The key issue now for Obama
People want to fall in behind a winner at this point. They do not want a big giant freaky convention with the whole super delegate intrigue. Add to that Obama picked up 12 and Clinton lost 3 on that score, and what is happening is what I predicted. Namely, that the superdelegates just aren't a big factor. They are going with the popular vote.
So what may happen is Wisconsin may break to Obama, thats a really competitive race right there. I would offer that if Obama can take Wisconsin it is going to be harder for Clinton to come forward.
The key issue now for Obama is for him to get very simple and direct and eliminate the one key issue left that amongst the people who are really going to the polls in primary - are going to divide against. That is national healthcare.
Obama's plan is a kind of strange frankenstein's monster of progressive ideals and platitudes. Clinton's plan is simple: make the Federal Employees Health Benefit Plan, scale up so that everyone can qualify for it.
That makes sense to the average voter. They can connect the dots. They can understand what happens next. There are also alot of people out there who have some kind of coverage, and thats ok too. But imagine what it would mean to their premium if there were an 800 pound gorilla on the block, stomping on prices. The big pharma and the overmedicators do not want that - they want "Sicko". But if the feds get into it they will definitely steer the game towards a price market that makes sense. Look, if you don't believe me - try this little hospital puzzler - go to your local hospital and ask them. "Hey, I need a cat scan. How much is it." Blank stare. Then "Well, what is your provider" and then you say .. "Oh, I just wanna pay for it".
Its fun watching the smoke come out of their ears. Everything is so effed up pricewise. Why? Because its all crooked - doctors are sending out lab work to firms that are doing the work and giving the doctor a margin on it after the billing is banked to the insurance company. The insurance company is losing out. The patient is losing out. Everyone loses except a crooked pair of people in the chain. Oh, and lets not just leave it there. The hospitals? All have coded in discounts so that if one provider is trying to charge X for a procedure, then - you end up with 40% + X billed so that they end up getting their "price" which is not public information - because they suspect you are a spy with Humana.
And new studies suggest Americans are overmedicating. Which wouldn't surprise me. What is viagra, some kind of sick joke? Do I need to take a pill? Give me a break.
No. In the end, the healthcare system needs a coherent connect-the-dots approach to a federal entity , more than a so called "free market" approach. Premiums are up 87% in the last 10 years, and over 400 acquisitions have been made giving three companies nearly all of the the market (about a good solid score over a third). There is no competition or fairness in standard oil. Only the kind of weird stuff we've been seeing , like in the movie "Sicko" by Moore. Just sad. People are leaving our country just to get healthcare. That doesn't make sense, but its true. And if you're smugly sitting there saying "I have a great policy" ask your goddamn employer what they think of paying off your fucking premiums.
So what does Obama do? Simple. He makes one point. He lets everyone know that the Federal Program that is now running the health plan for congress, will be the one running his plan when he gets into office. People GET the idea that you can add a single Terabyte harddrive and add 200 million accounts and still have 300 Gigs of storage left over for youtube clips of Thomas Jefferson waterskiing on the Potomac or something.
But just be clear. Let them know thats what is going to happen. Not some kind of 'exchange' or 'intermediate' 'saves you money' program. McCain is going to go for letting the big dogs get bigger and go national, so the 'saving you money' angel isn't gonna work in the general.
And if Obama figures out that he can start running his general now, by doing that one thing then the mantle of victor will be placed upon his shoulders like the bright steel of a king's sword. And America will see a new Thomas Jefferson who really can ski the potomac.