Not taking to lame duck status very well, Grayson continues to put things into perspective like only he can. His take on the debate about continuing the failed “trickle down economics” experiment? He wants us to make suggestions to the richest 2% on how to spend their additional $83,000 next year if the Bush cuts are extended for them.
HA! I forgot about this… Here’s legendary nitwit Chris Matthews berating Alan Grayson not two short months ago about Grayson’s assertion that health care reform would ultimately get passed via reconciliation.
It’s almost as if Matthews has absolutely no idea what he’s talking about. Unpossible!
Relatedly, here’s a nice summary by Robert Reich about the philosophical roots of the HCR legislation that was passed last night…
Medicare built on Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal notion of government as insurer, with citizens making payments to government, and government paying out benefits. That was the central idea of Social Security, and Medicare piggybacked on Social Security.
Obama’s legislation comes from an alternative idea, begun under the Eisenhower administration and developed under Nixon, of a market for health care based on private insurers and employers. Eisenhower locked in the tax break for employee health benefits; Nixon pushed prepaid, competing health plans, and urged a requirement that employers cover their employees. Obama applies Nixon’s idea and takes it a step further by requiring all Americans to carry health insurance, and giving subsidies to those who need it.
So don’t believe anyone who says Obama’s health care legislation marks a swing of the pendulum back toward the Great Society and the New Deal. Obama’s health bill is a very conservative piece of legislation, building on a Republican rather than a New Deal foundation. The New Deal foundation would have offered Medicare to all Americans or, at the very least, featured a public insurance option.
I’m not posting this in order to be (too) cynical about the new legislation. As Reich notes, the larger political significance is the rebuke of Reaganism, which I can fully appreciate. But it’s not nearly enough, which is why it is so critical that Grayson continues to push Medicare For All.
Alan Mother-Fucking Grayson…
Will somebody please put this man in charge??? Can you imagine if this had been the health care plan that Democrats were pimping from the get-go? All the bullshit fretting and hand-wringing and, quite frankly, republican empowerment we could have avoided. But instead, Democrats act like Republicans, Republicans hypocritically demonize them for doing their dirty work, and the rest of us get disgusted and turn off politics. You’d think that the Democratic Party would somehow cease to exist if the insurance/drug company money suddenly dried up.
This used to be such a nice blog.
I’ve been meaning to pimp up newly minted U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) ever since I stumbled across his campaign website prior to the election. Dude seemed almost too good to be true, but so far he’s been nothing short of a champ. He campaigned on the basis of having successfully sued war profiteers (aka military contractors) for ripping off taxpayers and endangering troops (see link above). Upon taking office he hired lefty blogger Matt Stoller as a policy advisor and landed a seat on the House Financial Services Committee, a gig which has kept him busy ripping new ones into those involved in the bank bailout debacle, five minutes at a time. I’ve assembled some choice videos. Enjoy!
Feb 11, questioning Citigroup CEO, Vikram Pandit: