described it yesterday. You'd have the "exchange" and the P.O. would be one of the choices.

                It's smart politics.

                (Almost) everybody acknowledges that pure single payer would have no chance of passing. The opposition is pushing the idea that the public option is pure single payer and that no other reform exists.

                So you make it just a slice of the pie. You pitch your reform as mostly regulations on insurance companies as the major part of the reform. You play down the P.O. as just a small piece and totally, um, "optional," as in "voluntary," as in "choice." And thus you have a chance to get it passed. Finally.

                The new baby panda is HERE! See it at a PANDA CAM near you! Congrats San Diego Zoo!

                by Fonsia on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:26:16 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  you think Obama really wants the public option? (12+ / 0-)

                At a town hall meeting Saturday in Colorado, he said the issue is one of many that are critical to successfully overhauling the ailing health-care system. "All I’m saying is, though, that the public option, whether we have it or we don’t have it, is not the entirety of health care reform," Obama said. "This is just one sliver of it."

                Does that sound like someone who's completely committed to the public option?

                "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

                by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:58:55 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  It's hard for the Obamadoring Kossacks......... (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                moiv, Yalin, CMYK

                .....to have to admit that their Idol may have feet of clay, which is understandable, considering the amount of time, effort and money they may have had invested in his presidential campaign.  I find it interesting that every damn time that Obama backs away from a campaign promise they find a way to rationalize his turn-around.

                Campaigning is a very different game from governing.
                Obama is an excellent campaigner but I have a real problem with his governing leadership skills.  He's always too ready to give the special interests and the right-wing wackos whatever they want.  I want to see real leadership out of him, more like that shown by Lincoln, by both Roosevelts, by Kennedy and by LBJ.

            •  keyboard diarrhea for sure. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ShadowSD, soms, jonimbluefaninWV

              ~Conservatives are one of the many tools of the devil~

              by CWalter on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:34:14 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Write to the White House, then post on this blog. (5+ / 0-)

              If we want the White House to know this, let's tell them directly. Yes, I did.

            •  reflexive overreaction (12+ / 0-)

              Well if you have already been sold out on nearly everything else its only human to develop this kind of reflex.  I mean if someone keeps slapping you in the face can you really blaming a ducking reflex?

            •  Pardon me (16+ / 0-)

              I am not trying to be combative, but I am truly unable to understand your position on this.  I say this because of the following:

              (1)  Over the past several weeks (months?) there have been mounting indications from various administration officials and senior members of Congress (e.g., Dick Durbin) that Democrats are willing to cave on the public option.  Sibelius's remarks are only the latest in a long series.

              (2)  Unlike our ever equivocating party, Rethugs have drawn a very clear line in the sand and said that the public option is a deal breaker.  If the PO is included in the bill, it will get no Republican votes.

              (3)  Despite all of the dishonest Republican attacks during the recess, most everyone from the administration and among Dems in Congress continues to talk about "bipartisanship" and "wanting Republican ideas."

              (4)  Now co-ops are being discussed with increasingly frequency, it seems, as a way of compromising on the PO, which was already a compromise, in my view.

              So, why is it irrational or counterproductive or beneath us to be concerned that the White House is about to cave?  For Christ's sake, Obama appears to have made some kind of secret deal with Billy Tauzin, and he won't even be honest about what it was.  Are you saying that there's something inherently incredible about the possibility that Obama will dump the public option to appease the Republicans and Blue Dogs?  I fully agree with you that you can't possibly get the desired policy results without a public option, but this part of the debate isn't about policy, it's about politics.

              •  You know of course that NO republican votes (8+ / 0-)

                are needed right?
                Then dems can pass anything that they want.

                They can't do that though because other dems WON'T VOTE FOR IT.

                Stop blaming the R's when we have enough to pass whatever we want.
                It's the D's that won't pass it!

                A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

                by AJsMom on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:16:58 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  In theory (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  ShadowSD, dwayne, CMYK

                  you're right.  Assuming that you can get each and every Democratic senator to show up to vote, and every last one of them votes to end the certain Republican filibuster, then yes, only Democrats are needed to pass the legislation.  Given that both Byrd and Kennedy are very sick, I'm not certain that you'll have all 60 Democrats present and voting.

                  Mind you, I'm not excusing the Democrats.  I honestly don't believe that people like Max Baucus and Kent Conrad want health care reform at all.  Indeed, I think Baucus is dragging out his so-called "negotiations" in order to give the insurance industry and the Republicans as much time as possible to rally opposition to even the limited reforms that are being proposed.  

              •  I would argue that (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                wilderness voice

                (1) Obama and administration officials have been singing the exact same tune all along if you actually examine the record; members of Congress are a different story, so there I agree with you

                (2) and (3) are explained by the fact that, as you point out just above, Democratic votes might not be enough, and there might need to be a couple Republicans to get to sixty; if Obama is planning on pursuing reconciliation should the Senate not get its act together by October 15, then it serves his interests to sound as reasonable as possible until then, and be able to say that while the Senate exhausted all alternatives to reach the same results as a public option, none of the plans presented after extensive deliberations met that threshold.  If Obama had said "public option or nothing" from the beginning, the idea that this was in Congress's hands would be a sham, and it would be 1993's perceived micromanagement all over again.

                (4) The public option is the compromise, I agree, and I have written about this at some length myself.

                I argue that there is something completely implausible about Obama working harder to defend and explain the public option at these town hall meetings than anything else, and then during around and giving it up when he has enough votes to get it in  reconciliation.  To do so would be all political downside for him and no upside.

                I refuse to accept illogical premises.

                Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:58:58 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  explain this (6+ / 0-)

              this isn't the place for you to be arguing against a public option

              Via Politico's reporting of a straw poll taken during Netroots Nation, you'll find that support for the public option among so-called progressives is seriously underwhelming:

              A majority of attendees—53 percent—said they cannot support a health care reform bill that does not include a public option.

              This isn't about Repubs or Blue Dogs. This is about those among you who aren't convinced that the public option is worth fighting for. Why is that?

              "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

              by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:55:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I wonder if this result influenced the decision (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                kyril

                to further back away from the public option today?

              •  Who are the people who show up to those things? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                moiv

                If Markos did a poll on the front page right now, you'd have 80%-90% of registered users voting that a public option is the line in the sand - I'd bet you anything.

                Perhaps those who have the ability to take days off AND the financial means to travel from across the country to a national meeting have different priorities interests than the broader universe of kossacks.

                Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 04:01:47 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  so you're calling them elitists? n/t (0+ / 0-)

                  "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

                  by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 05:16:39 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  If you're asking that with at least a tinge of (0+ / 0-)

                    irony and snark, sure.

                    If you mean that seriously, obviously its important to understand means are relative; just because people have the money to get there doesn't mean they're rich.  However, it is a simple fact that most of them probably have health care, whereas I don't, and they have the means to travel out of state to Netroots Nation, whereas I do not.  Polls show both of those demographics are statistically less likely to support a public option.

                    Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                    by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 05:50:21 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  not irony or snark (0+ / 0-)

                      You don't know the demographics of those who took the poll. You're making assumptions.

                      "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

                      by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:52:15 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I don't think it's an unwarranted assumption (0+ / 0-)

                        that 1) people who travel out of state for days at a time require a certain amount of money to do so, 2) people with more money are more likely to have health care, and 3) people with more money are comparatively less likely to support a public option than people without (while almost every demographic shows some level of majority support for a public option, the numbers vary, with the poor usually being even more supportive than the middle class).

                        Those all sound like facts to me.

                        Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                        by ShadowSD on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 04:58:40 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

            •  This probably doen's need to be said (0+ / 0-)

              but there are still some who don't seem to understand that corporations, not the people, run this country. That is one reason the public option has been nearly flogged out of the Bill.

              "It's like these guys take pride in being ignorant." Barack Obama August 5, 2008

              by thefretgenie on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:15:24 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Randy is that you? n/t (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            soms

            "I know we will have differences. Put them aside. It is so easy to focus on where we don't agree and to lose the big picture. Fight until we win" -Kwickkick

            by vc2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:28:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  2.5 trillion (13+ / 0-)

            That is what America spends on health care. It is  more than enough for everyone and then some.

            What's the use of happiness? It can't buy you money- Henny Youngman

            by sheep in wolf clothing on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:34:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  but not for everyone to get $30K stents (7+ / 0-)

              or to dialyze your demented granny when she comes in from the nursing home in renal failure. Yes, I said that.

              We can't afford the $2.5 trillion that we already spend, it's paradoxically the only surviving part of our economy but also what's killing it. Costs have to be reduced while providing universal access to care. That's going to take some hard choices.

              And that's what no one wants to address. Not Congress, not the White House, not the president.

              Frankly, we're just screwed.

              Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

              by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:41:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  How about some tort reform? n/t (0+ / 0-)

                A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

                by AJsMom on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:22:48 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  sure thing, as soon as medical boards (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  zeke L, moiv

                  start pulling doctor's licenses when they screw up. Give us truly universal single payer health care with a professional disciplinary regime that has some real teeth and maybe we can sell elimination of medical malpractice liability to the same Joe Sixpack who's currently ranting against health care reform and medical malpractice liability -- but has no problem collecting state & federal disability, having his parents treated under Medicare and suing everything that moves when he gets into a car accident while trying to text his girlfriend.

                •  why? (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  moiv

                  I have to agree with a lot of what plembo said above. There are docs out there who, frankly, shouldn't be practicing and the only recourse is the tort system.

                  However, universal coverage (whether single payer or not) would be a big part of a solution to this problem; people have bad outomes (all medical procedures have a risk of negative outcomes) and need to be treated for it; they lose their insurance because they can't work, they will only qualify for state assistance if they lose all their assets; going to court may be an effort to assure medical coverage.

                  Yes, there are bad actors out there who bring suits. Yes, the liability costs are very high on providers, especially docs (as opposed to medical systems) even if overall the malpractice insurance costs are a small part of the total healthcare system.

                  But even where there have been "reforms," it hasn't brought down costs for either the provider buying malpractice coverage or for the person buying medical insurance. OTOH, it's sure helped the insurance companies.

                  Now, is that what you want?  

                  Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                  by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:52:07 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Tort reform (0+ / 0-)

                    would bring down costs because there is a certain percentage of doctors who overtest because of the fear of lawsuits.

                    There is also the matter of the HUGE malpractice fees because of a few bad apples.

                    A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

                    by AJsMom on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:57:21 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  well, I have to say (4+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      moiv, wsexson, wilderness voice, Remarque

                      that the idea of overtesting is bull. As someone in the field, I can tell you that. You test for what is common and what can do the most damage to the person. Yeah, so we send people frequently for venous doppler studies to exclude blood clots, even when the physical exam is not convincing - but the evidence shows that physical exams are not reliable, and a pulmonary embolism can be lethal. As one example. Sure, some people don't want to miss the DVT because they don't want to get sued; other people test because they don't want the patient to die.

                      As for the malpractice fees for a few bad apples, as I and plembo both said, there are some that shouldn't be practicing. We docs need to do a better job of policing our own; but we've already lost that control in so many other areas. The answer to that problem is to get those people out of practice, but it's not happening sufficiently at the administrative level.

                      Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                      by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:04:21 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

              •  About that $2.5 trillion (0+ / 0-)

                Some of that is my money and money of my father's and if my father needs to have dialysis so that he can keep alive while he is undergoing clinical trials for his orphan blood cancer, then he will and I will do everything I can to keep you and others from screwing things up so that he won't have the access to health care that he has earned.

                •  would you say that if (0+ / 0-)

                  you had to pay the full costs yourself? This is the problem. Neither you nor your father have paid into the system sufficiently to cover the costs of dialysis over the long term.

                  Just asking, what do you mean by he 'earned' it? Seriously, I'm asking for your explanation of that way of describing it.

                  I'm not saying no one above a certain age shouldn't have dialysis. There are some who would benefit from it, although the data very clearly shows that the percentage of people who actually receive dialysis who have long term survival is quite low, and even lower the older you go.

                  What I have continually talked about, however, is giving dialysis to the contracted, demented 85 year old who comes in from the nursing home in renal failure. Dialysis is not going to extend her life measurably, it's sure as hell not going to improve the quality of her life, and it's going to generate extreme costs - and for what? Really?

                  That does not appear to be the situation you describe.

                  On the other hand, to be frankly brutal about it, if everyone takes the attitude of Katy Abram that "I've got mine, I'm going to get what's coming to me" then we're never going to get through this mess. That's just simply the facts.

                  Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                  by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:17:36 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  other countries spend less per cap (0+ / 0-)

                and get much better results. also, as you said below dialysis for the demented is not going to improve their dismal quality of life anyway. so what's your point?

                •  My point ties into yours (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  wilderness voice

                  that $2.5T needs to be cut, not added to - and there are multiple parts of those cuts.

                  For example, not only are $30K stents not used for every 50% stenosis and multiple ones per artery like they are in the US, they don't cost $30K overseas. You don't have stent reps makine $750K a year, which comes out of your insurance premium and mine, your copay and mine. You don't have hospital administrators making multiple millions of dollars a year in other countries. Etc. etc.

                  Furthermore, they do look at the evidence, where it exists, before a treatment is recommended. Here, we jump on every new thing that comes along. It's considered a good thing to be at the "forefront;" someone like me who decides to wait and see what the post-marketing data is (unless it's a new treatment without alternatives) is branded as being "behind the times." And the way "healthcare" is marketed in this country (something that doesn't happen elsewhere, btw) many patients will come in and say "I want this" when it may not be the most appropriate but will certainly add to costs.

                  As Dr. Abraham Verghese said in the WSJ several weeks ago, our system is based on getting more for doing to the patient rather than doing for the patient, and that's a real problem.

                  In short, we could really cut the costs of our system, and probably improve outcomes, if we recognized across the board that medical care doesn't follow a market model; in short, take the profit out of the system.

                  Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                  by stitchmd on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 04:20:46 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not sure where $320 a year came in (20+ / 0-)

            Even Govt Employees pay more than that. I think ultimately what people should be most concerned about is

            1. Pre-existing Conditions: people who have pre-existings can get affordable insurance and there is no penalty for having them especially if the condition is discovered AFTER many thousands of dollars of premiums are paid and the insurance company declines to pay claims and terminates the policy.
            1. Group Protections- Group Rates for Small Business, self employed and unemployed with some subsidy depending on income. Currently small businesses have little or no protection from "purging". If an employee gets very sick, the company is purposely purged by a increase in premiums that is so drastic they can no longer afford under any conditions.
            1. The other side is Employers are threatened with the hikes unless they terminate the employee. Soon, they can no longer pay for insurance and then the insurance company is off the hook.
            1. Right now in virtually every state there are no protections for people who buy private insurance that is non-group. No protection from re4cessions, dramatic price increases, claim denials etc et al.
            1. Price reductions: I don't think anyone was thinking that this bill would suddenly relieve them of all financial responsibility for Health Insurance. If they were, they were dreaming. People have reached the breaking point of what is affordable simply becuase Insurance Companies charge more and more for less and less until they take everything for nothing. In no capitalistic system would this ever be allowed to occur. Companies who charge for a service are expected to deliver.

            True competition keeps a downward pressure on prices while keeping an upward pressure on companies to innovate so they have happy customers. Right now they only innovation going on Private Health Insurance is centered around policy termination and claim denial.  

            Insurance companies, having the power of a control over a corrupt govt , have been able to eliminate competition to the point where there are really 5 major players in today's market who have neatly carved up states where they can have duopolies or monopolies. In short, they have never had to compete.

            A public option forces them to compete. Not just on price, but on delivery of services. If a Public Option is not out there when this bill passes, then no reform will have started. It's that simple. Even if the regulations are tightened,  look to how the banks quickly turned the Credit Card protection bill on it's head

            There is no credit card reform coming. Health Insurance companies are following the same play book. Roll up and buy all the smaller competitors until they have virtual monopoly power and then buy off congress so when reforms come they have enough gaping loopholes they don't even slow them down.

            A ROBUST public option creates national competition where there was once none. People keep saying it will put them out of business. Some of them will go out of business. That's what fricking happens when competition is introduced. Some of them will start looking at ways to streamline their cost structure and use technology to get providers to play with them.

            One way a Public Option could work is to have electronic billing presentation with same day reimbursement to the providers. If they didn't have to spend hours and hours dealing with insurance companies they could accept lower rates for the increased cash flow. Instead of assuming everyone is out to defraud the system, assume innocence until proven guilty, but make the penalties criminal . As soon as some providers businesses are shut down and their owners jailed for a long period, fraud will be a small percentage of the total cost.

            Private Insurers would have to do the same. In exchange they would get lower costs. If Providers suddenly had 46 million new insured patients, they could afford to buy supplies like drugs at far better prices. That would allow them to be competitive while still bring down the total cost.

            The Public Option can and should address not only
            the insurance side but the provider side also . Private insurance companies who wish to stay in business will have to learn a new word: Competition. That's all this comes down to. When Policy makers say a Public Option will drive insurance companies out of business, they are right to a degree becuase , again, competition does that.

            The big lie is that Health Insurers are competing. That's one lie the Public Option will expose.

            Bottom? What Bottom?.

            by Dburn on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:00:15 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  You got it (29+ / 0-)

          Chicken Little diaries — wwhich are all speculation at this point — serve only to dishearten people and cause them to give up. They are not productive. Save the recs for Slinkerwink.

          Rob Portman: He sent your job to China.

          by anastasia p on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:37:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  BenGoshi seems to parse every dialogue (39+ / 0-)

          down to fit his "pessimistic" outlook on the motives of our new administration.  The public option is not a major part (or the "ESSENTIAL" part) of the MASSIVE healthcare bill as our President stated yesterday. Actually he called it a "sliver" but he did address and explain the importance.                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Can we please start thinking outside of the box and work at helping our President, as he's asked, by putting all of our effort into educating the public and staying on the asses of our complicit and/or wussy Congress critters?      

          To Congress: "GO BIG" or go home

          by mjd in florida on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:42:40 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Conrad stated co-ops meet this test (17+ / 0-)

          and WH reporters are saying the WH is pushing co-ops to them.

          What other evidence do you need?  Bad news doesn't get better with age...

          "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

          by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:01:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Can Conrad explain how co-ops meet that (13+ / 0-)

            test?  He can say it all he wants, he has to explain how in a way that would convince the President.

            If you doubt this, we also have to remember that another giant gaping hole in the WH selling us down the river theory is why would Obama go out to town halls and put so much effort and capital into defending and explaining the public option if it wasn't what he was going to push for in the end?  Why would he bother?  Why take the risk if he's supposedly so afraid of daking the risk?

            There is no plausible answer to this question any more than there is to the question of how co-ops would be designed achieve the same results as a pubic option.

            Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

            by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:20:49 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  he tried on Fox News Sunday (6+ / 0-)

              And everyone seems to be lining up behind them...

              By the way, they will not get more than one Republican vote from Snowe.

              Republicans such as Shelby and Armey are already saying they are still government plans under another name.  If the Administration think Conrad's plan is going to get more traction than the current one with doubters, they are sadly mistaken.  And if they pass it, they will the system that I think you believe will result...a slightly better system, at significantly higher costs to everyone.  This will cause a mass revolt against Obama and Democrats as no one will say oh this was the Republican's fault for not allowing a public option.

              I hope the CPC is able to stand up.

              "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

              by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:27:18 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  When you say everyone seems to be lining up (11+ / 0-)

                behind them, who's everyone?

                If the Administration think Conrad's plan is going to get more traction than the current one with doubters, they are sadly mistaken.

                Correct me if I'm wrong, but I just finished arguing that Obama does NOT think Conrad's plan and other watered down ideas will get more traction than current ones, because their claims of achieving public option like results are dubious and will be met with skepticism.  Come October 15, Senators like Conrad and Baucus will have found themselves unable to get any other reaction, forcing the de facto admission that only a public option will achieve the required results.

                Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:41:03 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Everyone that is speaking for the Administration (0+ / 0-)

                  and talking on background...

                  The skepticism that you speak of is no longer being voiced.  I remember when Obama used to say exactly what you are saying.  Why is that if your point of view is correct?  Why give it any credence?

                  "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                  by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:47:32 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The last statement I heard from Obama on the (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    dmh44, jodygirl

                    issue was just in the last week or two, and reflected the same skepticism; it was diaried here at the time.  I will find a link for you if you'd like.

                    Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                    by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:55:20 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  the town halls were not meant to defend the (4+ / 0-)

              public option.  They were meant to defend the 8 principles Axelrod laid out in his email, none of which were the public option.

              "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

              by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:28:26 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  He could always explain what a wonderful success (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              chuckvw, tgrshark13

              Blue Cross/Blue Shield coops were back 30 or more years ago...  The country went down this road before.  Didn't work then (the for-profits came in and bought them out) and won't work now.  No co-op will be large enough and have a large enough risk pool to absorb costs.

              Democracy is not something you believe in or a place to hang your hat, but it's something you do. You participate. If you stop doing it, democracy crumbles.

              by wave of change on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:29:31 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  lower cost, allow everyone to get coverage, and (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ybruti, dewley notid, cdkipp

            don't discriminate.  I don't think people should get hung up on these 2 words "public option"

          •  Call or e-mail Conrad. threaten to (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            oceanheart

            do everything you can to see he does not get re-elected.  Appeal to reason too.  Do an e-mail or phone bomb to this prima donna.  Yes, I did.

        •  Half Agree (8+ / 0-)

          You're entirely correct that Obama has never insisted on the public option. But your explanation for why he never has or what he'd be willing to sign seems highly speculative to me.

          There are plenty of folks who believe--or at least claim to believe--that coops accomplish everything that the public option does.  It's entirely possible that Obama is willing to join them.  Just because the "argument" is dead wrong doesn't mean it won't be made.

          Because there is a second reason that Obama might have always insisted on the end result produced by a public option: he doesn't want to fight a two front war on this and knows he can't afford to piss off progressives.  If Obama is planning a bait and switch on the public option, the final switch will come at the 11th hour. That's just good politics.

          So Obama hasn't just thrown the public option under the bus. I've long believed that, from the White House's perspective, it's always been there.

          Policies that were wrong under George W. Bush are no less wrong because Barack Obama is in the White House. - Bob Herbert

          by GreenSooner on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:17:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  But you know what wouldn't be good politics? (12+ / 0-)

            Obama going out to town halls and putting so much effort and capital into defending and explaining the public option only to pull a bait and switch.  Why would he bother?  After all, this would cause significantly more damage among his base that simply saying nothing and pulling a bait and switch; it would hurt his 2012 fundraising machine in a way nothing else could.

            I just don't buy it.

