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Stephen Stromberg:

Obama bears a lot of blame for the confusion on the recent cancellations. He set expectations when he promised that Americans could keep their health-care plans. His promise didn’t bear out, which looks like incompetence, dishonesty or both. High complexity was also the byproduct of Democrats’ choice to keep most of the existing system intact and build around it.

But health-care reform was always going to be complicated — and easy for uncomplicated ideologues to denounce. Republican demagoguery — from the days of “death panels” to the current frenzy over cancellation letters — has done much more to confound public understanding of the Affordable Care Act, not to mention the law’s implementation.

Next year, voters should judge the law based on how many more people ultimately get affordable health-care coverage, and at what cost to taxpayers. Right now, many appear to be judging the law based on misunderstandings and warped representations.

Forbidden words for most pundits: maybe we should wait and see on Obamacare before rushing to judgment.
#scotus should announce it will hear the religion challenge to the ACA contraception mandate next Tues afternoon: http://t.co/...
@SCOTUSblog
Greg Sargent:
Senator Harry Reid appears set to go nuclear — before Thanksgiving.

With Senate Republicans blocking a third Obama nomination to the powerful D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, a senior Senate Democratic leadership aide tells me Reid is now all but certain to move to change the Senate rules by simple majority — doing away with the filibuster on executive and judicial nominations, with the exception of the Supreme Court – as early as this week.

At a presser today, Reid told reporters he was taking another look at rules reform, but didn’t give a timeline. The senior leadership aide goes further, saying it’s hard to envision circumstances under which Reid doesn’t act.

More politics and policy below the fold.

Brendan Nyhan:

Is the sky falling for Obamacare?

You might think so from reading the press these days. On Monday, National Journal published a piece by Josh Kraushaar with the headline “Why Obamacare Is On Life Support” and a subhed that predicted “Democrats may begin calling for repeal if the law’s problems don’t get resolved soon.” CBS News’s Jake Miller also asked “Is the Affordable Care Act in serious jeopardy?” and Politico’s Todd Purdum went even further, warning of “Obamacare’s threat to liberalism.”

It’s true, of course, that the rollout of the new insurance exchanges has gone much more poorly than the administration expected, raising concerns among members of Congress, including Democrats who normally back Obama. The issue has become sufficiently damaging that 39 vulnerable House Democrats even voted in favor of a GOP healthcare bill. But the legislation has no chance of becoming law, which allowed those Democrats to cast a free vote that distanced themselves from the current controversy without actually undermining their party’s policy objectives.

Jonathan Cohn, whose work on ACA has been stellar:
At least some of these tales are precisely what they seem to be—stories of people paying more for less coverage, or facing increases that put real strains on their budgets, or moving to plans that don’t provide access to the same doctors and hospitals. You've read some of their tales in this space. These people are angry and feel deceived. That’s a totally legitimate story.

But how big a story should it be? To answer that, you need to know how many people actually fit these descriptions—and what might have happened to these people if the Affordable Care Act had never become law. It's impossible to answer either question with certainty, because reliable statistics aren’t available and there's no time machine for seeing how alternative futures might play out. But there are at least six reasons to think the real story is smaller—and way more complicated—than a credulous media would have everybody believe.

Dana Milbank:
Republicans, of course, hope their sabotage will lead to the program’s repeal. But the exchanges are unlikely to fail; they are working more or less as intended in states that have supported the launch. The likelier outcome: Republicans will achieve nothing but an increase in the federal deficit, about which they profess to be concerned.

At the end of his spooky session with the press, Boehner was asked if he had plans to pass any health-care legislation before the end of the year. He had nothing to propose other than the ongoing effort to elevate the fear factor. “No decisions on what it is that we may or may not do,” he said. But one thing is certain: “Our members are going to continue to collect stories.”

It’s a safe bet they will be selected from the horror genre.

First Read:
This isn't to say that other problems with the federal website won’t surface in the coming weeks and days. Indeed, Politico and Buzzfeed report that an administration official testified Tuesday on Capitol Hill that the payment and accounting portion of the website still needed to be completed (although the administration says those portions don’t need to be operational until 2014).

And it isn't to say that the administration will meet its target in insuring up to seven million Americans by March 31 -- including a sizable portion of young, healthy adults to make the system work.

But it is to say that people's -- and the political media's -- impression of the website and enrollment could be a bit dated.
What was true two or three weeks ago might not be true anymore.

More Greg Sargent:
But here’s the flip side of this: If the federal website is mostly operational by the end of the month, it’s likely we’ll see a massive flood of advertising from insurance companies selling new plans over the exchanges. The advertising that was placed on hold may simply resume –and it may be heavily concentrated in December and the three months in 2014 leading up to the March 31st enrollment deadline.

This comes by way of Scott Roskowski, the senior vice president for marketing for TVB, the trade group for commercial broadcasters. As the Wall Street Journal reported back in August, TVB had estimated, based on expected insurance industry profits, that insurance providers were set to spend $1 billion on ads over the next two years to woo new customers shopping on the exchanges. This was seen as a boon to the law’s chances — enrollment is crucial to its success – but it was forgotten after the website crashed.

