With a bang and a whimper…

Health care comes at last. With half of us kicking, screaming, wailing, and digging fingernails into the door frame and the other half throwing a kick-ass victory party, America will at long last join the ranks of developed countries who have recognized that health care is a critical piece of the social fabric and the legitimate province of government regulation, even if we are still fidgeting uneasily at the end of the line.

It’s certainly not a perfect bill. And it’s not a quick fix either. The pieces will take several years to fall into place, and there will be kinks along way. Good people will look at the same fact sets and differ over implementation and scope. But finally – finally!! – we are moving in the right direction.

I hope to flesh this out a little more thoroughly in the days to come, but let me put forward just a few salient points:

  • Just for the record, the procedural maneuvers that brought us reconciliation and deem and pass are no more illegitimate than the use of a filibuster to require a super majority of 60 votes.Ā  The Senate was designed to operate on a majority vote, and an excellent case can be made that requiring 60 votes thwarts the expressed will of the majority of the electorate. Reconciliation and deem and pass serve as a check to a dictatorial minority in the Senate.
  • Requiring citizens to purchase health insurance is no more tyrannical than requiring them to purchase car insurance. Uninsured people impose huge costs on the rest of society. It’s just good economics to require everyone to participate in order to minimize costs across the board.
  • Health care cannot be unmoored from its moral implications. I don’t want to get mired down in a debate over whether it’s a right or not. I don’t care what you call it so much, but it is important to recognize that we’re talking about services that make the difference between living and dying, and that changes the terms of the debate in important ways.

If you really can’t bring yourself to find a scrap of good in this, I hope you can at least enjoy the political theater. It’s been unusually exciting lately, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to let up any time soon.

Bon voyage, Rushie baby! Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

4 responses to “With a bang and a whimper…

  1. I first want to say that I’m saying this in love, not a spirit of anger or argumentation (you know I love you :). But I just want you to maybe see what people on the other side are seeing. For those of us opposed (not everyone I guess) it isn’t so much a matter of health care as it is the precedent being set. It is a matter of one day things being take from us and decided for us that we don’t want taken or decided. It may not happen anytime soon, but our children will see it. And it may even be good economics, but sooner or later this type of economics historically leads to a system our country was never intended for. I don’t think everyone is looking at the long term implications this may have. I know you wont agree with me, or I with you. But there are other sides to this that aren’t just ignorance or stubbornness or unwillingness to change. And that is the beauty of being sisters in Christ. We don’t have to agree. But I think we can see our opposing views openly and with a spirit of love and understanding. Love you Monica šŸ™‚

    • I know you love me. šŸ™‚ I ā¤ you too.

      For the record, I do understand that there are legitimate policy objections to this particular reform package, and I also understand that there are legitimate differences of opinion as to the appropriate realm of public policy. I believe that access to health care is a vital public service that the government needs to ensure is at least minimally available to all of the citizenry, but it's OK if you don't. That's why we have frequent elections. šŸ˜‰ So that everyone gets their day in the sun. While I find a great many of the objections that come out of leading conservatives unbelievably short-sighted and self-serving, I don't for a minute think that there aren't thoughtful, concerned, compassionate, reasonable people on the other side of the debate.

  2. And that is why I can respect you and those like you. I know you are open and understanding. Some aren’t and it can be very difficult. It makes it easier when everyone is a little more compassionate. I just wish more people were. I think there are those (not you šŸ™‚ who jump to conclusions no matter which view you hold.

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