Patterico's Pontifications

7/16/2017

Rand Paul, ObamaCare, and the “Don’t Let the Perfect Be the Enemy of the Good” Argument

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:38 am

It has become accepted wisdom in Washington that the most we can do about ObamaCare is tinker with it around the edges. Make marginal improvements. Don’t let the perfect become the enemy of the good, we are told.

One man, and one man alone, has consistently made a strong and public case insisting that Republicans keep their promise to repeal ObamaCare. That man is Rand Paul.

I think he deserves some praise and support, for being (as far as I can tell) the only Republican vocally demanding that the GOP do what it promised to do.

Once, Ted Cruz had a plan for dealing with ObamaCare. I talked about it in detail in this post from March. But today I want to concentrate on the first point he made:

First, begin with the 2015 repeal language. . . . Virtually every Republican in Congress voted for that language, and the parliamentarian has already ruled it as permissible. We should begin with that previously approved repeal language as the baseline.

Today, Cruz has given up on that goal. Mike Lee, whom I respect deeply, has given up on that goal. They are apparently willing to retain the ObamaCare subsidies that are doomed to drive up premiums, just as any government subsidy drives up costs (hey, has anyone noticed that higher education is a tad expensive these days?). They are apparently willing to retain most of the basic structure of ObamaCare, as long as insurance companies can offer non-ObamaCare compliant plans in addition to ObamaCare-compliant ones.

We know this isn’t their ideal solution. Cruz’s ideal solution is what I described in the March post linked above. But it is what they are settling for.

And that’s too bad. Do I blame Cruz and Lee? Only a little. There’s plenty of blame to go around — from a dishonest news media that pretends that even Cruz’s proposal is draconian, to an electorate that increasingly wants goodies without responsibility, to an education system that fails to teach basic economic principles, to a President who loves him some big government and decries even the most lily-livered tinkering as “mean.”

But I’ll be damned if I am going to be lectured by people who tell me we have to settle because hey, at least this bill is better. It’s a surrender. Don’t talk to me about Medicaid cuts. They aren’t happening. Cuts to government programs in the out-years are always phony. Always always always. The whole edifice has to be dismantled. (The details of that dismantlement are described in detail in my March post.)

I can already hear people saying: but you can’t do this to people. I commend my entire March post to you, but let me quote a couple of paragraphs for the non-clickers. The “too long, didn’t read” answer is that economics is about allocating scarce resources, and most resources are scarce:

What about the people who can’t afford insurance (or who are simply irresponsible and do not buy insurance)? Well, first of all, with the above reforms, there would be far fewer people in that situation than there were in 2008, before ObamaCare was passed. But in the end, this is a separate question from the basic policy of how to repeal ObamaCare. There will always be the less fortunate in society who can’t afford some of the basics of life: housing, food, health care, and the like. And there will always be people who are irresponsible and don’t plan for their future, whether it’s in the area of health insurance, life insurance, retirement, their kids’ education . . . the list goes on.

For these groups of people, there will always be a tension between people like me, who recommend that such issues be taken care of by charity and the private sector when the problems to be addressed are serious or life-threatening, and leftists who want the government to take care of everybody. Either way, the reality of the world is that resources are scarce, and not every need can be met. This will always be true under any system. Government cannot simply decree that everyone will receive the best possible care for every illness. Any system, whether public or private, will result in some people not being able to access scarce resources. No government health care system is a panacea, and anyone who keeps their eyes open and watches for stories of people being mistreated under socialized health care will find them. The VA is just the tip of the iceberg.

But the solution is not to give ideal care to people who could have bought insurance but chose not to. Imagine doing that with any other type of insurance: Gallant buys a fire insurance policy and Goofus does not — but Goofus knows that government will buy him a new house if his house burns down. Goofus is not going to buy insurance in that scenario — and Gallant won’t either. The concept of insurance is destroyed by such an arrangement. Some Goofuses are going to suffer in the free market — but again, no resources in this world are unlimited, and Goofus will never have all his needs met without contributing to society.

Rand Paul’s position, and my position, are lonely positions to hold. There’s this thing called electoral reality, we are told, that should prevent us from advocating we think actually ought to happen, and should force us to settle for tiny chimerical improvements.

