Free Markets, Free People

“Health Care Reform” Passes The Senate, Lady Liberty Passes Out

As I and others have been saying when this legislative process began, the Democrats are going to pass something and call it “health care reform”. The absolute best that can be said about this abomination of a bill just passed in the Senate is they’ve managed that.

In every measure possible, this became about politics, not the people. It clearly degenerated from a goal some considered worthy (and others considered beyond the scope of government and wasteful) to simply an exercise in raw power with an aim at producing anything they could label as reform.

Well, apparently we have it. The New York Times reports:

The Senate voted Thursday to reinvent the nation’s health care system, passing a bill to guarantee access to health insurance for tens of millions of Americans and to rein in health costs as proposed by President Obama.

Or course the bill doesn’t provide insurance for other tens of millions (but it does provide fines or jail for them if they don’t get it) – the supposed original purpose of the legislation.  And the NYT doesn’t report that President Obama, on the day that he signs the bill, will break yet another vow about refusing to sign anything that bends the health care cost curve up. In a disgraceful gaming of the system, Democrats used the 10 year window within which the CBO is statutorily required to work (and other machinations) to present a false picture to the American people of the cost of this monstrosity. And when President Obama signs it into law, he will know full well that he’s breaking his word and has set the future of American health care on a steeper path to insolvency.

This bill belongs solely to the Democrats as Olympia Snowe, the Republican most likely to be picked off by Democrats in any effort to make the process “bi-partisan” attests:

“I was extremely disappointed,” Ms. Snowe said. After Senate Democrats locked up 60 votes within their caucus, she said, “there was zero opportunity to amend the bill or modify it, and Democrats had no incentive to reach across the aisle.”

It also made an absolute travesty of the legislative process – a bill concocted in secret by the Senate Majority Leader, unavailable to other Senators until very late in the process and, of course, leaving no time to carefully read, consider or debate what was in it. Bribes for votes were blatantly written in to the bill. As one person noted, when you bribe a public official, usually you use your own money. Harry Reid bribed public officials using our money.

It was a pathetic and disgusting performance by the supposed “greatest deliberative body on earth”. There was no deliberation. Raw politics shoved a grossly costly, freedom limiting bureaucratic nightmare which we can’t afford through based on bribes and politics. Even David Broder wondered how you celebrated this mess, asking “how do you applaud while holding your nose?” Everyone who voted “yes” for this, and especially those who engineered its passage in the manner they did, should hang their head in abject shame. They made a mockery of a system set up to serve the people and instead made it a slave to party politics.

And, as Warren Meyer at Coyote Blog notes, even the silver lining isn’t so shiny:

The bad news: The Democrats are going to pass a half-baked mess of health care insurance changes. Several opponents of the bill are saying there is a silver lining — that this will allow Republicans, who did such a bang-up job when they last controlled Congress and the Presidency, to get back in power. Color me less than excited.

We’ve all been badly served by this government and these political parties. This legislation is a culmination of a decades long process, participated in by both Republicans and Democrats alike, which has essentially turned a liberty loving people into serfs who are answerable too and controlled by an ever increasingly powerful and intrusive government.

Richard Fernandez, at Belmont Club, uses the Detroit and California as the inevitable ends of this sort of “governing” and wonders:

Given the scale of the failures of Detroit and perhaps now of California why is repeating the same mistakes not only inevitable but actually described as being desirable public policy? Maybe it is because we cannot help ourselves. Consider that before the year is out the Senate may have voted in health care bill which a majority of voters, if polls are to be believed, actually detest but which they are going to get anyway. Like the residents of Detroit, we take the handout we know will kill us and do it despite everything.

Yes, like good serfs, we’ll knuckle our foreheads and thank the aristocracy which has just taken more of our freedom and money to use as they wish to use it and reward them by giving them additional chances to increase their power and further erode ours. And anyone who stands up in the shadow of this monstrosity and the process that brought it to fruition and says this is exactly what those who founded this country envisioned is a damnable and contemptible liar.



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27 Responses to “Health Care Reform” Passes The Senate, Lady Liberty Passes Out

  • The Detroit situation is all wrong.  White flight with the ’67 riots and with it happening in other major cities at the same time leads to a common myth about Detroit.  A first wave of it occurred then, true.
    White flight that had the impact on the city leading it to become a wasteland occurred primarily in the 70’s with the election of a specific mayor with the help of white liberals (many of whom are now former liberals).  An environment which said pretty much, get out was developed.  This included industry.  Auto plants in Detroit from that time have ad hoc mesh fencing over their windows and a high frequency of guard houses and guard towers in the their parking lots.  Then the shrinking tax base forcing more tax burden on auto facilities pretty much sealed the deal.
    The jobs went to the suburbs, lost to technology, or left the country.  They didn’t go to low wage states barring a token return.

