Thursday, February 10, 2011
The constitutional lawsuits against he Obama health insurance bill now offer the liberal minority a golden opportunity, which should not be missed. It appears from all the writing on this subject that a decision to raise taxes to pay for a single-payer health insurance plan would be legal, and that the machinations of the blockers would have to rest on advisability rather than mandates to buy. Once a plan payed for by a general levy, say by a percentage addition to the income tax and was named for the cost of a gift to the general population of “free” health insurance paid by US, the cost would become an issue in its own right. At the time that Obama decided to play softly, softly with the party of NO, there was a substantial majority in favor of single payer, and the closing of other ways of paying it by constitutional maneuverings leaves it in a position to raise the issue again, this time in time for the 2012 election. Also, the blockage of the compromise was not by the Dems, but by those championing the predatory blockage by the profiteers. In an atmosphere where the alternative has been closed, it would be just right to turn the 2012 election around that question. And it would not be the liberals that blocked the soft turn to compromise. Of course, all this would bespeak a hormonal recovery by the Dem party, and a straight opportunity for the people to enact their own health salvation by kicking the GOP out of the Congress. Those who believe in the people can propose this resolution under the urgency of the word “must”. There is a certain satisfaction in the stratagem of laying this matter into the hands of the People, and for them to rise or fall by their own vote. Then we might see what the People really want. The theorists of Democracy have always told us that taking a good or bad outcome by your own choice beats having it forced upon you by someone else’s power.
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
We hear a lot about entitlements these days, in a tone of inaudible snickering, as though the laws which detail the safety net provisions detailing them were somehow suspect, like the Obama birth certificate also beloved by the snickerers. Actually, it might be worthwhile to master this skill, for use in referring to Republicans. There are many cases of laws laid down for the benefits of a particular section of society, but the subtle sneers seem reserved for those who are poor and nearly helpless, unlike banksters and hedge fund scams. Attacks on these latter are dismissed as class warfare. The public is so used to special laws favoring the rich and well-connected that they have long since quit taking note of those special laws, such as the one passed in the 1930s tailored for the tax needs of Louis B. Mayer, the movie mogul. In the late 18th century, the laws of monarchial France favoring the princes and dukes were so old and well-established that the struggling masses had ceased to comment on them. Even in more democratic England in the XIX Century, it was common for a bank or an economic scheme to rent the name and title of a duke, or at least a baron, as a façade to legitimatize its predations. Those without any particular talent for the enterprise understood that society would rather enter any such undertaking as the underling of a man who called himself a noble than take a chance with one of the (sneer) common people. The idiocy continues today in nations that still vote for the scions of supposedly superior people. It is time to announce that the snickering use of the word “entitlements” is the mark of a snake-oil salesman, seeking to turn the working population against the laws that protect their homes, their jobs, their incomes, and their pensions. We should recognize that the sneer should apply instead to those who implicitly suggest that legal protections apply solely to working people and that there is something dirty about them. Only a fool would fall for that scam.