That’s not how real change happens. It’s the kind of thing, frankly, that ObamaCare proponents were told. You can’t remake health care. People have tried. It’s too big a task. But they actually cared about ObamaCare.

The GOP once claimed to care about repealing ObamaCare. Again, just about every Republican in Congress voted to repeal it. Yet they are not being asked, again and again, why they aren’t simply implementing what they claimed to want to implement in 2015.

Don’t let the perfect become the enemy of the good? No, I’d characterize the GOP’s proposal in a different way. Like this: Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the chance to take joint responsibility for a socialistic program that will ruin 1/6 of the economy. Or this: Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the concession that this tiny meaningless improvement to the status quo is the best we’ll ever do.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back.]

86 Responses to “Rand Paul, ObamaCare, and the “Don’t Let the Perfect Be the Enemy of the Good” Argument”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  2. Make America Great Again could be translated as “Every Man/Woman and Child for yourself.” Is that too “mean” to be signed?

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  3. Rand Paul lifeboat syndrome…’sorry, we’re full’

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  4. Repeal.

    If you only change it, you own it.

    And even though The Unaffordable Care Act is already a total fail, the Democrats will use it as a club to bludgeon the Repubs in 2018 and 2020 with their willing accomplice the news media.

    I saw a great cartoon, can’t find it now, of the GOP Elephant in a store looking at a completely destroyed humpty-dumpty shaped thing with ‘OBAMACARE‘ written on it, completely shattered and wrapped as a bundle of parts. The clerk says “you break it, you buy it”

    Exactly, the double standard will be huge with this issue and the Dems/media will lie through their teeth that the soaring costs and huge wait times are all the fault of the Repubs.

    Look at the story in the Times this week about The United States handing Iraq to Iran, it….does….not….mention…..Chairman Zero, except after about 40 paragraphs and only in the context of a UN meeting in 2016. It was he who engineered the giveaway after taking credit for the Surge he opposed.

    If the Repubs have the balls, they’ll repeal and introduce the same free markedly rules for health care that keep cosmetic surgery and veterinary prices much lower than everything else, they aren’t subsidized.

    harkin (140d0a)

  5. Nice shotgun blast harkonnen.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  6. To pass the kind of genuinely revolutionary healthcare reform that is needed — which would include not just abolition of Obamacare, but getting the federal government out of the health insurance business; which would reintroduce free-market economics and informed patient choices made with financial skin in the game; and which would likewise end Medicaid as we know it and return the function of indigent healthcare entirely to the states, including the funding thereof — there would need to be a comprehensive reeducation of the American public on matters economic and civic.

    Instead, as the 2016 cycle demonstrated, we’re moving toward a stupider, shallower electorate.

    Nobody in DC — including Rand Paul, for whom I share no warm feelings or respect, because he’s not helping anything or anyone, he’s just being contrary and a showboat right now — is doing anything more than rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.

    I expect that our healthcare system will collapse into rationed single-payer crap within five years, ten at the very outside. The “war” over healthcare isn’t over, but its outcome is already decided.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  7. The “too long, didn’t read” answer is that economics is about allocating scarce resources, and most resources are scarce:

    Don’t be absurd; all resources are scarce.

    CayleyGraph (4db457)

  8. We don’t consider air to be scarce even though there is a finite supply.

    Patterico (117533)

  9. To pass the kind of genuinely revolutionary healthcare reform that is needed — which would include not just abolition of Obamacare, but getting the federal government out of the health insurance business; which would reintroduce free-market economics and informed patient choices made with financial skin in the game; and which would likewise end Medicaid as we know it and return the function of indigent healthcare entirely to the states, including the funding thereof — there would need to be a comprehensive reeducation of the American public on matters economic and civic.

    Instead, as the 2016 cycle demonstrated, we’re moving toward a stupider, shallower electorate.

    Nobody in DC — including Rand Paul, for whom I share no warm feelings or respect, because he’s not helping anything or anyone, he’s just being contrary and a showboat right now — is doing anything more than rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.