            There are plenty of folks who believe--or at least claim to believe--that coops accomplish everything that the public option does.  It's entirely possible that Obama is willing to join them.

            Is it?  Every Obama statement on record about co-ops achieving the same ends as a public option is put in a hypothetical manner, including comments from just several days ago.  That reflects skepticism, and until I see that wording change, it is not rational to assume otherwise.

            Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

            by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:26:50 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Obama is keeping his options open... (4+ / 0-)

              ...one way or another.  

              He understandably wants to sign something and wants to be able to declare victory when he does. All part of taking what the White House sees as the opposite approach to Clinton, Clinton, and Magaziner in '93.  

              But centrist Democrats like Obama have never been shy about pissing off the left wing of their base, as they can always a) blame the Republicans and b) ultimately say "who else are you gonna vote for?"

              Even if Obama is perceived as stabbing progressives in the back on health care (and as I read White House statements, they are designed to make either an option with or an option without a public option consistent with White House desires), do you think most progressive Democrats will refuse to fund a Committee to Re-Elect Obama in 2012 if the other live option is Palin-Jindal?

              I'm willing to believe that Obama would prefer a public option in a perfect world. But it's clearly more important for him to keep his options open.

              Policies that were wrong under George W. Bush are no less wrong because Barack Obama is in the White House. - Bob Herbert

              by GreenSooner on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:40:12 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You lose me when you base your entire argument (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                askew, dmh44, Matt Z, tgrshark13

                on the assumption that Obama is a "centrist" Democrat, a term that his dkos diary (check it out if you haven't already) reveals that he rejects and sees right through.

                Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:44:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I don't _assume_ that he is a centrist Democrat. (9+ / 0-)

                  I judge him to be a centrist Democrat by his positions, statements, and actions.

                  (I'd be more than happy to look at the diary you reference, but I can't even figure out whose diary you're talking about.  Link, please?)

                  Policies that were wrong under George W. Bush are no less wrong because Barack Obama is in the White House. - Bob Herbert

                  by GreenSooner on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:56:10 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Sure (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    dmh44, wilderness voice

                    The link is here.  Here's a snippet:

                    Let me be clear: I am not arguing that the Democrats should trim their sails and be more "centrist."  In fact, I think the whole "centrist" versus "liberal" labels that continue to characterize the debate within the Democratic Party misses the mark.  Too often, the "centrist" label seems to mean compromise for compromise sake, whereas on issues like health care, energy, education and tackling poverty, I don't think Democrats have been bold enough.

                    This is the only mention of the term centrist or center by Obama that I can find in this piece or anything else he has written, and it is clearly a negative connoation.

                    (And yes, I understand that you judge him to be a centrist Democrat; my criticism about your previous comment was that it seemed to be explaining why the behavior of a centrist Democrat was coming from someone you deemed to be... a centrist Democrat, sounding less like going from point A to point B as much as going from point A to point A.)

                    Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                    by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:58:29 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Obama is trying to un-ask the question... (11+ / 0-)

                      ...and I'm afraid that doesn't fly.

                      He doesn't say he's not centrist. He says, let's not talk about centrist and liberal. Let's move beyond labels.  

                      I'm sorry, I think that's nonsense. These labels aren't perfect. But they describe something real. And unless one comes up with a better set of descriptors, simply junking them makes intelligent political conversation more, not less, difficult

                      Obama certainly doesn't embrace the label "centrist" in this 2005 statement. Anybody planning to run for the Democratic presidential nomination would have been more or less crazy to embrace the word "centrist" during the last election cycle.

                      What Obama does here is to say: let's provisionally define "centrist" as "compromise for compromise sake." Well, if that's what it means, I'm no centrist. But of course, if that's what it means, virtually nobody is a centrist.  Even people who, in fact, support compromise for compromise sake won't tell you that's what they support.

                      And, of course,  he also refuses to embrace the title "liberal" in this statement.

                      Here's some of what leads me to call Obama a centrist (in no particular order):

                      1. Other than one statement in 2003, he's been against single payer (and even that statement was a kind of hypothetical statement in favor of it sometime in the future).
                      1. He's against equal marriage rights (though for overturning DOMA and Don't Ask Don't Tell....but only sometime in the unspecified future).
                      1. His policies toward our wars on Iraq and Afghanistan are essentially the final policies of the Bush administration in these two theaters of conflict: draw down of forces in Iraq to match the Bush-negotiated agreement with the Iraqi government; escalation of the war on Afghanistan.  And they're being implemented by the same Secretary of Defense.
                      1. Favored FISA "reform" and endorses many of the secrecy policies of the Bush administration
                      1. A Wall Street-first economic approach that approved the Bush-administration sponsored bailout and led him to put people like Geithner and Summers at the top of his economic team.
                      1. An unwillingness to challenge the War on (Certain Classes of People Who Use) Drugs.
                      1. Only mild disapproval of the Honduran coup.
                      1. No support for fundamental electoral reform
                      1. Support for "free" trade and other elements of Washington consensus international economics
                      1. The Sotomayor nomination (a mainstream, centrist Justice)
                      1. Lukewarm support for card check and deprioritizing of any version of EFCA
                      1. Agricultural policies that rubber stamp the pro-agribusiness status quo.
                      1. Embracing so-called "clean coal" as part of our long-term energy and global warming solution.
                      1. Opposes deep cuts in our bloated military budget.
                      1. Opposes fundamental reform of the intelligence "community."

                      ...and that's just the start.

                      Policies that were wrong under George W. Bush are no less wrong because Barack Obama is in the White House. - Bob Herbert

                      by GreenSooner on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:06:56 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Let me add that I take Obama at his word. (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        chuckvw, Jacob Bartle

                        I don't think these positions are compromises. I think they reflect Obama's (centrist) values.

                        Policies that were wrong under George W. Bush are no less wrong because Barack Obama is in the White House. - Bob Herbert

                        by GreenSooner on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:16:45 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  But I could just as easily come back at you with (3+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        dmh44, wilderness voice, tgrshark13

                        Places where Obama went more progressive than any other recent Democratic nominee would ever have done:

                        -ending all torture
                        -immediately ordering Gitmo and CIA black sites around the world to be closed
                        -cancelling the CIA assassination program the moment it was discovered
                        firing Blackwater by not renewing its government contract in Iraq before it expired in May  
                        -announcing all combat troops out of Iraq in a year and all troops by the end of 2011
                        -reaching out diplomatically to Iran without preconditions and sending a Norooz speech to the Iranian people containing a line of Farsi
                        -achieving a 48% favorable/20% unfavorable in polls of the Muslim world, unthinkable for a US President at any other time in the last sixty years, and placing him as more popular than any of the leaders of Muslim countries
                        -personally admitting the CIA overthrow of Mossadegh in Iran in a speech to Muslims
                        -personally acknowledging the understandable sense of a double standard when it comes to who can and cannot have nuclear weapons while giving a speech to Muslims (implying America and Israel, the latter of which's nuclear weapons capacity is a major admission historically, even when made implicitly) and addressing that inequity by advocating nuclear disarmament for all countries
                        -insisting Israel recognizing Palestine is as important as Palestine recognizing Israel
                        -pressuring Israel to dismantle several of its key checkpoints in the West Bank
                        pledging no permanent bases in Iraq or Afghanistan in front of a Muslim audience
                        -eliminating Pentagon no bid contracts and waste
                        -pulling all troops out of Baghdad and all other Iraqi cities before the June 30 deadline
                        -striking the perfect tightrope balance of noninterference and supporting human rights after the suspect Iranian elections

                        While some of these things he campaigned on or at least hinted at throughout the course of his career, there are progressive actions on this list he has taken that he NEVER campaigned on, even in the primary where it would have helped him immensely to do so (No Permanent Bases in Afghanistan; Not Just A Combat Troop Withdrawal Date But A Withdrawal Date For All Troops).  Why would Obama take progressive actions as President that he did not take the opportunity to advertise during the campaign and benefit from politically, unless he believed them?  What possible other motive is there?

                        Also, as mentioned in that list, Obama has had a better attitude on cutting Pentagon waste and bloated contracts than any President in fifty years, so I dispute your #14.

                        Furthermore, your #3 is misguided and a bit insulting to the intelligence; do you think Bush REALLY would have have withdrawn from Iraq according to agreements?  The neocons used every tactic of obfuscation and delay to get away with all their criminality over the last eight years, including in the area of Iraq, where their luxury permanent bases exposed their motives quite well.

                        They NEVER would have left, and honestly, I'm not convinced any Democratic President other than Obama would have either, because he was the ONLY one of the last three Democratic candidates who had written a bill that said "No permanent bases in Iraq".  I don't know what's more offensive about your point #3; the utter lack of appreciation of this rare historical opportunity for America to break from institutional neonconservative tendencies, or the assumption of good faith from the neoconservatives on Iraq withdrawal.  Yikes.

                        Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                        by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:10:50 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Note though (0+ / 0-)

                          that all of these are related to either defense or foreign policy. Good enough, I agree with all of those positions. However, Presidents and Congress are not elected based on foreign policy. Backing away from real reform and pursuing consensus with the wingnuts is both bad politics and bad policy.

                          When I perceive the fight to be rigged, I don't wanna grow up. The Ramones

                          by tgrshark13 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:00:12 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I can list domestic progressive achievements also (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            wilderness voice

                            (h/t to jonnie rae for most of this data)

                            -We went from losing 700,000 jobs a month at the beginning of the year to losing 400,000 jobs in June to losing 200,000 in July.  Tens of thousands of state employees still have jobs, and services are maintained because of his stimulus.  He provided unemployment, food stamps and a 65% reduction in Cobra for those who lost their jobs, and more jobs will be created in transportation when rest of stimulus kicks in in 2010.
                            -He stabilized the markets, so 401Ks are starting to slowly come back and we are not about to meltdown anymore; we went from a tailspin under Bush to stabilizing at a 6000 Dow, climbing up to 8000, stabilizing there, and gradually climbing up ever since.  He saved the American auto industry (cash for clunkers is doing great too, both for the industry and jobs, and for the environment.)  GDP went from 6.5% shrinkage to 1% shrinkage since Obama has been in office.  A significant amount of the bailout money is being paid back.
                            -95% of Americans are receiving a tax DECREASE.  
                            -He has cut 2 trillion from the budget over the next ten years.
                            -He has taken on healthcare, the most difficult thing to pass in the US.  He ended the abstinence only thing, and the law that said a pharmacist could refuse to give birth control pills to women if they so chose.
                            -He has taken on energy, the second most difficult thing to pass in the US and it has already passed the House; he set new emissions standards, and protected wilderness land set for oil leases.
                            -He nominated and got confirmed the first latina Supreme Court Justice in history.  He signed Equal Pay for Equal Work, Children's Health Bill and Credit Card Reform.  He has a first time home owner's credit, a modification of mortgage plan in place. He has made it easier for students to get college loans (UMass just gave a 1500 rebate to all students because of the stimulus money.)

                            At a certain point one has to ask, exactly how much were we expecting in the first six months?

                            Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                            by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:20:16 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Stimulus, check. (0+ / 0-)

                            The stimulus was a strong accomplishment, I hope we are all in agreement on that. The rest, in my view, were fairly minor.

                            To come to your last point, how much where we expecting in the first six months, I don't disagree with you about the amount that has been accomplished. Where I do have a problem, and for me its a big problem, is with the backtracking from progressive positions. I didn't expect health care reform to be enacted in the first six months, so I am not disappointed there. However, I sure as hell didn't expect the public option to be taken off the table in the first six months (or ever!), either. The fact that it has been is extremely disturbing to me, although you and others may feel differently.

                            When I perceive the fight to be rigged, I don't wanna grow up. The Ramones

                            by tgrshark13 on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 05:45:50 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                •  In many cases, (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  blueoasis

                  Obama has said one thing and done quite another, and that's unfortunate.

                  But in light of that, what he DOES is many orders of magnitude more important than what he SAYS.

                  Pre-9/11 thinking: When we captured terrorists instead of creating them.

                  by DixieDishrag on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:20:54 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I don't agree with your first sentence at all (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    wilderness voice

                    I find Obama to be a refreshing exception to that tendency of politicians to say one thing and do another.

                    Pretty much any "said one thing and done another" critique about Obama can be shot down pretty quickly as either 1). poor analysis and misinformation, or 2). "he hasn't done what I wanted FAST enough!" which isn't a contradiction unless Obama is renegging on a time he said he would have something done by, which he hasn't yet on any issue.

                    The sole possible exception I can thing of in the entirety of Obama's career would be the FISA thing, which is a bit trickier of an explanation for him: he said he would filibuster any bill with immunity, but ended up not filibustering because there was zero chance of succeeding.  Some believe that he should have made a stand even if failure was guaranteed - I can respect that - and that he should have been more clear about his position beforehand if he wasn't going to do a filibuster no matter what - I can respect that, too.  However, in the worst case scenario, it's the one solitary thing close to a contradiction in Obama's career that I can find.  Care to post some examples?

                    Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                    by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:36:29 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  really? (0+ / 0-)

                  He clearly stated during a Q&A at one of his pressers: "I am a conservative".

                  Centrist enough for you?

                  "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

                  by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:10:55 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  something bad is worse that not (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                chuckvw, inclusiveheart

                signing at all.

                The onus cannot, must not fall on individuals to be mandated to turn money over to the insurance corporations without an option. Especially if there will not be any regulation on said insurance corporations.

                If that's what we get, it will be worse than what we have now, and that shall not be tolerated.

                Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

                by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:45:39 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  I think Obama would do it (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              jonnie rae

              for the same reason some of us say we have to be very vocal in pushing the public option even though we are not as sold on it as some others.

              We already started negotiations by giving up on a single payer, a move I question, now the public option is the contention.  If we gave up on public option now, the repubs will just move to the next item, they will never be satisfied.  It is not horrible to have this fight be over the public option, there are a lot of other extremely beneficial things being proposed. I think Obama will keep pushing public option and hint it could be negotiated.

              If he gives it up there will still be significant reform  and the repubs will save face by saying they beat the evil public option. Meanwhile, we got rid of preexisting conditions, arbitrary termination,and have mandatory coverage with subsidies for millions.

              Don't get me wrong, lets fight like hell, but some people here are ready to define a huge victory as a defeat.

              •  I wouldn't go that far at all (7+ / 0-)

                Without a public option guaranteeing affordable health care to all, a bill with insurance mandates would just be indentured servitude.

                Why don't we just elect Romney President if we like his shitty failed ideas so much?

                Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:10:55 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Without the public option (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                zeke L, ShadowSD

                to keep private profiteers (e.g., health insurance companies) in check, in short order we will end up with a system that will crash in on itself.  Those reforms you mention will mean little if affordable coverage is not available to most.

                Democracy is not something you believe in or a place to hang your hat, but it's something you do. You participate. If you stop doing it, democracy crumbles.

                by wave of change on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:44:00 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Can you please elaborate? (0+ / 0-)

          end result it produces

          What kind of end result you have in mind?

          What's the use of happiness? It can't buy you money- Henny Youngman

          by sheep in wolf clothing on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:31:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  And we must work! (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueoasis, ShadowSD

          We all must appear that townhalls along with the Screaming Deathers (hey, that sounds like a really good rock band!) call the White House and our representatives to let them know that giving up on he public options means that THEY ARE GIVING UP ON THEIR CAREERS AS REPRESENTATIVES.

          The idea is better Democrats to represent the interests of the American people, not just a democratic majority.

        •  No, we have to apply pressure, here. (5+ / 0-)

          The Chicken Littles are the folks who say we have to cave.

          No matter what rationalization they use to do their spelunking.

          Applying pressure from The Left is our job.our job.

          And that is what Ben is most admirably doing here.

          •  You clearly didn't read the diary that I linked (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lol chikinburd

            to back me up, because a direct quote from that diary, which I wrote just a few days ago, was:

            I AGREE that it is our job to pressure Obama from the left and say the things that he cannot say, in order to pull the political center to our direction, and perhaps even give him the room to say exactly the things we are saying but just a little bit further down the road.  

            Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

            by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:47:36 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  So where is the line between Chicken Little (0+ / 0-)

              and pressure?

              •  I think I describe that clearly in the diary (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                NLinStPaul, the tmax

                One is based on erroneous reasoning, and the other is a good idea no matter what as long it's done in a constructive way.

                I just don't like reflexive responses to soundbites that aren't actually news, but rather just a piece of the person's position that the writer of the article has chosen to emphasize due to concerns of brevity (if not more nefarious motives); the problem is that we are reacting to that emphasis - the emphasis of a third person - as if it comes from the horse's mouth, and we really ought to know better, instead of reacting to it reflexively in a manner that defies common sense.  I don't accept that such poor examples of judgment and critical analysis are part and parcel with effective pressure from Obama on the left; I would argue that they are counterproductive to that effort.

                Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:16:31 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  That should read "on Obama from the left" (0+ / 0-)

                  Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                  by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:23:54 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  That is totally subjective (0+ / 0-)

                  Unless you think you are the only arbiter of what is and is not real. Responding to the current media trend is not reflexive any and reactive.

                  Pushing back against the media spin is part of what we do.

                  And we each do it in our own way. Iow, just because you disagree with it, doesn't mean it is wrong.

                  Obviously the whole site is in an uproar over how to deal with the current limbo reality we are in. But it IS a reality, not just a soundbite.

                  •  I would argue that the following are NOT (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    buhdydharma

                    subjective, but objective facts:

                    1. Soundbites dominate the news
                    1. Soundbites are inherantly flawed because they are destined to omit something important unless the topic is incredibly simple, which policy rarely is
                    1. Most media outlets are owned by corporations against the public option
                    1. The potential for misinformation and misdirection is thus very high
                    1. It's a beneficial thing to be aware of that, because knowing what's going on is necessary to be able to react to events effectively

                    Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                    by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 05:42:30 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  All true, but (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Burned, ShadowSD

                      All of what you outline is caused by the vacuum left by the lack of leadership by the Dems.

                      Which is exactly what people are, at the root of it all, bemoaning and protesting.

                      So, is it the fault of those protesting, or the leaders they are protesting/trying to pressure?

                      Without real info to fight for provided by the leadership, we are left by default and lack of leadership to fight over soundbites.

                      Conclusion: What we really need to be fighting for is better leadership.

                      •  I agree with that (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        buhdydharma

                        What do you think of the idea of a non-partisan citizen petition online that people can sign, pledging to support the primary challenger of any member of either house of Congress who votes for a health care bill without a real and robust public option?

                        The idea came to me earlier today to start something like this; I had already been considering doing something of this nature with torture investigations for some time, but I can see it working for health care as well (with potentially even more immediate results if successful).

                        Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

                        by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:04:00 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

        •  Only the public screaming chicken little... (0+ / 0-)

          ...screeching, groaning, moaning - and for those dying, whispering with their last breadths - that the sky is falling, brought health care reform to the forefront in the first place.

          HR 676 - Health care reform we can believe in - national single-payer NOW.

          by kck on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:53:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  ShadowSD, this kind of strategy (5+ / 0-)

          Will result in a worthless, meaningless compromise.  Just wait and see just what kind of steaming pile of compromise shit comes down the pike that the RepublicSCUMS still won't vote for.    

          ...someday - the armies of bitterness will all be going the same way. And they'll all walk together, and there'll be a dead terror from it. The Grapes of Wrath

          by deepsouthdoug on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:00:42 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The strategy I outline in the diary I link (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            the tmax

            involves pressuring Congress and The President for a real and robust public option and nothing less - how is that going to result in meaningless compromise?

            I am only disputing the reflexive dancing to the pier piper of MSM soundbites; we should not be so easy to manipulate.  Not only is it foolish, it's counterproductive.

            Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

            by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:50:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Good analysis (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ShadowSD, xavier110

          I agree with your analysis.  
          His goal is 1.  to bring down health care costs 2.  universal coverage 3.  Eliminate health insurance industry abuses.

          If that can be acheived with co-ops, then fine.  
          But I don't think the proponents will be able to prove that co-ops make more sense than a public option.  

        •  Other countries achieve universal coverage (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dmh44

          without a public option.  Check the Netherlands, Germany, and Switzerland.  What they have is heavily regulated insurance, and public insurance too.  See Health Reform Without a Public Plan: The German Model

          First, these countries all mandate the individual to be insured for a basic package of health care benefits.... An insurance sector that must insure all comers at premiums that are not contingent on the insured’s health status — a feature President Obama has promised — cannot function for long if people can go without insurance when they are healthy, but are entitled to premiums unrelated to their health status when they fall ill.

          Second, these nations try to tailor the individual’s contribution to the financing of health care closely to the individual’s ability to pay — almost perfectly so in Germany, albeit less perfectly in the other two countries.   In Germany, statutory health insurance, which covers 90 percent of the population, is financed by a payroll tax. The individual’s premium is not a per-capita levy, as it is in the United States. It is purely income-based. Ostensibly, about 45 percent of the premium is contributed by employers, although economists are persuaded that ultimately all of it comes out of the employee’s take-home pay.   An employee’s non-working spouse is automatically covered by the employee’s premium.  Unemployment insurance pays the premiums for unemployed individuals, and pension funds share with the elderly in financing their premiums, which are set below actuarial costs for the elderly.   Finally, premiums for children are covered by government out of general revenues, on the theory that children are not the human analogue of pets whose health care should be their owners’ (parents’) fiscal responsibility. Instead, children are viewed as national treasures whose health care should be the entire nation’s fiscal responsibility.

          The health insurance premiums paid by Germans are collected in a national, government-run central fund that effectively performs the risk-pooling function for the entire system. This fund redistributes the collected premiums to some 200 independent, nongovernmental, competing, nonprofit "sickness funds" among which Germans can choose.

        •  When will you followers wake up? (0+ / 0-)

          You all yelled about how he was all about the Law.
          Then he tossed the constitution down the rathole bush dug.

          You yelled about how he would fight for human rights. Then he threw the gay community overboard.

          You yelled about how he was fighting for the american worker. Then he threw them overboard to give massive handouts to big business.

          You yelled about how he would end the war. Until he changed his mind and decided Iraq was all good for a couple more years.

          You yelled about how he would fight for civil rights. Then he shook the hand of the cop who racially profiled and assaulted a black man daring to enter his home.

          When will you people wake up?

          Never interrupt your opponent when he's making mistakes (Ivan Marovich)

          by cdreid on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:49:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I don't play 11 dimensional chess. (0+ / 0-)

          The hungry judges soon the sentence sign, And wretches hang, that jurymen may dine.

          by magnetics on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:27:58 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I agree. It's too soon to give up up on a... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ShadowSD

          strong public option.

