Before President Dubya took us into the Iraq War for no legitimate or sensible reason, literally multi-millions of people protested in the US and around the world on the same day, but Bush didn’t flinch. He was abandoned by most of the world community and was only able to assemble an international military coalition of the D-List, but he went right ahead. And in the course of his two terms, he managed to set American democracy back by centuries, nearly nullified the Bill of Rights, sunk us into unprecedented debt, and laid the foundation for the global economic crisis by lessening regulations/ restrictions on everything but the American people. And he got away with it.
But now, the Democrats can’t manage to zip their pants up in unison, let alone forge ahead with radical, necessary, health care reform – and there are a dozen other equally-enormous issues they haven’t had a chance to run away from yet. They’ve allowed themselves to be defeated by a series of well orchestrated Town Hall protests, a well-funded media scare campaign, the inevitable objections and dirty tricks of Republican colleagues (including MySpace rants by the Wicked Witch of the North), and, I assume, their fear that they won’t be elected again if they dare to try to use the power they won.
It bears remembering that it was after the Clinton health care reform efforts failed that American medicine was turned into an HMO system designed by the insurance companies to protect themselves and cut their losses. What do we think they’ll do now that they’ve seen they’re still more powerful than the government and the will of the majority of the people? Why won't the Democrats unite, then stand their ground? Why have they allowed ignorance, lies, and relatively modest resistance to beat them even before they’ve really begun? Why hasn’t their media campaign been as large and hard-hitting as the opposition’s? Why did the president leave it to Congress to put together that huge, sloppy, unintelligible bill? And if we can’t get the change we were promised now, when will it ever be possible?
Barack Obama needs to have an epiphany, an essentially politically suicidal determination to do what has to be done. He should call yet another press conference and say this:
“We are the only country in the world where health care is a business instead of a service and I’m going to stop that, because that’s what I was sent here to do. You – politicians and the public alike – have been reciting a string of terms – socialized medicine, death panels, all kinds of crap – and you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. You are putting your trust in the insurance and pharmaceutical companies instead of your own government. You are confusing competition with democracy and putting the profit of the health care industrial complex ahead of your own best interest.
“So, it stops now. I’m putting forth a government-run, non-profit health care system that will serve everybody and cost far less than it does now – essentially Medicare for everyone, but an updated, improved Medicare. I’m going to put the insurance companies out of business. I’m going to make the drug companies toe the line, and if they don’t, I’ll put them out of business, too. And I will smash any Democrat who doesn’t back me up. Pretend I’m a white Republican and just get in line.
“America, if you don’t like what I’m doing, you can vote me out in 2012. But so long as I’m here, I’m going to do what I know is right – just like my predecessor, who believed he was a messenger from God. I’m going to drag this country into the 21st century before we fall so far down it’ll make the Fall of Rome look like a holiday sale at Wal-Mart.
“I won’t be stopped by your outdated Cold War mentality. You can call me a Socialist or Daffy Duck, I don’t give a damn. I was handed a platter of crap when I came into office and none of the “public servants” on either side of the aisle have done anything but get in my way. I’ve had it with all of you. A big change is coming and if you don’t like it, tough! I’m the president, we’re in trouble, and I don’t care what you think or what you say. Any questions?”