    I’m confused by your comment. He espouses the very sorts of solutions you propose — and they are the right solutions — yet you give him no credit for being a strong voice on those issues. Why not?

    Patterico (117533)

  10. Rand Paul wants to vote aaginst a bill that he’s telling everyone else will pass. He’s be doing this for some time – I heard it again today.

    He’s proposing twoo bills br e brought to the sednate floor.

    Bill 1: A plain repeal of Obamacare. He will vote for that.

    Bill 2: A replacement for Obamacare. He will vote against it, but he says yiu can get something that will get Democratic votes.

    This way he (and others) will keep their camopaign promises to repeal Obamacar (although actually it as Repeal and Replace

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  11. You need massive government subsidies, but not in a way that drives up costs. Dems are protecting certain parts of the medical industry, particularly I suppose any part that is unionized.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  12. We also need a free market – in health care, not health insurance.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  13. they’ve dragged it out to where who even gives a crap anymore

    failmerican healthcare just kinda is what it is now

    don’t get sick

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  14. 1. Talking about what the House passed when they knew it wasn’t going anywhere is pointless. News at 11: Politicians posture. It’s not a particularly honest argument.

    2. The Reform bill (that’s what they all are) started out fairly well with the original House bill. Nearly every Republican will come to rue the day that this was not passed through both houses.

    3. Since then, the bill has been laden with poison pills. Both centrist and hard right Republicans have added things they KNOW will just enrage the other side. Every iteration is less workable and more hostile to people who have had Obamacare FORCED ON THEM. Now the GOP is going o use them as a social experiment, too.

    4. There was some hope that the costs to older Americans would come down, as they are often running at 30% of income, just for premiums. But each iteration makes it clear that those costs will jump. You are going to have 60-year-olds going without insurance for the first time in their lives, so that deadbeats who are gaming the system can continue to be covered.

    5. And, having broken the thing 17 different ways, the GOP will DESERVEDLY take the blame.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  15. In the end, the GOP will “compromise” with the Democrats and the result will be Obamacare forever. At least until the Dems get the votes for single payer. Ryan’s bill led to a much better system, but in seeking protection, the GOP has achieved surrender.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  16. *protection = perfection

    Kevin M (752a26)

  17. Meanwhile according to Cato the Cruz “Freedom Option” has been neutered in the bill.

    This draft imposes ObamaCare’s “single risk pool” price controls on “freedom option” plans. Long story short, that means there is no “freedom option” in this bill. Insurers probably would not even offer non-compliant plans. If they did, ObamaCare’s “single risk pool” price controls would make secure, guaranteed-renewable health insurance impossible by taxing such plans to death.

    Ryan, McConnell and the rest of the republican talk-tough but go-along caucus are the real problem.

    crazy (11d38b)

  18. Single-payer, the only long range answer is inevitable.

    I blame Obama..

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  19. Make America Great Again could be translated as “Every Man/Woman and Child for yourself.” Is that too “mean” to be signed?
    Ben burn (b3d5ab) — 7/16/2017 @ 11:54 am

    I don’t mind me and my wife working our little farm out on La Frontera providing the Feds keep back the Comancheros. Like GM used to say, It’s job one.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  20. Rand Paul knows that there is no possibility of comprehensive revisions now. He’s using that as his excuse to showboat. Lee and Cruz and others are indeed trying to do that which can be done now, realistically, which is a sorry shadow of what needs to be done. Paul isn’t trying to educate anyone or build the kind of public understanding and support which translates into political capital. He’s just railing against other Republicans. So in my eyes, he’s just being obstructive and contrarian: He isn’t fixing things, he’s insisting on the ideal, but not moving anything any closer to the ideal, or doing anything constructive.

    He’s not a strong voice. He’s a loud voice to no effect.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  21. @4 harkin

    Local pickup only. No returns.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  22. They just need to make those blood pressure machines at the drug stores big enough to stick your head in.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  23. yeah but they won’t cause of liability issues

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  24. Paul isn’t trying to educate anyone or build the kind of public understanding and support which translates into political capital.

    He had a piece at Breitbart which I thought made a very good case.