          This certainly is an interesting strategy that the White House is using here but so far they've not deviated from it one bit. From what I've read and heard, Sebelius hasn't said anything different than what she's said all along.

          Time will tell but I still have hope.

          "If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem." -- Abraham Lincoln

          by markthshark on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:31:59 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Uh .... (0+ / 0-)

        No.  Not ignoring you.  Haven't heard abut it or are laughing at you maybe.

        But just to let you know how big an influence the USA has, I had an adventure outside Flinders St. Station in Melbourne, Australia a couple of hours ago.

        A stand outside the station with a few right wing (and very ignorant) right wingers.  Pictures of Obama with a Hitler Moustache.  Godwin after Godwin.

        And apparently there are "MASS STRIKES" at TOWN HALL MEETINGS all over America.  Pity they couldn't name one....

        The USA "debate" on health care is bringing out all the nuts who want to disassemble health care.

        Will you guys please get it sorted out before rest of us lose what we have?

        Best Wishes, Demena Left/Right: -8.38; Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.36

        by Demena on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 12:06:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I have been there with you BenGoshi (16+ / 0-)

      please see my diary with a run through of the evidence that the tide has turned...published moments before you including this late breaking update...

      "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

      by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:35:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Chill the frak out (117+ / 0-)

      Sebelius says something and you take the bait immediately.   Guys, it's all head-fakes and ego stroking to get something, anything out of the Senate so they can start working on it in committee.  It's just a tactic aimed at this particularly point in time as part of a larger strategy.

      All these little signals and winks are aimed at getting some sort of bill completed in finance committee.  

      All the while, Obama has been touting the public option personally in townhalls yesterday and the day before.

      So - have your little freak-out.   Enjoy it.   But it's utterly meaningless.  

      I'm shocked to learn that 1 in 12 Americans do not know that the bird, is in fact, that word.

      by dansac on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:43:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hello dansac! (9+ / 0-)

        Recc'ed your comment as a way to say hello.  Hope you're coming back; I've missed you.

      •  It is not a head fake... (25+ / 0-)

        Obama made the same point yesterday and attacked public option supporters in the process...

        that is not a head fake...

        "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

        by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:52:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Attacked? How did he do that? (40+ / 0-)

          When he said that both people on the left and the right were fixated on the PO as if it was the only thing part of reform? That's attacking?

          I can see where this diary is going and I don't have the patience for it.

          I'm off to the market.

          "There's no reason to say I'm the illegitimate grandson of an alligator." Birther Biller, Rep. Bill Posey

          by marabout40 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:58:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  yes...please see my diary (27+ / 0-)

            published earlier...I will copy my point here...

             

            This is a legitimate debate to have.  All I'm saying is, though, that the public option, whether we have it or we don't have it, is not the entirety of health care reform.  This is just one sliver of it, one aspect of it.  And by the way, it's both the right and the left that have become so fixated on this that they forget everything else, like the fact that we can help Nathan make sure that he doesn't suddenly find himself -- (applause) -- completely broke in trying to treat his son.

            That is the hyperbole that comes out when you are trying to push back, not when you are unequivocally supporting a policy.  This is Politics 101.  Does anyone really think those pushing for the public option forgot about Nathan's plight as the President stated.  The President knows public option advocates haven't forgotten those who are most affected by the current system.  He knows that public option advocates understand the stakes here.  However, this is just what is necessary to start the distancing process. This is the prep work that has to be done before it gets pulled.  It has been going on for a month now.

            I call that an attack on public option supporters.  It says we don't care about the Nathan's of the world.  Do you think we don't?

            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:02:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Don't know ... (30+ / 0-)

              ... if I'd call it an attack, but it is a rhetorical device of Obama's that I have little respect for -- equating the right with the left and then implying his way is far more responsive to real needs.

              He used the same rhetorical device on the torture issue and mcjoan did a great job calling him out on it.

              I doubt he'll stop, though, which is unfortunate, to say the least.

              I don't know what we'll end up with, but the deliberate lack of clarity by Obama for obvious political reasons has its consequences, whether one agrees with that tactic or not.  I don't agree with it.  We need transparency and clarity in this process and we aren't getting it.

              To blame folks for reacting to these kinds of ups and downs in the process rather than admit we DON'T have that clarity and transparency is, imo, foolish.

              •  You're conflating two issues. (10+ / 0-)

                To blame folks for reacting to these kinds of ups and downs in the process rather than admit we DON'T have that clarity and transparency is, imo, foolish.

                If you think we need "clarity and transparency" from the administration we aren't getting, why don't you write a diary on that? But respect those of us who have real concerns about needlessly alarmist language in rec'd diaries like this.

                •  I have written a full (8+ / 0-)

                  diary on the issue published minutes before this one, with recommended actions, and refutation of your statement that my comments are alarmist.

                  I don't know if you are referring to me, but if you were, your statement does not stand up to the weight of evidence...

                  I am more than happy to debate you on the merits of this position.

                  "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                  by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:28:50 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  It's backwards ... (15+ / 0-)

                  ... to blame folks for "alarmist" language when the optimistic spin is just as speculative and can lead to just as bad an outcome, i.e., complacency and not holding our representatives' (and that includes Obama) feet to the fire.

                  Iow, when there is no clarity and transparency, all that's left is speculation.

                  So it all flows from that, imo.

                  Frankly I am more concerned with the bad effects of complacency than I am of what you call "alarmist" language.

                  As far as respecting folks' concerns -- that's a two way street, and thus far I've seen very few folks who act accordingly when it comes to "respect."

                  •  No. (13+ / 0-)

                    People are getting demoralized by crap like this, and tuning out.  That is the wrong strategy right now.

                    This is not constructive and actually harmful.  

                    Darwinic pilgrims claim the image fills them with an overwhelming feeling of logic. --The Onion

                    by mem from somerville on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:41:10 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Eh. (16+ / 0-)

                      Speak for yourself.  I'm not demoralized at all.  I am, however, frustrated at the lack of transparency in this process and very few people seem to give a shit about that.  But even that doesn't "demoralize" me.  It just frustrates me.

                      Show me some real harm, measurable harm, and I'll take a look at what you have to say.

                      I'm not afraid to hear people's concerns and even fears when it comes to this legislation.

                      •  Look down these threads (9+ / 0-)

                        *I'm done with Democrats
                        *No more support from me
                        *I'm dead
                        *I am not working for this any more

                        This is exactly the kind of undermining that the right wants to see.  The spate of "no change" diaries here has caused people to tune out and walk away.

                        And this contributes to more of that.  That is a stupid strategy.  

                        Darwinic pilgrims claim the image fills them with an overwhelming feeling of logic. --The Onion

                        by mem from somerville on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:02:57 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Again, eh. (9+ / 0-)

                          None of what you're saying is the least bit substantive.  Nor do I believe it is the intent of these folks to undermine but instead this is an expression of real and understandable frustration.

                          Those feelings could be dealt with respectfully and maturely, but instead folks freak out and call names, completely ignoring why these feelings are being expressed.

                          To me, the fear of these kinds of feelings is palpable and, imo, foolish.

                          I have no idea how many of those folks are simply venting and how many are actually "walking away" and neither do you.

                          I don't feel undermined.  And I can well understand the frustration both with our party and our representatives and President.

                          I hope our party does listen to these folks and understand that they can't continue to depend upon our goodwill forever without some real results.

                          Sorry, what you have said proves nothing except there's a lot of emotions on this issue.

                        •  npk, i agree with mem (6+ / 0-)

                          this stuff is destructive.  people start giving up and we need to keep up this fight and stand behind the progressives.  if the wh is going to throw the public option under the bus, the progressives are going to need us to support them while they fight for us - or to goad them into it - whichever is necessary.

                          •  I understand what you're saying ... (11+ / 0-)

                            ... and absolutely disagree.

                            I find it interesting how many posters here are willing to defend the ugly "sausage making" process of legislation,, defend making deals with Big Pharma, defend Rahm Emmanuel, even, but when it comes to actual citizens stirring up a fuss and threatening to withdraw support, oh noes!

                            Sorry, I'm on the side of the citizens and there's ample reason for citizens to be hollering right now and writing "alarming" things about this process -- now's the only time we can do this before something is signed into law.

                            This IS goading our politicians.

                            I don't find it destructive at all.

                      •  You're not going to get full transparency. (4+ / 0-)

                        While I hope somebody leaks the details of any bad deals so the adminstration has to publically back off from it, it's only practical logic that we're not going to get a play by play on these kinds of negotiations.  Some secrecy is need for folks to make the kind of compromises necessary.

                        That said, I think Obama would be kind of a moron to be out here selling the public option, and then turn around and give us something that isn't equivalent to what he said.

                        I think some folks here need to stop looking for signs of betrayal, and excuse to bail.  We were always going to have to start from here, from a place where most veterans of the party have been deferring to and compromising with the Republicans for some time.  Our majority is young, and we don't have the Republican's brusque disregard for other's opinions.  So, it's going to be hard work turning the country back our direction, and we will not be spoiled with continuous victories.

                        That said, Obama's putting his ass on the line for the Public Option, and his HHS secretary's equivocation is pretty much a very conditional way of appearing open minded, in order to head-fake those who would want to nail him for being close-minded.  He want it to appear that he's chosing the Public option not out of stubborn ideology, but because its the only option that everybody can live with that gets the job done.

                        Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                        by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:22:01 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Whether or not ... (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          justmy2, blueoasis, dewley notid

                          ... transparency is how you define it or how I define it or whether or not it is desirable politically, there are consequences to not having it, and we are seeing those consequences in how folks are reacting to any news which implies we may not get a public option.

                          There's consequences to everything, Stephen.

                          Nor do I think folks are "looking for signs of betrayal" or "excuses to bail."  It's not as simplistic as that, imo.

                          Your last paragraph is pretty much how I see Obama playing this issue and I hope we are both right about that.

                          But the fact is we won't know until a bill is put on his desk.

                          Till then, every citizen has a right to air their grievances.  If you can show how they are factually wrong, fine, I have no problem with that.  But to say they're whining or quitting or somehow or another bad Democrats -- eh, I don't find that to be true at all.

                          •  I think the attitude is important. (0+ / 0-)

                            We can't approach it as if the Democrats are something external that we give up on if we don't get what we want.

                            Instead, we approach it like WE'RE the Democrats, who will get what we want, sooner or later, and those who don't want to acknowledge that won't be around too much longer, if we have our druthers.  This cannot simply be allowed to be the next variation on "poor us, we can't be the corporations or those nasty Republicans".  We got to have more testicular fortitude than that.

                            Republicans win to the degree that they are persistent.  So can we, if we've got the guts.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:24:32 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I also think ... (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            chuckvw, justmy2, blueoasis

                            ... the attitude is important.

                            And I have no problem with the attitude in this diary, even as I am not particularly swayed by its conclusion.  I do understand where it's coming from.

                            I don't see this diary as a "poor us" piece of writing.  It is a direct challenge to our reps that if we don't get a meaningful public option our party is going to suffer.

                            Every citizen has the right to express their grievances.  And that is going to take many forms.

                          •  The guy starts off with the worst possible idea (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            lol chikinburd

                            of what could be true, considering what she said.  He does not take into account other sources.  He simply, and rather smugly says, (literally) "I told you so, he's going to screw us."

                            Based on his evidence, which happens to be the ambiguous wording of one statement, I reserve the right to make the case that his assertion is poorly supported, too narrow in its expectations.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:19:52 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Well ... (0+ / 0-)

                            ... claiming his assertion is poorly supported, etc., is not the same as claiming he's "looking for signs of betrayal," etc.

                            Hope you can see the difference there.

                          •  Being thrown under the bus... (0+ / 0-)

                            Is political shorthand for an expedient betrayal of a compatriot or a principle.  He says "I told you so."  Meaning that he already believed this was going to happen.

                            So, he is saying outright in the title: I was looking for this to happen: the betrayal of the promised Public Option.

                            Which means, by definition, he was looking for signs of betrayal.

                            I think if you're worried about the public option, you should go ahead and write in support of it.  Make sure the White House knows where it's political bread is buttered.  Robert Gibbs gave another signal about where the Public option might go, saying:

                            "The president believes the option of a government plan is the best way to provide competition," he said on CBS's "Face the Nation," but he added the White House looked forward to the Finance Committee's ideas.

                            "The bottom line again is do individuals looking for health insurance in the private market have choice and competition?" Gibbs said. "If we have that the president will be satisfied."

                            In this context, it becomes less certain that Sebelius is sending any other message than that which a poor choice of words might.  Gibb's response leaves the door open to swing both ways, but also indicates a clear preference.

                            Don't just jump on one quote, I'd say, in order to suss out a position.  Officials can be wrong.  Opponents can jump on bad phrasing.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:26:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Eh. (0+ / 0-)

                            I don't think you make a case for this at all.  And no, I don't think that by definition he was looking for signs of betrayal.

                            I would say that looking skeptically at government is no big surprise these days.  That's just the way it is.

                            At this point I am just waiting to see what the fuck is going to happen.  I'm sick to death of all these trial balloons and clues and no one in a position of power saying the truth outright.  I know, I know, that would be CRAZY!

                            But still I'm sick of it.

                            We'll see what happens.

                          •  Okay, what exactly does he mean by... (0+ / 0-)

                            ...thrown under the bus?  Betrayal is inherent in the meaning of that phrase.

                            Meanwhile, I have a comment here that might clear some things up.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:10:16 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  signs? (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          chuckvw

                          I think some folks here need to stop looking for signs of betrayal, and excuse to bail.

                          Who needs to look for them when they're being thrown in your face?

                          And if people choose to bail, they certainly have that right. That is a part of democracy too. Anything else smacks of "with us or against us" blind partisanship that is wholly destructive.

                          "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

                          by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:18:45 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  and (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          justmy2

                          Did you vote for a politician into "head fake(s)" or someone who would uphold his promise to tell the truth?

                          "I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats." - Eckhart Tolle

                          by catnip on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:20:08 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                      •  I'm demoralized. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Burned

                        Disappointed, angry and really tired of this circus act that both sides are putting on in order to preserve the status quo while also trying to make people think they give a shit.

                        •  are you demoralized by the statements (0+ / 0-)

                          on this site stating Obama is telegraphing a move from the public option?

                          "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                          by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:04:07 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I am demoralized by the Obama Administration (6+ / 0-)

                            and the Democrats' pathetic and disgusting handling of this entire process of supposed "reform".  Anyone who thinks that BenGoshi had to point out what's been going on here on the Hill for a while now, is sadly mistaken.  The fact that people advocating for single-payer were being escorted out of public meetings and arrested should have been everyone's first clue that Congress and the White House are both pretty insincere about their claims about wanting to pass meaningful health insurance reform.  Today is just another day in a long succession of what I think has been a fairly onvious reality for some months now.

                          •  you can not correct or react to what you (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            inclusiveheart

                            are unwilling to accept....

                            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:30:28 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Absolutely true. (0+ / 0-)

                            Someone needs to start a ten step group for o-fundies.

                          •  Hey, my friend. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            inclusiveheart

                            .
                             Good to "see" you.  You're right, it has been "fairly obvious" for a while.  But the Front Pagers on Daily Kos tip-toed all around this.  nyceve, Slinkerwink have been unrelenting in keeping this "on the front page" (diary-wise), and I've tried several times to expose Obama's whole milquetoast position (such as it's been) on the Public Option, as well as Conrad's crap co-ops.

                             Anyway, this thing's coming to a head, some of us are pointing that out and some percentage of Kosniacs' heads are exploding with anger and grief that Obama is, in fact, capable of failing at something.  

                             The shame of it is that this never needed to be:  he's never had to bend over backwards for "bi-partisanship" and has never had to appease Mitch McConnell, but he's chosen to do so anyway and, well, now here we are.

                             bg
                            ____________________

                            "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

                            by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:57:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  P.S.: (8+ / 0-)

                      Using your logic I'll also say there are plenty of folks who are equally demoralized and "tuning out" when it comes to mindless fealty to Obama and chastising of anyone who has a different view.

                      That's politics.

                      I have little sympathy for either side when it comes to quitting.  Summer soldiers, and all.  And I don't blame someone writing a diary for that kind of behavior.

                      •  this is not about mindless fealty to obama (6+ / 0-)

                        it is about people getting all negative and then getting others all negative.  e.g., i am going tomorrow evening with nyceve to rep. crowley's "conversation on the corner" in the bronx to support him on hcr.  i wonder how many people will join us?  i wonder how many who might have come will now not bother.... hey, it's august, it's hot in nyc, obama's going to sell us out anyway, why bother, i'll just stay home and chill out in front of the tv/computer.

                        •  I was using ... (4+ / 0-)

                          ... that example (mindless fealty) to show there's all sorts of reasons that people will use for quitting.  I'm not about to change my own rhetoric for fear of that result.  And I don't think anyone else should, either.

                          You are proof that your fear is not warranted.  I don't see you quitting because of this rhetoric.  Why do you have so little faith in your fellow citizens that you think anyone else is going to quit because of something someone wrote?

                          •  because i see the negativity eat into morale (3+ / 0-)

                            what could become a call to action becomes a whining fest.  because of inertia.  if people haven't been doing anything, if they think doing something is fruitless to start, then they certainly won't overcome the inertia.

                            hey, want to come to the bronx tomorrow evening.  you can take the 6 train to parkchester (1/2 hour ride) and then there's a ten minute walk to metropolitan oval.  crowley's conversation on the corner is from 6-8 and nyceve has been in touch with his office.  they are welcoming support.

                          •  Will respond to the substance below ... (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            blueoasis

                            ... but can't go with you tomorrow.  Health reasons -- ironic, eh.

                          •  sorry to hear (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Nightprowlkitty

                            it would be fun to meet you.  hope you are feeling better soon and i hope you have insurance.

                          •  Thanks. (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            conchita, blueoasis

                            Yeah, I do have insurance ... but it seems to be covering less and less these days.

                            Agree it would be fun to meet!

                          •  Negativity DOES eat into morale. (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            conchita, Nightprowlkitty

                            And a lot of us have been calling and writing and signing petitions and donating for ads. So, we have a stake in this.  Have the President and Vice President and Sebellius and Reid been fighting as hard as we have?  Remember, Rahm has already said that he will take anything at all as a win. Very encouraging! I will always support the President, but this does look like caving.  Maybe we just have too many of the wrong sort of dems in Congress to get a public option.

                          •  btw, i am not proof (4+ / 0-)

                            i am pissed off.  i am pissed off at the negativity/excuse for not doing anything.  i am tired of people who rant and rave and give up at the slightest sign of difficulty.  now is the time to burn up the lines/emails to the wh, get out to meetings with congress members, talk to neighbors - not spend time on dk complaining about everything.  and unfortunately, that is what i see happening in this diary.  i haven't read all of the comments, so perhaps things have turned around since my initial foray, but i don't have time to spend whining about sebellius or obama when i need to prepare a flyer for tomorrow evening.

                          •  Well ... (7+ / 0-)

                            ... to me you are proof indeed.

                            Do you honestly believe you're the only one who gets pissed off at what's said here at Daily Kos?  I get pissed off all the time, this diarist is pissed off, we're all pissed off.

                            I'm tired of a lot of crap that goes on here.  But I also know it's not going to end, that's politics.  That's the way it is -- and I've staked my ground and will fight for it.  As do we all.

                            For you to name call (i.e., "ranting and raving," "whining,") -- what do you think that accomplishes in dealing with this kind of writing?  Do you think that because you're being active (and good on you for going to the town halls and such) that means your way is the only way?  Because I can't agree with that.

                            Because Obama refuses to draw a line in the sand when it comes to a public option, it's inevitable we're going to hear rhetoric like this and I am neither demoralized or pissed off by it.  I don't agree that the P.O. is dead and this diary doesn't make me think so at all.  It just shows me the consequences of the lack of transparency in this process.

                            Now that may be brilliant political strategy on Obama's part -- we'll all see when something either does or doesn't get signed into law.

                            But these are the consequences of that lack of clarity and refusal to commit to the public option for political reasons.

                            No, I don't think this is whining.  And it doesn't piss me off.  And "ranting and raving" are always in the eye of the beholder, imo.

                          •  i guess we will have to agree to disagree (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Nightprowlkitty

                            heading off now to work on my flyer.  i see that this diary now has 721 comments.  i just hope they are not all from people who are giving up just because of a media meme about a bill that hasn't been full written yet.  if people come out of this diary even more ready to fight then all is good.  i hope that is the case, but in my experience people give up all too easily and tune out.

                          •  lol ... (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            justmy2, blueoasis

                            ... see my "P.S." response below.

                            I'm find with disagreeing ... to me, that's what democracy is all about.

                            There's plenty else we do agree on.

                          •  *fine*, not *find* nt (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            blueoasis
                          •  (: hey, on my way out, i saw mot's diary (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Nightprowlkitty

                            and took a moment to read and rec.  also saw this comment as a prime example of what i am talking about:

                            We need it but we're not going to get it (1+ / 0-)

                            Recommended by:
                               fernan47

                            it's over. The Whitehouse has already surrendered. We can only kill the bullshit bill they will try to pass. It will ruin this presidency and we will get a republican takeover in 2010 and republican in the WH in 2012.

                            It all sucks!

                            i'm leaving off the commenter's name.  but do you see what i mean?  the words "surrender" and "it's over" do a lot of damage.  and once this starts, it spreads like poison ivy.

                          •  I think ... (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            justmy2, blueoasis

                            ... it is quite an overestimation to think comments like that "spread like poison ivy."

                            I've had that reaction myself when I've seen comments I thought were pure poison.

                            It is interesting, though, that when you actually look to see the influence of those kind of comments, it's quite minuscule.

                            In any event, I don't think it's fair to compare this diary to that comment.  Fact is, we don't yet know if we'll get a public option -- which is why we're fighting for it.

                          •  i hope you are right (0+ / 0-)

                            i have seen a stream of them and it is worrisome.

                          •  yawn (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            oceanheart

                            people can discuss their views and be politically active on the frontlines at the same time.  these are not mutually exclusive activities.  a lot of folk on here are displeased to here some displeasure with what's been happening.  well, then "change the channel" then.  let others have a discussion and quit being so sanctimonious as if you are great for doing your civic duty (if you are privileged and have the means to do so). i mean, how dare we we hold our elected officials accountable?

