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Most of this was already posted as a way too long comment to RenaRF's thoughtful and particularly well written diary.

I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that some of the writers who most influence my thinking such as Krugman, Ezra Klein, Steve Benen and many fine members of this community are wrong. The Senate health care bill is not good enough. It is already a political disaster, so let's just kill it and start over.

Here's what I wrote:

"Yes, I will almost certainly support and vote to reelect this disappointing president. And yes, it goes without saying that a return to an even more radicalized GOP rule would be an unmitigated disaster. I'll vote next fall, mostly for Democrats as usual.

I won't even hazard a guess as to how close to Obama's liking this Senate HCR bill really is. I honestly can't say that I feel I know what is truly in this man's heart. I don't know if he's brilliantly gotten close to what he wants or if he and his political team have simply fucked it all up.

I was never naive enough to think that he would truly be transformational. Once he made Emmanuel Chief of Staff it was pretty clear to me that it was going to be another Right Lite type of administration.  Obama may occassionally play a liberal on TV, but he's a corporate centrist at heart. From Punahou to the Ivy League to the US Senate, that's the world in which he was raised and trained.

All that nice talk about taking on lobbyists and changing how Washington does business, and negotiating in full public view, etc. was just campaign rhetoric. It got him the nomination, because too many of we progressives simply never trusted Hillary Clinton or forgave her for her and calculated pro-war stands on Iraq. The nomination itself was pretty much enough to beat McCain and Palin after 8 years of Cheney/Bush. And that's something, I guess.

But Good God, I sure hoped he would stand and fight once in a while for some decent things.  I see little fight, little pride. I see that the Capitulation Caucus, led so brilliantly on Capitol Hill by the traumatized and neutered survivors of 1994 and 2002 and 2004, has now set up shop in the West Wing. I see a president who looks weak, and I live among an electorate that punishes weakness every time. I fear the ramifications of what Josh Marshall calls the 'bitchslap theory of politcs'. And it didn't have to be like that.

I get why people liken this administration's decisions on war, torture, security and civil liberties and its failures to investigate or prosecute the previous administration' crime to "George W. Bush's 3rd term". I didn't expect much, but I can't believe how bad this is becoming.

As for health care, I don't think we have to just take what we can get at this time. We don't have to accept a mandate to purchase shitty insurance from greedy corporations that enjoy antitrust protection. That to me outweighs whatever good remains in the bill. That's the deal breaker for me.

Let's start over. Let's not worry about political consequences. That situation is already a clusterfuck. If we can use reconciliation for budget busting tax cuts for the wealthy, why can't we use it to expand Medicare and take a big step closer to universal coverage that way?"

OK then.

I support Governor Dean on this, and I'm disgusted with the way he has been treated by the president's hacks, especially so given the way Lieberman, Snowe and Nelson are being kowtowed to. I'm not actually a Democrat, but I'm proud to support the stance of a man who still represents the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party.

Originally posted to Snow Camp on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 12:06 PM PST.


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