Thursday, December 17, 2009

Health care deform stalled but . . .

Well, the public option and Medicare expansion now seem to be off the table, but as I suggested a couple of days ago, getting some kind of bill passed by the senate is still not a done deal. It's hard to imagine the Obama administration, which has plenty riding on being able to sign something, will allow the bill to die completely. Too bad.

As this Register editorial explains, what's left in the bills being considered now is still plenty bad. The major reason is the individual mandate, which Obama claimed to be against during the campaign, but force is the only thing government knows (indeed, the use of force pretty much defines government), so . . . With an individual mandate, however, as the editorial explains:

An individual mandate allows the government to control what kind of insurance you can buy, how much you will pay, how insurers pay doctors, how doctors work, how doctors practice medicine, and ultimately what kind of medical care you receive. It is a giant step toward complete government control over medical care.

Could it fail ignominiously? As time passes the polls turn more and more against it, which may explain some of the trouble in Congress, and the closer Democrats in normally Republican-leaning districts get to November the more reluctant they will be to back Obama on something that is becoming increasingly controversial. Abortion continues to be a sticky issue.

Still if I were a betting man I wouldn't bet against something getting passed.

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