                            We are the ones we've been waiting for. -- Barack Obama

                            by seeta08 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:31:17 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  not meant to be sanctimonius (0+ / 0-)

                            was only explaining why i couldn't stick around and read the comments and discuss.  i had an objective to accomplish that i knew would take time, plus all of the other household stuff that has to be done.  i also am hardly privileged - this afternoon is the time i have to do this - i work like most and have other responsibilities.  however, i do recognize that this is not going to happen unless we are pushing the ball down the court.  i spent the last few years trying to get my rep, nadler, to move forward with impeachment, talk about holding someone accountable.  at least now he and i are in the same place re hrc and accountability/prosecutions.  my frustration with the naysayers is as i said, i think it is a momentum killer.  

                          •  Write a diary and include a poll (0+ / 0-)

                            asking how many people have given up...and I think you will be suprised by the results...

                            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:51:49 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  that is a good suggestion (0+ / 0-)

                            if i have time to flush out a proper diary, i will do it.  

                          •  I simply point out (0+ / 0-)

                            .

                              1.  That some of us have seen this coming and have tried to get (the community) ahead of the curve.  Now "the curve" is upon us.

                              2.  These Co-ops are crap (wondering how many detractors have actually followed the Co-op diary links and read them -- guessing, not many).

                              3.  Now the Admin has done what we feared it would do:  make a point of really, really distancing itself from the Public Option as a necessary component of a Bill the President can/will sign.

                              4.  This emboldens the Right Wingnuts and Insurance Cretins all the more.

                              5.  In comment after comment after comment I've noted that it's not entirely over:  that if the House holds strong and the People get fired-up enough then despite this sad (but predicted) development, all is not lost.

                            Pretty simple message.

                            bg
                            ___________________

                            "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

                            by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:16:38 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  "For you to name call" (0+ / 0-)

                            Your previous two contributions to this subthread repeated the word "mindless" in characterization of people you disagree with.  Please to be choosing your words with care befitting your own professed standards.

                          •  P.S.: (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            BenGoshi, conchita, blueoasis

                            I know this will sound inconsistent, but I absolutely support your right to be pissed off at stuff I'm not pissed off at -- and even name-call if you feel that's warranted.

                            I'm proud to have you as my fellow citizen.

                            I just don't feel the same way about this kind of writing (this diary), is all.

                        •  It is also about the fact (0+ / 0-)

                          that Obama has so far done little or nothing to justify the accusations and vitriol that are being thrown at him. We are still mid-play in the first big policy debate. They don't come bigger, it was never going to be a slam-dunk, victory with the first shot debate.

                          None of the attacks I have seen on Obama seem to have any justification whatsoever, and the fact that so many recced diaries are attacking him just makes me think this place isn't worth coming to any more.

                          Chill the f*** out. I got this.

                          by ultraviolet uk on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:47:13 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Yes, to many of us, that's exactly what it... (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          zeke L

                          .
                          . . . seems to be.  I have supported the President (still have an Obama sticker on my car and all) but I put my support of the American people and my support of meaningful and comprehensive Health Care Reform above my otherwise positive feelings about President Obama.

                          You know, true friends, spouses who enjoy healthy marriages, successful business partners, etc. can always say to one another:  "Hey, you screwed up this time".  Those who only dote on the other or who can only ask, "How high?" when their partner, friend, spouse, or colleague says, "Jump" are living in a rather unhealthy relationship.

                          Obama's my President and I like him.  And he's screwing up.

                           bg
                          _____________________

                          "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

                          by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 03:04:55 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                    •  You seem to be advocating a put (7+ / 0-)

                      your hands over your eyes because you may demoralize some strategy?

                      If people are calling for action, that seems to be advocacy, not me...not demoralization.

                      We are reasonably intelligent here and calling for more action should never be considered demoralizing...

                      "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                      by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:07:34 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Bingo, mem!! Thanks! n/t (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      mem from somerville
            •  He's pushing back at diaries like (6+ / 0-)

              this one, and the attitudes of the people who pile on and decide to start a new party and NEVER Vote For HIM Again.  He's pushing back at Sarah Palin and the deathers.  Sad that we're in the same coalition.

              Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

              by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:25:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  No one is saying start a new party (8+ / 0-)

                That type of rhetoric is not productive.  Most of us are recommending actions to take to turn the tide.  Saying the we have "forgotten" what this is about and equating us with Republicans is insulting to say the least.

                "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:30:11 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Obama is defeating hope. (12+ / 0-)

                  Read the NY Times yesterday.  He cannt get out his email list people.  OFA is weak.

                  No third party matters becasue Obama is defeating himself.

                  No change; no hope.

                  They "prefer an America where parents will lie awake at night worried if they can afford health care their children need."

                  by TomP on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:37:48 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  It is insulting, and I'm (14+ / 0-)

                  being insulting intentionally.  I'm sick of the hyperventilating and over-the-top reactions to every bit of flotsam and jetsam that floats out of the beltway.

                  This is politics.  It's a game, there are moves and counter-moves, there's a lot of trap-baiting and balloon-floating and bones handed to the slavering dogs to get them to show their real intentions.

                  How about if we take a deep breath, stand back, and try to understand that Obama is about health care reform, and there are elements he's adamant about, and elements he's willing to negotiate about, but ultimately it isn't reform unless it reduces premiums, regulates insurers, makes the health care system work better, reduces costs, and insures everyone.  That doesn't happen without a public option - if the name has become toxic, call it barking spiders, just get it done.  

                  Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                  by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:46:32 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  And if everything you just said is true (15+ / 0-)

                    why not actively advocate for it, and push back when the Administration tries to move right.

                    The drug companies gave a perfect example this week.  As soon as they thought their deal was even in jeopardy, the immediately pushed back.

                    That is politics.  When your position is being weakened, you push back.  You don't wait for more information because you don't want to be disruptive.

                    "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                    by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:55:37 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  and exactly how is this diary (3+ / 0-)

                      that conflates our HHS secretary's words, a public option is not the "essential element" to mean that it is not a "necessary element" in a massive healthcare bill?  This diary is bullshit and I have noticed you doing tons of doomsdaying instead of helping our administration lately too!

                      To Congress: "GO BIG" or go home

                      by mjd in florida on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:06:43 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Please do not make accusations that you (3+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        buckhorn okie, blueoasis, KingCranky

                        can not stand up to.  It will not turn out well for your credibility.

                        I stand by my comments and active debate in this community.  I always back up my comments with facts, I give the President credit when credit is due, and I make recommendations required to support the President.

                        If you want to debate the merits, let's do so.  But do not begin using ad hominem attacks with no evidence behind them.  I welcome you to read every one of my diaries on the issue and point out any thing that i have not backed up as fact.  Just because your point of view is different, doesn't mean that it is doomsday talk.  As a matter of fact, you attempts to limit debate say more about you and your confidence level in your position than anything it says about me.

                        "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                        by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:12:27 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  The question is, helping them do what? (4+ / 0-)

                        I for one consider a public option essential to any real health care reform. But apparently the administration does not.

                        So how then do I help them? Help them to understand that for many people in this country, a robust public option IS essential?

                        Isn't that what diaries like this are meant to do?

                        To whom it may concern. Waterboarding is torture. Torture is illegal. Sincerely, A. No Brainer.

                        by Pescadero Bill on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:28:00 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Apparently you're not paying attention to (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          mjd in florida, Matt Z

                          what Obama is saying.  He's engaged in moving the infamous Overton window here - most of the country is not on DKos every day.  Most of them need to be educated, and reassured, and shown how this will be good for them, all this having to be done while Obama is knocking down the flaming straw men the opposition lights up every moment of every day.

                          Obama believes that a robust public option is essential to reform.  He repeats that many times, but apparently no one in the progressive community is able to hear him, because we're too fucking busy looking for proof that we're going to be betrayed again.  What a waste of time and energy.  

                          This is so sad - it feels like betrayal has gotten to be the only comfortable state for the left.  No matter how idiotic the right is, it seems like we'll do everything we can to help them regain power.

                          Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                          by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:38:22 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Again, his words. (7+ / 0-)

                            All I'm saying is, though, that the public option, whether we have it or we don't have it, is not the entirety of health care reform.

                            Whether we have it or don't have it?

                            That's like the Captain saying, "Yes I know the boat is sinking, but whether we have or don't have enough life boats is not the entirety of our survival plan."

                            Less of course you're the one that's left with no seat on the boats and staring the icy cold waters of the North Atlantic in the face.

                            A public option is crucial. He needs to reiterate that in every speech, not whittle away at it.

                            To whom it may concern. Waterboarding is torture. Torture is illegal. Sincerely, A. No Brainer.

                            by Pescadero Bill on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:52:25 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  OK, you're right, this (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Matt Z

                            has all been an elaborate scheme to make sure nothing changes in our broken health care system.  Obama has been playing a game, just trying to keep a few thousand of us happy by pretending he cares about changing our country for the better.

                            He never intended to get health care reform passed, he doesn't care about the economy collapsing, and he has no intention of doing anything about the environment or the future of the country.  He just wanted to get elected and run around in the WH for a few years.  

                            Enlightenment has finally reached me.

                            Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                            by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:57:56 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No, what he's saying is.... (0+ / 0-)

                            ...lifeboats aren't the entirety of the plan.  He has to reassure folks who aren't going to be on the Public Option plan that there's something in it for them.  If you've looked, you would see that in his recent town halls.  He talks to people about reforms to health insurance as well.  That's what he means.

                            He's saying, to extend the metaphor, that they've also got transmitters and life preservers and flares.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:27:56 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I read that comment totally differently.. (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Pescadero Bill, oceanheart

                            especially when the question was about the public option...

                            If his goal was to alleviate fears, that was a strange way to do it.  I don't think this was a "there also is something in it for those who don't have the public option statement".

                            It also was repeated in different way by Sebelius and Gibbs today, while responding to an even more direct question.

                            I would welcome you reading being correct...but I just don't see you reading as the actual intent.

                            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:00:20 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  They will have it passed and (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          blueoasis, Matt Z, I love OCD

                          they don't want it spotlighted right now to all those more interested in the idea of getting their "present" healthcare improved. (the majority of the population)  Even though a public option is important to about 46 million Americans, it's not as important to most of our "self-interested" Americans...get them thinking about their self-interests instead.  The "public option" will pass easier with less fanfare with the public...AND it will pass easier if we help our administration by keeping on the asses of our complicit/wussy Congress critters too!

                          To Congress: "GO BIG" or go home

                          by mjd in florida on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:41:24 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                      •  can you walk and chew gum at the same time? (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Moresby

                        quit the sanctimonious drivel.  people can discuss views while being politically active on the frontlines.  get over yourself.

                        We are the ones we've been waiting for. -- Barack Obama

                        by seeta08 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:36:32 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                  •  Agreed. Will also have to take pride (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Pescadero Bill, I love OCD

                    out of this issue.  If only for the negotiations.  Prior to any final outcome we can't walk around thinking this is about validation of the progressive movement and voice.

                    It is about the goal.  It is about providing affordable, accessible Health Care for all Americans.  Negotiations are harmed by pride.  This is business.  We stand a better chance of winning if we go in to it without our prideful stake.

                    This is not about Conservative principles and their validation for the Insurance Companies.  This is about money.  This is about business.
                    You can't come at that with emotions.  You just can't.  You come at it with smarts.

                    •  The Oligarchy has won on the health care issue (4+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Moresby, KingCranky, seeta08, I love OCD

                      for 75 years using emotions and only emotions.

                      •  No, they have used other people's emotions. (0+ / 0-)

                        The debate is different this time.
                        They can't play on the "scary socialist" Government run program as effectively.  That emotion no longer is more threatening than what the people of the country face every month as they pay their worthless premiums.  The Insurance Companies have F'd us to the point where a little socialist Government run HC is actually a very intelligent solution.  It makes sense now.  The case has been proven by the Health Insurance Companies. (I have a tangent I will attach at the bottom of this)

                        The only emotions they have to exploit is the "scary black man taking over the country, reparations, pitting old people against young people."  That is what this whole death panel thing breaks down to you know.  They want the old people to believe their health care will be dismantled for the betterment of the young.

                        All of their emotional arguments can be fought with intelligence.  This time.  Their strawman threats are specific.  Not vague ideas.

                        Tangent:
                        Their is a card in this that is not being played out in public.  But I hope it is being played behind closed doors.

                        The Health Insurance Companies would be better suited at this point in time to compromise with a public option.  Look how far the Public Option has come in the last 10 years.  Due mainly to the behavior of the Insurance Companies.
                        If they are able to continue with the status quo or anything similar, the next time this issue comes around the insurance companies will be forced out of existence.  Single Payer non-profit will be the answer shouted out by even the biggest Rush Limbaugh fan. (psst they aren't protesting HCR they are protesting PBO)
                        They have to know this.  If they would like to preserve some sort of money making business they have to compromise.  The future of this industry will collapse under the status quo.
                         

                        •  They can and do rely on focus group tested (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          KingCranky

                          emtional responces.  They can and do win with emotion.  I think it could be countered by the democrats but they seem more interested in caving than fighting.

                          •  I think that is just too easy to say. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Stephen Daugherty

                            You know there is a reason Democrats and Republicans have different POVs.  They are different.  They have different styles.  What you call caving and not fighting I interpret more as style and an unwillingness to go "there" in a debate no matter how effective it may be because, well, yuck.

                            If the Democrats went out there and tried to manipulate emotions and play on the worst part of me.  The part of me that I struggle to improve on daily...... yuck.  I would be so turned off of all things government.  I am glad they are out there with a practical style.  I agree there is room for improvement on volume. They are fighting.  It is just not cage match style.

                            There is an answer that is not extreme and so repulsive.  I will agree the Democrats have not hit that stride, yet.  But, a willingness to come out these last few days and say words like, "not telling the truth", "lies", "dishonest" says to me, they are closer to being more effective with the public message.  What the Democrats are always missing is confidence.  I think they are finding it.  Our President has it.

                          •  This is what I'm talking about. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            wave of change

                            We need to start being confident in our own skin, with our own approach.  Rather than dragging ourselves through the mude to try and out GOP them, we should be fighting our own way, pushing things with the force of passionately held positions of reason.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:21:01 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I think we're fighting back in the better way. (0+ / 0-)

                            Emotion is not as sustainable as fact.  Sooner or later the gasbags can't keep angry, or keep getting attention for being angry, and we stand their, strongly, passionately fighting for the truth, setting the record straight, telling them the things that they want to hear about reform.

                            Trust me, the polls say they want many of our policies.  It's selling the overall plan that's the issue.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:19:34 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  We mostly don't fight. Our strategy seems to be (0+ / 0-)

                            to cave instead of fight.  We have seen a little fighting in the last few days, but a lot of caving.  We don't need a public option is the last cave from the White House and it undermines all democrats who are trying to fight for a good bill.

                          •  You're right we don't need to cave... (0+ / 0-)

                            ...but the author of the diary that starts this thread has a weak case for that being the only viable alternative, or even the strongest.

                            I've observed that sometimes the way one tends to describe oneself becomes the expectation one behaves by.  If our expectation is that we will lose and be betrayed, well then we'll be looking for the warning signs of such loss and betrayal, and will give up at that first sign.

                            We need to understand that the Republicans are prepared to go all out to defeat this, and that this requires us to go all out to fight back against this.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:55:53 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  I wish I could buy that. (3+ / 0-)

                          But thinking that big business will ever take action that helps it in the long run is probably in error.  Big business is constantly killing the goose that lays the golden egg; if the destruction of our economy in the years since Reagan tells us anything, it's that business hasn't got the damned sense to do what is better for it in the long run.

                          They're short-term thinkers.  They're greedy.  They won't take their hands out of the cookie jar voluntarily, even if it's proven that if they only take one cookie an hour they'll be assured of cookies aplenty indefinitely.   History shows it over and over and over again.

                          Think coal mine operators didn't know there would be war in the mountains if they didn't start treating their workers with even minimal humanity?  They had to be forced to change, though, by force and fury that outstripped even theirs.

                          Think these polluters don't know they'll be in it with the rest of us when the polar ice caps are gone?  Think they'll voluntarily act on that knowledge to try to head off disaster?

                          Think car makers in Detroit couldn't have figured out in the seventies that small, fuel-efficient, quality vehicles were what people wanted?  Yet they kept making the huge, gas-guzzling, 80,000 mile cars because they had a better margin, while Toyota and Nissan took over their market.

                          The horrible truth is that they're not very bright.

                          •  I am crossing my fingers our very smart (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Kentucky DeanDemocrat

                            President is imposing this very real scenario to the Industries, Baucus etc.

                            I gotta think Pharma, AMA, AARP all see the writing on the wall and they seem to be reserving a seat at the table.

                            But, I take your point.  Business has been foolish for long term operation.  It offends me to my core.  The power of greed to override sensibility is frustrating and probably a big threat to our country.

                          •  The President is not imposing this scenario on (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Kentucky DeanDemocrat

                            anyone, he is begging for it instead of fighting for it.  Time to take the gloves off, make people accountable for what they say and do and be clear in what you want.  Bipartisanship won't work with this Congress.  "Crossing my fingers" has never been a good strategy.

                          •  How do you know? Seriously. That is my (0+ / 0-)

                            question to you.

                            Are you saying the President is begging for the Insurance Industry to not recognize a compromise helps them.  So, somewhere in the future Single Payer/non profit will be the only answer?  I just need to be clear on what the President is "begging" for.

                            While we are on that word, I am a little sick of the simplistic view that you are either beating someone over the head or you are cowering in a corner begging.

                            This macho everything is a Die Hard screenplay is something that quite frankly, appeals to those who have put us in this position over the last 10 years.

                            It no worky.  Let's elevate the expectations just a little.

                          •  Are you seriously suggesting that progressives (0+ / 0-)

                            fighting against the abuses of the private health insurance industry are responsible for Republican Rule?  The DLC lives on!

                          •  How did you get THAT from my comment? (0+ / 0-)

                            This is a panic to the extremes.  Reread my comment.  Your conclusion is ridiculous.  Don't try to take me there.  I will not go.
                            I asked you a question.

                            What is the President begging for?

                          •  This is how I got that from your comments. (0+ / 0-)

                            This macho everything is a Die Hard screenplay is something that quite frankly, appeals to those who have put us in this position over the last 10 years.

                            The President is begging for Republicans and Blue Dogs to reason with him over the facts.  This will never happen.  They aren't studpid, they know what they are doing.  Do you think Grassley actually believes there are death panels?  Of course he doesn't.  He will just say or do anything to kill health reform, including to act like he is negotiating in good faith, when he isn't.

                            Obama needs to quit playing nice and make Congress persons pay a steep price for opposing him.  He has the bully pulpit and other powers and he should use them.  But I don't think he will, except against progressives.

                      •  Has it? (0+ / 0-)

                        Ole' Ronnie Reagan campaigned against Medicare when it was introduced.

                        Care to guess how far that got?

                        Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                        by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:28:52 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Seems to me that it got him the Presidency and 28 (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          raboof, justmy2, KingCranky

                          years of Republican control of the government.

                          •  To more directly reply to your comment. (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            justmy2, KingCranky

                            They have been able to keep most of the health care system in private hands, even though this has resulted in a poorer economy and poorer health for the population as a whole.

                          •  During which he couldn't touch Medicare. (0+ / 0-)

                            Point is, Medicare exists despite the emotional tirades of these folks.

                            You can pass legislation, legislation that they end up trying to add to in order to look more popular.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:17:23 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Meanwhile, millions live shorter more infirm (0+ / 0-)

                            and pain filled lifes while the rest of developed world progresses right on past us.

                          •  I'm puzzled as to where this leads. (0+ / 0-)

                            Are you trying to say that we shouldn't try to attempt universal healthcare or healthcare reform?

                            Are you trying to say (here I might agree) that the Republicans will always come across with some kind of emotional attack which we have to beat back?

                            Do you believe there's a point to all this, or do you believe otherwise?

                            There were other contributing factors to Democrat's weakness in the following year after Medicare, and other reasons why Reagan became President.

                            I believe that we need to rewrite the political rules, best we can, not pretend like they're political realities.  It's not something we can approach with a weak will.

                            Reject the drama like Barack Obama!

                            by Stephen Daugherty on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:51:54 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  And you don't understand the lack of trust (0+ / 0-)

                    in what we hear from the Administration? No end to DODT, no EFCA, no torture prosecutions, etc., etc., and etc. And yet you have the nerve to suggest we should not be extremely concerned when the Administration pulls back from a strong public option in health care?

                    Hell no.

                    When I perceive the fight to be rigged, I don't wanna grow up. The Ramones

                    by tgrshark13 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:09:47 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

        •  I watched his entire Town Hall. (19+ / 0-)

          One of us was smoking something, because I didn't hear him repudiate the public option.

          Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

          by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:23:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I never said he repudiated it... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            buckhorn okie, greenearth, TomP

            never...

            I said he attacked supporters...there is no need to put words in my mouth.

            Please see my diaryfor a full view of my position and support for this point of view.

            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:26:22 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I read your diary, and I don't (21+ / 0-)

              agree with your take.  He took a shot at progressives, most likely because we're acting like WATB's half the time.  One day it's a diary list full of rage about Obama selling us out, the next day it's all about how he really IS supporting the Public Option, the next day it's sell-out, followed by half-admissions that that he seems to be supporting the public option.

              If I was him I'd be taking shots at us, too.  If we want a public option, we stay in touch with Congress, we show up at Town Halls, we write LTE's, we talk to our friends and family members.  

              We're big kids now, we don't need to be waiting with bated breath for every rumor/head-fake/example of bi-partisan outreach that comes to us.  This is politics, and we don't seem to be very good at it.

              Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

              by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:34:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  How is my diary not recommending (3+ / 0-)

                essentially the same thing that you are saying below.  

                Tell me this.  If you thought everything was a-ok, would you write a LTE?  If you thought the public option was falling by the wayside, would you write an LTE?

                That is why it is so critical to read the what is being said and understand the walk back that is underway.  As long as people are comfortable, activism will not occur.  If we continue to act as if everything is ok, we will miss the window to act.

                We are on the same side.  It is simply unacceptable to me to sit back quietly and watch this debate change without any action.  

                "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:57:14 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I am dedicated to writing, (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  askew, Matt Z, Laurdet

                  to calling, to e-mailing, to talking to people about this.  What I don't agree with is the notion that it takes having my hair on fire before I can do what I know is right.

                  We need to do this because it needs to happen.  What makes me CRAZY is the bi-polar tone of this blog, and the progressive movement.  We're adults.  We don't need Obama selling us out diaries every 15 minutes, we need to strap on a pair, accept that he's committed to health care reform, and do everything in our power to hold his back, nudge the Blue Dogs, and fight the idiot lies.

                  It's like watching a bunch of adrenaline junkies searching for the next fix.  It's embarrassing.

