So why did Mr. Smith go to Washington? He will generally have one of two reasons. One is to change the world; the other is to collect and redirect a large quantity of the world’s change. These two motivations can lead to considerable conflict. It splits our political leadership into those who wish to do good and those who make darn sure they end up doing well.
The Democrats have reached a schism point, because President Obama’s Healthcare Subinfuedation Act has forced them to choose sides of this divide. Until he crafts a specific, scoreable and feasible plan that satisfies both factions, the nation is spared his unique idea of a gift.
Those who actually buy into the Noir Noblesse Oblige of Modern Progressivism actually want to take care of every American’s health. They believe this government’s moral obligation. Every American must be taken care of by government – even if the stupid idiots try to refuse! This is change they are genuinely ingenuous enough to believe in.
Another branch of the Democratic Party is not progressive. They joined the party, well, for the party. Many of them enjoy the benefits of running a powerful political machine and are managing their districts in a manner reminiscent of how the Sheriffs used to manage Nottinghamshire before Robin of Loxley showed up. They could care less about the stupid Doctor and Nurse stuff. What does Nebraska or Louisiana get out of Obamacare? That’s what this sort of politician really wants to know.
So, on one end of the spectrum we find Congressman Dennis Kucinich, and on the other we get Senator Mary Landrieu. They both nominally prey upon the governed as Democrats, but the current mish-mash of a healthcare bill has caused them to end up at loggerheads. Satisfying one of these coalitions will lose President Obama significant portions of the other.
Idealists, like Kucinich, want a bill that sticks it to The Man. They think that pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies milk the current system and deserved to be punished on behalf of the oppressed and righteous proletariat. The fact that Medicare, Medicaid and the tangled regulatory plate of bad spaghetti were all government creations, doesn’t intrude on fantasyland.
It’s nothing that a well-meaning crusade, featuring lots of regulation and price controls can’t quickly get in hand. Just punish the fat-cats that donate to the other party, and liberty and justice will rain down upon us all.
Realists, like Ben Nelson, walk around thinking they are The Man and expect a bill that shows them all the respect and financial deference that being The Man truly entails. They view this bill as another opportunity to bring home the bacon. They see no problem with investment bankers, pharmaceutical companies, medical PACs and anyone else’s flunkies who want to join in on the pillage. The whole point of this has to do with pay-off.
If Barack Obama really wanted to codify all three volumes of Das Kapital into legislative language, and preface it with The Communist Manifesto, these Pay Dawg Democrats could truly care less. The President would simply have to assure them that the applicable COBRA Act included lots of relative surplus value for their districts in and amongst the usual legislative Marx.
The conflict comes when the Idealists raise their hackles over The Cornhusker Kickback and the Louisiana Purchase. Saint Dennis the Menace and The Venerable Waxman of the Hearing Room grow tiresome to the Realists. They don’t like single digit approval numbers. Their districts aren’t gerrymandered and their constituents have spent the past three months wondering how long it will get worse out there in flyover country. This process has to produce something tangible for themselves and the people they represent.
If the process on Capital Hill can’t tangibly produce, than the Congressional leadership has to produce some big, fat tangible bribes. Pay Dawg Democrats will gladly vote for stupidity – when remunerated. The stupider the stupid, the higher the price tag. It works that way in the market economy that the Democratic Party’s leadership seems so hell-bent on legislating out of existence.
Yet then the Idealists see how the legislative sausages get rolled. It offends their sensibilities like a mandatory pee test for narcotic detection. Dennis Kucinich balks over the lack of punitive measures aimed at eradicating the health insurance industry. Bart Stupak finds abortion on demand offensive and doesn’t believe like-minded taxpayers should be forced to pony up for a medical procedure they believe tantamount to premeditated homicide. Everyone has their silly little belief system, and begins to fall off the drunken Hope and Change bandwagon faction by faction.
Now the burgeoning problems with America’s fisc complicates matters. Bribes can’t be offered from the empty treasury. Political activists not only know what earmarks are, they know which earmark went to which Congressional sow and they have the unmitigated gall to organize these, these, Tea Parties and express their condign indignation.
So Senator Bayh decides Washington has gotten too partisan. Senator Biden’s adorable little sprout won’t even run for the family’s Senate Seat that some folks mistakenly believe belongs to the State of Delaware. Congressman Parker Griffith switches parties. He does this after offering Speaker Pelosi a medical referral in reference to her state of mental health.
President Obama perhaps calls his old Harvard friend from Alabama, Congressman Artur Davis. “Who is this Parker Griffith?” He querulously asks.
If this were a real conversation, Artur Davis would want to ask Barack Obama some questions as well. He would want to know just exactly how a signature piece of legislation which features higher costs, more government spending, higher taxes across all brackets, loss of insurance coverage, and bankrupt hospitals, according to Medicare’s chief actuary, is going to help him return the Alabama Governor’s mansion to the Democratic Party's noble demesne.
The answer is that it won’t. Senator Nelson, Senator Tester, Senator Webb, Senator Landrieu and Senator Dorgan all know this good and well. They want this bill to die. They want it to die in the house. They want it to die for good.
This, when Dan Perrin reports that Senator Dorgan demanded the House to go first, this doesn’t come as a shocker. Out on the cold, windswept fly-over inhabited by realists, nearly 20% of the American workforce idles without the prospect of employment. Senator Dorgan counts himself lucky not to be one of them.
X-Posted At:THE MINORITY REPORT.