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I've thought about this a bit and I am getting the sickening feeling that

  1. We could well end up with no bill at all or
  1. We could well end up with a bill that we don't find palatable.

If so, what then?  Even better: what now?

Then I saw the facebook group I'm Sticking With Obama.   I thought about it...and then joined.  I'll tell you why.

First of all, I thought about how attempts to reform health care have failed.  President Truman and President Clinton were excellent presidents (IMHO) and both failed.  President Nixon: well, he was savvy and he failed too.

Remember that these Presidents tried at times when attempts to undo President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal approach were not as far as advanced as they are now (I recommend Paul Krugman's book The Conscience of a Liberal).

And so President Obama is trying.  Sure his approach won't be perfect and he'll make (or has made) miscalculations and/or mistakes.  

And yes, we might not win.  But if we don't, I won't say that the reason was this mistake or that mistake on his part; he might fail for the same reason good basketball teams didn't beat the LA Lakers this year:  what President Obama is taking on is bloody hard, and success is not guaranteed no matter how good the strategy!!!  Sometimes the optimum strategy turns out to be a losing one.

But one thing I have to give him credit for:  he has both heart and guts:

That doesn't mean that I have given up; I've gone to a town hall (put on by the local medical society) visited my Representative's office, sent letters to the editor and have given money to OFA and to MoveOn for ads.

But if this fails, I am not going to quit on this presidency either.

Does anyone remember the first term of Bill Clinton?

That's right; not only was Bill Clinton at lower approval at this stage but he went on to be a successful president even with this setback.

I don't want anyone to think that I am a blind follower; I am not.  I also think that we should keep on the pressure for the public option.

But none of this has made me regret my working to get him elected; I knew that I wouldn't like every one of his positions and that some battles would be difficult and that we might not win all of them.

Just a couple of reminders to myself as to the attitudes that we are up against (though our most galling political enemies are some of the so-called Democrats, the general principle still applies):

And remember this old gem from Rep. Stark; he did cross the line but his larger point of our priorities verses their priorities is right on.

Originally posted to onanyes on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 06:49 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (8+ / 0-)

    When liberals saw 9-11, we wondered how we could make the country safe. When conservatives saw 9-11, they saw an investment opportunity.

    by onanyes on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 06:49:05 PM PDT

  •  I can say that I've attended a town hall (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZappoDave, Nightprowlkitty, soms, JoanMar

    My experiences are laid out here:

    http://blueollie.wordpress.com/...

    No fireworks; the thing that struck me is that the medical doctors had very different opinions as to what should be done, but all but one thought that the pure "free market" approach was completely wrong.

    When liberals saw 9-11, we wondered how we could make the country safe. When conservatives saw 9-11, they saw an investment opportunity.

    by onanyes on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 06:51:56 PM PDT

  •  Hail to you ... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theran, ZappoDave, onanyes, soms

    ... my fellow citizen!  :)

    For me, I have a similar queasy feeling, and you captured that very well in your diary.

    As I am of the progressive school, my personal view is that we will get a bill that will be baaaaaarely palatable to me, like by a shred, lol.

    But I do think we'll get a bill.  I think Americans want it and we'll get it.

  •  If Obama fails on this (0+ / 0-)

    He will never get another piece of legislation that he wants passed through Congress until 2013 at least.  Republicans will say, "If we can defeat him on this, we can defeat him on anything" and anything else that he wants passed will be dead.  It will break him legislatively.  

    •  this would be an argument for (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      soms

      "settling" for a "half-bill" rather than going down with all flags flying.

      When liberals saw 9-11, we wondered how we could make the country safe. When conservatives saw 9-11, they saw an investment opportunity.

      by onanyes on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 07:35:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A "half bill" is better than nothing (0+ / 0-)

        A defeat would cripple the rest of Obama's legislative agenda.  He has to get something and he knows it.  

        •  unfortunately ...there are those (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          valadon, Nightprowlkitty, soms

          who would disagree with you; one of them is Bill Moyers:

          http://www.alan.com/...

          Moyers makes the case with Bill Maher that it’s better to lose fighting for the whole loaf, rather than to settle for half a loaf.  That way you can come back and fight again.

          Moyers: "Much better that Barack Obama go back to this public insurance for everybody. Universal health care, run by the government with tough cost controls, in which everybody could join, employees and individuals, and which puts the care of the patient back in the hands of the doctor.  And lose.  If we were to do that and lose the fight this fall, I guarantee you, it would reinvigorate the party for not being who it is and who it’s for."

          When liberals saw 9-11, we wondered how we could make the country safe. When conservatives saw 9-11, they saw an investment opportunity.

          by onanyes on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 07:50:23 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Obama = Failure (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GeeBee

      Yea, Obama better just resign because he can't get Congress to pass a Health Care Reform Bill. It's over! Throw in the towel! Forget about doing anything else, go on vacation back to Chicago and shovel some snow and cut the lawn.

      Actually it's a failure of Congress that they can't pass a bill that the vast majority of citizens thought would benefit Americans. That's where any blame should be placed. Congress failed! Not Obama!

      Isn't there something about a September Surprise.

      Amazing the Time I waste Here! Sometimes it's not wasted though!

      by raster44 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 09:18:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Excellent Diary. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    soms

    I agree with everything you say.  Yip'ed and rec'ed.

    http://politicz.wordpress.com/

    by GlowNZ on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 07:45:38 PM PDT

  •  I want the public option (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TedNewman

    I want him to fight for public option but we all know that the blue dogs have a gun to his head and is saying you have to do what we say. Obamas hands are tied. They will not vote for the public option but will vote for a trigger for the public option. The bottom line is this we can't cut  off our nose to spite our face. We have to pass a bill in to law this time if not the democratic party will be extinct with or without the public option. If no bill is passed..Republicans win, the Insurance companies win and the democrats and obama lose. So we have to swallow what we have and get a bill into law and try and fix this healthcare crisis. Get 80% of what you want now and get the 20% later. If democrats pass a healhcare bill, the democrats will be set for life. The poll numbers will rise and the republican party will lose big time.

  •  If Obama fails, PROGRESSIVES can blame themselves (0+ / 0-)

    For not being smarter than the enemy.

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