    Sometimes I think being vocal about sticking to your principles is the most valuable thing you can do as a politician. It helps move the vaunted “Overton Window” and gives people something to think about.

    I think he has been fantastic on this issue. I’m not sure what, specifically, he could do that you would find praiseworthy that he hasn’t already done. Unless it’s to go the Cruz/Lee route — which, as I explained in the post, I see as pure surrender.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  25. Texas or New Mexico la frontera?

    I thought cactus was the cash crop.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  26. Health care reform — its substance, and the urgent, hard, and mutually exclusive choices that must be confronted and made now — should have been one of the defining issues in the 2016 election cycle.

    Instead both parties nominated candidates who refuse to acknowledge the problems and offer nothing but more big government borrowing-financed patches as the system moves inexorably toward collapse.

    Now it’s too late for Rand Paul or anyone to do the kind of sustained efforts necessary to gather the political capital necessary to reform the system. Rand Paul isn’t even trying to rearrange the deck chairs, he’s tripping the people who’re doing that. It won’t matter how many he trips, since the Titanic is going down anyway. But he ought not pretend that tripping the people rearranging the deck chairs is saving the ship or any of its passengers. It just makes him a smug jerk while everyone drowns.

    I don’t think there are any good outcomes here anymore. If he could educate people about why they’re choosing among the least-worst outcomes, that would be marginally constructive. But instead of a positive message, all anyone (except maybe a few who are already on board and sympathetic to these proposals) will get as their takeaway from listening to Rand Paul right now is: “All the other Republicans are traitors.” He’s become a useful idiot for the Dems in that.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  27. Patterico: Does Rand believe in a national highway system funded by federal taxes? Seriously inquiring..

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  28. i regard Senator Paul as being genuinely principled and not a narcissistic showboat like Ted Cruz has so often been in the past but I think he’s behind the curve on this issue

    nobody has a vested interest in crafting a quality health care system that’s not chock full of graft and corruption

    if you’re not even paying attention you can still tell what a joke this whole thing is by how everyone is kow-towing to a nasty corrupt pig like Lisa Murkowski

    these trashy-assed senators aren’t people what are seriously trying to craft good health care policy, and Rand Paul’s energies would be better spent on a serious issue where some good policy can still be enacted

    flush this turd bill or enact it who cares

    this is just boring now

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  29. A fun medical fact of sorts: In between composing music and decomposing patients, Dr Jack Kevorkian invented a cervical biopsy punch. I don’t think it had an on switch though.

    I think that’s where he got his ef you money.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  30. *protection = perfection
    Kevin M (752a26) — 7/16/2017 @ 2:16 pm

    If you don’t pay your premium, be a shame if your pizza place burns down.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  31. Texas or New Mexico la frontera?

    I thought cactus was the cash crop

    Tennessee in this case. My Way Way Back Machina went haywire.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  32. Nopales

    No Peace

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  33. 11.You need massive government subsidies, but not in a way that drives up costs. Dems are protecting certain parts of the medical industry, particularly I suppose any part that is unionized.

    Don’t forget one of the things that Dems wanted to follow Obamacare was mandatory unionization of home healthcare workers, one of the fastest growing sectors. With that unionization they’ll dig in like ticks to get at the union funds for their campaign war chests. They will also write in union contracts similar to many other union/public employee CBA’s that require pay to be based on a formula that uses minimum wage, another reason they’re fighting so hard for $15+ hour laws. When minimum wages go up, all the union pay goes up accordingly.

    harkin (536957)

  34. Sense of humor so NOT Tennessee, no offense. Early George Carlin, but he was New Yawk.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  35. Now that is entirely clear that DJT and the leadership did not mean what they said on this central issue, it’s time to stop dealing with them in any serious way. Ted is making a serious error by doing so.

    It is quite beyond me how the GOPe has calculated it is better to put lipstick on this pig and take ownership of it. All of it is on the Dems and their obstructionism this very day condemns them as their system collapses. Yet it is the GOP who is in a panic. That they can’t figure out how to affix near-universal blame on the Dems for the current state of healthcare finances is truly pathetic.

