Saturday, August 29, 2009

Health care rally

Dropped by the health care rally that the Obama organization (Organizing for America) put on today. Not a bad turnout, probably 800-1,000, although it was hard for me to tell since I strolled into the back and couldn't judge how many people were seated on the ground. I'm not a big fan of these rallies, as carrying signs and being led on inane chants don't really do it for me, but I felt people like in the Silent Thinking Majority need to get ourselves out there more. So let it begin with me, etc.

Rep. Gwen Moore gave a good speech in favor of reform, showing how health care costs cascade their way through a number of areas of our lives. I don't think the Dems have done a good enough job explaining that health care reform is a necessity to improve American business and fiscal competitiveness. Allowing the for-profit sector to continue to run this without the large-scale competitor that a government option would be means higher premiums for both employers and employees, with health care costs getting in the way of chances for growth and expansion, and probably more companies choosing not to cover, which pushes this burden onto the worker and the taxpayer.

We need to start drawing this debate as a matter of choice and competitiveness vs. the ever-increasing limitations of keeping the status quo. I think us on the lefT have grown tired of the ignorant anti-reform complaints and the lack of explanation of why this is so critical. And it's especially disappointing that we don't talk enough about how increasing health care costs are already driving up budgets to unsustainable levels, in covering government-paid jobs like police officers, fire fighters and teachers, and also how the private-sector contractors can increase what they charge for publicly-assisted coverage like Medicaid and Medicare Part D (showing to be the ridiculous corporate giveaway we feared it might be).

The next few weeks are critical, but one of the chants at the rally grabbed my attention. It was "Get it done." I think people are demanding ACTION, and woe be to the group that tries to block final action from occurring. If that is made clear, I think reality will sink for the Senate Blue Dogs, and something will get passed. It might not be enough for my taste, but getting something is preferable for 2009, because once the benefits become obvious, you'll see a lot more in 2011 and beyond. And that's exactly what the GOP is scared of, which is all the more reason to do it.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Quick update

Can I take back that Brewer take in early June? Not a fun year for the Brew Crew anymore. Yuck.

And my June points on health care still stand. In fact, if these health insurance companies have enough time and money to use all this effort lobbying against real reform, isn't that proof they have excessive profit? And that profit comes from Econ 101 lessons- monopoly of inelastic services = big opportunity to have your way.

If these companies can't compete with government using THEIR economies of scale, doesn't that mean they don't deserve to stay afloat? That sounds like the way capitalism should work to me: do your job well, or get beat by someone who can do it better. But these folks want feudalism, not capitalism, with us being the serfs. That's the REAL answer.

As I said earlier, Obama and the Senate Dems better go big and to the left, or else they will be the ones who pay the price for pussing out. Should be an interesting next month.