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More bullshit from Darcy Burner

vastleft's picture

Via bulk e-mail:

A year ago, progressives in Congress came to the table with a set of proposals to fix this problem. They said, "Our first choice is Medicare for all. And if we can't get that, we'd settle for letting people who want to buy into a Medicare-like public option have that choice, so that insurance companies have real competition." At every step of the way progressives have engaged in the debate, pushed forward, and tried to get this job done. And at every step of the way, obstructionists in the House and the Senate - paid off by the insurance companies - have done everything they could to block progress.

Today, President Obama got key leaders from the House and the Senate from both sides of the aisle to sit down and figure out how to move forward. He got the worst obstructionists into a room, on cameras, in front of the American people, to get on with getting the job done - or get out of the way.

This past year, career "progressives" have joined Obama, Daschle, and Baucus in denying oxygen to supporters of single-payer Medicare for All at every turn.

They gave away their purported goal of Medicare for All at the outset, based on some opaque and never-discussed process where Jacob Hacker's "public option" proposal, and any infinitely depleted version of it, became their (and that of everyone who, tragically, trusted them) One True Healthcare Reform Agenda.

Part and parcel with that was a uniform lack of interest in exposing and critiquing Obama and company's outright lies about conducting an open and transparent process that considered all options. One can only surmise that, in their eyes, to give due consideration to the deep-sixed options — which would actually work — would be fatally unflattering to their vapid "public-option" agenda.

For all their smarmy application of "robust" and "strong" as pet pre-fixes to "public option," they won't acknowledge that no public plan discussed anywhere near Congress will provide the supposed "competition" to more than a tiny percentage of the public (and surely the most expensive to insure).

Nothing that leading "progressives" or Obama have done this past year could be properly called anything but obstruction of real health-care reform.

On today's kabukijerk between Obama and Congress, msnbc.com reports:

Obama said cost is a legitimate question

In these rarefied circles, one question is held to be utterly illegitimate, utterly taboo: why the fuck have policies that could cut costs in half or more — single-payer or socialized medicine — have been kept at bay for the entire process?

Naturally, we know the answer. America is fully hostage to corporate interests, and Democrats and "progressive" elites won't do a goddamn thing to help solve our real problems.

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MoveThatBus's picture
Submitted by MoveThatBus on

the worst obstructionist was in the room.

I supported Darcy over Reichert both times, but right now I'm really glad she's not in congress. Where is she? Why is she bulk e-mailing anyone? Is she preparing for a 3rd loss?

dblhelix's picture
Submitted by dblhelix on

if you're out there, be sure to click on Action Fund BOD. You'll find an old friend.

Submitted by lambert on

I had no idea Digby was networked with Celinda Lake. That explains a lot.

Submitted by hipparchia on

i knew darcy burner has joined the staff there, but i had no clue about the board members until you pointed this out.

that explains a lot. and it explains digby's uncritical pushing for the public option too.

dblhelix's picture
Submitted by dblhelix on

suggest putting on ignore. Works for me, and my bank account thanks me for it.

Dems are losing in places like MA, PA and so on because "progressives" don't really look or think like Dems across the nation, no matter how many tokens get put on fund-raising boards.

dblhelix's picture
Submitted by dblhelix on

is much, much bigger than the blogosphere, which actually represents a minority faction within the DP interested in accommodation and status quo preservation, thus the vehicle displacing activism is bundling for candidates.

One thing about Obama/DNC/OFA is that they've gone a long way in decoupling online donors from netrootsian brokers, and I expect this trend to continue -- hence the level of consolidation you see on these boards & the current meme of 'villian rotation,' i.e., the Dems are playing you for fools. Like any gimmick, there's an expiration date on its effectiveness.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

Drank the Kool-Aid on Obama and "public option."

It would be comforting to say the blogosphere isn't real life, but Potemkin Progressives are fooling a lot of people.

Heck, it's reassuring that a slight majority of Democrats voted against Obama in the primaries, but we're still basically fucked as far as I can tell.

Submitted by gob on

Yes, my only comfortable political cohort is now in the single-payer advocacy and anti-torture worlds. People focused on policy either never drank the Kool-aid or got over it fast.

But many of my nearest and dearest have become political idiots in my eyes. Obama portraits, IOKIYO reasoning, the odor of hopium everywhere.

dblhelix's picture
Submitted by dblhelix on

are creations of the blogosphere. That various bloggers made a business decision to aid and abet is a different matter.

