The source of the fear is inside Congress, not out there in America:

Over the past week, the public option has made an unexpected comeback. As of this morning, 23 Democrats had signed a letter asking Reid to add it into the bill during the reconciliation process. The White House and the Senate leadership both said that if the public option had the votes, they wouldn’t oppose its inclusion. But privately, most of the offices were saying the same thing: We don’t want to oppose the public option, but we don’t want to reopen the public option debate.

But they signed the letter anyway. They described it as a collective action problem: If everyone signed it, Democrats had a serious problem on their hands. But no one individual wanted to oppose it.

It would be fair, at this point, to ask why Democrats would have a problem if they attempted to pass the public option. The public option is popular policy, it’s good policy, and it energizes the base. The problem is that it’s not popular policy with the handful of conservative House and Senate votes that you need to push this bill over the finish line.
[…] I’m not defending these arguments. I don’t think conservative Democrats will pick up even a single vote if the final plan doesn’t include a public option, while I think they’ll probably gain a few if their base feels like they won something big this year. Nor have I seen any evidence that Americans will reward Democrats for being bipartisan if Republicans refuse to cooperate with the strategy. But that’s the thinking.

Kathy Kattenburg
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Copyright 2010 The Moderate Voice
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Cupertino56
Guest

Dear Mr. President:

Health care reform without a public option is no reform at all.

Mr. President, you seem to slipping from a position of leadership, to one of management. Please, take a few minutes to watch this clip from the 1995 movie, The American President, starring Michael Douglas. View it in the context of health care and banking reform, and the current state of malaise in American politics. This clip is worth 10,000 words.

Thank you.

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWRVbWMvi7c

DLS
Guest

It became toxic waste during the past year, thanks to the Dems. [clapping pinkies]

Obama may have left the public option out of the Dems’ bargaining position to present the view they wouldn’t try to overreach going in — of course, his plan and what the Dems appear to be seeking makes a lie out of any claim to being reasonable. (We already suspected they wouldn’t bargain in good faith, and the plan with things like federal price controls on insurers show they’re overreaching, anyway.)

The public option could truly be revived. Never mind if it might reappear in the Senate or even in the “summit”; don’t forget the House could well try to resurrect it. Maybe it might even be revived “in response to” or “in exchange for” loss of some of the other overreach portions of what’s being sought now.

The far lefty radio chatterers are wondering aloud where the public option is, or might be (reappear).

DLS
Guest

Kathy,

This is an article in the Economist, a magazine I’ve long enjoyed (a perfect companion for me on a solo flight, or whenever I must wait for a long time somewhere). This is something I just posted in a reply I made to someone else on another thread.

Government intervention in health care is something I view as eventual, if not inevitable here, and for various reasons (not just ignorance of or contempt for constitutional federalism, or for deliberately concentrating interventionism in Washington, but for convenience if not laziness or impatience or the desire for standardization as well as ultimate portability standardization confers). In fact, I’ve stated more than once that the ultimate long-term choice we’ll likely make is between Medicare for All and VA for All (depending much on how bad costs get). Something else in play is the continued confusion by so many advocates of the insurance system and what insurance is, with what advocates believe exists, as well as what is desired: prepaid health care (the form of what is desired often being comprehensive, including preventive care). In fact, the insurance model is the key to why I believe it will face replacement (a government takeover being likely because of the details and circumstances). I’ve already provided examples before of future insurance-related issues that should kill the model — cracking the genome and using genetic material associated with disease as additional pre-existing conditions that will largely disqualify many from any insurance at all, and will result in much larger rate increases for so many more being my preferred example. The basic insurance model, which many of you lefties are ignorant of, is actually a good thing to use in favor of your goals now, not only later. And in fact, reviewing this would give lefties better fuel powering or propelling any revival attempt for the public option.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2010/02/insurance_premiums_skyrocket

Enjoy. If advocates (and Democratic politicians) argued using information like this, and sought agenda items based on information like this, they might get their way much better than they do now.

shannonlee
Guest

thanks for the link.

JSpencer
Member

Thanks for the economist link, good article.

dduck
Member

This is an article in the Economist,”

They didn’t exactly bend over backwards to explain all the Anthem premium story.
The WSJ has some facts: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704804204575069833643345608.html

DLS
Guest
dduck
Member

of another insurance problem.”

The government plan will accept 100% of all requests, I’m sure.

facebook-766034178
Guest

Democrats are treating the public option the way they treated GLBT people in the 90s. It is “cool” to support it in principle, but when the time comes for a vote, they bolt.

superdestroyer
Guest

The Democrats have had to run away from the public option because they have been so open in the desire to see the public option fail. The Democrats have been very open in saying that they would first start a public option, they would then subsidize the costs with tax dollars (to put the private insurance industry out of business) and then would lower reimbrusement costs to drive health care workers out of the industry.

A pubic option would look like the current school system: the rich would still have a boutique private system, the poor would have the equivalent of inner city schools and the middle class would pay very high taxes to have a pathetic system that would costs a lot and deliver little.

