The health care 'blast' is pretty much finished now. In simplistic terms....every ounce of fuel was burned...we are at the arch of the push....and it's pretty much a fast downward spiral with few comments from anyone except the media.
It feels like a combination of a hangover, a hallucination, and the anxiety feeling after attending a WWE wrestling event where the Undertaker lost. Some folks had significant expectations. You had everything lined up.....the House, the Senate, and the President. Then, the balloon burst.
With a bit of pondering.....a guy from Bama offers four observations.
You get the impression that fifty guys met in some guy's backyard to make a stew. There never was a clear instruction on the ingredients...so the guys mixed up shrimp, beef, cod fish, pork, lamb, rattlesnake, ostrich, chicken, turkey, croc, and turtle....into this big stew pot. Half the guys were drunk and could have cared less about the ingredients or the final outcome. The stew never got finished because the fifty guys kept arguing about beer, baseball and women....rather than concentrating on the stew itself.
There were around seven things which drove the price of healthcare up to the point where it is today. If you had only attacked one of those....and made a simplistic bill of eighty pages....it likely would have passed and cut the price of insurance down by eight percent. Six months later? You take another piece of the puzzle and cut another eight percent. For some reason....this was situation where a car repair was not enough....you had to dump the whole car and forget about simplistic repairs.
Two thousand pages? I sat and wondered how the colonies would have done the Declaration of Independence today. Would we have gone over the four thousand page point? Would we have given South Carolina forty million dollars for wooden bridge construction to get them to agree with a measure required by New York? Would the Declaration be debated by outside influences? Would we write a complete sentence for support of one measure in the Declaration, but then write eighty pages later a measure to forbid funding to support that one measure?
Face it.....the Democratic Party really doesn't exist. You saw various factions, and you have to admit it's really around a dozen mini-groups which make up the Party and pretend to be one group but they aren't. You sit and watch interviews where one big Party member says "X", then later....someone from the same party comes up to say that "X" isn't really that important. They pay each other with millions in bridge construction or road funds.....to get agreement for stupid things that they'd normally never agree with.
So here we are. I don't think any reform of health care will occur in 2010....it's completely a zero topic now. The remainder of this Administration? Nothing. The Republicans take control of the House and Senate by the end of 2010 and even if the President wins in 2012 (which is likely)....what else can happen with health care?
Finally, a comment over common sense and appearances. What if Representative Pelosi and Senator Reid were not the prime players in this entire game over the past six months? What if a more moderate Democrat with friendly character had run the Senate effort? What if a Florida moderate Democratic had taken up the House's leadership? There is an entirely different scenario which could have come out of this. Face it, Harry Reid really has zero impression on influencing folks. Nancy Pelosi? For hard core Democrats...she's a four-star wonder but once you leave that group of folks.....you just don't have much of a impression.
So we've wasted tens of thousands of hours on MSNBC, CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox and CNN....listening to some idiots talk and talk and talk over the package. The funny thing is that in the end.....you had to have the death of Teddy Kennedy.....an arranged replacement deal which had to be completely rebuilt by the top players of Massachusetts, and then an election where a Republican actually replaces Kennedy. At that point, the county fair ended.....and everyone went home. You can't even make up stuff like this.
Life goes on now....but we ought to have some grit in our teeth over the past six months. It was a joke....and never went beyond that stage.