We realize the members of the new party will ultimately arrive at permanent probably grander name, but we needed a working label. By focusing on the future we hoped to leave behind some of the historical baggage standing in the way of progress. It seems we as a nation keep singing “another someone done someone wrong song.” Various minorities seeking the end of white privilege, women retribution on men for a catalogue of miseries and Asians wondering how they arrived at a place where everybody else takes it out on them. Most of those indicted for group offenses feel they personally did nothing wrong but they and theirs face paying a price anyway.. The truth is everyone has a grievance against someone over something in the past. This isn’t to minimize past horrors, just the realization exacting a price from the innocent just creates more animosity. Descendants of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe coming well after the civil war called on to pay for the sins of slavery or worse children of Vietnamese boat people forced to surrender their rightful place at a top University may feel unfairly singled out.. Grievance begets grievance in an endless cycle. While arguing over how to achieve the impossible task of evening up the score for everyone’s past, we can’t move on to solving our present and future problems. In any case our two major parties have made the politics of grievance and reaction into an art form. No one is going to outdo these two masters in appealing to the aggrieved. Rather than being mired in the past, listen to the words of Nelson Mandala, “Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward.”
“Medicare for all would cost $32 trillion” ,”stripped down low-cost policies now available”, “Obamacare loses pre-existing condition protections”, “Democrats will highlight Healthcare in the mid-terms” and “House bill allows for more Health Savings Account (HSA) Flexibility”. Healthcare has been in the news lately and in political campaigns signifying noise but little forward motion. Democrats in many of the mid-term races are making healthcare a centerpiece. What that means varies between bailing out Obamacare to Medicare for All. By easing requirements to cover pre-existing condition and allowing stripped down short-term health policies the administration further destabilized the already wobbly Obamacare. What these efforts won’t do is bring us closer to a workable health policy. Just more nails in the Obamacare coffin without replacing it with a workable healthcare plan.
Charging into the breach, progressives led by Sen. Bernie Sanders and his young Congressional candidate companion, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez with their plan to save the day, Medicare for All. The idea is everybody loves Medicare so let’s give it to everybody. On the face of it, it would seem a poor idea to add millions and millions of people to a program that no longer is keeping its head above water. Adding to the idea’s questionable fiscal sanity was a report by Charles Blahous of Mercatus Center at George Mason University showing the plan would add $32.6 trillion over the first decade of Medicare for All. Not deterred, Sen. Sanders and Ms. Ocasio-Cortez proffered Blahous’s report actually shows when all healthcare costs are figured in Medicare for All is a great bargain. Mr. Blahous apparently wasn’t amused and took to the Wall Street Journal Op-Ed page to show that this clearly was untrue. Citing not only his work but other concurring studies he laid waste to the Sanders-Ocasio-Cortez talking points. One would think that would be the end of their use of his report in their talking points, but you would be wrong. Days after the OP-Ed was published, MS. Ocasio-Cortez appeared on Chris Cuomo’s CNN prime-time show and repeated the same discredited talking point that Blahous’s report shows Medicare for All is a bargain. Of course Chris Cuomo brought up Blahous’ refutation of everything she was saying. Wrong. He sat there never uttering a question or fact. Now in show prep for her appearance this WSJ OP-Ed surely would’ve come up. We always thought Cuomo was a dim bulb but where were the producers? Cuomo just thanked Ocasio-Cortez profusely for her appearance and insights. Apparently Bernie and Alexandria will repeat this refuted talking point at every opportunity. Such is the state our healthcare discussion.