Thomas Edsall discussed the issues moving forward on ACA, and it's not all sweetness and light:
Technology aside, the stakes could not be higher for the Democratic Party.

The Affordable Care Act “is often compared to Social Security and Medicare but these comparisons are imprecise and misleading,” as Edward Carmines, a political scientist at Indiana University, put it in an email: “The distinctive feature of the new health care law is its redistributive nature, which is mostly absent from Social Security and Medicare.”

Carmines went on, succinctly analyzing the political problem lying at the heart of Obamacare:

“Most of the benefits of the new program will go to the poor and less-well-off and most of the costs will be born by the well off. Neither is true of Medicare or Social Security. When the new law was passed it was hailed by the New York Times as the most redistributive policy in a generation, and they were right. It was not sold as being markedly redistributive, of course, but that is how it was designed and will operate. This does not mean it is a bad policy or doomed to fail. But it does mean that it was bound to be caught up in controversy and heated debate.”
Makes getting all voters, and not just older white voters, out to the polls in off year elections, and all elections, more and more important.

The closer we get to 12/14, the more stories like this we can expect to see:

BROOKFIELD -- Full-time emergency services dispatcher Gregory Beck, who was just elected to the Board of Education, has outraged school and town leaders who say they find offensive his Facebook post related to Sandy Hook anniversary tributes.

The outgoing Democratic school board chairman Ray DiStephan said he is so "disgusted'' he wants Beck to relinquish his seat. First Selectman Bill Davidson, who will also be stepping away from his job into a new role as minority selectman on Dec. 2, was equally appalled.

Board of Ethics Chairman Alice Carolan confirmed a request has been made for an investigation.

In response to a Newtown-based proposal for 26 Days of Kindness to honor the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre, Beck's name appears below a Newtown Patch Facebook post that reads, "I shall buy my friends who are gun enthusiasts a box of ammunition for days 1-26.'' The 26 days were to begin Tuesday. Beck's post has since been removed.

Brookfield is the next town over. I get that people have divided views about guns, even on this site, but that's no reason to be an insensitive blockhead. Take whatever side you want, but not involving 12/14, a time for contemplation, not confrontation. It'll be difficult enough in town as it is, and that's why there's no formal memorial.

Here's a better idea:

One month prior to the first anniversary of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school that took the lives of 20 first graders and six educators, a group of parents have a message: it's time to parent together.

Sandy Hook Promise, an organization formed by community members that includes relatives of the victims of the Dec. 14 , 2012 tragedy, kicked off their Parent Together campaign this morning on "Good Morning America."

"It's as simple as going to the website, SandyHookPromise.org, and making the promise to parent together. And by making that promise, you become part of a national community of parents who are committed to putting their children's lives first," Nicole Hockley, who lost her son, Dylan, told "GMA"'s Lara Spencer.

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Comment Preferences

  •  from Jonathan Cohn, an FAQ (30+ / 0-)
    I Just Lost My Insurance Because of Obamacare. What Do I Do?

    A step-by-step guide to replacing your health insurance

    http://www.newrepublic.com/...

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

    by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 04:38:41 AM PST

  •  Nuclear option (5+ / 0-)

    I wish Obama would get out and fight for his judicial nominees like Bush did.  He seems to nominate them and then leave them dangling in limbo and you rarely hear anything out of Obama about it.  Maybe the Senate wouldn't need to go nuclear if Obama would fight a little harder.

  •  What is the meaning of the term "parent (6+ / 0-)

    together"? This is new to me. I'm still recovering from the use of "parent" as a verb rather than a noun.

    Thanks for the roundup, Greg!  This is where I get my news. The other alleged "sources" (newspaper and televicious) are nothing but the Village yapping in concert, IMHO.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 04:43:07 AM PST

  •  ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koosah, HudsonValleyMark
    With @EL_Swan, why Hillary Clinton shouldn’t be threatened by Elizabeth Warren http://t.co/...
    @MysteryPollster

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

    by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 04:43:19 AM PST

    •  I can't even begin to take a Warren run seriously (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude

      at this point....no compute.

      •  Why "no compute"? She won't run, or she ... (0+ / 0-)

        ... wouldn't win?

        Every serious candidate at this stage in a general presidential election says s/he has a good job now and wants to keep it, etc.

        I think she probably won't, but we should take a look at the likely field. If we can find it.

        2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

        by TRPChicago on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:31:07 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Warren said herself she's not running (12+ / 0-)

      Hopefully, we can now end the Warren for Pres 2016 stories and speculation now that the Senator herself has said point blank that she is not running for President in 2016.