Didn't you mention in comments that you're in the Cambridge area? Not representative, although I can see why you feel the way you do. But remember, while Cambridge was turning out for Martha Coakley, the rest of the state, not so much.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

It's not just Cambridge or similar lefty hotspots, though. (Also, I'm not sure of your point re: the Coakley-Brown election).

I never said the culprits were constrained to the blogosphere. MoveOn isn't, exactly, the blogosphere. Nor is St. Dr. Dean. Nor is Our Rhodes Scholar of the Airwaves. But the big bloggers are part of a continuum of truthiness that infects "progressive" thought. And, as tribal heroes, they go unquestioned.

I have friends and family and acquaintances who believe what the career "progressives" say. The combination of truthiness and tribalism is some powerful bad medicine.

dblhelix's picture
Submitted by dblhelix on

Coakley-Brown -- senior & working-class shift to Brown in pre-election polling. These are Dem demographics not well-represented in progressive circles. Millenials -- not turning out, and now we have the Pew polling that indicates a shift to R. I view today's progressives as more or less the so-called wine-track Bradley coalition. Finally, an old HRC email list came alive pre-MA, and quite a few on the list declined to participate in the election -- again, a demo not well-represented in progressive circles since strong pro-choicers are expected to sit down and be quiet.

Additionally, I live in a state that's barely majority white/Christian. Obama's power base is ethnic and religious minorities, which is why his approvals are still very high here. This is why a "Howard Dean" has no chance at a Dem primary challenge in '12, IMO. I'd argue that if you want to see real changes in policy, the key is activism focused on a much broader coalition than 'wine-tracks.'

One thing about that dreadful PO that went largely under the radar is that the Urban Institute came out against the it w/ a preferred policy goal of triggering a much stronger, i.e., truly competitive PO, a position I agree w/ if one is stuck w/ the PO concept. Reason, of course, is because in urban areas you'd have minorities paying the more expensive premiums in the crippled "PO" w/ the corresponding decrease in the private market. Honestly, I was appalled that "progressives" were pushing for this and even more disgusted that "progressive" pols were pretending to go along with this scheme. This is just one example where so-called "progressive" policy goals are completely out-of-touch with reality on the ground.

Submitted by lambert on

We're just ahead of the curve in surrenduring some illusions, that's all.

john.halle's picture
Submitted by john.halle on

The late and greatly mourned Nick Skala of PNHP described his run in with Darcy Burner as follows:

Darcy Burner told me that they would construe talking about the public option — even comparing it to single payer — as an attack on the members of the Progressive Caucus.

True to her word, she shut him down when he tried to mention it at the forum in question.

See

http://www.singlepayeraction.org/blog/?p...

A truly vile individual.

Submitted by hipparchia on

i can see why she's been defending the po so viciously from the evil single payer advocates. if nick skala had been able to convince the progressive caucus to drop the po and push for single payer, it would effectively have been an attack on darcy burner's position as a prime player [if not the coordinator] of this new-fangled inside-outside progressive block thingy.

Submitted by jawbone on

on the rapacious power of capitalism. A sample:

We are all Mexicans now

Thanks to the autonomous commodities economy, Mexico literally cannot keep itself in tortillas. No longer food self-sufficient, Mexico, where corn was first bred and developed into a staple, buys corn on the world market. The price of tortillas in the tiendas along my street is up 40 percent and climbing at ten times the rate of Mexico's minimum wage.

Mexico was food self-sufficient in 1982. Minimum daily wage then was the equivalent of 8.2 kilos of eggs, or 23 liters of milk, or 33 kilos of tortillas. Eighty-five percent of the people had access to government medical care and the country was fifth worldwide in GNP growth. Now, thanks to international financial pirates, Mexico cannot even keep itself in tortillas.

This has happened repeatedly to Mexico, each time due to a different pirate gang, the French, the English, the Germans. But most often, it is the Americans and their institutions and policies, the IMF, GATT and NAFTA. Mexico is continually robbed from within and without. Within lives the tapeworm of government-business corruption feeding on money passing through the nation's economic bowel. From without come the assaults of American and global corporate financialism.

Loathe as Americans are to believe it, the Mexican people and the American people are in the same situation of being mugged. However, they are robbed at a different rate and from different positions in the global pecking order. We rob the Mexicans and global capitalism robs us. Fortunately we can still afford to buy our national food staple from Dominoes. Which makes us a superior people. (my bolding)

Good luck fighting the Corporatists, people.

