Thursday, December 17, 2009

What does the health insurance industrial complex have on Obama?

In lieu of an extended post that I have been preparing regarding Obama supporters - apologists vs. critics - the point seems moot as I am not sure that even the apologists support what is happening with the healthcare bill. Believe me, you can be sure the critics don't feel any joy over the way this has gone down either.

Forget licentious Lieberman and his band of amoral cohorts of both parties; Obama has abandoned all opportunities, from the very beginning, for meaningful leadership on healthcare. The insurance lobby must have some very useful information about the President, or someone in his family, that would make him kiss their asses the way he has...right from the get-go when he made the deal with big PhRMA. Remember his support of single payer when he was a State Senator in Illionois?
That was oh so long ago in the Pleistocene Age of politics, right? What happened between then and now?

Obama has chosen to stand on the sidelines while the battle for a decent bill rages on. Why? There has to be a reason. Listening to malignant influencer, Rahm Emanuel, isn't reason enough for Obama to desert his authority. Someone, somewhere knows something he doesn't want us to know. There is simply no other explanation as to why he conceded this whole debate to the health insurance industry. The secret must be a doozy. If it isn't that, please let me know what else it could be. I'm listening. (Please, no tortured explanations of how hard it is lead or what a mess he's had to deal with...)


VeryVenice said...

You may be right. This bill is a disaster. Why even bother? Check out the Howard Dean column in the Washington Post.

Eric Roth said...

Great post and I share your disgust.

Here, however, are three alternative scenarios to blackmail.

1. He's a progressive, but completely incompetent and utterly weak. Everyone - from the insurance companies, GOP senators, corporate lobbyists to China, Iran, and the Taliban see this sad fact. Think Jimmy Carter.

2. He's progressive and incompetent and naive. He made those terrible insider deals thinking everyone would work together for the common good - and he's shocked that corporate lobbyists are pursuing their own interests. This innocence, by the way, is even worse than option number 1. Again, think Jimmy Carter who asked Breznhev to pray together when they first met.

3. Obama was a conservative democrat that attracted a progressive image due to his exotic name and dark skin. Given his actual policy decisions from TARP II to health insurance sellout, this seems quite plausible.

4. Obama is power-hungry politician who is better at winning elections than doing a credible job. He left his State Senate job before passing much legislation, left his Senate job without passing any legislation, and has had a very unsuccessful first year. Perhaps he just wants to be popular, says what his target audience wants to hear at the moment, and doesn't care one iota about the public policy. This is also a plausible reading of the actual Obama track-record.

Let's just say that all possibilities - include the blackmail interpretation - are quite troublesome.