There is no need to lay out the case for single payer health care if you don’t think it is the best way to take care of the ill and injured in the united states that’s fine go read something else. The progressives among us have had a rough month the news has not been in our favor and there have been times that it seemed the dream of Health Care reform was going to slip through our hands. But the situation may not be as dire as it seems. August was tough we where out played by a team that is smaller, slower and is completely dependent lying and dirty tricks. It is however only the end of August, September is coming up and there is still a lot of Hockey to be played.
The most important thing is that we take our lead from congressman Barny Frank. We can’t fight with the 5 percent of people out there who only listen to Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh. They are beyond salvation and for the most part beyond contempt. They need to be walked out of town hall meetings, no fighting no fussing but if they are going to persist in lying we can’t waste our time with them. Every one of their arguments has been debunked over and over and yet they keep at it. So they now have achieved the same status as Fred Phelps and his congregation we can’t stop them from talking but we need to ignore and shun them and we need to shun any media outlet that gives them airtime. Once the kooks are out of the room the real discussion can start.
Don’t get me wrong there are problems with the health care reform measures that are bouncing around congress, not the least of which is that no one has really bothered to sit down and figure out how to pay for the start up costs (if we can get the thing rolling it will pay for it self we just need to get creative in how we build the tax structure). And there are things to talk about. The Right wing wants Tort reform and that is something that we could look in to, I am thinking a best practices panel can kill two birds with one stone. There is a chance that well made co-ops can do the work of a public option. These are all things that can be talked about.
Politics is the Art of the Possible, when we where knocking doors in oppressive Indian Summer heat we were not telling people that Obama wanted to win so that he could shove Health Care reform down the throat. No he was going to open a new chapter in politics different from the previous administration’s “all you all can go to H-E double hockey sticks”. Obama’s Hope and Change campaign was not about getting rid of republicans (well just a little) it was about raising the level of discourse, about compromising and finding better solutions then either side could come up with on their own, it was about not calling each other Nazis anymore. So let the guy do what we sent him to Washington to do, to make the country just a little bit better then when he started.
As for us, we have positions, we know what we want and thanks to the Obama grassroots machine we know how to get it. Don’t whine that the debate is not going your way get out there and turn the debate. Just remember a majority of Americans want Health Care reform. We just need to get out there knock on a few (read millions) doors and convince them that it should be the kind of reform the progressives envision.