    What a tragedy the stay of execution we voted ourselves last November has become. It was our last, best chance. DJT, as the outsider (Attkisson calls him the Wildcard), had a puncher’s shot at rolling back the crushing State. Good on Rand Paul to call it out.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  36. I just want a health care bill that gets The Captain and Tennille back together.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  37. sleazy kentucky trash senator Mitch McConnell never had any intention of repealing obamacare

    he just want to get his corrupt pig wife a cushy pension job

    and it’s the junior senator from Kentucky who comes closest to calling him out on this

    that’s as close to a display of good character as these trashy senate worms get anymore

    torture-turd John McCain just wants sweet sweet welfare monies for his illiterate, dusty constituents

    same with nasty-assed ohio burn victim John Kasich

    these people are sick, amoral, and deeply corrupt

    some of us understood this when all the trashy senators got behind perverted slicked-up Mitt Romney, the sleazy liar who invented obamacare

    some of us are a little slower catching onto these things

    but the key thing is we’re all on the same page now

    we should have a pancake breakfast to raise money for unicef

    don’t wanna waste the moment

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  38. Sense of humor so NOT Tennessee, no offense. Early George Carlin, but he was New Yawk.
    Ben burn (b3d5ab) — 7/16/2017 @ 3:35 pm

    I should hope not. Born and bred in Wyoming. I also don’t lick my thumb and wet down the front sight on my M1.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  39. I’m not even one of Ralphie May’s legs, bless his heart.

    Pinandpuller (decea3)

  40. If you were up to your neck in sewage and someone threw a bucket of mucous at you…would you duck?

    Vox

    “Don Jr.’s Russia scandal may have one little upside for the White House: Two sources close to the health care negotiations told me they’re pleased it has distracted the “resistance” movement and moved much of the media spotlight away from McConnell & co.’s negotiations.”

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  41. I don’t know a Garand from Mosin Nagant but I sure like the feel of it.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  42. the treacly and nauseating virtue-signaling what permeates this poopy and vapid blog post about 80-year-old John McCain’s most recent infirmities from Hot Air bottom-feeder Jazz Shaw makes me think we need act now to preserve the phrase “virtue-signaling” so as not to redefine it to encompass this nauseating and patently insincere spectacle of inane lugubriosity

    but i link this for you because the comments are a joy to read

    the regular folk seem to got their heads 5 by 5 these days way more than is usual common

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  43. we need *to* act now to preserve the phrase “virtue-signaling” i mean

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  44. Dear Rand Paul:

    You might as well talk about “principle” to your dog as to this administration.

    But then you knew that.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  45. Dear Kevin M:

    President Trump is doing the good principles as best he can with this sordid Congress that is unprepared for the challenges.

    best,

    happyfeet

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  46. The thinking part of my brain admires Cruz and Lee for what they are attempting and wonders “Why are there just two of them?”

    The other part hears Rand Paul and shouts: “Danm straight!”

    Even my brain has become an instrument of binary choice.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  47. How do you work with the fact that the Republican Caucus is a wholly owned subsidiary of K Street?

    ThOR (c9324e)

  48. 44 – Too bad Trump doesn’t have the principles of Chairman Zero; lying through his teeth to get his signature health care scheme passed, lying through his teeth about nuke technology and secret billions to a terrorist-sponsoring state, lying through his teeth about the IRS targeting conservatives, lying through his teeth about “the biggest middle class tax cut in history”, lying through his teeth about GWB’s share of the deficit, lying through his teeth about calling ISIS the “JV team”, lying through his teeth about oil in the Keystone Pipeline not being used in the US………etc. etc. etc.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/fact-checker/wp/2017/01/19/obamas-biggest-whoppers/

    Another reason Trump won.

    harkin (140d0a)

  49. RIP Martin Landau

    harkin (140d0a)

  50. R.I.P. Martin Landau

    NXNW, ‘Mission: Impossible’.. ‘Space:1999’… Ed ‘Wood’ be proud.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  51. I totally agree with Rand Paul and Patterico. Market stabilization=insurance company bailouts. So, for about 5% of the adult population that has to buy individual insurance, we are going to ruin the nation’s finances and turn over control over our lives to bureaucrats.