                  Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                  by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:30:10 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  We need Obama on our side. (7+ / 0-)

                    Not mocking our efforts.

                    In fact I think he was directing this comment at people like you and your efforts to sway Congress to your POV.

                    This is a legitimate debate to have.  All I'm saying is, though, that the public option, whether we have it or we don't have it, is not the entirety of health care reform.  This is just one sliver of it, one aspect of it.  And by the way, it's both the right and the left that have become so fixated on this that they forget everything else, like the fact that we can help Nathan make sure that he doesn't suddenly find himself -- (applause) -- completely broke in trying to treat his son.

                    Unless of course you don't see the a public option as essential.

                    And, what doesn't he get about a public option being essential to real health care reform? Why isn't he taking a stand on it?

                    To whom it may concern. Waterboarding is torture. Torture is illegal. Sincerely, A. No Brainer.

                    by Pescadero Bill on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:43:28 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  He is doing exactly that, (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Matt Z

                      but apparently you can't hear him because he's not yelling "Eat shit and die republican asshats, I'm shoving a public option up your fat white butts."  or the equivalent.

                      He's selling reform to a group of people who are scared by the Palinista's lies, and who need to be reassured.  Why is that so hard to understand?  Why don't you get it that the vast majority of Americans never visit Daily Kos, don't have our access to information, aren't aware of all the details of what this will do for them?  Why don't you understand that there's a tone he has to take to reassure the scared seniors, and inform the people who are getting lies in their in-boxes every day?  Why do you have to immediately assume that he's selling health care reform down the river?

                      It's because politics is complex, and it seems as though we can't tolerate that.

                      Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                      by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:50:05 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Can't we just have one discussion without (6+ / 0-)
                        Hyperbole.   You're case by creating strawmen that don't have any basis in reality.  You can't find one place where I said obama should be demagouging Republicans, but you start your response with that. My reaction was to write this and ignore anything you said after because you were no longer debating the merits.  

                        Buy after writing, I went back up and read.  And it continued your same tactic which disappointed me even more.

                        Nothing you stated remotely resembles my position.  You just wrote your dream boogeyman and then assigned it to this discussion.

                        Let me repeat.  Obama is clearly telegraphing a move away from a public option as part of health reform.  I have provided evidence.   I have asked that those who advocate a public option take action to attempt to move the needle back. I have asked those that believe co ops are a viable alternative to justify their position.  I have recommended actions.

                        That is what I have stated and stood by.  I would think that it would be possible to debate these items without resorting to the tactics that you used in your last comment.  But I continue to welcome the discussion.  

                        "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                        by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:05:59 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I apologize for not (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          justmy2

                          stepping back and listening harder to you, but I don't understand what you're saying.  I'm pissed in general - I think I need to get off this blog for a while.  I've lost patience with people who are convinced Obama's going to sell us out.  And that's what I'm getting from your postings.  If that's not what you're saying, what ARE you saying?    I'm not being nasty, I just don't understand. You seem to be saying he's selling us out.

                          I don't believe for one moment that he's backing away from the public option, and that's what my passion is about.  He won't back away, because it's the cornerstone - without it, there is no reform, and he hasn't put this much on the line in order to get nothing worthwhile out of it.

                          He's selling reform to a group of people who are scared by the Palinista's lies, and who need to be reassured.  Why is that so hard to understand?  Why don't you get it that the vast majority of Americans never visit Daily Kos, don't have our access to information, aren't aware of all the details of what this will do for them?  Why don't you understand that there's a tone he has to take to reassure the scared seniors, and inform the people who are getting lies in their in-boxes every day?  Why do you have to immediately assume that he's selling health care reform down the river?

                          In Bold is what I think everyone's missing here, including you.  Why does he have to keep working to sell his ideas to Progressives?  Why can't we just get it that he's working for genuine reform and help him sell it to all the people who aren't us?

                          Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                          by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:39:49 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I guess the difference is I don't call backing (0+ / 0-)

                            away from the public option selling out.  Maybe that is the difference.  I see it as him being pulled in a certain direction due to the state of the debate and the lack of commensurate lobbying (financial and media advocacy) on the side he is attempting to push.

                            I am able to say without trying to be alarmist that a move in another direction is underway.  That doesn't mean that Obama is being paid to that.  It means to the political winds have changed, and the only chance to change them is pull the political team back towards a public option.  I am convinced that without a game changer, Obama and team will be forced to believe they have to compromise.  

                            I also believe, that there is zero downside to continuing to advocate that position.  It is a constant push and pull.  

                            There is a downside to just saying all is lost, vote for Nader, Obama is a sell-out.  That is an attempt to demoralize and it is also likely an attempt to project certain internal beliefs onto him.  

                            But I have never done that, and I won't.  But I think it is critical to push back immediately and forcefully anytime the media narrative is pulled off balance.  You have to keep in mind that lobbyists have daily access to our Congresspeople.  We really only have the media narrative that we can shape.  If we wait until the cake is baked before making our position clear, it is highly likely that the public option that you believe in will not make it into the final bill.

                            That is my opinion.  You are more than welcome to disagree.  You believe that to get a public option, he has to downplay it.  What I would fervently argue, is that your strategy would be incredibly counter-productive long term as it would immediately impact his trustworthiness rating, which is his main asset.  Americans do not like a bait and switch.  That is what it will become if he praises a bill without the public option, deemphasizes it, and then turns right back around to advocate it again.

                            Politics is about principle.  Americans want to believe their leaders will stand up for what they believe.  Once they believe otherwise, you will be politically hamstrung.  

                            There literally is zero precedence for a politician beginning a de-emphasis process such as the one underway to then get additional votes.  If the votes are not there, saying the something is not essential does not get those votes with your opposition.  It gives them permission to agree that it is not essential.  That is how politics works.

                            If you believe Obama has the votes, and this is just a rhetorical ploy to try to change polls, that is fine.  But I strongly disagree.  

                            I would also point out to you how many people who had your position just two weeks ago are now attempting to state the virtues of a co-op after stating Obama's declaration that he wouldn't sign a bill without a public option was binding.  This is implicit recognition of the shift, even thought it will not be admitted.

                            Thanks for continuing to discuss and for the last comment that continued the debate on the merits.

                            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:38:47 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Thanks for your thoughtful reply. I understand (0+ / 0-)

                            your position better.  I may have done so sooner, but I was already in a major snit from a previous diary.  You didn't deserve that anger, and I'm sorry I unloaded it on you.

                            The only place I still don't agree is that I don't believe he's backing away from the public option (really, I don't).  I think he's changing terminology, maybe, or underselling the idea, but only until grandma gets over being afraid she's getting the plug pulled.

                            There will be more backing and hedging and slipping and sliding as Obama and his guys have to adapt to the insanity on the right, and pull in more and more regular people with facts and more facts, and a lot of head pats and "It'll be okay, don't worry."

                            The fight is white hot, and I'm still trusting him to get a public option in there - the name may have to be changed to protect the innocent, but he knows that reform without those principles is an empty balloon.  

                            Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                            by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 04:32:58 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

              •  Oh for fuck's sake. (8+ / 0-)

                We're to blame for the administrations wishy-washy stand on this?

                To whom it may concern. Waterboarding is torture. Torture is illegal. Sincerely, A. No Brainer.

                by Pescadero Bill on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:37:53 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  No, we're to blame for (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  askew, Matt Z

                  being so fucking reactive that we can't stand back an consider who it is he's talking to here, and what they want to hear.  They've got "Public Option" = "Death Panels" in their heads.  You and I know that's not true, but we're not on the front lines here.  Obama has to sell this, and I don't give a shit what he calls it.  If PO has become toxic, call it Shit for Brains, but get it sold.

                  What's infuriating to me is that I keep reading diaries and comments from people who don't seem to be able to look at the larger fight here, so we waste mega-tons of energy that needs to be put into the fight.  It's a losing strategy folks.  We're being shredded, our voice is being neutralized, and we're willing participants.  WTF?

                  Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                  by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:44:14 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The problem is (6+ / 0-)

                    you see him playing politics to get a public option worked into a bill. Others see him as waning on his commitment to one.

                    As I see it, you have faith, and I have years of hard evidence that all aspects of DC politics are influenced by big business for big business much to the detriment of the people. I'm working from the premise that the process is corrupt. I'm hoping Obama knows this, and was hoping he'd be doing more to fight openly fight it.

                    IF a bill is offered with no public option, or what ever you want to call it, then the effort to do so is dead.

                    To whom it may concern. Waterboarding is torture. Torture is illegal. Sincerely, A. No Brainer.

                    by Pescadero Bill on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:05:53 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Exactly - without a public (0+ / 0-)

                      option, health care reform is dead, it's meaningless, and it's a waste of time to have even started the process.

                      My problem with the cynical, and I consider you cynical, is that this man is very bright, and he's politically brilliant, but you still seem to think he's stupid enough to destroy his presidency by working on a half-assed bill.  What?  Why?  He could have dropped reform and said he was too busy with foreign affairs.

                      No one has been able to explain to me why he'd do anything this stupid.  It's not believable, IMO, so maybe we could just quit being cynical and hyperbolic, and get on with the job of moving Congress and educating our neighbors.

                      Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

                      by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:47:10 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

      •  Hope you're right (11+ / 0-)

        but I have considerable doubts. Sebelius is a cabinet secretary, so her words carry a good deal of weight. And unless the president really twists arms for a public option, who's to say a conference report with one won't be successfully filibustered?

      •  My thoughts aussi (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Nina, sephius1, aymandaman

        All the while, Obama has been touting the public option personally in townhalls yesterday and the day before.

        Sebelius doesn't write or sign legislation.  Obama has been talking the Public Option up.

        "What has science DONE!"-Dr.Weird

        by jds1978 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:03:31 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  So You're teling Us Not To Believe (7+ / 0-)

        ...our eyes and ears?  Hate to say it but his "freakout" appears to be much more grounded in reality and actual evidence than your rosy scenario.

      •  Head fake? (9+ / 0-)

        I don't know if that's true or not....but what I do know is a public option is very important..Somebody at the White House needs to get their backbone straightened and stop being suck a jellyfish. As Maddow just said on MTP ( and she was the only reason I watch that asshole Gregory) Obama used up a lot of political capital on health care and without the public option the problem of cost will not be solved.

        did I tell you that Harold Ford sucks....he is worse than the blue dogs...what an ass

        by larryww on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:17:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You catch more blue dogs with honey ... (0+ / 0-)

          If you use a bunch of strong rhetoric and basically give the Blue Dogs and moderate Republicans no way to support the public option without looking like your bitch on healthcare then you would be shooting yourself in the foot.

          In fact if Obama "had a spine" and was out there saying stuff like "you are with us or against us" and it is going to be "my way or the highway" then you would know for certain a) he is an idiot and b) he has no clue about getting legislation through congress. That type of rhetorical posturing is ineffective in the long term.

          •  there is a big difference between getting (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KingCranky

            legislation through and getting good legislation through...just any legislation is not good enough.

            did I tell you that Harold Ford sucks....he is worse than the blue dogs...what an ass

            by larryww on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:43:21 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Grandstanding doesn't get good legislation passed (0+ / 0-)

              We can grandstand. We can claim out loud for all to hear how the public option is vitally necessary and the best way to effectively control costs. How we can't support any bill without it.

              However, Obama has to be a bit more tactful, a bit more conciliatory. He has to be open for negociation. If the Republican's can come up with a plan that is more acceptable and equally effective at controlling costs then Obama needs to be open to that. I'm can't imagine they will but it isn't like there aren't other tried and tested systems out there for doing the kind of things we are talking about.

              Switzerland has something like what the US is talking about but doesn't have a public option and insurance is still affordable compared to US levels. Germany has another interesting approach.

      •  I think it's a real danger (6+ / 0-)

        And I've been getting this vibe from the OFA folks for a couple of weeks now.  Listen, Obama said he's willing to be a one termer to get health care reform. Doesn't that clue you in that he'll compromise one hell of a lot to get a health care reform bill? Because you know he doesn't WANT to be a one termer.

      •  I don't know, but it seems to me (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        buckhorn okie, KingCranky, seeta08

        that the WH misread the undercurrents of anger and resentment left over from the election. Coupled with massive insurance company / wing-nuttery attacks and the ill advised bi-partisan approach (at the very least in the sense that they left their backs exposed for easy knife access)- resulted in a not unexpected, but decidedly different backlash. Now, the Admin knows that if HC reform is, or even looks like, a failure it will be difficult to get agenda items passed, and it may be a case of "some health care reform is better than none" and on to energy.

        I hope that's not the case, but it seems likely in HO.

      •  but the sky! (0+ / 0-)

        I agree that this isn't the equivalent of the four riders of the apocalypse for the public option. In part this is really good strategy because no one wants to look like they are someone's bitch on any issue. If you tell the blue dogs "my way of the highway" I'm pretty sure you lose most of them. If act like you are flexible and willing to negotiate with people in good faith then this lets them "come around" to your point of view.  

        Obama is clearly pushing the public option but if in the end he can't get it he will take whatever he can get. I've converted almost everyone I know: family, friends, coworkers to the idea that the public option is pragmatic and effective for controlling costs and I would guess about 3/4 are Republicans although few are the kind that listen to Rush.

        The objective is getting a bill passed by both houses of congress. If anyone is an expert at that then I'm really interested in what they think. If someone is just part of the peanut gallery then a little more humility always works better.

        •  I my humble opion, (0+ / 0-)

          A good bill, democrats and all of our ideas will dominate the government for 50 years.

          A bad bill, republicans and all of their bad ideas will dominate the government for 50 years.

          A so - so bill, rupublicans and all of their bad ideas will dominate the government for 50 years.

          No bill, everyone lives to fight another day.

          A bill without a public option can be no better than a so - so bill.

      •  Sorry but this is just delusional bullshit. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dewley notid, KingCranky, Losty, seeta08

        Guys, it's all head-fakes and ego stroking to get something, anything out of the Senate so they can start working on it in committee.  It's just a tactic aimed at this particularly point in time as part of a larger strategy.

        All these little signals and winks are aimed at getting some sort of bill completed in finance committee.  

        All the while, Obama has been touting the public option personally in townhalls yesterday and the day before.

        CRUNCH. Another rube thrown under the bus.
        Rahm's White House. STILL.

        Reality is,  we're in serious political trouble  as all this nudge-nudge-wink shit forfeits Obama's once persuasive  brand..that of Transparency and  Change from the Same Ole .

        Serious Political Trouble. So don't so you weren't told so when we lose in New Jersey next month and are looking looking down the barrel at losing once promising Gubernatorial and mid term prospects.

        The only thing that's "head-fakes and ego stroking to get something" is this type of delusional nonsense to tamp down progressive blowback at having been PUNK'D. Yet Again.

        Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance
        and conscientious stupidity. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

        by Robert Davies on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:41:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Even if you are right - (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dewley notid, KingCranky, the tmax

        We NEED to raise hell over this.  If they say there's no need for a public option and hear nothing but crickets, they will surely drop it.

        We need to make them do it by being just as loud and, if necessary, obnoxious, as the other side.

        This is no time to sit quietly and wait for rabbits to be pulled from hats.

    •  So, make the case for me... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      princess k

      If we get a bill that provides quality affordable care for all Americans, but uses co-ops...

      what's wrong with that?

      (This is a batting practice pitch - knock it out of the park.)

      •  That's the thing. (15+ / 0-)

        If we get a bill that provides quality affordable care for all Americans, but uses co-ops...

        A bill that uses co-ops will NOT provide quality affordable care for all Americans.  Co-ops will fail.  See all the links provided in the dairy, and several in the comments.

        I would be fine with co-ops if they worked.  But they won't.

        They are a political compromise, trading quality and affordable health care for some political cover (and still no Republican votes).

      •  Your question is legitimate (22+ / 0-)

        They don't have much research on coops but the research they do have is they don't work.  Blue Cross/Blue Shield started as a coop and look what they have turned into.  I am not an expert but from what I read for a public option to work it has to be big enough to have leverage when negotiating costs. And big enough that it won't have to spend money to advertise.  It also has to have rates somehow linked to medicare rates, and Obama gave that away yesterday at his town hall.
        Think about it, if co-ops are so similar to the public option why is the health insurance spending millions to dedeat the public option but are ok with a coop?

        •  Is it possible to craft legislation that would (4+ / 0-)

          adequately address Blue Cross/Shield experience as a coop?  Blue Cross/Shield was created, not by legislation, but as a private effort all the way.  So could it be argued that Blue Cross/Shield's experience isn't all that relevant, since the new coops would be created through and regulated by government legislation?

          I've never been that much against coops, mainly because I don't know what they'd look like as crafted by proposed legislation.  They talk of "regional coops", like one in the northeast, one in the south, one on the west coast, one in the midwest, etc.  So they would be pretty large.  And they would still be government subsidized, either directly or indirectly.  And would be run within the bounds of the crafted legislation.  So, is it not possible to craft legislation for coops that would accomplish what a public option would?  Or is the fear that a coop would eventually go out of business, leaving us at the mercy the private insurers?

          An idea that's gone through my mind in recent days is to combine the coop and public-option-trigger ideas, whereby we start with coops, then after seven years (for example), if coops aren't providing decent competiton (they're either going out of business, or they can't compete well enough to keep costs down), then the trigger would kick in and a government run plan would be created.

          (Another thought I had was regarding the public option trigger.  I never heard a real debate for or against that.  I saw that everyone here was against it, but it seems to me that if a trigger is out there, then the private insurers would have to compete against the threat of a public option that would be created if they continue to misbehave.  That would theoretcally be easier to implement because the government wouldn't even have to do anything, just codify the public option threat.  Maybe the fear is that future Congress could undo the threat of the public option trigger much more easily than they could eliminate an already-implemented, up and running, public option.)

          Well, I'll still wait for what comes.  The Senate Finance Committee's bill still has to be merged with the other Senate bills, the House bills must also be merged, and then the Senate and House final bills must be merged.  All of those sub-bills but one will have public option.  One will have coops (I guess).  It seems to me that either public option forces will win, or whatever coops are created will look a lot like a public option.

          P.S.
          Thanks for the first legit attempt to answer Benintn's challenge. :)

          •  I am far from an expert (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KingCranky

            slinkerwink has a diary up about Coops.
            My problem with your suggestions is not with the suggestions themselves.  The problem is that the Blue dogs and their senate friends don't want a coop that will force the existing insurance companies to lower rates.  They want a coop as a way of avoiding the potential positive outcome of your suggestions.  I don't claim to know wether your suggestions would work if implemented. But we know that a strong public option will work so why waste the time and possibly lives finding out?

          •  Thanks for thoughtul post (3+ / 0-)

            I feel like one of the best things we can do is educate ourselves.. To push public option we need to understand why not coop. If we give a knee jerk ideological positioned response, we are just like the repubs.

      •  Please tell me how (15+ / 0-)

        a bill without a public option provides affordable health care. Perhaps we should start there since, as I see it, the only thing to keep down cost in any of these bills at this point is nothing but insurance subsidies.

        They don't win until we give up.

        by irmaly on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:05:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  A couple key things (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cdkipp
          1.  It's not just about cost.  It's also about access and portability.
          1.  The basic idea is that we'll use a public plan to give us collective bargaining power to negotiate rates.  I have no idea how we get that, apart from a public plan.  But if we can find that mechanism (strength in numbers, organization, leadership), then that's gonna help.  

          Even creating a gov't agency that will run "consumer reports" on insurance overhead/bureaucracy costs, profit-taking, etc., will help hold their feet to the fire and keep insurance companies honest.  When people see that insurance companies put profits before patients, they'll vote with their feet - and their pocketbooks.

          In any case, we need to do a better job of PR than the insurance companies are doing.  Even with a public option, we're going to have insurance companies continuing to attack and destroy "government-run insurance" and trying to claim that they're the kinder, gentler, more compassionate system (complete with ads on all the TV networks and millions in direct mail advertising).  The real battle is in the hearts and minds of Americans who make healthcare buying decisions.

      •  I don't think you can have both (5+ / 0-)

        Co-ops won't health provide quality, affordable health care to all Americans.  They just continue to give more power and money to for-profit insurance companies, which guarantees that we won't have quality, affordable health care for all Americans.  Yes, the bill might have lots of new regulations for the insurance companies, but we all know that the insurance companies will spend a lot of money figuring out ways around those regulations. And the day after the bill passes, the insurance companies will spend a lot of time lobbying to get those regulations changed.

      •  You need an infusion of (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FightTheFuture, Jim P, Benintn

        hope.

        You assume the bill will do those things withouyt any evidence.

        We get it Ben.  No matter what Obama does it is the best of all worlds.

        They "prefer an America where parents will lie awake at night worried if they can afford health care their children need."

        by TomP on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:39:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  and for BenGoshi (10+ / 0-)

          Anything Obama does is the worst of all possible worlds.

          The fact is that we don't know what's going to happen. We also know that Conrad and Baucus are highly unlikely to vote for the PO, though they may vote for cloture if we tickle their balls enough.

          I don't know why so many people find it hard to believe that Obama wants a public option. As I've said before, he didn't have to take the hit over this. He could drop this shit now and get something like Wyden-Bennett passed if he just wanted a political victory. This fight is killing him in terms of public support.

          Perhaps we should focus on explaining to independents what a public option would do instead of running uninformative ads issuing ultimatums to Ben Nelson. Progressives have deluded themselves into thinking they didn't need to make the case to the unwashed masses and have wasted a lot of energy firing purity cannons at a sympathetic White House.

        •  Want more cookies? ;-) (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          North Coast Ohioan

          I'm still working the problem, instead of working the referees.

          Just for reference - in District 6 in Tennessee, the AGAINST calls are outnumbering FOR calls 9 to 1.  Bart Gordon voted FOR HR 3200 in Energy/Commerce.

          Now, Bart Gordon is "on our side" (though he is a Blue Dog, I have spoken to current and former staff and he's looking for a way to vote for the final bill).  He wants to cut costs, improve quality, and increase access.  He just doesn't want to pass the costs on to our grandkids.

          I still need to find a good talking point to win against the libertarian, fearful, anti-reform crowd.

          I'm not looking to block progress.  I'm tired of being insulted for asking questions.  And I'm asking for solutions.

          •  Just tell the libertarian that the outcome will.. (0+ / 0-)

            be more about one having access to health care rights. The insurance industries should not be able to take those rights from us as they do now.

            Secrecy breeds fraudulence

            by North Coast Ohioan on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:22:27 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  But we don't need a public option in (0+ / 0-)

              order to stop insurance cos from taking rights away.

              A simple change in the law will do that.

