From the point of view of many consumers, public health, digital rights and development groups, the United States Trade Representative is a major disappointment pushing an anti consumer agenda on dozens of issues.
Without the public option, the truth is that we have a bill that might cost the government less, but costs consumers more. The public option will create the competition needed to drive down prices of private insurance.
Olympia Snowe's vote might not have been a tie-breaker, but it was a mood-shifter. And at least she's not the kind who gloats, flaunts her influence and does a victory dance when the bargaining is done.
Private, nonprofit health care cooperatives, properly designed, actually could offer quite a lot to both the left and the right, as well as to anyone who is interested in expanding health care coverage.