    •  love my Senator and also (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Hoghead99, SoCalSal

      Hope she does not run. Because I fear she will not be able to win the general.given the lies Republicans will tell.Who she is as a person will make it easier for them...she is not well known except superficially and has been shown to have too much integrity to take accusations.seriously and fight back.
      I saw how she ran in MA. There are issues with how she comes across to.people when a candidate that are not a factor it seems in the Senate. I hope Dems will look into this if they weren't in MA themselves during an election. Talk to moderates. Men  did not like her...called her "strident" and she lost the male vote by a lot. Men I talk.to.had problems with her, impressions of her,.that I hadn't seen before in reaction to other candidates even Coakley.

      Want whoever can best keep a Rep out.of the WH. This is new for me. They are so crazy right now a Rep.President will rubber stamp Rep legislation. Vulnerable Americans will die when they slash SNAP and turm Medicaid into a block grant to states.

      •  "Men ... called her strident"? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Hoghead99, Stude Dude

        And this distinguishes Elizabeth Warren from, say, Hillary Clinton?

        Come on, JP, you say men view her as strident, yet you criticize her for not fighting back against accusations?

        Republicans will tell lies about every Democratic candidate. And in Hillary's case, some of them will be partly true. (She should never get over discovering all those lost law firm billings "under a chair.")

        I know of only one issue with Sen. Warren, that application to Harvard with a 1/whateverth fraction Cherokee heritage. Bring that on, Republicans, you're gonna smack her anyway because she's smart enough - and, Oh, elitist, too! - to teach at Harvard Law School!

        I was in MA during a large part of Elizabeth Warren's run. She got out and met people, unlike Martha Coakley who took a vacation a few weeks before the special election and looked as if she hated handshakes. (I think she did! Good public official; lousy candidate.) Elizabeth Warren said sensible things to real people.

        She had substantive ideas, communicated them well (yes, and forcefully) and a good personal story. Mayor Menino took a looong time to endorse Ms. Warren (I lost count of his excuses for that!) and she got past that, er, hurdle.

        She'll be a fine campaigner. She'd be great in a debate with any Republican within range of being a candidate. And if she ultimately loses more men than Democratic candidates typically lose, I'd be surprised.

        2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

        by TRPChicago on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:58:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  'Stop and Frisk'...GOP does that to the President (7+ / 0-)

    at least five times a day.

  •  How many times has Harry "appeared" (20+ / 0-)

    on the cusp of being on the verge of about to lift a finger to move in the general direction of musing about talking about the nuclear option?

    Many times.

  •  Abortion stops in 24 counties in TX (10+ / 0-)
    WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Tuesday turned away an emergency application asking it to block a Texas law that requires doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.

    The decision was effectively 5 to 4 and split along ideological lines.

    Because driving 150 miles for an abortion is not a hardship,
    unless of course,
    you don't have a car, or
    there is no public transportation.
    The effect of the ruling, Justice Stephen G. Breyer wrote for the four dissenters, was to leave 24 counties in the Rio Grande Valley without abortion clinics. “It may,” he added, “substantially reduce access to safe abortions elsewhere in Texas.”

    Justice Antonin Scalia, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr., wrote that the challengers to the law had not met a heavy procedural burden in asking the Supreme Court to alter an appeals court’s provisional decision to let the law go into effect while it considers an appeal.

    “Reasonable minds can perhaps disagree about whether the court of appeals should have granted a stay in this case,” Justice Scalia wrote. “But there is no doubt that the applicants have not carried their heavy burden of showing that doing so was a clear violation of accepted legal standards — which do not include a special ‘status quo’ standard for laws affecting abortion.”

    Stay tuned.  Any question about what the Supremes will do when get the chance to overturn Roe vs. Wade?

    It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

    by Desert Rose on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 04:47:10 AM PST

    •  So messed up (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Desert Rose, JaxDem, DRo, bear83

      but there's always time & reason to consider The Pill.

      #scotus should announce it will hear the religion challenge to the ACA contraception mandate next Tues afternoon:
    •  That's a different world down there. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DRo, Stude Dude

      And they're trying to bring it to the rest of the country.

    •  Throwing out an idea (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Desert Rose

      With too little knowledge

      But.

      It's there anything that could be done at the local grass roots level to get admitting privileges or bring the clinics up to code? Perhaps with money raised at the national level?

      "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

      by Stude Dude on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:09:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  In many areas in TX, there is not a (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stude Dude, Desert Rose

        hospital within 30 miles of the clinics being closed.  In fact, the women's clinic being closed may be the only access to women's reproductive health care in the area at all.

        The clinics being closed in the Rio Grande Valley will just force women to go to Mexico for abortion services.  Emergency rooms in the Valley will need to be prepared for the ramifications of that.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 07:37:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  500 miles in some places I'd heard (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes, Stude Dude, Desert Rose

      Few that stay open iirc are in East Texas. Tx. Is huge. Admit no time to check to be sure.

