The Private Public Option
For example, we decided, early in the history of our country - that we would be a democracy, not a republic or an aristocracy. Our founding fathers were democrats - especially Thomas Jefferson. He said, "The government that governs the best is that Government which governs the least."
And so, real common sense in government was always the opposition of bankers like Alexander Hamilton - who believed that that country should be set up as a republic, where you hire others to do your talking for you. Lobbyism was not implicit in Hamilton's design - but it is the natural outgrowth of 10 years of republican control.
And recently being freed from the big-spending republicans - the echo of their influence still follows through. A compromise agreement on the floor of the senate, for the healthcare reform - turns the public option into the outside chance that everyone will be able to get healthcare insurance from a non profit organization.
I worked in a place yesterday where I heard alot of local shop talk. In my area, there are thought leaders. Some people who are, to be perfectly honest - quite satisfied with how intelligent they are. And they have helped create a class of political thought in my area which cannot be described as conservative, but definitely republican.
They are vehemently opposed to the chance we have, as Americans, to go all the way with reforming a horribly broken healthcare system. And they will not accept any compromise other than ditching the entire 'Trillion dollar debacle'. These people implicitly accept the role of corporations in their lives. I smiled when one of them went into the place where I was working, and railed about how corporations (and really, to be honest, their lobbyists) were ruining this country - and then in the same breath opposed healthcare reform (that would hold big insurance corporations to task). It was in fact, kind of bizarre - the gentleman was completely underinsured - he'd taken out a policy but in order to afford it on his own (self employed) he made his deductible - are you ready for this? .. 20,000.00$
When I told him that people in England pay, as a part of their taxes, about 800 to 1200.00 a year for their health insurance... it just couldn't add up. It was a concept that required him to actually connect government, to him personally - and not the lobbyists who had sent him the mass-email custom-scripted with his first name on the top - that told him what to think that morning.
And yet, somehow, the leadership in Washington thinks that they can deliver into the waiting arms of yet another corporation the trust and hope that the public option offers. Obama said, in his speech, that the purpose of the public option is to create competition. How have we created competition, by creating a non profit organization that could so easily be influenced by lobbyists?
Unless, of course, you're a republican - and then you accept the concept of lobbyism - because its not really a government of the people, is it... you have an elected representative, like the senator of your state...
We have already seen a war funding bill pass congress, that raised the minimum wage. Its an accomplishment of the republicans - that we'd have a public element of a bill, be executed by a private corporation.
Is there such a thing as being half-pregnant?