              (Remember, I am not a libertarian, but I argue with them frequently.  Thanks for the suggestion, by the way.)

              •  Kinda naive, aren't ya. Libertarian stupid, (0+ / 0-)

                actually, even though you claim you are not.

                Changing the laws will not be enough; and it is never that simple to do anyways.  The corrupting influence of money will always overcome them.  You need to change the intrinsic structure of the market place.  A public option is the only way to start that has a chance, a chance to get to what will ultimately change it--single payer.  

                As it is, it is likely  they can carve all sorts of holes, ala Medicare Part D in the public option.  It will be apparent very quickly and could be fixed more easily then the subtle shenanigans they would pull with co-ops for years to come.  The public option is much stronger than co-ops, as it's been pointed out by Dr. Dean on a number of occasions and is the least we should strive for.


                We the People in order to establish Justice, Defense, Welfare, Liberty do establish the US of A. That is what America is about!

                by FightTheFuture on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:46:09 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  Re (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingCranky

        If we get a bill that provides quality affordable care for all Americans, but uses co-ops...

        what's wrong with that?

        If George Bush appointed Pat Robertson to the Supreme Court, but the religious liberties of all Americans were respected, what's wrong with that?

      •  because regional co-ops would not have the (0+ / 0-)

        sufficient pool base since they'd be regional in order to provide competition in order to lower costs of your monthly premiums.

        And there's nothing that prevents regional co-ops from being privatized.

        After all, Blue Cross Blue Shield once was a regional co-op, and look at where it is now.

        I'm on Twitter. I'm also a part of the FDL team on health reform.

        by slinkerwink on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:36:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It looks like this will be the diary of choice.. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ferg, TomP, allie123

      It is also important to note more breaking news...

      Conrad stated there is no September deadline on FNS.

      "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

      by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:54:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Do they think (6+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JanL, blue in NC, TomP, KingCranky, Losty, miss SPED

        if they drag their feet long enough the issue will go away?

        The longer Conrad, Baucus and the rest of the Republicans (yes, I know they're nominally Dems) drag their feet, the more money the well-funded insurance industry lobby will shovel into killing even the slightest reform.

        How many people need to lose their insurance before we get real reform?  How many need to die?  From my local paper:

        3500 Floridians lose their health care every week

        By the end of this year, 2.3 million Americans -- 185,000 of them Floridians -- will probably lose their insurance.

        Public option or primary challenge? Your choice, Congressman.

        by puzzled on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:12:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  yes they do... (6+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          puzzled, TomP, dewley notid, Losty, Andhakari, vc2

          this is Conrad's plan to break the plan's back...

          "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

          by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:13:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I am one of those Floridians... (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CWalter, justCal, KingCranky, Losty

          I am public teacher who recently stopped working in one Florida School District to accept a better position in another. I had to go through a 90 day probationary period for health insurance which was extended two months because of summer break. So, from the end of March this year until September 1st, I am ineligible for my employer's health plan and other benefits. That is 5 months without health insurance (I could not afford $700/month for COBRA and am not eligible for the new 65% discount since I left my previous employer voluntarily).

          By the way, as a young adult, before becoming a teacher, I worked in the insurance industry. I quit because I couldn't reconcile the inherit conflict of interest created by the profit motive in the insurance industry, where restricting and denying benefits and coverage is how insurance companies maximized their profits. The profit motive is fine for luxury goods and services but for basic needs like food, healthcare and housing, there needs to be a safety net.

          Maybe this is why it is hard for me to be enthusiastic about anything other than a single payer, government provided, national health care system.

          - The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

          by FreeWoman19 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:57:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  yup (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            FreeWoman19

            Single-payer is the only true health reform.

            Your situation is not unusual.  The "official" number of uninsured only counts people without insurance for an entire year.  The real number of people uninsured at any given moment is almost twice that.

            Your "spot the irony" opportunity from the above link:

            The Census bureau counts only people who were uninsured for the full calendar year. For its own study, Families USA commissioned The Lewin Group to analyze data from the Census Bureau and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

            Public option or primary challenge? Your choice, Congressman.

            by puzzled on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:12:59 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Obama's position and that of his cabinet has (13+ / 0-)

      been predicated on not referring to the public option as "essential", but rather insisting only on the end result it produces, in order to sound open minded to any alternative path that would reach that end.  However, unless the Senate has a magic wand, it's not going to be able to invent such a path using co-ops or any other alternative to a public option, because no such path exists, even in theory.

      Consider, if Sebelius had said anything different - if the reporter had asked whether the public option were essential and she said yes - it would undermine the approach Obama has been using this whole time; is her refusal do to that really indicative of actual news or any sort of current trend in the administration, or just the sun rising in the morning?

      We have to be careful not to fall into Chicken Little mode here.

      Private insurance companies only profit from denying health care, killing 20,000 Americans a year. A real public option ENDS the rationing of health care.

      by ShadowSD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:03:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If Obama wanted "Public Option"... (23+ / 0-)

      Axelrod's 8-point email would have said "Public Option" in plain, bold letters. It did NOT. Then, he asked us to forward his letter to our friends and family. That hurt.

      A "Non-public Co-op" is not a "Public Option." Where is the security in a "Non-public Co-op"? Who can ensure me the continued existence of a "Non-public Co-op"? Who can ensure me the financial viability of a "Non-public Co-op"?

      I don't want a "Non-public Co-op". Howard Dean said the co-op idea was an unproven and unsustained EXPERIMENT.

      Do you want to bet your health on that?

      •  bingo... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        esquimaux, pataphysician, KingCranky

        Bad news doesn't get better with age...I sometimes feel like those saying "have faith" are shilling us...

        this has been readily apparent for over 3 weeks now...

        "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

        by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:15:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Are you serious? What's it matter if bold font (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        askew

        wasn't used in an email?  The President has said with his own words he wants a public option.  The font used in an email is irrelevant.

        I'll say this: Obama said with his own words that he wanted a public option, but never ruled out coops that are created under regulations that would achieve the same results.  Which is what Sebelius is saying.  Such a coop hasn't been proposed yet.  If the Senate Finance commitee thinks they can craft legislation that would create coops that would achieve the desired results, then I say, "go for it".  If they can't, then they'll have to admit that.  If they can, then why should be be against it?  Whatever coops are proposed must pass muster with the House and other Senate committees (all of which support public option), if the coop idea is to survive.

    •  Message to the President and Sec of HHS- if you (15+ / 0-)

      ... do not stop this weaselily flip floping crap, we who are doing the actual gruntwork can't sell your product because we can't tell what it is.

      You are spineless masses of jelly which stand for nothing.

      You spend most of your times sucking up to the other party instead of caring at all what happens in this one.

      Are you renting this administration or do you own it ?

      If this is the best you can do, send this vapid, idiotic sounding woman around the talk shows sunday morning to do more triangulation, at this stage of the game, then you deserve to lose.

      Like I said, I didn't expect to be fighting my own party on this harder than fighting the losing Republican Party-  you do remember they lost the election, don't you?

      Thanks for letting a few DINO Senators from a few flyover states hold the entire rest of the Democratic Party and all the Independents and crossovers hostage to their campaign donations.

      Good luck with your job hunting in January of 2013, I'd start polishing up those resumes now as certainly some of you are going to be forced to bail early after this fiasco.

      "Toads of Glory, slugs of joy... as he trotted down the path before a dragon ate him"-Alex Hall/ Stop McClintock

      by AmericanRiverCanyon on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:03:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Obama would throw his own mother (7+ / 12-)

      under the bus.  The man is nothing more than just another politician more interested in keeping his own job than doing it.

      "YES WE CAN" doesn't mean he is going to. ~~Daily Show

      by dkmich on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:20:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Get a grip. (18+ / 0-)

      We've had diaries exactly like this at least once a week, full of screaming about Obama throwing the PO under the bus.  Every fucking week.  Obama doesn't think reform means jackshit without a public option - call it whatever you want to call it, it has to do the things he's outlined, or there's no reform.  No wonder Rahm told progressives to fuck off.  We're about as reliable as Sarah Palin.

      Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

      by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:21:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Unfortunately for you, (0+ / 0-)

        your BS in siding with Rahm to blast progressives is easily debunked.

        I seem to recall Obama pledged he'd filibuster retroactive legal immunity for the telecoms which cooperated, without a warrant, with Bush Jr's spying on of US citizens.

        Of course, Obama then proceeded to turn right around and vote for the very same retroactive legal immunity for the telecoms that he said he'd vote against.

        And seeing as how Obama is keeping the same national security policies that I so despised with Bush Jr-warrantless spying, military tribunals, indefinite detention-then I see NO reason to take Obama at his word alone.

        Obama also said he'd stop with the signing statements and promised to be a "fierce advocate" for the LGBT voters.

        Chirping crickets are drowning out any noise Obama may be making regarding that last point.

        Oh yeah, once Obama makes a pledge, he sticks to it like glue, no reason to doubt him in the least.

        And as for Rahm

        It's Rahm and his lackeys who don't seem to realize that if Obama doesn't roll over the opposition, then Obama will be the one getting rolled.

        I don't see lots of liberal support for the Dems come 2010 if there's not a strong, govt. run public option in the final health care bill, because what's the point of voting for the Dems if they refuse to stand up to the rapidly dwindling GOP?

        If the Repubs are still calling the shots, in spite of their electoral irrelevance, then why should the libs trust the Dems in the least?

        The ONLY time Rahm doesn't bitchslap the libs is during a general election campaign, when he wants our votes & campaign contributions, otherwise, we're nothing but baggage for colossal jerkoffs & fucktards like Rahm.

        So let Rahm toss the libs under the bus, again, no doubt the minions of his precious Blue Cross Dems will be as successful with fundraising and GOTV efforts as the liberals have been.

        Because last I checked, it wasn't Rahm's precious Blue Cross Dems that kept the party alive during the darkest days of the Bush Jr Administration and GOP rule, it was the libs.

        If anyone needs to fuck off, it's Rahm and the rest of his anti-liberal ilk.

        When it comes to Texas Politics, "Stupid" Plays Very Well

        by KingCranky on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:16:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I guess I haven't yet seen enough (0+ / 0-)

          post-election real live grown-up support for Obama from progressives to know if he should give a shit what we want.  I see a lot of fussing and screaming and WATB diaries about how we're doomed, but not a lot of steady, meaningful, active support for any program.  

          The purity trolls on the left are just as dangerous as the purity trolls on the right, and they're out in force on this blog.

          Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war. - A. Einstein

          by I love OCD on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 05:53:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Damn, every time I try to give Obama (5+ / 0-)
      the benefit of the doubt, he proves that he's exactly the opportunistic corporate loving, right-leaning, Wall Street enabling faux-democrat that he's been all his life, at least all his 'professional politician' life. He threw the
      'community organizer' part of him out and established himself as one hell of a corporate donation loving opportunist.

      The other day, after he said that he would be willing to be a one-termer if he got healthcare legislation to pass, I told myself "maybe you're confused and you haven't really given the guy a chance".

      Nope, I wasn't confused until the other day. But I'm back now. And as for Obama, I was right about him all along.

      I pledge allegiance to Wall Street

      and the criminals and thieves who are running our country

      And to the oligarchy

      for which it stands

      one nation

      bankrupt and corrupt

      with servitude, poverty, and tent cities

      for us all.

      •  So, STOP giving him the benefit of the doubt. (0+ / 0-)

        I stopped giving him the benefit of the doubt last year after his FISA flip flop.

        Nothing he's done since then  has made me think I made the wrong decision.

        Why do you insist on continuing to give this PROFESSIONAL POLITICIAN the benefit of the doubt, especially when his track record has shown time and time again that he is willing to say one thing, and then when push comes to shove, do the complete opposite of what he said he'd do?

        Newsflash:  Obama's gifts as a politician are his smooth words (LIES) and cool charisma that sucker people in to believing in him . . . even though his actions are 180 degrees in the opposite direction.

        Nonetheless, there is no end of people who will continue to be taken in by his pretty words and rhetoric.  Just witness all the Obamabots, "true believers," Obama-apologists, self-interested shills, and just plain SUCKERS on this site that continually leap to his defense with justifications, minimizations, and just plain old denial whenever his latest BETRAYAL is brought to anyone's attention.

        Pathetic.

        •  I always expect him to lie. Always. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          varii
          As I just posted in another thread, the list goes like this:

          He was gonna end outsourcing, bring the jobs back. He was gonna stand up for the American worker (who he promptly screwed while throwing everythine we have to the thieves and cheats of Wall Street. I was ALWAYS AGAINST THE BAILOUT!) He was gonna undo all the unconstitutional signing statements of the bush admin. He was gonna investigate their crimes and treasons. He was gonna raise taxes on the wealthy. He was gonna do all kinds of stuff. Or so he said.

          I settled when I campaigned and voted for the man. He was NEVER anyone I wanted to see in the White House. AND NOT BECAUSE HE'S BLACK, but because he's the most opportunistic self-serving politicians I've seen come down the pike in my entire life. I carefully looked at his Senate record. I looked at his campaign donors. And I knew that this guy was not a Democrat. He was simply a duplicitous politician who was also a gifted speaker.

          But when McCain picked Palin, I got out and joined the campaign workers here in Omaha, NE.

          But I've never expected this much from this guy. And that's a good thing, because we aren't gonna get much from him either.

          Oh, to be a republican. Life would be so much simpler in my old age. I'd still be broke and poor. But I wouldn't be so damn disgusted, heartsick, and disappointed by the betrayal of the country and the people by the Democratic Party once again.

          •  I voted for him as a "lesser of two evils" choice (0+ / 0-)

            But now that I've seen him in action, I'm beginning to wonder if it would have been any worse with McCain in place.

            The reality is that style wise, Obama is an improvement over the Republicans. But, in the end, style doesn't mean anything without substance, and to me, I see that the Obama administration is pretty much carrying on the same policies as the prior administration, with the exception of a few small differences and adjustments.

    •  You can say and say (7+ / 0-)

      but that doesn't make you anything more than just another handwringing doomster. There is a lot of back-and-forth discussion going on now. There are some signals we can interpret as not being friendly to the public option. There are an equal number, if not more, that signal that reform will definitely include a public option. Anyone who thinks they know absolutely definitely for sure that ANYTHING has "met the underside of the bus" is kidding themselves. The situation strikes me as almost totally fluid.

      Or perhaps you work for an insurance company and want everyone here to give up? Because quite frankly, that is what you will accomplish. Right now, I sense another couple of hundred people here — if not more — figuring it's useless to keep contacting their Senators and representatives.

      Sorry, but we're fighting  for something, and doomsters don't contribute to that fight.

      Rob Portman: He sent your job to China.

      by anastasia p on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:35:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If this goes down in flames (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nicolemm

      Obama is the one who needs a primary challenger. Health care reform has already become only health insurance reform. If the public option is missing, he will be a one-term president and deservedly so for showing the back of his hand to the progressives who worked tirelessly to put him in office.

      I'm not worried about government bureaucrats between me and my doctor; I'm worried about insurance bureaucrats between me and my Senator.

      by PsychicToaster on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:38:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Has anyone asked Obama if he'll veto any bill (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BenGoshi, dewley notid, miss SPED

      that doesn't contain a public option? What was his response?

      I don't recall if anyone asked, or if he answered such a question in those terms.

      No hell below us, above us only sky...

      by rightiswrong on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:38:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  thanks for asking what I have been thinking (2+ / 0-)

        If BHO goes on record as vetoing any bill without PO, then I am willing to tolerate vacillation and triangulation.
        If he is in favor of PO but is willing to sign anything to be able to say he did health insurance reform, then the critics and skeptics are imho correct.

        I think BHO has been asked. I just don't think he has answered without prevarication/equivocation.

        •  I really don't know what the "for the record" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingCranky

          answer was, and I really think that it's our due diligence to get that answer.

          I'd much rather get that answer directly from the source rather base than speculation based on the statements of others in the administration.

          Frankly, I'm tired of assuming that there is some grand chess game being played behind the scenes, and I'm sick to death of the transparent political bullshit being played with this issue. As far as I'm concerned, the election was a referendum on every obstructionist deadwood asshole in congress and the true nature of the presidency. A Compromise with the dishonest and corrupt serves no one but the dishonest and corrupt. It's times like these that makes me long for a functional press.

          No hell below us, above us only sky...

          by rightiswrong on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:35:50 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Hell, if Obama did thet (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        pataphysician

        even a cynical fuck like me who hates Democrats only marginally less than ReThugs would fight for health care reform.

        But until I hear just such a promise from Obama, an unequvical "I will veto any bill that doesn't include a strong public option", I won't lift a finger to fight only to be sold down the river.

        Fuck no....

      •  He has clearly stated public option = optional (0+ / 0-)

        He has clearly said that the main thing is the main thing - and that is reduced costs, improved quality, increased access, and making sure that the plan is deficit neutral.

        There are three main ways to do that - HR 3200, the Dole-Daschle-Baker compromise, and the Healthy Americans Act.

        Most people don't want to do HAA because it will tax employee benefits (though the plan is to give a hefty tax refund, create a soft cap, and create a progressive structure so that the "Cadillac plans" that cost $40K a year will be taxed at a higher rate).

      •  I *think* at that late June presser (not sure) (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rightiswrong

        .
         and he just talked around it.  He's had opportunity after opportunity after opportunity to say exactly that and he's ALWAYS declined.

        See this, from "way back" in June.

         bg
        ___________________

        "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

        by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:41:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  ok. begin Operation: All Hell Breaks Loose (5+ / 0-)

      they're afraid of a looney tune with a stupid sign.(not really. they were just looking for an excuse to make a deal with the industry lobby) Lets show them what happens when they piss off their responsible voting constituency. Tell them they better be prepared to fight for their jobs, and sing for their suppers. They're testing us now, and unless we actually strike them back, they will continue with their plans.

      Aperture Science. We do what we must, because we can.

      by lincoln deschain on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:12:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I couldn't disagree more strongly (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nicolemm, Cynical Copper
      Obama has been very clear that he supports a public option.

      He has also been very clear that there are certain things the reforms must have to be acceptable.

      A public option is not an end in itself. It is a means to achieve the things that everyone on this site wants to see achieved.

      So far, nobody has shown that there is any other means of achieving it. I do not believe there is any other effective means. I don't believe for one second that Obama does either.

      This is not Obama throwing the public option under the bus.

      This is Obama challenging his opponents to show how the necessary reforms could be achieved without a public option.

      I don't believe they can. I don't believe he believes they can. And once they fail to come up with a satisfactory alternative, Obama has made the case for the public option, and the Republicans will be unable to oppose it.

      I do believe in Obama. I do believe that the Bill will pass with a public option. My faith remains undimmed despite all the crap being thrown at Obama on this site, which I think is utterly uncalled-for.

      Chill the f*** out. I got this.

      by ultraviolet uk on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:31:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Don't know what you're reading . . . (0+ / 0-)

        .
        . . . or listening to, so I'll try to put it more simply for you:

         1.  I've never said that he wasn't "for a Public Option".

         2.  What I've said in previous diaries and comments is that he "hedges" and uses "wiggle words" like how he prefers, or likes, or supports a Public Option, but has NEVER, EVER said that such must be part of the final Bill.

         3.  This lack of commitment to requiring a Public Option in the final Bill emboldens the GOP/Ins. Industry/VichyDems.

        Today, not unlike a couple of months ago, the Obama Administration has signaled that while a Public Option would be just peachy, it need not be included in the final Bill in order to gain the President's signature.

        Maybe, just maybe, if the House of Representatives shows enough spine and The People show enough anger and determination, a Public Option may, just may, find its way into a final Bill.  But that hard road's just become harder with Sebelius' pronouncement this morning.

        You're free to "disagree" with the facts all you want.

        bg
        ___________________

        "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

        by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:49:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm free to disagree with facts? (0+ / 0-)

          And you are free, like, it appears, hundreds of subscribers here, to continue to abuse Obama and hand Palin the keys to the White House in 2012.

          I don't actually believe for one second that Obama has either reneged or will back down. I believe he will deliver the public option.

          But people on this group are handing the Republicans a wholly undeserved victory. If Obama delivers the public option, it will be because you forced him to. If he doesn't, he has betrayed you.

          Either way, the only winner from all the crap on here at the moment is Sarah Palin.

          Chill the f*** out. I got this.

          by ultraviolet uk on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 02:43:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I told you so is a bitch, ain't it? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BenGoshi

      but you were right. Dammit, you were.

      Diversity may be the hardest thing for a society to live with, and perhaps the most dangerous thing for a society to be without - W S Coffin

      by stitchmd on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 11:41:56 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Co-ops have been tested and FAILED. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BenGoshi, wave of change, Losty
      The state of California funded PacAdvantage, and when it attempted to become privately self-sustained, it went bust. There are a number of insurance brokers who can tell you all about it.

      And the premiums were enormously expensive for anyone who bought in -- much more so than most individual policies.

      Insurance co-ops = epic fail, no two ways about it.

    •  It's NOW OR NEVER (0+ / 0-)

      They're putting this out there in hopes that we will rise up and put the right wing noise machine to shame.  If we don't, we will lose on this.

      Why?  I'm not sure.  The idiots should just craft a GOOD bill and ram it through.  Nevertheless, we have our work cut out for us.

      It's now or never:  either we go nuclear or we lose.  And make no mistake, if Obama loses on this, he will lose in 2012 and we may lose a lot of seats in 2010.  Even I will find it difficult to turn out and vote for these spineless fucksticks ever again if they cannot pass this bill.

    •  No health care reform without Public Option (0+ / 0-)

      If there is depth to the AP story, guess Obama's comment about his willing to be a one term president to pass meaningful health care reform, is like his campaign promises on the rule of law, just out there somewhere in the wind.

      "Justice is truth in action." - Disraeli

      by allenjo on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 01:54:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  what fucking nonsense (0+ / 0-)

      and that's being polite.

      Tell me, if the AP tells you to jump do you?

      I can not believe you are posting as fact something the AP has said.

      But then you probably never really cared for Obama and I certainly don't think you care for logic.

      This is a waste of space.

  •  I've got to go pick up a friend from Nepal... (20+ / 0-)

    .
     . . . and take him to breakfast.  I apologize in advance for not being able to stick around to interact.  I'll be back by about 10:30 Central, if this hasn't scrolled-off, yet.

     Best to all -

     bg
    ______________________

    "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

    by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:23:51 AM PDT

  •  Looking forward to all those email apologies... (12+ / 0-)

    .
     . . . from those 10-20 Kosniacs who were all "slings and arrows" about how I've got it all wrong.

