Much to my delight, I spent most of this week alternately entertaining and chauffeuring an old college pal who was visiting the wilds of Central Ohio. As opposed to sitting in front of a computer speculating about whether Obamacare would pass. I said last week that I thought it would pass, and it will. Anyone who was paying attention to Bart Stupack’s imitation of Hamlet should have known by last Thursday that he was never going to vote ‘no’.
So Obama and Pelosi will have their bill, and Democrats own health care for better or for worse.
Sure, it’s shitty legislation, but I can’t say I’m all that worried. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in 25.5 years of dealing with people and their money, it’s that they will do anything to ensure their standard of living is not lowered. And that’s why I think that much of Obamacare will never actually see the light of day. In the end the mandate will go away, rather quietly, and by mutual consent. Probably via an indefinite delay in implementation. People simply will not tolerate a government order to lower their standard of living; and demanding a family making $88,000 pre-tax to spend $15,000+ after-tax to fulfil Obamacare’s mandate is just that.
And while Obamacare does in many ways threaten our way of life, our liberty and so on and so forth, I’d be lying if I didn’t confess that it really has had its upside as well. It’s been pure, unadulterated joy to watch legions of sanctimonious, holier-than-thou progressives sell out for the sake of pure partisanship and/or personal gain. It’s been fun to watch the kept men like Markos Moulitsas, Matthew Yglesias, Josh Marshall and countless others ditch single payer and the public option as if they had never once considered either worthy of interest, much less their support.
We’re to the point where progressives are now out-Clintoning Bill Clinton. They’re now worse than the DNC Bill Clinton forced upon them. The DNC they loathed. The DNC they’ve so often derided as being so centrist as to be sell-outs. Now they’ve got health care reform written by AHIP and financed by PhARMA, and they couldn’t be happier. They’re now in the same league with boob-jumping evangelists, Hummer-driving treehuggers and spendthrift Republicans… and they couldn’t be happier.
Like I said, that almost makes it all worthwhile.