      •  Hospital Admitting privileges for (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Desert Rose

        clinic physicians is only part of the HB2 restrictions on providing abortion services in TX.  As of September 1st next year, only those clinics defined as Ambulatory Surgical Centers will be allowed to provide abortion services.  Currently there are four.  The Fund Texas Women website describes what will happen when HB2 is completely implemented next fall, and provides a Texas map with clinics and ASC locations marked.

        One ambulatory surgical center (ASC) out of 5 in the state has closed due to the admitting privileges requirement. Now, the only 4 ambulatory surgical centers in Texas are located in Dallas (1), San Antonio (1), and Houston (2). These 4 clinics represent the only places where an abortion will legally occur in Texas after HB2 goes fully into effect on September 1, 2014

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 08:00:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  if I remember TX geography, those (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Stude Dude, Desert Rose

          four are all in the Eastern part of TX.

          Maddow had segments on this. TX is so huge, they will have to drive for many hours. I actually remember her saying seven hours for the furthest away, but I might be mistaken.

          SC is acting against the Constitution as per Roe v Wade. Driving seven hours makes it very burdensome and difficult to get an abortion...against the ruling.

    •  You know..... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude, Desert Rose

         ...that a$$hole Karl Rove was asked about repealing Roe v Wade  some years ago. As best I can remember, his reply was along the lines of, "Oh we'd NEVER want to see that! There are so many pro-choice Republican women and Independents we wouldn't win an election for 20 years."

         Now I know he didn't tell the truth very often, but in this case, I think he did! Thay want to TALK about repealing Roe v Wade, and that's just to keep the Bible-thumpers on board, while they ignore the New Testament and starve the poor....

      Compost for a greener planet.............got piles?

      by Hoghead99 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:16:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This Gregory Beck character... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DRo

    I suppose it's too much of a stretch to say he's related to Glenn Beck, but he's just as much an idiot.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 04:50:48 AM PST

    •  Not too much of a stretch (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skohayes

      Although I don't know if there is a relation, Glen Beck up until a few years ago lived in a nice multi million dollar home overlooking the Stamford Reservoir in New Canaan, CT.

      This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

      by DisNoir36 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:17:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Isn't Chuck Todd in charge of First Read? (0+ / 0-)

    What? A small & tepid sorta kinda admission at the end of the article...

    But it is to say that people's -- and the political media's -- impression of the website and enrollment could be a bit dated.
  •  A friend posted this interesting article on FB (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rikon Snow, Hoghead99, Subterranean

    THE BATTLE LINES OF TODAY’S DEBATES OVER GUN CONTROL, STAND-YOUR-GROUND LAWS, AND OTHER VIOLENCE-RELATED ISSUES WERE DRAWN CENTURIES AGO BY AMERICA’S EARLY SETTLERS

    http://www.tufts.edu/...

    ....how much the incidence of violence, like so many salient issues in American life, varies by region. Beyond a vague awareness that supporters of violent retaliation and easy access to guns are concentrated in the states of the former Confederacy and, to a lesser extent, the western interior, most people cannot tell you much about regional differences on such matters. Our conventional way of defining regions—dividing the country along state boundaries into a Northeast, Midwest, Southeast, Southwest, and Northwest—masks the cultural lines along which attitudes toward violence fall. These lines don’t respect state boundaries. To understand violence or practically any other divisive issue, you need to understand historical settlement patterns and the lasting cultural fissures they established.

    It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

    by Desert Rose on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:02:48 AM PST

    •  Oh, I don't know. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude

      I'd give Cold War paranoia a bigger role than the Nineteenth-Century civil war/frontier in developing the gun culture.

      "Where some see a system for encouraging discussion . . . others see an echo chamber of bad grammar, unchecked stupidity, and constructive interference . . . " -- Ars Technica

      by Rikon Snow on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:12:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ridiculous. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        I love OCD, Stude Dude

        Willie Horton's picture had more to do with gun culture than the Cold War.  During the Cold War we hid under desks and built bomb shelters.  No one thought a gun would stop a missile.  

        We are all in this together.

        by htowngenie on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:35:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Pretty narrow view of the cold war. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Stude Dude

          http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/...

          viz:

          The cowboy now rode across the Cold War landscape as the embodiment of manliness, democracy, individualism, and capitalism. Popular culture promoted the mythological version of the cowboy and the frontier that stood in stark contrast to the anxiety-ridden culture of the Cold War, which drew on, found support in, and perpetuated the myth of the Old West. More importantly, the culture of the Cold War helped to create a new meaning for the toy guns wielded by youngsters engaging in western play. Specifically, it invested the form of amusement with special meaning while simultaneously affecting parenting styles. Parents' attitudes toward their pistol-packin' boys reveal the various layers of their own anxieties concerning the masculinity of their sons. The discourse about toy guns occurring in popular sources readily available to the general American public also exposes the uneasiness pervading the American popular consciousness regarding gender roles, and it sheds light on the roots of America's gun cultures. Ultimately, the anxious climate of the Cold War, punctuated by the threat of instantaneous nuclear annihilation, challenges to traditional gender roles, and the standoff between communism and democracy created an environment in which a youth gun culture could flourish among white male youths.