     Thinking I'm going to be waiting a while . . .

    bg
    _________________

    "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

    by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:33:34 AM PDT

  •  The rich win again (47+ / 0-)

    Money buys influence.
    Influence buys legislative change.

    The rest of us, shut up and vote.

    Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. Truth itself becomes suspicious by being put into that polluted vehicle. Thomas Jefferson 6/11/1807

    by Patriot4peace on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:33:39 AM PDT

    •  Bingo. (7+ / 0-)

      .
       Bingo.  Bingo.  Bingo.  

       We lose.

      bg
      _______________________

      "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

      by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:34:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Obama isn't king (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Nina

        And he doesn't write legislation.

        Yes, we know that Rahm, Sebelius and the rest of Obama's administration want to dump the public option to prove their horse-trading abilities, and are Ahabing for bipartisanship with Senator doRite.

        But the House Dems and the Senate Dems can count to 50, and know they can pass a real bill with a robust public option, and don't have a pathological urge to prove they can be pals with everyone.

        So it's not over.  If you get kicks out of wallowing in defeat before the game's over, fine.  Knock yourself out.  But it doesn't reflect reality.

        "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

        by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:23:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Senate Dems ABSOLUTELY.. (9+ / 0-)

          "have a pathological urge to prove they can be pals with everyone."

          I am not sure where you've seen evidence to the contrary.

          Every damn bill out of Senate committee has to be toothless and watered-down so they can backslap the hell out of each other.

          The only thing they can't water down are yes/no questions. If there's any nuance to be had in a bill, they'll mealy-mouth the s#!t out of it.

          I am beyond frustrated by that body.

          "Yao from 20 ... yes!!!!!! Rockets by six. Great stuff. I haven't been this excited by a Chinese person since General Tso." -- Bill Simmons

          by malharden on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:08:07 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  ok, I'll give you Baucus and Conrad and Wyden (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mariva

            and Reid.

            But there's a solid block of 15 or so with Sanders and including Schumer and Rockefeller who care about this bill more than bipartisanship.  And they're big enough and committed enough to derail the co-ops.

            "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

            by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:18:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Obama could write legislation (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mariva

          and give it to a senator and a representative to be placed in the bill hoppers.

          In fact he could have placed a bill in the senate hopper on his last day of senatorial office.

    •  Or we could always become domestic terrorists (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jbou, mariva

      "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich." - Napoleon

      Lucky for the rich, I'm a Christian...

    •  Thus -- (0+ / 0-)

      we need a new historic bloc -- a "bloc of our own," to wit, and not one which has to lean upon corporate financing to pay its bills.

      "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." -- Martin Luther King Jr.

      by Cassiodorus on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:55:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Ugh. Quitters. Pouters. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pattym922, Matt Z

      Is that who we are?

      Also too, you betcha?

      •  Stop the name calling (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        chaboard, dewley notid

        All is says is that you are not a good debater...discuss don't attack.  You are better than that...

        "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

        by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:04:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No I m not. The energy that is being soaked (3+ / 0-)

          up with this paranoia.....
          This is quitter speak and it is counter productive.  I can't debate paranoia.
          PBO has done nothing to deserve my mistrust.  Nothing.  This issue is complicated.  It is not simple.  The NEGOTIATIONS have so many dimensions.

          PBO has spent his short 6 months trying very hard to prove to us that he is going to work towards keeping his campaign promises.
          We can chose to believe he is doing this because he believes he is right.
          Or, we can chose to believe he is doing it to brace us for a big let down (HCR).  
          He has earned my patience on this.  I will not give up on him until he displays for me that I should.

          Meanwhile, I will make it clear to people in power including PBO what I want and expect.

          •  the comment could have provided action (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Annalize5

            yes...It did sound like it was an I quit comment.  Fair critique.

            But patience is not going to bring the public option back on the table....I fully support the President just as you do.

            It all depends on how you define support.  I am sure you havecread this quote but let me repeat it.

             

             FDR was, of course, a consummate political leader. In one situation, a group came to him urging specific actions in support of a cause in which they deeply believed. He replied: "I agree with you, I want to do it, now make me do it."

               He understood that a President does not rule by fiat and unilateral commands to a nation. He must build the political support that makes his decisions acceptable to our countrymen. He read the public opinion polls not to define who he was but to determine where the country was – and then to strategize how he could move the country to the objectives he thought had to be carried out.

            You see, if the President is truly for the public option, he needs us to advocate as opposed to support.  He is being pulled politically by an aggressive and highly organized opposition with a platform for wide scale dissemination.  

            My view of supporting the President is balancing those opposition voices with voices just as strong and sturdy as those on the other side.  It is critical.  

            To put it another way....a pretty good speaker made the following statement a 1 1/2 years ago...

             

             Change will not come if we wait for some other person or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for.

            "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

            by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:24:37 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Which is why I stated this (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Matt Z

              Meanwhile, I will make it clear to people in power including PBO what I want and expect.

              It is like when you hook up with a new boyfriend after having been cheated on by the previous boyfriend.

              You have to work very hard to believe this new guy is not a complete douche.  That he is not predestined to F you over.

              President Barack Obama is not Bush.

              He relishes this job.  He really wants to DO the job.  He is not a figure head.  He is a man who thrives (needs) on his own effectiveness.

              I am sure someone with a PhD in psychology can break him down better.
              But it is very clear to me that he is very ambitious.  But, it is not about titles.  His identity, his self preservation, is wrapped up in his effectiveness.  That is very good for US.  You and I and the USA.

              •  We have the same view of our President (0+ / 0-)

                That does not mean that we should stop holding him accountable.  

                That is all that I am saying.  Some of the comments go to harsh and don't provide action.  But that isn't me.  I am urgently attempting to convince people who believe that simply having faith will be enough to save the public option. It will not be.

                But we agree on the President's integrity.

                "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:49:08 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Fair Critique? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              justmy2, Annalize5

              A statement of fact is not a whiny quitting opinion.

              I submit that money (or lack of) is the difference between having the ability to influence the process, and having to settle for what others decide what the public gets.

              Do you really think the deathers are going to benefit from their blind allegiance to FoxNews Propaganda? They're being used, and in the end, if they're successful in further watering down what used to be "health care for all" and is now barely health care for most, we all lose.

              We can scream and bitch and complain and organize and it won't mean shit without being able to spend more than the insurance companies can spend.

              Legislators are influenced by the highest bidder.

              Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. Truth itself becomes suspicious by being put into that polluted vehicle. Thomas Jefferson 6/11/1807

              by Patriot4peace on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:44:01 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I was referring to the title (0+ / 0-)

                The rich have not won...yet...

                that is the key...we can still win...let's not give up...

                but let's not act like we are not behind..

                but your point on the influence of money is accurate...

                "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

                by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:51:23 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  Yup. We've just lost this battle (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bigchin, varii, peregrinus

      and increasingly it appears that we're losing the war. Again. Still. Ever, ever more.

      -9.63, 0.00
      I am not a purity troll. I am a purity warrior.

      by nobody at all on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:18:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's why I don't understand repub voters. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingCranky

      They're convinced that without big government, with all its laws and regulations, the power will belong to ordinary Americans.  What a load of crap.  Corporate America will grab that power, and then we'll all be fucked.  99% of us will be anyway.

      A jackass can kick down a barn but it takes a carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn (D-TX)

      by Ice Blue on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:28:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And no matter for WHOM we vote, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Annalize5, haruki

      we lose.

      And America loses.

      Because the candidates who would really make a difference if elected are always outspent by the faux-progressives whose campaign coffers are fat with corporate loot.

      Ergo, the corporatists maintain control.

      I really think we are doomed.

    •  That's pretty much what Gore Vidal said (3+ / 0-)

      Gore Vidal warned you all, but you REFUSE to listen:

      Vidal wrote in the 1970s:

      "There is only one party in the United States, the Property Party...and it has two right wings: Republican and Democrat. Republicans are a bit stupider, more rigid, more doctrinaire in their laissez-faire capitalism than the Democrats, who are cuter, prettier, a bit more corrupt—until recently... and more willing than the Republicans to make small adjustments when the poor, the black, the anti-imperialists get out of hand. But, essentially, there is no difference between the two parties."

      Could someone please explain to me why Kossacks refuse to believe that what Vidal wrote is the truth?

    •  Just goes to show once again (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Annalize5

      what the real battle is: the ability of the corporations (AKA "the oligarchy") to control politics and policy in this country.  The "prescription" for this is a long and hard-fought battle to break up the monopolies and get the money out of campaigns.  Easier said than done especially in a system with a supreme court that says that corporations have all the rights of people.  

      Democracy is not something you believe in or a place to hang your hat, but it's something you do. You participate. If you stop doing it, democracy crumbles.

      by wave of change on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 02:53:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  "The rest of us, shut up and vote." (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      North Coast Ohioan

      Yeah, and hope the chads don't get hung up or pregnant.

  •  You are right...if we do not get a public option (28+ / 0-)

    we are wasting our time and I will not support this reform and actively work against it.  Co-ops would do more damage because in order to bring down healthcare costs, they would have to force people into buying insurance they can't afford. The net result would be that once Obama left office whether it is in 2012 or 2016, we will be right back where we started or worse.

    I think we should actively work to repeal Medicare...it's all or nothing.  If they don't like socialized medicine...we should make this generational...those selfish old asses in these townhall meetings should really get a taste of how the other half lives.  

    •  Amen (6+ / 0-)

      I think we should actively work to repeal Medicare

      Amen to that. If government health care is bad for the rest of us, then why is it acceptable for the seniors? Repeal it!

      I just find it sickening to see all those seniors at these town hall meetings screaming rudely and ranting about they they are all so opposed to government health care. Well, then let's repeal Medicare and see how they like it then...

    •  Yep. No public option = (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dewley notid

      throw the bill under the bus.

      They don't win until we give up.

      by irmaly on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:08:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  good point (4+ / 0-)

      The first mistake was calling it a "Public Option" instead of "Medicare for all" -- then we can talk about efficiencies with public vs private health insurance and insurance reform.

      Does 47 million uninsured make us too big to fail?

      by musicsleuth on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:16:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes...kill the whole thing... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SingleVoter, bigchin, dewley notid

      and then, maybe, we can start over and get a true single-payer system with universal coverage.

      Even with the public option, the emphasis on cost control - the most essential part of any healthcare reform - has been limited at best.

      Look at Medicare: as good as it is for the end-users, the cost and the routine ripoff of public dollars by the providers themselves is disgraceful.

      We always hold up the insurance industry as the villains - and villains they are - but the problem rests, and always has rested, with the greedy and out-of-control costs perpetrated on the nation by the providers.

      •  that's not going to happen (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Balam

        a true single-payer system with universal coverage

        Where are the votes? What makes you think Conrad, Baucus, Lieberman, and Nelson are going to support single-payer? It was hard enough to get the public option supporters we have now. You go single-payer and you're going to lose Hagan, Bayh, Specter, etc.

        •  The problem will single payer is that they did (6+ / 0-)

          not call it Medicare for all.  If we had...no one and mean no one would have been able to argue against it.  I watched the video of Lawrence O'Donnell and some(don't remember who) lame ass right winger and even though Lawrence tried to bait him into denouncing Medicare, he ran and dodged like a scared rabbit.  Even the craziest wing nuts would not touch the subject of Medicare.  We made a framing mistake and it will likely defeat us.

          •  I think that "Medicare for All" would be (3+ / 0-)

            a good start...

            but then it will be necessary to get the costs imposed by the greedy and parasitic providers under control.

            The biggest reason for people's concern over the solvency of Medicare even as it exists now is that the costs are still so high.

            Without government control over the worst of the human greed, nothing will bring those costs in line with reality.

            •  I am not sure what the problems with Medicare (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              blue in NC

              are but here are my guesses.  Seniors need help to navigate something as complicated at healthcare.  A good first step would be a system of digital records.  Second step would be a system that could review those records not just for costs but for care protocals because American seniors have a tendency to be overmedicated and overuse health services to their own detriment.  Some of them use their health issues to get attention(their families pay more attention when they are ill) and some of them grow so afraid of their own mortality..they constantly run to the doctor and beg for more tests and medications.  How do you successfully manage that I cannot say but we must try because it will bankrupt us.  

        •  I know...really, I know... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SingleVoter, KingCranky

          it's just a dream of mine.

          A dream that the richest nation on earth, the nation with allegedly the greatest aggregate intelligence in the world, the nation that proudly proclaims it's collective "pro-life" credentials...

          well, a dream that such a nation could actually harbor the hope to care for its own citizens at least as well as dozens of "lesser" empires that seem to be well-able to handle their healthcare needs with efficiency, universality, and efficacy.

      •  What crack are you smoking? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NDakotaDem

        Do you really think we can get single-payer HC in this country of crazies?  Have you not been following the news the past couple of weeks.  Conservatives have actually convinced many Americans that Democrats want to kill their grandmas.  Do you really think conservatives will allow of single-payer to happen?

  •  how is your rhetoric about (6+ / 0-)

    co-ops any different than that the right-wing uses against reform? I'm not sure yet which would work better in practice but shouting boo against co-ops seems sort of disingenuous.

    "instead of believing in science, we believe in crazy hokus pokus. It's like Kansas" -Prof. Farnsworth

    by last starfighter on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:34:05 AM PDT

    •  so this is your argument? (11+ / 0-)

      the public plan is part of the Democratic Platform...not co-ops...

      the burden of proof is on co-ops supporters, not public plan supporters...

      "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

      by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:37:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  How are non-profit co-ops the equivalent of the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        soms

        existing for-profit health insurance system?

        IIRC, the non-profit co-op was the cornerstone of Kerry's health care plan back in '04.

        •  I think his plan (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          justmy2, soms

          was the extension of the FEHP to all americans, which is a lot closer to a true public option than this co-op nonsense.

        •  blue cross/blue shield were non-profit (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jim P, pataphysician, KingCranky, Losty

          Any non-government insurance provider will become equivalent to the profit health insurance system, because all the incentives for their CEO and their board force them to be exactly like the current private insurance companies.

          Really, there's zero difference between a private non-profit co-op, and the current private insurance companies, some of which are non-profit.  The word "co-op" doesn't magically change the corporate structure or incentives.

          "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

          by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:26:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  But Blue Cross/Shield were private initiatives. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            askew

            They weren't created as a result of government legislation.  They had no regulations under which they had to work.  They could change from non-profit to profit enterprises at their whim.  I see the Blue Cross/Shield analogy used over and over, but I question its legitimacy.

            Check this out:
            Private coops created through government legislation, and regulated by that same legislation.
            Plus subsidies to cover the poor.
            Plus banning of pre-condition exclusions.
            Plus the health insurance exchange thingy.

            Now, would the above really be so terrible?  The bottom three are already set in stone.  Would adding regulated coops rather than public option to all of that really be a disaster?

            •  fannie mae, freddie mac, sallie mae (3+ / 0-)

              Were created by the government, privatized and became disasters.  It doesn't work.  It's been tried.  

              If an organization's incentives are aligned to private insurance, it will end up acting like private insurance.  It doesn't matter how an organization starts.  That's basic market behavior.

              Look, the Darwinian market enthusiasts who claim the market is like evolution are right in a sense.  If a species like dolphins lives in the water, it will be streamlined like a fish, even if it starts as a mammal.

              And I can't believe you're pushing the Heritage Foundation's exchanges as a major benefit.  That's embarrassing.

              "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

              by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 09:05:48 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  This is terrible (4+ / 0-)

              A patient in Illinois was charged $12,712 for cataract surgery. Medicare pays $675 for the same procedure. In California, a patient was charged $20,120 for a knee operation that Medicare pays $584 for. And a New Jersey patient was charged $72,000 for a spinal fusion procedure that Medicare covers for $1,629.

              "It’s the wild, wild West when it comes to prices of anything in the U.S. health care system, whether for a doctor visit or for hospital charges," said Jonathan S. Skinner, a health economist at Dartmouth.

              In general, patients hit with high bills from out-of-network doctors and hospitals may have little recourse, said Leslie Moran, senior vice president of the New York Health Plan Association. "When patients dig in their heels and say, ‘No, I’m not going to pay it,’ it sometimes goes to collection," she said.

              While there is no way of knowing how often doctors submit exorbitant bills, insurers tell America’s Health Insurance Plans that they see such bills "all the time, every day," Ms. Pisano said.

              The New York Health Plan Association provided more examples. In testimony at a state hearing in October, it told of a Long Island surgeon who charged $23,500 for an emergency appendectomy. The patient’s insurer paid its out-of-network fee of $4,629. The surgeon demanded the balance or said he would force the patient to pay. The insurance company paid the bill.

              http://www.nytimes.com/...

              I want an end to these ripoffs.

              I want SINGLE PAYER.

    •  My "rhetoric" about co-ops? (17+ / 0-)

      .
       No, my understanding of and research about them:  and reporting what they are (as exemplified in the Energy Sector):

        +  they are subject to industry capture.

        +  they are too often cesspools of corruption.

        +  they are, in fact, too often breeding grounds for criminality.

       If you would bother to actually go to and read the examples provided, and dig underneath (via the links provided in my several Dairies on these things, here's the latest, e.g.), you would "get" what I'm talking about.

       Do you think that the Health Insurance Industry is any less inclined to capture Health Co-ops than the Energy Sector is their counterpart Co-ops?  Really?

       bg
      _________________________

       bg
      _________________________

      "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

      by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:40:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  ahem (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LynneK, Losty, vc2

        the rights' argument against a government public option is that health care would be subject to

        +government capture

        +corruption

        +be a breeding ground of criminality

        I'm not saying the right isn't full of crap but throwing out these fears of what might happen with a given system like it is what will absolutely happen is not very different rhetorically.

        "instead of believing in science, we believe in crazy hokus pokus. It's like Kansas" -Prof. Farnsworth

        by last starfighter on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:49:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Except their argument is spurious and based... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bigchin

          .
          . . . on vapor.

           Mine is based on demonstrable facts and examples (see Co-op diaries).

           If you want to take the Right Wing's side, then I'm sure Red State and Free Republic would welcome you with open tentacles.

           bg
          ________________________

          "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

          by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:20:16 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  We're not getting a public option from Senate (33+ / 0-)

    That disturbing fact has been self-evident for weeks.  Conrad and Baucus* are unalterably opposed to it, and there's no countervailing force in the Dem Caucus.

    The terms of the deal are much less important to the WH than the fact of a deal on health care.  MAYBE if the House digs in its heels, something might happen in conference.  I'm not holding my breath waiting for it, however.

    *BTW, I'm still trying to figure out why 2 senators from such tiny states feel it necessary to raise, respectively, over $4mm and $11mm.

    Some men see things as they are and ask why. I see things that never were and ask why not?

    by RFK Lives on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:34:24 AM PDT

  •  So here we are: (58+ / 0-)
    1. House Ways and Means has public option.
    1. House Health has public option.
    1. House Commerce has public option.
    1. Senate Health has public option.
    1. Senate Finance will likely have co-ops.

    And so therefore, the negotiations are all over. Public option, meet underside of bus. Game over.

    Jeez. Remind me never to put you on my touch football team.

    It's not over for the public option, not by a long shot.

    "If you come to a fork in the road, take it." - Yogi Berra

    by brooklynbadboy on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:34:56 AM PDT

  •  Sad indeed. Many of us have spent many years (8+ / 0-)

    working on this issue.  If we give it up now to appease the party of no, and the health care industry political operatives, it may be many, many more years before America joins the rest of the industrialized world in the 21st century.

  •  And like I predicted... (35+ / 0-)

    Rahm is about to show why he's called an enforcer. All the pressure is going to be put on us.

    Wait for the talking-points,"liberal purists."

    "Perfect be the enemy of the good."
    "Undermine your own president in the beginning of his presidency.

    And yes folks, "Let's keep our powder dry for another fight."

    Wait for it...

    Cheney tortured people To get false confessions To fraudulently justify Invasion of Iraq!

    by dclawyer06 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:37:49 AM PDT

  •  take a deep breath... (44+ / 0-)

    ...there are two more months to  on this effort. And our side is just getting started.

    Just for the record, there is not going to be any way to NOT have a serious discussion about co-ops. It will be introduced and must be in order to refute its effectiveness at all. You cant fight something that isnt brought up.  So yes, we should prepare for the FACT that it WILL be brought up as a possible alternative. And we should have our refutations well in order.

    That said, discussion about a co-op doesnt not equate with acceptance of a co-op. There's simply no other way to discredit it than to allow it to get out there and have it analyzed in the public sphere.

    Painful. Scary. But totally necessary.

    (BTW, and on a  related note, there is no other way to take a good bill to reconciliation than to "exhaust all other options". Just sayin')

  •  Didn't she say NON-PROFIT co-ops? (6+ / 0-)

    How is a tightly regulated non-profit co-op the equivalent of today's loosely regulated, primarily for-profit health insurance system?

  •  poltiico talked about this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Losty

    politico headline yesterday-dem leaders prepare liberals. prepare liberals to have no pub opt etc.. that is what ti was all about.some reps were saying those scary townhalls freaked em so the right must get no pub opt in the bill. sen webb said he wont talk pub opt-said it was scary. the article was right-if no pub opt in the bill liberals with dean as the head will likely primary dems who bailed. pub opt is crucial for tri c-it is minority consituents who will pay most dearly if a strong one is not there.

  •  Don't let this slide!! (5+ / 0-)

    We've got to hold Obama to this!!  It was his promise to us!! We should make him keep his word!!

  •  For the benefit of the open-minded non-activist (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mem from somerville, soms, Escamillo

    please give me 3 clear talking points about why co-ops are bad/inneficient/not an improvement.

    Gender neutral marriage. NOW.

    by Montreal Progressive on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:43:52 AM PDT

    •  Read. The. Co-op. Diaries. -nt- (3+ / 0-)

      "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

      by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:49:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  seems to me (9+ / 0-)

      (and i preface this with a serious disclaimer b/c I've not seen any co-op plan and neither has anyone else, frankly)

      It seems to me that building a regional co-op plan complicates unnecessarily the reform we need. IOW, why have 10 regional co-ops all operating with separate rules, standards, filing requirements etc when it could be consolidated into one federal public option.

      I;ve seen other arguments against co-ops but to me it seems this is the most basic.

      What's the supposed benefit of having co-ops as opposed to one consolidated system?

      I dont see any.

      •  Actually, I can personally say (7+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ferg, missLotus, Summer F, fumie, Nina, fou, mdmslle

        why regional co-ops won't work for me: my small company has people in 4 states.  I cannot get everyone equitable insurance if every place has a different system.  

        I need a 50 state solution.