Of course, the public option does nothing about tort reform, illegal aliens, government mandates, and ever increasing regulations.

Leonidas
Guest

Why are the democrats so afraid of the public option?

November

Silhouette
Guest

Either dems can’t do math or they’re running scared of “Citizens” [including foreigners] United”.

Either or…

Leonidas
Guest

Somehow I think I’ll get many a chuckle from progressives blaming corporate campaign ads for election losses.

Budjob
Guest

I see Dick Cheney was released from the hospital this morning after being treated for a heart attack.The public option that he and the rest of these jerks in congress are ENTITLED to is treating ALL of them very well !!My question is where the hell is my healthcare VIA the public option???

Silhouette
Guest

Yeah, it’s not like most of us are too busy trying to keep our heads above water that are main source of information for or against candidates is found online or on the tube. It’s not like advertisers know this. It’s not like most campaign money is spent on this. It’s not like exhaustive studies and factual experience has shown us that advertising money makes or breaks otherwise equal candidates. Nah..

It’s so friggin’ HILARIOUS that now corporations made up of foreign citizens, like Newscorp or Citigroup [Newscorp of Fox news hellbent on dividing citizens against each other in time of war] [Citigroup, one of the main bank failures that nearly ruined us] can directly affect the outcome of elections.

I find especially giggly and fun that the Supreme Court decided to rewrite the 14th Amendment extending “citizenship” beyond its description of “born or naturilzed” AND [not or] subject to the laws of the US. I love how their protection of free speech extends to Prince Awhleed bin Talal and his prince buddies who pledged to buy up as many media outlets abroad as they could “to affect domestic policy”.

Yep. It’s just one big barrel of laughs the level of corruption that has risen straight to the Supreme Court and how with time the USA won’t even be recognizable as a free democracy. Not even close. Just so funny..

DLS
Guest

Why have Dems retreated from the public option?

“November” [Leo]

I wonder if some of them have learned the lessons of the past year, which includes one of them with this one, and other big things the Dems have done (badly and wrongly) that have repelled Americans.

With this and other kinds of legislation, given their past record, and Americans’ experience, sometimes even the less-controversial or potentially-useful legislation falters, because [sniff, sniff] there’s this past year’s Dems on it!

DLS
Guest

Duck,

“didn’t exactly bend over backwards to explain all the Anthem premium story”

No, though I felt it was instructive nevertheless.

For what it’s worth, Medicare is ludicrous. In addition to underpayment (which restricts access as a general problem), with transplants Medicare is simply stupid. They pay for the transplant (I don’t know and I suspect it’s subject to the standard of 80% of allowed costs, so you’re stuck then with 20% of all you incur plus any additional balance billing, which then is compounded by any Medigap insurance fun and games). But they only pay for the post-Tx immunosuppressant drugs to prevent (or reduce) post-transplant rejection of the organ, for only three years! They’re saying they only expect or permit those organs to last for three years. It’s deliberate negligence, not intentional shorting of graft life, but the result is the same. The #1 reason organs fail is rejection due to failure to take the drugs, and the #1 reason the drugs are skipped or stopped is inability to pay for (afford) them. (In fact, it’s the classic worst case to use to illustrate the inadequacy of public payment for health care and the need for more.)

Here it’s a case where the intermediary is interfering with and inhibiting needed care. As I’ve said about public (single-payer or otherwise) programs, the (federal) government becomes the intermediary if or when we switch. But many feel at least that the government is more accountable and controllable as an intermediary. (I wish more lefties would express a rational stance in favor of interventionism in that way.)

“The government plan will accept 100% of all requests, I’m sure.”

Not now, not later (20+ years). But at least we may have some or more say in what happens, at least in theory (I know, most of which will be discarded or distorted in practice).

Actually, I believe lefties have still to be surprised at this — the government plan won’t necessarily (or all of our future government plan). It’ll be more complicated 20+ years from now, when cost controls become inevitable (we may switch from Medicare to VA for that reason, if not for others). Aside from this case’s financial details, I think more about what might be done to the organ procurement system (a problem in this story, already) and the queues for organs (assuming no “presumed consent” donation laws, something overdue). As with climate “science,” so with this issue: I’ve already seen an article (I saw it years ago), which was in the politically-tainted New England Journal of Medicine (so many periodicals as well as areas of academia are infiltrated and infected with liberal politics — the Sixties really has left its mark), one of some articles saying the waiting lists are inherently discriminatory (because results for all aren’t 100% equal — radical egalitarianism, radicalism, is in effect here) and that rather than get more minority-compatible donated organs, some minorities ought to get “race-conscious points” to speed them past others, i.e., whites, in the queues. This is extensible to all future queueing a la Canada, US style, for medical services 20+ years from now.) This is what a government-run health care future, with the Dems and modern liberalism and its radical features, possibly (if not likely) portends.

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