    The present bill seems like a shell game to me. The supports and subsidies and bailouts are still there but hidden better.

    In return for that, the government will bankrupt the country and turn us all into Charlie Gards. I had a minor procedure recently and I got quizzed on whether or not I felt safe at home, blah blah, because I guess the nurse would then call Obama to show up to save all the people who are in abusive relationships? Or worse yet, the data will go to some pinheads in DC, newly hired, who see themselves as our betters. My brother, an MD, says federal auditors check to see if everybody in the office has quizzed the patients on smoking, because they hit you with a fine if you don’t.

    I see doom, people.

    Patricia (5fc097)

  52. The vintage bouquet of conservative whine; bitter dregs.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  53. R.I.P. Martin Landau

    Icy (37fa5e)

  54. The moral bankruptcy of the Republican Caucus is a longstanding problem. These three Senators fought these same battles during the previous administration and, if they are re-elected, they will continue fighting during the next administration. Of course, the Big Money interests that bought off the rest of the Republican Senate will be bankrolling primary battles against these three, so we may not have them with us much longer.

    You notice, nobody is debating corrupt vs. incompetent any more. Corrupt won.

    By the way, where is Ben Sasse in all this? Oh yeah, too busy in Iowa to do his job.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  55. http://acecomments.mu.nu/?post=370681

    My position is Dave’s position that I’m linking.

    He has more experience selling policies than I and also more backroom dealings with some big players involved in the game.

    Full repeal. End stop.

    NJRob (ce11fb)

  56. Two Rand Paul bills

    Ain’t good for McCain

    You’re in the OR in Phoenix

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    Maverick while you’re busy gettin’ stitches

    Get one for me if you have time

    Your memories don’t erase so easily

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    You left him there to drain your head in Phoenix

    I know it hurts you all the time

    But do you really make a difference?

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    You left him there to drain your head in Phoenix

    I know it hurts you all the time

    But do you really make a difference?

    Does Rand Paul ever

    Does Rand Paul ever

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    Pinandpuller (658ff9)

  57. R.I.P. George Romero

    Icy (37fa5e)

  58. Can we really be sure about that, Icy?

    nk (dbc370)

  59. Probably not. In fact, the next time you see an older person walking around the mall . . . 👻

    Icy (37fa5e)

  60. President Trump is doing the good principles as best he can with this sordid Congress that is unprepared for the challenges.

    I am dumber for having heard that.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  61. I don’t know a Garand from Mosin Nagant but I sure like the feel of it.
    Ben burn (b3d5ab) — 7/16/2017 @ 4:08 pm

    You have more in common with Don Jr than you think.

    Pinandpuller (46b56e)

  62. @42 happyfeet

    “I don’t know what you’re talking about but it sounds damn saucy, you lucky thing!”-Hugh Laurie Blackadder III

    Pinandpuller (46b56e)

  63. In its essence, that is what the Trump scandals will come down to as well, she believes. The big struggle in both cases, she says, is: “Can you hold a president accountable for the acts of his subordinates? We’re going to get to that question at some point in this.”

    ***

    Yet the differences between then and now, as Drew lays them out, are pretty compelling.

    Nixon was smarter, she argues. He read books and cared about policy.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  64. Trusting mcturtle is like sending your dig to the taxidermist

    https://www.wispolitics.com/2017/johnson-
    says-very-ill-advised-comments-from-mcconnell-put-health-care-bill-at-risk/

    narciso (25ad2b)

  65. The CBO releases its score of Trumpcare this week. Like all the previous scores, it will be the equivalent of a solid F, predicting tens of millions will lose their health insurance.Republicans will attack the CBO as a worthless bunch of monkeys with abacuses, the opposite of when they called the CBO heroic titans of truth and justice when it scored Obamacare seven years ago.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  66. Consider the problem for what it actually is: we’ve hit the bottom. We’re at the end. There are no more choices about which version of socialism is the best. It is national bankruptcy and economic disaster or hard change in the other direction for the better. There is no Republican congressman or conservative intellectual that will state the obvious truth: our system of socialized medicine — including Medicare and Medicaid — cannot work because it cannot pay for itself. Paul will imply it but he won’t come out and say that such a system is ethically evil. No one will state that this coming economic disaster is a certainty and, as such, that we have to scrap the whole house of cards instead of waiting for the inevitable disaster to play completely out. When the “small government” party’s “solution” to the excesses of socialism is more socialism then I submit that there is no point in having such a “party” if such a party supports, in fact, socialist principles. Call the Republican party what it is.