        That said, this diary is a piece of flambé and I don't expect any real discussion of the issues in it.

        Darwinic pilgrims claim the image fills them with an overwhelming feeling of logic. --The Onion

        by mem from somerville on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:09:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  i hear you (6+ / 0-)

          i own a  small business as well and although we're based in FL right now and mostly I only have to hire on a contract basis, I have decided that if we cannot get real reform here I am going to have to relocate my business to Canada.

          I cannot see working to build a successful business only to have it all crumble when I have to sell it to pay for cancer treatment my insurer refuses to pay for.  I cannot see how I can compete with larger businesses in my field when I cant pay people BOTH a decent salary AND provide decent health benefits.  I cannot figure out how to contain the costs of rising insurance. My insurance has gone up 60% in just two years!

          Its unsustainable for me, my family and my business.  I am hoping this reform effort works and I;m doing everything I can to do my part to make it happen but if it fails, I have to consider what's in my best interest.

          Its sad, really.

          •  It bodes ill for the US that we are willing (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            fumie, mdmslle

            to sacrifice so many human lives to the old gods..

            Crops have failed the insurers cry 'Just another year'. 'We demand the sacrifice'. 101,000 virgins 'so the nation will live'. They demand the sacrifice

            by Andiamo on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:42:12 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Ditto (0+ / 0-)

            My company's insurance premiums are likewise skyrocketing at a rate that's unsustainable.

            We haven't discussed moving to Canada, but we'll be dropping employer-paid health insurance, for sure if something doesn't change soon. Our peers are facing the same situation.

            And I can't help but wonder: maybe the sh!t really needs to hit the fan (employer insurances dropped, companies relocating or folding) to jolt the 'satisfieds' and the 'deathers' out of their complacency?

    •  Since a public plan is part of the party platform (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ferg, irmaly, o the umanity, pataphysician

      Please give me 3 clear talking points about why co-ops are good/efficient/an improvement.

      The burden of proof is on co-op supporters...

      "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

      by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:57:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This ain't a court of law. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        askew

        Both sides must make arguments.

        You know what, since I haven't seen a convincing argument against coops in this entire thread (I've seen a few of good faith efforts), and have instead seen mostly mocking and attacking anyone that requests talking points against coops, I begin to conclude that you guys don't have any real reason to be against coops, other than ideology.  And ideology is the same reason that the other side prefers coops to public option.

        I've not heard convincing arguments from either side.  The burden is on you just as much as them.  (And please, simply citing the party platform is not an argument.)

        •  Ben Goshi has made very cogent (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          varii

          arguments against their downsides...and their is a recommended diary providing this detail.

          If you are an advocate, you should be able to advocate.  What is wrong with those arguments, which you state are not convincing without providing any explanation, and what do you argue on the other side if that is what you are advocating.

          The public option has been advocated ad nausem, and I don't think it needs to be rehashed once again.  That was my point.  But if you are not convinced now, it seems like it will be difficult to change your mind, although I am sure many of us are still willing to try.

          "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

          by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 12:44:25 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Co-ops allow Montana ranchers (0+ / 0-)

        to get VA rate drugs at rural hospitals without having to share this benefit nationwide via a national exchange.

  •  Whip the progressive caucus! (5+ / 0-)
    Get behind Jane Hamsher's effort to whip the progressive caucus. The only way we defeat this is if the progressive caucus promises to vote down any bill with no public option.
    •  We have to support whatever plan Dems have (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Whimsical

      Its simply too important.  We will get destroyed beyond recognition in 2010 if we have no bill.  We have to bite our lips and support whatever they come up with.  

      •  No we don't (7+ / 0-)

        and I won't.

        They don't win until we give up.

        by irmaly on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:14:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Support WHO? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ferg, TracieLynn, cybrestrike

        We can HAVE a bill. If it does not contain a public option, it better have complete and total reform of this so-called insurance industry. Because I'm sick of paying my premiums only to be told I'm not covered for something. Or dropped, regardless.

        Far as I'm concerned, it is complete and total bullshit to be trying to come up with something that hasn't been done before. There is no faster way to scare everyone than to say "we have to try this, but we're not sure if it's going to work or not".

        I cannot--cannot--believe this "uniquely American plan" flapdoodle which is being sold and bought by some on the left. Why aren't we owning the argument that this could be just like Medicare? THAT'S WHAT IT NEEDS TO BE. THE FRAMEWORK IS ALREADY IN PLACE FOR THIS.

        What the fuck is going on, that we have to endure all this sound-byte bullshit trial balloon?

        Necessity is the mother of revolution...

        by o the umanity on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:18:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, pretty much. (0+ / 0-)

        But good luck getting people in a supposedly reality based committee to actually, y'know- deal with that reality.

        They seem to think that the massive electoral losses that will come in '10 from not passing a health care bill will motivate Dems to go further left, which is unlikely (The message will be read not as "The Dems lost because they didn't pass a good enough bill", but rather as "The Dems lost because people don't want government in their health care", guaranteed), and that having the Republicans back in power will NOT lead to blowing by tipping points on just about every major issue there is- which is impossible.

        Freedom of speech does not mean the freedom to lie without consequence; unless, apparently if you're a right wing talk-radio host.

        by Whimsical on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:33:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  geez (13+ / 0-)

    Do any of you ever pay attention to what the president says? He's been saying for the last week during town halls that the public option is only one sliver of the health plan. It consists mostly of reform to insurance: pre-existing conditions, not being able to drop patients, etc. This is just a talking point.

  •  Sorry to say, I'm not surprised (5+ / 0-)

    This comes after Obama threw whistleblowers under the bus, too.

  •  Support for Dems by progressives, (8+ / 0-)

    meet underside of bus, if there is no public option.
    I've stated before and I will state again, if Dems cave on healthcare they will not get my vote or my money in 2010, 2012, or any other year.

    -7.88/-4.41 "The blood sucking aristocracy stood aghast; terror stricken, they thought the day of retribution had come." - John Ferral, union leader

    by Interceptor7 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:46:00 AM PDT

  •  oh brother. (37+ / 0-)

    tell you what: any of you prognosticators please feel free to email me with next week's powerball number.

    The fact is that none of us know what's going to happen. We're ALL nervous. We're ALL invested. We're ALL working hard. And NONE of us knows how this is all going to come out.  We're ALL trying to feel in control of a situation in which we have only limited control. And for some of us acknowledging that we cant know and control every aspect of life is easier to deal with than others.

    Here's the truth: try our best. work hard. dont lose hope. dont stop pushing. then wait for the result.

    I know a lot of people HATE that, but its the truth and its the only thing that we can KNOW.

    •  No, you just want rainbows and unicorns to (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      justmy2, SmedleyButlerUSMC

      .
       . . . make the public option happen.

       Why can't you just say:  "Y'know, you're right.  Looks like that's where Obama's going.  But we'll fight on anyway."  ?

       bg
      ________________________

      "Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove." -- P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

      by BenGoshi on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:52:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  no screw up ben (22+ / 0-)

        i have been busting my ASS to try to make it happen goddmnit.

        I;m down her in FL in 98 degree weather knocking on doors and giving people who doesnt even KNOW bill nelson his phone number and the talking points

        only to have a blogger like you say "FUCK IT youre a dumbass for trying."

        screw you. what are YOU doing other than being an ass about it?

        •  With respect (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mdmslle, miss SPED, lighttheway

          Are you going out as a member of OFA asking people to support the president's reform legislation or are you out there rallying for people to tell Nelson to support the public plan?

          I would agree that mobilizing with OFA to tell everyone to support "Obama's bill" (which doesn't even exist) is not going to help with the public plan, and therefore works against our best interests.  

          Pressuring Nelson to support a public plan does work in our best interests though and putting pressure on Democrats is the way to go.  Doing this in the middle of the summer, in Florida, outdoors is heroic, IMHO.

          The important thing is not to accept any old reform bill and not to go out there and kill yourself working for some amorhous bill for the president when he and people close to him are sending signals that they are willing to do away with the one part of reform legislation that will make a real difference in our lives.

          For anyone who does choose to go out and cheerlead some amorphous "president's plan" while he refuses to guarantee a strong, viable public option, should not come back with disappointments and complaints when he sells you out.  You were warned that your best interests lie in pressuring Democrats not to accept or vote for any bill that does not include a strong public plan available on day one.

          •  i'm rallying people to (7+ / 0-)

            push for public option.

            i'm using some OFA resources but i'm mostly visiting communities I visited in 2008 during the election. These are not folks on the internet. they are middle class and poor families. Apolitical people who don't even know who bill nelson is.

            I give them a small business card sized print out that I made myself. On one side its has his number and on the other it tell them what to say. I know its a bit aggressive but these are the same people who were registering to vote on October 2nd and who I had to drive to the polls just to make sure they went.

            Often I do this during the week so I can stand there WHILE THEY CALL the office.  I figure, Bill Nelson's heard from me enough times already. I;m also working with AA and Latino churches in my area.

            the other thing I've done is tried to get an appointment with Nelson. I have contacted DECs from all the major counties in the I-4 corridor (the critical area of the state for elected officials) as well as the OF based groups in those same counties and requested a meeting with Bill Nelson representing that we are the i-4 democratic and grassroots coalition who can tell him what's going on in our counties. I should hear back from his scheduling staffer this week.

            I find OFAs efforts to be sort of vague and general and I understand it b/c when I talk to people they are incredibly uninformed and frankly I have to keep it simple. they arent wonks and I'll lose them if i cant make a pitch in 2 minutes face time. the good thing about OFA is that I can use it at will and do things in the way I think is most effective. I take what i can from OFA and discard what I think is stupid.

            •  While I don't agree with your optimism (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mdmslle

              If it keeps you motivated to continue doing what you're doing, more power to you.

              No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.

              by Magster on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:01:18 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  mdmselle, you're a hero (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Matt Z, mdmslle, michiganlefty

              Thank you for your extraordinary hard work and thank you for understanding the very complicated situation we're in, and for using your own admirable resourcefulnesss and creativity to craft a solution which informs and supports the people.  As I said above, we're fighting a battle on two fronts here, one against the lies from the right and one against the capitulating from the representatives whom we worked hard to elect.

              Actually, there are three fronts if you separate lobbyists and the conservatives into two separate entities.  So we've got the lying conservatives, the capitulating Democrats, and the lobbyists who are spending a million and a half a day to protect their blood money profits and bonuses.

              We've given the Democrats a large majority, a filibuster-proof majority, and now we have to make them use it for the people and not for the gluttonous health-related industries.

        •  Bravo. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Matt Z, sam storm, mdmslle, michiganlefty

          So nice to hear you're active and engaged.  I don' know why this guy has to be such a @#$%.  The fact is anytime we engage with people in our communities, we do something a hell of a lot more constructive than writing a chicken little diary.

          Sounds like this guy just wants to diminish the significance of your efforts (by saying you want unicorns ans rainbows) and to insist you tell him he's right.  Dunno 'bout you, but that smells kinda sexist to me.  I guess he's forgotten that progressive women (I'm assuming you're a woman since your name is mdmlle) are strong.

          Blagojevich/Palin '12.

          by fou on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:59:46 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  so, please explain (18+ / 0-)

        how does it work with patronizing comments? If they're made to you, you'll threaten to HR them, but you think it's ok for you to make them to others?

      •  Charlieeeeeee (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Albatross, Matt Z

        We found the map to public option mountain!

        Shuuunnnnnnnn.  Shuuuunnnn the unbelievers.

      •  Explain? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sam I Am, Matt Z, mdmslle, TenthMuse

        So Ben, are you going to explain to mdmslle who has been working so hard on this and who you tell he should give up and he is a utopian, are you going to answer his question or not? Are you going to explain how much work you have been doing to get HCR? Why so rude?

        Such a give-up attitude at this point in the game is pretty lame, IMO.

      •  The sad fact is that Obama chose Rahm and Sebeliu (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Justina, varii

        to be in his cabinet, and they have been terrible so far.  Obama has been unwilling or unable to stand up to the Blue Dogs in the health care debate, the environmental debate, the bank bailout debate, etc.  He has surrounded himself with very conservative democrats and he's being Rasputined.

        Now is the time to get pissed. I don't share mdmselle's optimism.

        No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.

        by Magster on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:56:13 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Obama's backroom deal with Big Pharma (14+ / 0-)

    In order to win the support of Big Pharma, Obama promised to continue prohibition of buying identical medications from Canada for substantially less money.  

    In return, Pharma agreed to cut 80 billion in profits -- over the next TEN years.

    80 billion translates into about 2% savings per consumer -- over the next ten years.

    ..

    Fucked again by big business and the government that enables them.

    Sunshine on my shoulders...

    by pkbarbiedoll on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:46:24 AM PDT

  •  Please explain why tightly regulated non-profit (6+ / 0-)

    co-ops are horrible.  That includes how they can be scammed in ways that public insurance couldn't, and where the profiteering is going to come from.

    IMO, if people have access to affordable quality health insurance, I don't care where it comes from.  So until someone can point out how nonprofit co-ops are a horrible, terrible, no-good, very bad sellout, I'm willing to keep an open mind on them.

    •  Bluer Cross Blue Shield was once a non-profit (19+ / 0-)

      co-op, and look where it is now.

      I'm on Twitter. I'm also a part of the FDL team on health reform.

      by slinkerwink on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:48:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The current regulatory system sucks, though. (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HarlanNY, Sam I Am, fou, Escamillo, aymandaman

        And if that changed, as it is supposed to, then we are talking about a different system than BCBS operated under.

        Look, anything can be undone by a future administration--even a public option.  But once people get used to having well-regulated health care, they won't let that happen.

        In any case, I'm not going to panic--I have let my Senators and Rep. know that I support a public option, and I'm going to keep up that pressure.  But I am not going to "throw anyone under the bus" at this juncture (God, I wish that phrase would die a well-deserved death).

        •  It's meant to. Who thinks that will change? (5+ / 0-)

          Under the current corporate-owned Congress - and White House?

          •  Regulation IS the cornerstone of health care (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            fou, michiganlefty, Escamillo, aymandaman

            reform--it's a much bigger deal than the public option (which would not be successful in the context of a deregulated private industry).

            When Obama says that the public option is just a small part of health care reform, this is what he's talking about.  It's the regulation, and not the public option, that has the industry in such a snit.  They know it will put an end to their abuses.  We need to focus attention on that more than anything.

            •  enron, arthur anderson, aig, goldman sachs (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              obiterdictum, Escamillo

              It's unreasonable to believe American regulation along is going to produce nice, fair insurance companies.  American companies are good at working around regulation and lobbying for weaker regulation.  That's what America does best.

              The public option avoids American corruption by using a system that's worked in the past: Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and the VA.  We know government-run systems work for this kind of problem.

              "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

              by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:46:04 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I appreciate your comment, and rec'ed it (0+ / 0-)

                because it was a good faith effort to argue against coops (which is remarkably rare in this diary's thread).  However, Enron (one of your examples) acted criminally, people went to jail, and the company no longer exists.  The regulations in place actually worked, ultimately.  If the legislation that creates coops includes criminal penalty for violating the regulations, then is that still unacceptible?  Also, I don't know that corruption is impossible under a public option.  Both public option and coops would have to run under tight regulations with criminal penalties, IMO.

                •  parasites and plagues (0+ / 0-)

                  Look at it this way: health insurance companies are rent-seeking parasites.  Unlike productive companies (like hospitals or drug companies), they don't produce an intrinsically valuable product.  They are middlemen extracting a toll on every health transaction.

                  A smart parasite doesn't kill its host.  A dumb one causes a plague.  Enron was dumb and greedy and made news by plunging California into darkness.  If Enron had been slightly less greedy, it would have taken a nice cut of energy revenue and providing no real service.  The regulation didn't eliminate the unproductive rent-seeking, it just limited it.  It only got caught because it was too greedy.

                  Even if Enron had been smart, it still would have been a parasite.

                  The health insurance companies are in the same boat.  Their recission and pre-existing condition greed has gone beyond a minor blood-sucking.  They'd love to accept some regulation, keep collecting rents for little value.

                  But why should we accept that?  Instead, get rid of the damn parasites.  Even with regulation, they're still a drain on the economy.  Since we have the chance, lets actually fix the problem.

                  "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

                  by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 10:34:41 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  I KNOW it will (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Hawkjt

            Even GOP is talking about ending recission, stopping the denials of service for pre-existing conditions, making insurance portable, etc.

            The key question is this:  Will we have a viable nonprofit alternative to the for-profit insurance system?

            If it's between a strong public option and nothing, I choose the strong public option.

            If it's between co-ops and the public option, I choose the public option.

            If it's between co-ops and nothing?  I still think I like co-ops better than nothing.

            And then, I will go out and kick butt and get rid of the corporate-owned Congresscritters.

        •  Remember Enron? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ferg, slinkerwink, Losty

          It was once a highly regulated industry - energy - and it brought down the 6th biggest economy in the world - the State of California.  Water was once highly regulated and some guy named T. Boone Pickens helped get the rules set in his favor.  Of course, more recently regulations were in place to keep banks and financial companies separate and something terribly bad happened because regulators were wholly owned puppets of the executive branch.  And then there were sell out politicians that allowed FISA to pass and could not enforce a subpoena against Karl Rove and they were in charge.  Those are the same sugary powdered folks we have to move to get healthcare.  Won't even mention how fast they voted to go to war - but take a day and eternity to ensure the health of the nation...

          Every time history repeats itself, the price goes up...East Wing Rules

          by Pithy Cherub on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:07:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Here's why (7+ / 0-)
      1.  They won't allow a national co-op, and the smaller state co-ops won't be able to compete with the big insurance companies.
      1.  There is no money to get them started.
      •  Conrad said public money will be used to start (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ferg, Losty

        up co-ops on FNS...but it is private..

        which Richard Shelby used to say "See it still is a public plan"

        It is a compromise that will obtain zero votes...

        it is crazy...

        "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

        by justmy2 on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:06:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Oh sure, there will be some $ to start up these (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          justmy2

          local co-ops.  Just enough to make sure they really can't compete with (read, hurt the profits of) the big insurance companies.

        •  a compromise that will obtain zero votes (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          fou

          That's an excellent, excellent point.

          For the co-op supporters: which votes will you gain by killing the public option and replacing it with co-ops?  Name the Senators.  

          And, while we're at it, name the 10 Democratic Senators who will vote no for any bill with a public option.  You can't, because there are not 10 Democrats who will vote against the public option.

          "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

          by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:48:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Here we go (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pataphysician, miss SPED

      This is they type of argument you should expect to see, in force, in the coming weeks.

      Get ready to be berated by your friends in the netroots, and get ready for some prolific and weedy discussions about how co-ops might be an acceptable alternative.  It's bullshit water carrying and it is not in your best interest.

      And please, knock these arguments down as soon as you see them.  The case against co-ops has been made over and over and over again.

      We need to spend our time pressuring Democrats not explaining why co-ops won't work and defending the public option for the billionth time.  If you don't realize why co-ops don't work, do your homework.  The answers are all over this site, Firedoglake and numerous other netroots sites.

    •  Loopholes. Don't worry, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      North Coast Ohioan

      the private sector will find some.  Our investment banking houses sure did.

      A jackass can kick down a barn but it takes a carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn (D-TX)

      by Ice Blue on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:51:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Also, they're too small to (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Justina, indres, miss SPED, cdkipp

      be able to have the bargaining powers that a public option would have.

      If you were a doctor's office and a co-op of 1,000 participants demanded they accept 85% of their charges in order for the doctor's office to be on the co-ops list of preferred providers, the doctor's office would say "see you"

      If you were a doctor's office and a public option provider with 20 million people nationwide signed on makes the same offer, there's no way a doctor's office is going to turn down such a large pool of business.

      No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.

      by Magster on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:05:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I just sent a very angry email to the WH. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    varii

    I want the president to know that I am against reform without a public option.

  •  I don't see it - I don't see anything as etched (10+ / 0-)

    one way or the other.

    What I do see is the House is united for the public option, as well the most of the Senate, and the Senate Finance Committee and Max Baucus standing against it.

    Rather than predict gloom and doom, here's the Senate Finance Committee contact information. I'd like to think we told them just what the hell we think of their opposition.

    http://finance.senate.gov/...

    I'd suggest we re-double our efforts to let them know we will remember at the polls and when it comes time to donate to their campaigns if they continue to stand in the way.

    I will never, ever donate to the DSCC or DCCC again. This behavior is a good reason why I donate only to specific candidates, not 'Democratic Committees'.

    Kossacks, please join me in boycotting all DSCC and DCCC donations.

    Republicans: against Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

    by shpilk on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:48:50 AM PDT

  •  The Public Option... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hester, Drdemocrat, Losty

    ...has been dead since the CBO numbers came out. The only reason the President is still talking about it is to use it as a negotiating chip (i.e. gives him something to take off the table as a concession).

    I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long and in all places...arousing and persuading and reproaching you.-Socrates

    by The Navigator on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:49:59 AM PDT

    •  Public option is being used as a weapon (0+ / 0-)

      against the health insurance companies.

      Obama 7/09: "Don't bet against us" (unless the Dems screw it up).

      by Drdemocrat on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:00:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  how does the CBO numbers hurt the PO? (0+ / 0-)

      I don't remember anything from the CBO that was negative for the public option.  Everything from the CBO was positive about the public option.

      "At the end of the day, the public plan wins the game." Sen. Ben Nelson

      by ferg on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 07:50:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What the CBO numbers say are (0+ / 0-)

        smaller and smaller numbers of people being covered..

        Its just a scam because the real NEED is huge and at least 70-80% OF ALL AMERICANS CAN'T AFFORD WHAT THE PREMIUMS ARE GOING TO HAVE TO COST.

        That's why we really NEED the HUGE SAVINGS of single payer, not the number manipulation of private mandatory/public optional.

        Crops have failed the insurers cry 'Just another year'. 'We demand the sacrifice'. 101,000 virgins 'so the nation will live'. They demand the sacrifice

        by Andiamo on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 08:19:20 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Calm the hell down (17+ / 0-)

    Do any of you ever pay attention to what the president says? He's been saying for the last week during town halls that the public option is only one sliver of the health plan. It consists mostly of reform to insurance: pre-existing conditions, not being able to drop patients, etc. This is just a talking point.

    He says that so that it doesn't seem as if this "public option thing" is a complete take over of health care.

  •  Co-Ops are a good idea. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Drdemocrat

    But, yeah, the PO is dead.

    I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long and in all places...arousing and persuading and reproaching you.-Socrates

    by The Navigator on Sun Aug 16, 2009 at 06:50:57 AM PDT