          "Where some see a system for encouraging discussion . . . others see an echo chamber of bad grammar, unchecked stupidity, and constructive interference . . . " -- Ars Technica

          by Rikon Snow on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 07:22:10 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  If it were the Cold War, (0+ / 0-)

        then why doesn't it affect the US uniformly?  Cultural history explains much of gun culture, and even Cold War attitudes, which varied by region.

        "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

        by Subterranean on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 10:57:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  that's Colin Woodard who has written (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Subterranean

      extensively about this.

      http://www.dailykos.com/...

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:39:49 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks for link. (0+ / 0-)

        It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

        by Desert Rose on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 04:50:47 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Is the sky falling for Obamacare? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, wintergreen8694, skohayes

    To listen to CBS, including my local affiliate, yes, it is, because it's been the lead story for quite some time now. But just keep on chasing that bone, CBS, you're bound to catch something. (Though I'd rather not get any of it on myself, thank you very much.)

  •  Re: Jonathan Cohn: the media is not credulous, (7+ / 0-)

    it is Republican.

    We have only just begun and none too soon.

    by global citizen on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:09:22 AM PST

  •  from story above, ACA will lose Dems many votes (0+ / 0-)

    Per Thomas Edsall article above, the New York Times hailed the ACA, when it passed, as "the most redistributive policy in a generation".

    Redistributive means those with more money will be paying more to benefit those with less - the poor and less well-off.

    Earth to DKos readers:  We have to be realistic.  

    We have to be prepared and expect those millions who under the ACA must now pay MORE $ for their health care will likely not reward the party (we Democrats) that has cost their families' budgets more money.

    Those people will be very motivated to come out to vote - against the Democrats who cost them more money.

    We should not ignore this reality.  Doing so is naive, and not constructive.

    We can only hope that the millions MORE who will now have access to health care will also come out to vote - but among those groups, particularly the poor and low information voters, turnouts are lower and far too many of them vote, if they are even registered to vote, for the Republicans and against their own economic self-interests.

    My assumption is that the ACA will cost the Dems in 2014, maybe not as badly as it did in 2010, but by 2016 it will at worst be a wash and in future years a net benefit politically.

    •  Daily pants wetting edition (10+ / 0-)

      This is really getting to be fucking old.  

      Earth to pants wetters, when the article refers to redistributive policy it's specifically referring to the fact that people at the higher end of the income have a new 3.8% surtax which helps pay for a part of the policy.  The policy specifically benefits those at the lower end of the spectrum.  So in reality IT IS redistributive.  It takes money from the rich and provides the poor with basic access to affordable healthcare which in the long run benefits all.  There's nothing surprising or earth shattering about this.  

      It's really not going to affect or piss off anyone outside of the elite and wealthy 1% and frankly they're mostly against it already.  Far more people will benefit from it than the really rich who will have to pay a measly 3.8% more in Medicare taxes.

      This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

      by DisNoir36 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:31:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  what's missing from the analysis as I noted (9+ / 0-)

      is the voting demographic shift in this country. It's not 1965 and whites are not the majority. 2008 and 2012 show you can lose that demo and win if other voters turn out.

      What the polling also shows is that people don't want ACA repealed, they want it reformed. Clear numbers on that.

      Another piece missing is the benefit of benefits. Creigh Deeds is in the news, but one of the benefits of ACA is mandated mental health coverage that for many did not exist. Etc.

      many moving parts, and Edsall is right to write what he did, but the future is no so obvious. Everyone who needs the coverage feels different when that happens.

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:32:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  realistically (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wintergreen8694, Subterranean

      Much of the media focus on the cost of plans in the ACA has ignored the available tax credits that go with the new plans for the vast majority of participants. For many, the tax credits will cut the cost by half or more, making comparisons to their current policies on price just irrelevant.

      But this could be a problem for 2014 still, because I don't know if another year is enough time for everyone to realize what the net costs really are. And of course the libertarians will go to their graves screaming about unwanted government subsidies...

      You will not be punished for your anger. You will be punished by your anger.

      by mstep on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:36:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  whenever i see "redistributive" (5+ / 0-)

      I know I am looking at a Republican talking-point. The capitalist system by default will take from the poor and give to the rich.

      Any program that doesn't accomplish that is bound to be labeled "redistributive". There's a tiny tax on gold-plated insurance plans, that doesn't exactly amount to a Marxist revolution.

      There's a lot of good in the ACA. The website is working much better now, but even besides that. You cannot be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition, college-aged children can stay on their parents plan until they're 26, premiums are going down for millions of people.

      If the Democrats lose in 2014 it wont be because of flaws in the ACA, it will be because of flaws in the Democrats.

    •  A month ago... (4+ / 0-)

      we were going to pick up something like 100 seats in Congress and win every gubernatorial election because of the shutdown and default threat.  Now the House and Senate are lost next year because of healthcare.gov and brosurance?

