The conventional wisdom on the establishment left is that Sen. Bernie Sanders is offering his enthusiastic supporters pipedreams in lieu of achievable policy proposals. Placed in proper perspective, Bernie Sanders may be just one justice away from setting in motion what he calls a political "revolution."
The real debate Democrats should be having should not be about whether single payer, a highly successful proven system in so many industrialized nations, is the solution, but rather how we can collectively come together to overcome the corporate forces that derailed the ACA from providing a public option, drug price controls and insurance rate regulation
I see no better way to celebrate Medicare reaching its fiftieth anniversary than to expand Medicare. If we follow the lead of those visionary architects fifty years ago, those who come after us will inherit a nation where affordable, first class health insurance -- Medicare for All -- is a birthright.
If we were to measure the real wealth of our society -- our health and well-being, the health of the natural world, our level of education, etc. -- we would see that inequality itself is reducing our nation's well being, and the power of big corporations is allowing the degradation of our communities and environment.
Even if Obamacare does help a lot of people, my question is: at what political cost and at what long-term cost to effective social insurance? Both the conception and the roll out of The Affordable Care Act will set back the effort of liberal Democrats to persuade regular people that government can be a force for the broad public good (Social Security has no such problems). The ACA is the social-policy equivalent of the Pentagon's apocryphal $800 hammer. Even with a great deal of catch-up and good luck, it will take a miracle for Obamacare not to be a net loser for Democrats in the 2014 mid-term elections.