In a new column posted this morning, Firedoglake's Jane Hamsher renews her call to defeat the Senate health bill--a position, I know, many of our mutual friends on the left share.
I respect her right to that opinion. I respect the fact that she's making substantive arguments about what the Senate bill would mean for real people. And I really respect the effort she's made, over the last few months, to promote the cause of health reform.
TNR published a piece I did the other day examining the ideological underpinnings of the left/center split in the Democratic Party over the propriety of a universal health care system based on regulated and subsidized private health insurers. I suggested there was a burgeoning, if questionably workable, tactical alliance between “social-democratic” progressives and some conservatives to derail much of the Obama overall agenda. Then I made this observation:
“One of the things that I’ve felt very strongly about during the course of this year is that hard stuff requires not paralysis, but it requires going ahead and trying to make the best of the situation that you’re in.”
Doesn't have quite the same ring as "the fierce urgency of now," does it? And in fact, MLK's next line was this:
"This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism."
Of course, Martin Luther King never met Ben Nelson.
At a Washington, D.C., restaurant, a child looking at a picture of Barack Obama turns to his mother and says: "Is he always going to be the president, mommy?"
"No," the mother replied. "Four years."
Maybe she's a Palin voter?
The United States is on the doorstep of comprehensive health care reform. It's a staggering achievement, about which I'll have more to say later. but the under-appreciated thing that strikes me at the moment is that it never would have happened if the Republican Party had played its cards right.
I had to learn this from Frank Foer’s proud father -- Frank's book on soccer, How Soccer Explains the World: an Unlikely Theory of Globalization was recently named by Sports Illustrated as one of the most five most influential sports books of the decade.