      It's November 2013.  Elections are in November 2014.  This "game-changer" will pass.

    •  Millions who have to pay more? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude, SoCalSal

      Most of whom are well off and can afford it?
      Pardon me, but if they're Democrats, they're not going to mind paying a little more to see more people covered, and if they're Republicans, they're not voting for Democrats anyway.

      Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

      by skohayes on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:21:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  No, the redistribution is by Medicaid and taxes (0+ / 0-)

      not higher premiums.  Almost nobody will pay higher premiums except the very young, rich and healthy.

      If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

      by Inland on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 07:20:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Read the excellent Cohn article (0+ / 0-)

      and dig into the numbers with some research.  

      I would be willling to bet that the number of people who now have access to coverage compared to those who pay higher premiums for their new improved coverage but still want to bitch about it anyway is going to be at least 10:1.

      Don't let the circus of the corporate media make you think this is a larger problem than it is.%

      That said, it is a much bigger problem in the states that chose to not expand medicaid and there are still some people with income and family size that will drop them into a zone where the premiums will be unaffordable.

      I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

      by Satya1 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 08:10:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Three cheers to Albuquerque! (10+ / 0-)

    The city voted down that restrictive abortion initiative, one that Susana Martinez was all enthused about, too.

    Mark Twain: It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

    by Land of Enchantment on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:22:26 AM PST

    •  The forced birthers are losing in the states, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Land of Enchantment, Stude Dude

      losing in federal courts, so decided to go smaller and start city wide bans.
      Like the anti-gay marriage groups, they're spending a lot of money and not getting very good results. Except perhaps in Texas.

      Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

      by skohayes on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:11:10 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The 'circumstances' under which Reid will not act? (0+ / 0-)

    The 'circumstances' are that Harry Reid will be Harry Reid, and will fail to provide leadership or balls and will further cause the President's agenda to sputter and fail.

    America doesn't have an Obama Problem, America doesn't even have an Abortion Problem or a Gay Problem. With 32% of the population representing the bedrock support of the Republican Party, America has a Stupid Problem.

    by MARTinNJ on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 05:37:01 AM PST

  •  Why is it Dems are not just as rigorously (4+ / 0-)

    collecting and publicizing the never-ending list of SUCCESS stories thus far from Obamacare.  The masses who have successfully navigated the federal or state exchange websites and come out the other side with affordable, QUALITY healthcare either for the first time in their lives, and/or with a major upgrade in coverage for no/little increase in premium once subsidies are factored in?  Why aren't Dems rigorously bringing those thousands of stories to light via endless parade of press conferences and Sunday show appearances like the Repugs are doing?  Why?  Oh yeah.  Because they're Dems and they're absolutely horrible at playing the game called politics.

    •  if they were good at it (3+ / 0-)

      Obama wouldn't have promised everyone could keep their health care without nunce and caveat (al least 95% of you).

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:00:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  As a polity, we don't do nuance very well. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stude Dude

        That is unfortunate, because most good policy relies upon nuance.

        With the Decision Points Theater, the George W. Bush Presidential Library becomes the very first Presidential Library to feature a Fiction Section.

        by Its the Supreme Court Stupid on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:08:38 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That is the absolute least of the manifestations (0+ / 0-)

        of their lack of political prowess.  

        •  it actually set up the last two weeks of (0+ / 0-)

          negative stories. I suspect what you call lack of political prowess may actually be lack of votes.

          "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

          by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:54:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm talking about lack of prowess well beyond (4+ / 0-)

            just Obamacare.  I'm talking about things like Dems constantly allowing Repugs to completely control the conversation/messaging on whatever topic is at hand.  Whether it's Obamacare, Benghazi, etc.  I'm talking about being nearly 5 years into unprecedented Repug obstruction in the Senate, and we're still just chirp, chirp, chirping about it.  How do you think Repugs would have handled this if the tables were turned?  They would have changed the filibuster rules four and a half years ago.  And on legislation as well as nominees.  I'm talking about Dems constantly trimming over their precious moral high ground so as not to sink to the level of Repugs.  Dems!  Please!  Sink to their level ASAP!!!  I'm talking about being played a fool in nearly every negotiation since Obama took office with the exception of last month's shutdown standoff.  Repugs always open negotiations so far Right it's absurd, such that the "middle ground" makes Bush Jr. look reasonable.  And Dems fall for that lame, tires negotiating tactic almost every time.  My 9 year old daughter negotiates better than Dems.  If I negotiated like Dems, her bedtime would be midnight.