    We have to end this state control of medicine and it begins by the repeal — just the repeal, no replacement — of Obamacare. Yes, YES, weaning ourselves off of socialism is going to hurt — and it will hurt everyone badly in the short run — but it is going to happen whichever socialist path we choose, too, so we may as well fix the problem in the process while we have some modicum of control over it. There’s no point in waiting until there’s nothing left. We have to stop deluding ourselves that there might be “some way out” under some yet-to-be-discovered tenet of socialism. There’s not. How much history do you need for it to sink in? There is no “maybe”, no miracle, no “might be” — it is going to collapse the health care industry and our economy. It will turn the industry’s heroes — the doctors and the nurses — into the villains and it will set us against each other once care is rationed, as history tells us that it inevitably will be.

    It can hurt now, where we will have some economic capital left after this disaster or it can hurt a lot more later, when there is nothing left. It will be immeasurably worse to wait. We The People, “have chosen poorly” as the saying goes and the massive hurt to come no matter what we do is the cost of such folly.

    As Andrew McCarthy recently put it, “If you really want to move to the free market, you repeal statism.” Bingo. We know that socialized medicine is morally wrong, we know that the system that we have is broken and we know that it’s going to collapse regardless of the version of socialism that the Republicans choose.

    We also know what it takes to actually right this ship, too.

    So if not now, when?

    J.P. (9e0433)

  67. This,is,why the cooked up the push poll by the mouse network

    narciso (25ad2b)

  68. APOXONHEALTHCAREAPOCALYPSE!!!

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  69. Yes, the end is nigh. Better pack your duffle and shuffle. Single-pay the only way.

    Ben burn (b3d5ab)

  70. First, begin with the 2015 repeal language. . . . Virtually every Republican in Congress voted for that language, and the parliamentarian has already ruled it as permissible. We should begin with that previously approved repeal language as the baseline.

    I love this, but you do realize (and you probably do) that the ONLY reason the GOP passed that language before is because they knew there was NO chance of Obama signing it. Now, when they have to put up or shut up, they’ve chosen the cowardly way out.

    I remember when you said you were leaving the GOP and my first thought was, dude what took you so long… I almost left after they gave us Bob Dole as candidate. W turned out better than I thought (especially in hindsight). Then they gave us McCain. That’s when I checked out. No more GOP leaders left. I consider myself a conservative and an independent with a hope that the GOP swings back my may or that the GOP finally breaks down and admit they are dem-lite lapdogs and merge with them so the rest of us can create something new.

    Sorry. Rant over… I do love the fact that so many here seem to still have hope that this country isn’t circling the drain.

    ay (7b1435)

  71. Our host wrote (#24):

    I’m not sure what, specifically, [Rand Paul] could do that you would find praiseworthy that he hasn’t already done. Unless it’s to go the Cruz/Lee route — which, as I explained in the post, I see as pure surrender.

    Here’s what I wish all three of them would do:

    Propose a simple amendment which changes the name of this legislation to “The 2017 Emergency Stopgap Healthcare Reform Act.”

    Then everyone who opposes this bill should spend 95% of their time talking about what they intend to propose as the 2019 Healthcare Competition and Deregulation Act, and only 5% of their time talking about how short this bill fell.

    Despite anything currently under discussion by anyone, healthcare and health insurance are going to continue to deteriorate. Acknowledge that, acknowledge what’s currently under debate as the temporary bandaid it might be at best, and stop arguing about whether it’s a pink Flintstones bandaid or a blue Power Rangers bandaid. Stop being a tool for the Dems in their block-everything crusade.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  72. I ought have written, in #77: “… are going to continue to deteriorate unless and until market-based deregulatory reforms are made.”

