Seamanship Quotation

“In political activity, then, men sail a boundless and bottomless sea; there is neither harbour for shelter nor floor for anchorage, neither starting-place nor appointed destination.”
— from Michael Oakeshott's
Political Education” (1951)

Friday, June 29, 2012

Republicans bet the farm on repealing Obamacare

Barack Obama hasn’t transformed the Democratic Party but he’s making history by driving Republicans crazy. 

For 40 years, Republicans worked brilliantly to sell the Republican Party as more than assembly of rich white protestants who play electoral politics to keep their lessers out.

The moderns in the Republican Party stopped trying to re-fight the New Deal or market their own ideas about how to make the poor upper-middle class, too. Essentially, they promised better times and found things to attack that the average guy worries about as well—like other countries, run-away government spending, street crime, foreign influences, and white-collar officials and other snobs who don’t talk common sense.

In these hard times, campaigning against Obama as an incompetent would be good enough for these Republicans. Nevertheless, no-drama Obama has excited his opponent to go extreme.

Thanks to Republican staging by 26 Republican states, congressional votes, billionaire PACs, and dozens of primaries across the country—Americans are now four months away from an election with a vivid choice.

Obama, temperamentally and visually a liberal, will defend a conservative record and a half a dozen new universal rights and benefits for individual Americans.

Romney, temperamentally and visually a conservative, will call for radical change, promising to repeal new health consumer rights, and make government poorer and business more profitable.

By going to the Supreme Court, Republicans declared that what middle-class families in other successful democracies can claim as a right as citizens—guaranteed nation-wide access to basic and preventative health services—is impermissible in the United States.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court added “constitutional” to the various selling points of Obamacare.

A strong, as well as smart, Republican presidential candidate would stand back and think. He’d look at options, including amending the legislation and claiming to have the necessary experience to make the reforms truly affordable. Mitt Romney, however, doubled down simply promising to repeal the legislation.

In effect, he’s asking for a filibuster-free sweep. In tax, and social policy, he’s inviting individual Americans to break the government rather than do anything more to make life more secure and more comfortable—beyond what they can win for themselves in the market.

No doubt it will “galvanize” the Republican base. The Charge of the Light Brigade was vehement as well. 

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