            I could go on but I'll STFU now :)

    •  Fraid yer right! n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FraidKnot

      Compost for a greener planet.............got piles?

      by Hoghead99 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:22:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Something every person, progressive, liberal, just (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, Stude Dude, tb mare

    plain citizen not all enamoured with the current "NO!" to moving this country away from reactionary and regressive anti everything but the 1%, bigotry, ignorance and agenda to make us more like a banana republic needs to absorb into every political action:

    Your

    Makes getting all voters, and not just older white voters, out to the polls in off year elections, and all elections, more and more important.

    because

    No progressive measures will see the light of day until the right-wing cabal in Congress is crushed at the polls. (Carl Davidson at In These Times)
    Our system was designed to give minorities some protection and a voice, to not be completely marginalized by majority rule. This bunch has taken advantage of every lever, twisting some completely out of recognizable shape, to flip that to essentially minority rule. That must be crushed and it will not be as long as voters behave as if this is a matter they can treat as a normal political dispute between differing political viewpoints of good will.

    The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

    by pelagicray on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:11:01 AM PST

  •  While everyone is screaming (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, tb mare

    about Obamacare, the waste of billions of dollars goes on every day at the Pentagon:

    In its investigation, Reuters has found that the Pentagon is largely incapable of keeping track of its vast stores of weapons, ammunition and other supplies; thus it continues to spend money on new supplies it doesn't need and on storing others long out of date. It has amassed a backlog of more than half a trillion dollars in unaudited contracts with outside vendors; how much of that money paid for actual goods and services delivered isn't known. And it repeatedly falls prey to fraud and theft that can go undiscovered for years, often eventually detected by external law enforcement agencies.

    The consequences aren't only financial; bad bookkeeping can affect the nation's defense. In one example of many, the Army lost track of $5.8 billion of supplies between 2003 and 2011 as it shuffled equipment between reserve and regular units. Affected units "may experience equipment shortages that could hinder their ability to train soldiers and respond to emergencies," the Pentagon inspector general said in a September 2012 report.

    Because of its persistent inability to tally its accounts, the Pentagon is the only federal agency that has not complied with a law that requires annual audits of all government departments. That means that the $8.5 trillion in taxpayer money doled out by Congress to the Pentagon since 1996, the first year it was supposed to be audited, has never been accounted for. That sum exceeds the value of China's economic output last year.

    http://www.reuters.com/...

    Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

    by skohayes on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:17:59 AM PST

  •  ID required to vote. Absolutely NO ID to "buy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude

    elections" is the subject of  Harold Meyerson's "Voter suppression the new GOP strategy" piece today. It starts (my emphasis):

    Better bring some identification — and not just any identification, official though it may be — if you plan to vote in Republican-controlled states. However, if you contribute tens of millions of dollars to sway an election on Republicans’ behalf, the party will fight to keep your identity a secret.
    noting on the way

    Republicans have justified this crackdown as a way to keep non- citizens from infiltrating the electorate, not that there’s evidence such a thing is happening. But if a non-citizen wants to contribute millions of dollars to one of those “social welfare organizations” that spends gobs of money on an election campaign, Republicans fight to shield his or her identity.

    and ends with
    So: If you want to vote in the Republicans’ America, remember to bring your birth certificate. But if you want to buy an election and stay under wraps, your secret is safe with them.

    The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

    by pelagicray on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 06:34:51 AM PST

  •  The fallacy in the Edsall piece is that (0+ / 0-)

    it assumes the benefits go to the poor or less well off.  That just isn't true.  Many uninsured are people of means, they were just excluded from the market due to pre-existing conditions.  That issue does not discriminate by income.  Also, many of the benefits of the ACA have already been implemented for all policies (allowing kids to stay on parents' insurance until age 26, eliminating lifetime limits, no pre-existing conditions etc.).  These benefits also don't just go to the poor or less well off. They go to everyone.

    The other problem with the assumption is that it understates just how many small to medium and sometimes even large businesses are sending their people into the exchange.  That's net new volume over and above the prevailing assumption that year 1 would be comprised of the uninsured and the individual market.

    Any increase in net new volume that includes people who have the ability to pay premiums and a demographic spread will lower premiums in the exchange over time.

    My view is just to let the enrollment period play out.  I think the results will be good for the participants and employer based plans will not be too impacted. If the ACA imposes change in a mostly non-intrusive way to most Americans, then it will be a success in the political arena

    Global Shakedown - Alternative rock with something to say. Check out their latest release, "A Time to Recognize": Available on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Spotify and other major online music sites. Visit http://www.globalshakedown.com.

    by khyber900 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 07:13:35 AM PST

  •  Greg, with respect to the ACA (0+ / 0-)

    Stromberg says that  "His promise didn’t bear out, which looks like incompetence, dishonesty or both."

    I would say that it IS both incompetence and dishonesty.

    And Stromberg talks about the current "frenzy" over cancellation letters, well I'd be more than a little "frenzied" if I suddenly received a notice that the health insurance plan I selected and liked, since it met my needs, was cancelled.

    Stromberg is right when he says that healthcare reform is complicated, which is precisely why it shouldn't have been attempted by the Federal Government. A well regulated private market would have been far better.

    •  curious.. (0+ / 0-)

      Isn't your Trollism Reflex Syndrome a preexisting condition? So you do not fear changing jobs with different coverage and being denied?