    I feel especially bad about leaving that out because that’s what Rand Paul and Ted Cruz and Mike Lee all need to be educating people about, so they will become as convinced of its importance and truth as they became convinced about the importance of SCOTUS nominations or tax reform.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  73. 58. Pinandpuller (658ff9) — 7/16/2017 @ 10:27 pm

    Two Rand Paul bills

    Ain’t good for McCain

    Rand Paul doesn’t have two bills. He doesn’t really have one. He is proposing – he’s bene going around a month or more proposing – that two bills be brought to the floor, one of which he will vote for and one which he will vote against.

    The one he will vote for is a plain vanilla repeal of Obamacare, like they passed before, which got vetoed by President Obama (the last time it also passed the Senate)

    The second one will be something agreed to by enough Democrats to pass, which he will vote against.

    He’s arguing that surely some sort of bill that gets 60 votes can be agreed to.

    But the way the Democrats are hanging together, they won’t be able to peel away 10 or 15 votes – they have to get Senator Schumere and well over a majority of Democrats in the Senate.

    Now maybe Ran Paul thinks the REPLACE bill won’t pass the House but they will pass the plain vanilla repeal in the House and Donald Trump will sign it.

    That is, however, not what Donald Trump wants to happen.

    https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/884141905436696576

    Donald J. Trump‏
    @realDonaldTrump

    For years, even as a “civilian,” I listened as Republicans pushed the Repeal and Replace of ObamaCare. Now they finally have their chance!

    1:07 PM – 9 Jul 2017

    he’s never backed off from the REPlACE part, and signing a plain vanilla repeal would be playing a game of chicken. Trump isn’t there yet, and he’sore likely to try to negiotiating with Chuck Schumer. And neither are enough Republican Senators ready to try this.

    You’re in the OR in Phoenix

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    Maverick while you’re busy gettin’ stitches

    Get one for me if you have time

    Your memories don’t erase so easily

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    You left him there to drain your head in Phoenix

    I know it hurts you all the time

    But do you really make a difference?

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    You left him there to drain your head in Phoenix

    I know it hurts you all the time

    But do you really make a difference?

    Does Rand Paul ever

    Does Rand Paul ever

    Does Rand Paul ever cross your mind?

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  74. Oops did not delete the extra quoting of the “poem”

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  75. A day in the life of Donald Trump’s Made In America Week:

    Shirts from Bangladesh.
    Ties stitched in China.
    Suits and shoes from Italy.
    Watches– Swiss made.
    Socks weaved in New Zealand.
    Boxers sewn in Vietnam.

    Breakfast: French toast with Canadian bacon, Columbian coffee, decaf.
    Lunch: Taco bowl and Perrier, chilled.
    Dinner: Chicken Kiev (4) drenched in English butter; German chocolate cake and French vanilla ice cream, three scoops.

    Lies: Made in U.S.A.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  76. Or you could characterize it like this:

    The perfect will likley lead to the loss of 75 seats in the House and 15 seats in the Senate over the next 2 election cycles, which will lead to the immediate return of Obamacare or Single Payer, a development which will be impossible to roll-back for 40+ years as it would likely be that long before the GOP recovers sufficient numbers in Congress to ever make another effort.

    By which time the enterprise known as “private health insurance” will be only a distant memory in the marketplace.

    Where you are correct, to our mutual dismay, is that once given freebies, the populace is reluctant to give them back.

    The Senators are thus faced with a choice between the correct policy position, or avoiding electoral disaster.

    In the perfect world they would pursue the proper policy, but they will protect their seats and their majority instead.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  77. 76. Iowa’s weird, they were hell no against Hillary, as the slightly 50+ result fun Trumps favor indicated. but could have went Sanders. That’s the story forM I, OH and possibly WI. PA, NC, FL and the false sunbelt sirens not so much.

    urbanleftbehind (3c804a)

  78. “The 2017 Emergency Stopgap Healthcare Reform Act.”

    Not a bad idea.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  79. Sammy

    #1. Reconciliation?

    #2. Are you gonna sit there and tell me you don’t know George Strait?

    Pinandpuller (10d8bb)


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