On a lighter note, the women's ice skating costumes are glorious this year; glittery but sophisticated.

Submitted by jawbone on

Based on the comments. several Correntians have read this, America's Future: My Baseline Scenario already; if not, do go read.

Ian Welsh is very, very pessimistic. Lucky for him, he's Canadian and can always go home to health care...unless, as some commenters note, the US invades/takes over Canada for its natural resources, cooler climate when global warming makes weather too crazy in the lower 48, general orneriness.

It was a depressing evening's reading!

Thank goodness the women ice skaters really did perform, on the whole, extremely well. And many of them seemed to radiate joy while performing. Remember back when the skaters were trying to add more the difficult jumps to their routines and there seemed to be cartoon versions of championship performances? Almost everyone trying the most difficult jumps, falling, sometimes badly? Painful to watch. Last night was relaxing, entertaining, and, for the most part, very well done.

(Mirai Nagasu might've been robbed, imho. She's got the jumps, extension, flexibility -- and only 16.))

mass's picture
Submitted by mass on

You can see what team Obama did was decide rather than try to get the PO through the Senate, they would try to change the tax side to please enough progressives to get the bill through the House, i.e. the cap gains tax rather than a tax on benefits. I hope this doesn't mean the progressives are going along with this.

This: "Obama said cost is a legitimate question." is so typical of Obama and such a complete lie. I hate when I hear politicians say what we can't afford. Even if single payer were not less expensive, which it is, we are a rich country. We can easily afford health care.

Submitted by lambert on

The "bait" one, that was Medicare-style with 130 million enrollees that Hacker sold us, or the "switch" one, with under 10 million, that the career "progressives" kept shilling for anyhow?

mass's picture
Submitted by mass on

could love. The other one was never on the table. My worry is NOT that the PO will be dropped. I don't support any of the PO designs. My worry is the progressives in Congress will actually pass this thing.

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

the progressives have passed nothing in 4 years, and will pass nothing now.

mass's picture
Submitted by mass on

votes to pass a number of things like TARP, for example. And, that is my worry here. The WH has dropped any pretense of getting the Senate to pass the bill with the sham PO, and has moved on to attempting to get the House to pass it with the cap gains tax in exchange for dropping the anti-union benefits tax. Now when Darcy here acts like Obama is doing a gung ho job of trying to pass health care legislation I fear very much that House progressives are ready to pass the bill and then claim the victory of getting the tax on benefits dropped. My position is let no bill pass until they give the poeple what we want which is clearly, simply and plainly access to Medicare.

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

I just feel that the progressives tend to go along to get along, so I don't give them credit for getting anything passed, since that would imply agency.

But I do agree wholeheartedly on your larger point.

mass's picture
Submitted by mass on

They are such wimps that Darcy here brags about their go along to get along mentality.

"A year ago, progressives in Congress came to the table with a set of proposals to fix this problem. They said, "Our first choice is Medicare for all. And if we can't get that, we'd settle for letting people who want to buy into a Medicare-like public option have that choice, so that insurance companies have real competition."

I mean, cue the applause.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

"A year ago, progressives in Congress and the blogosphere, 'progressive' media and big advocacy groups came to the table with a set of proposals to fix this problem. They said, 'Our first choice is Medicare for all. And if we play an active role in ensuring that we can't get that, we'd settle for letting an insignificant and conveniently unreported number of people — whichever ones Big Insurance finds unprofitable to cover — who want to buy into a Medicare-like public option have that choice, so that insurance companies have Democrats feed them more customers, under both penalty of law and the illusion of real competition.'"

Submitted by jawbone on

He will work with might and main to not have anything like a workable PO; but he will work to get something which he can claim as a historic achievement.

What made me most angry watching him yesterday was when he would go into campaign mode and talk about how much people need reform -- All the while planning on screwing them over to achieve his BHIPP-PPP (Big Health Insurance Parasite Profit Protection Plan). Also, playing the game of lower the deficit w/ this crap piece of shit "bill."

Submitted by lambert on

It's not a legitimate question when banksters are being bailed out, either.

Jeebus, I got nothing this morning. Maybe I'll make this into a post...

Submitted by lambert on

See, you can work your whole life as an advocate for good policy, and finally get on the teebee, or you can join an OFB front group and get on the teebee right away! For some, that's an easy choice to make...