      Good Luck!

      ashes..ashes..we all fall down..

      •  I favor a system (0+ / 0-)

        Where individuals buy health insurance in a private market so we aren't dependent on employer provided coverage.

        •  problem is there is no question (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SoCalSal

          (zero, none) that the system you advocate was the most dysfunction part of current care. it's 5% of the market and was awful. Only healthy people could afford decent insurance, which changed as soon as you were not healthy. There are staggering numbers Jonathan Cohn presents.

          The best survey on this subject I’ve seen comes from the Center for Health Research and Transformation. In it, nearly half of all people surveyed rated their non-group coverage “fair or poor.” The proportion of respondents who had the same thing to say about employer coverage, Medicare, or Medicaid was half as high. This isn't particularly surprising, given that the most egregious insurance company abuses—rescinding policies for people who get sick, failing to pay for services that beneficiaries assumed were covered—usually come from the non-group market.
          Not only did the policies not function well, people did not like them.

          http://www.newrepublic.com/...

          "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

          by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 10:03:48 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not advocating a return (0+ / 0-)

            To the current system. I favor a truly free market with no tax incentives for employers to provide insurance. All individuals would buy their own insurance and they could buy it from any insurer in any state. I think the increased competition among insurers would drive down premiums and improve patient satisfaction. We do not have a free health insurance market now. The free market has worked to improve goods and services where it is in effect. I don't see why the health insurance market would be different.

            •  what would you do with medicare and medicaid? (0+ / 0-)

              what would you do for the millions who can't afford what you suggest? why do you think it would not be the dysfunctional 5% of the market writ large with recission and profit taking at the expense of delivered care?

              "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

              by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 02:44:27 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I would keep medicare and medicaid (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Greg Dworkin

                but perhaps put means testing in place. I think a free market would work better than our constrained market because of increased competition. Nothing is better than competition for improving quality and driving down prices. I'd have subsidies for the truly needy who couldn't afford the full insurance premium. Competition would lower prices though so premiums would be significantly lower than they are now.

                •  thanks for the response (0+ / 0-)

                  the profit motive drives insurance companies to skimp on health care to make a profit. Therefore regulations are needed. therefore it's not a truly free market.

                  Frankly, it's utopian thinking to think otherwise. We have actually seen how it works. You get kicked off insurance if you cost too much, because of bottom line thinking. Your system only works if you are healthy. And even then, you are often screwed because as what you thought was covered, isn't (like hospitalization that you didn't think you'd need, with the rest of us paying for you. Also known as emergencyroom.gov, the republican health paln).

                  Happens all the time now, even where insurance is competitive. To think "competition" makes that go away is wishful thinking.

                  "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

                  by Greg Dworkin on Thu Nov 21, 2013 at 05:18:05 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

        •  so to get back to your original comment and point (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SoCalSal

          one csan argue about winners and losers, but ACA set out to fix this. it is a feature, not a bug.

          "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

          by Greg Dworkin on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 10:05:04 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Thank you Greg! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Greg Dworkin

    I love that Cohn piece.  It is essential reading because it gets to the heart of facts necessary to even begin a reality based discussion on the "I'm losing my policy" complaints.  I've been trying to get a handle on the numbers as well and while they're elusive, I'm betting the ratio of people not able to  get coverage compared to the ones who feel they will be paying more than their current non-group policies (while ignoring the mandated features that make the new ACA compliant policies better) is going to be at least 10:1.

    Meanwhile the Stromberg article is mostly good too.  High complexity is the problem but was it a free choice of Democrats?  I don't think the Dems had a totally free hand at it and that makes this bit naive at best:

    "High complexity was also the byproduct of Democrats’ choice to keep most of the existing system intact and build around it. "

    I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

    by Satya1 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 08:19:22 AM PST

  •  Thomas Edsall (0+ / 0-)

    Edsall's piece is fine as far as it goes but leans too heavily on the conservative position, articulated most fiercely by David Frum, that the ACA is some kind of Machiavellian scheme to steal from Republican constituencies and give to Democratic ones. This perpuates the conservative conviction that all Democratic legislative actions have no driving force other than single-minded  attempts to undermine the Republican Party.

    In fact, there is a sound health policy basis to ACA financing, and Edsall would grasp that if he spent as much time with, say, Paul Starr as he does with conservative political consultants.

    Frum and his brethren evade the central conundrum of American health care, pre-ACA: Whether by happenstance or design, it was most accessible to those who needed it least and least accessible to those who needed it most. As a result, it was rife with overtreatment and under treatment.

    One could argue that both the access and cost benefits enjoyed by the health care haves were subsidized by the most at-risk population, not a political constituency. (As far as I know, pre-existing conditions are independent of political party.) In this regard, the ACA seeks to reverse a fundamental inequity. If this means that the gravy train ends for a few people, well, someone else was paying the freight anyway.

    "There is no room for injustice anywhere in the American mansion." Lyndon Johnson

    by pkgoode on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 09:31:40 AM PST

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