Desperate Times in DC: Health Summit Craters and Madness to Follow

February 25, 2010
By John

So it would seem the only way to pass a health reform bill that the public deeply reviles is to misuse Senate rules requiring 60 votes to pass policy legislation, and to cajole, threaten or bribe enough endangered House members to vote once again for this effective nationalization of the health industry.  Well folks, here it comes.  Keep your fire extinguishers at the ready, because the heat from the hinterlands is going to ignite a firestorm all around Washington DC and our nation.

I had a chance to watch some of today’s Health Summit in the Capital.  At best, it was poor political theater, and at worst it was a farce.  There was no real drama, as the minority Republicans sat at a table on one side of the room, and the majority Democrats surrounded the President and the rest of the room.  And they talked and talked and talked.  And everyone had a ‘ somebody done somebody wrong song’ to make their points.

We all knew what their positions were, and we heard them again.  And again.  But this time we had the President himself presiding in judgment over the legislative branches in an unprecedented attempt to revive his dead-as-a-doorknob proposal.  Let’s overlook the unseemliness of the President of the United States playing an arbiter role over the supposedly separate Congressional branch.   He did not acquit himself as impartial or willing to compromise, monopolized too much the conversation, and regrettably showed himself to be tin-eared to the public’s cries to stop the madness.  The words that comes to mind are self-justifying, regal and distant.  And it’s a shame.

The mainstream media punditry and the majority in Congress are all caterwauling over the partisanship that surrounds this issue and the intransigence of the opposition to ObamaCare.  They claim that somehow the supermajority’s inability to enact this legislation is a perfidious act of subversion by a minority party committed to skullduggery.  The fact that there is significant and legitimate disagreement about these hyper-complex, government-centric proposals doesn’t seem to enter their world view.  The problem is so attenuated in their minds, and their compelling need to seize control of it through a bare-knuckled assault on the public’s desires is so intense, that it suggests the majority’s ability to reason is gone.

So what happens if we open this Pandora’s Box and pass this 2700 page labyrinth of lobbyist-funded nonsense with 51 votes in the Senate?  The Democrats are right – reconciliation has been used 20-plus times in the last 20 years.  And it has been used by Republicans more than Democrats.  But has it been used when the public is deeply opposed to the proposal?  No.  Has it been used to make radical policy shifts?  No.  So what happens if the Democrats decide that national health care is worth everything to them, and shove it across the goal line?  Here are the Rough Truth predictions:

  • The November elections will be an 1894-stype wipeout, and Democrats will be swept from power for a generation.  (Post-publication note:  a CNN study mentioned on Drudge Report today said that 56% of Americans believe the federal government now “poses an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens“; and that means many people are afraid of their government; Americans will not tolerate that, and so change must be near at hand).
  • There will be a move to change the Constitution to allow states to recall Federal officials, and to impose term limits.
  • There will be calls for judicial removals, too, as Progressive judges that ratify the actions of this Congress will become toxic.
  • We cannot afford this.  We are insolvent, and descending faster every day.  So the economy will sink into another recession, as this will also raise taxes dramatically – and that on top of the expiration of the Bush cuts.  Yet the forecasted monies will not arrive, and we will be caught between even more tax increases or radical reductions in spending on entitlements and more.  Crisis after crisis will develop, and solutions will be short-term patch work.
  • There will be a series of confrontations over the funding of this bill when the next few Congresses arrive in Washington.  I’m betting the calls to Repeal, Revoke and Rescind this and other bills will get very loud.  The President will veto them – continuing to tax without providing benefits – and a Republican President will have to explain why benefits are being cut after years of paying taxes to get them.  That will be interesting.
  • If and when the minority re-takes Congress and the White House, the filibuster rules will be dead and the restraints the Founders put into the Senate system will finally be gone.  And our nation’s fortunes shall float with the vagaries of each election.  That cannot be good.
  • As the public becomes more aware of what the Congress and Administration have done with this bill, the bailouts and TARP, we are going to hear a new description for their actions emerge – one that is more technically correct than Socialism – and that is Fascism.  And the Rough Truth is that the last 24 months have introduced Allende-style fascism into our nation’s political economy.   The President told the Business Roundtable this in a talk just yesterday, if anyone was listening.

It may sound great to have ‘real democracy’ and a 51 vote requirement in the Senate.  After all, elections do have consequences.  But the filibuster has saved this country from many bad ideas.  And going slow is usually a really good idea on big things.  I fear it’s end will open the floodgates to foolishness and danger this year, and then snap back too far in the years to come.  The Democrats will come to regret this, as a long-term return to a minority status is in the near-term cards.

Ah yes, it is going to get interesting.  Remember to stock up on supplies, including batteries, pitch forks and medicine.  I can feel the heat.

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One Response to “ Desperate Times in DC: Health Summit Craters and Madness to Follow ”

  1. JoJoTo4 on February 26, 2010 at 9:44 am

    I did not get to see the summit but I’ve read most of it. To me it seemed that the President, who by the way this mess is named for, was the least informed person in the room! Stumbling for words he should have the answers too. The democrats came off very mean, arrogant and just downright nasty people. I just don’t understand the people of the United States of America do not want Obama care which should be enough! But the democrats are going to try to push this through without a care for the American people now that’s arrogant! The democrats keep saying work with us then turn around and say, no this is the way it’s going to be. They just don’t hear themselves. The wind of change is in the air. We are tired of all this bickering and lies. Great job John!

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