  • Short of the white flight the Dems are pretty much crafting policies that say, “Get out.”
    I’m simply at a loss for words for how the Senate could have done something so wrong.

  • Still a long way to go before this abomination becomes law.

  • As John the Baptist once said, “He must increase, but [we] must decrease.”

  • So…  No eggnog then?

  • A lot more nog than egg, I think.

  • It’s that special touch where Americans are quite clear they don’t want it.
    The Democrats responded by snapping on the latex glove and telling everyone to bend over.
    Had enough yet?

    • No, of course not.
      Thats why you see statements like this:
      “We’ve all been badly served by this government and these political parties.”
      Now if the above had been written in 1809 it would have some credibility, but it was written by McQ in 2009 and that is an embarrassment.

  • I am feeling strangely good about this.  You see, just after the election I thought it would be worse, much worse. I thought we would get a UK style health care, and card check, and cap and trade, and a bunch of other garbage.
    But now it looks like they have barely gotten their victory and they will pay a price for it. I don’t see them having anymore electoral victories on any big items.
    It is bad, real bad, but not nearly as bad as I thought it would be.

  • But do the Repubs have the cojones to roll it all back?
    Do they have the SMARTS?
    <crickets chirping>

    • Well, first understand that the current crop of establishment Republicans is mostly indifferent about rolling it back. They are looking at Democratic overreach, shown by the polls and the Tea Parties, and thinking that if they just keep their heads down the Democrats are going to hand them a victory next fall.

      If they get what they expect, I think we’ve just kicked the ball down the road aways. They will regain much of their power and influence, and they won’t even have to *promise* to do anything, much less actually do it. They can hamstring Obama the same way the Pelosi Dems hamstrung Bush, and one of them (with at least a hundred thinking “It might be me”) will replace Obama after 2012.

      Then we’ll be back to the Bush years, with the establishment Republicans, their political consultants, and their “anything is better than the Democrats” supporters in the media all wailing about the necessity for the big tent, lest the boogeyman of Democratic domination return. We’ll see amnesty for illegals floated again, tinkering around the edges on the federalization of healthcare, and various expansions of the welfare state. We won’t see any serious spending decreases, nor any of the most obvious actions that would reduce power, size, and cost of the federal government. They don’t really want that kind of rollback, not in their hearts, because if they did we would have heard the evidence for that long ago.

      We *might* see a repeal of the insurance mandate because of its extreme unpopularity, but it’s more likely that they let the Supreme Court do that work instead of taking responsibility for it directly. That way, they don’t have to stand up to their insurance company buddies, plus they get to tell their base for the next ten elections “See how important it is we get elected, so we can put the right Supreme Court justices in place?”

      Without a successful third party or a complete palace revolution within the GOP, we’ll see no signficant change. The current Republican establishment is lost, completely lost. They know nothing except gaining and holding political office. They don’t really want to know anything else.

      • Amen to that! As Shakespeare once said, “A pox on both their houses!”

      • That’s my worry as well — That the same old RINO’s who “love to play the game” of politics will be back at the head of the party.  It seems to me their primary interest in a candidate is “Can he win?”, instead of “What’s his experience?  What  are his principles?  Can he lead the country?”  Their “big tent – we encourage diversity of beliefs and values” attempt at gaining new members leaves me cold.  I want a fiscally-conservative, small-government  party.  The current GOP is only slightly less liberal than the Democrats, yet pretends they uphold conservative principles.  They’re really just the “Democrat-lite” party.  Their focus is to WIN, not to SERVE.    (Bleh.)

      • Billy HollisThe current Republican establishment is lost, completely lost. They know nothing except gaining and holding political office. They don’t really want to know anything else.

        Sad but absolutely true.  MiniTru, as part of its ongoing effort to boost the bill and tear down the GOP, has this to say just this morning:

        GOP lawmakers change tune on costly health plans

        Democrats are troubled by the inconsistency of Republican lawmakers who approved a major Medicare expansion six years ago that has added tens of billions of dollars to federal deficits, but oppose current health overhaul plans.
        All current GOP senators, including the 24 who voted for the 2003 Medicare expansion, oppose the health care bill that’s backed by President Barack Obama and most congressional Democrats.

        Even MiniTru recognizes that the GOP is NOT a party of fiscal responsibility and small government.  It truly is “democrat lite”.

  • “I was extremely disappointed,” Ms. Snowe said. After Senate Democrats locked up 60 votes within their caucus, she said, “there was zero opportunity to amend the bill or modify it, and Democrats had no incentive to reach across the aisle.”

    Uh huh.
    So Ms Snowe, did you learn anything?

    • I believe the phrase is, “Always learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth…”