So the true manifestation of the Trump presidency has been revealed in the form of public policy that has no definable objective other than to attempt to mask the impotency of a leader and party that has neither a heart or a soul. The incredibly inane attack on Obama’s signature achievement to change America’s broken health care system is both cowardly and may prove self-destructive.
But to be fair, I was never a fan of Obamacare because I felt it was a poorly negotiated capitulation to the dark forces of the powerful health care lobby and its un-indicted co-conspirators in Congress: namely, the Republican members. So to be fair about it let this low point in a steady devolution of representative democracy serve as a pox on both houses.
Obamacare has certainly been an improvement in many respects over the previously canibalistic system of health insurance that has made our country the envy of no other industrialized country on Earth. But it was a surrender to overt partisanship and polarization that only deepened the discord among the American electorate which led to the emergence of the Tea Party and eventually spawned the orange Julius.
Where were efforts over the last seven years to lance the sores that had been oozing with respect to affordability? Surely Obamacare has been gaining in popularity and has many positive attributes, but it also has many problems and an acknowledgment on the part of its supporters to fix it rather than rest on the laurels of victory and hope the problems go away has helped pave the way for a surgical makeover. That makeover was done with the precision of a rusty fish knife rather than a scalpel.
Rest assured that those who have disfigured our health care system can enjoy their 15 minutes of fame as the pyrrhic victory will prove as illusory as the demented claims that it will actually foster both accessibility and affordability. Whether the public backlash will sufficiently result in fulfillment of the Democrats new anthem, Nah Nah Nah Nah, Hey Hey Hey Hey Goodbye, remains to be seen. Even if it does, however, what a terrible price to pay for political revenge.
A pox on both your houses. At what point are we going to see a level of either testicular or intestinal fortitude where leaders of both parties actually challenge the status quo and insist on an actual fix to our pathetic health care nightmare? At what point are we going to insist as an underrepresented populace that our needs be addressed as they would be in, oh I don’t know, maybe Costa Rica? When will we see the light that health care is a right not a privilege?
Trump needed a victory at any cost. He now has one, sorta. The President has no conception of the complexity of public policy. His first nature is to lie as a cover for his disinterest in knowledge and detail. Unfortunately he has a willing base and an absolutely flabbergasted and underwhelming party leadership that values self-interest more than the public interest. So let the people eat cake.
Democrats on the other hand have been transfixed by the marvel they created and shrunk from the responsibility to fine tune an imperfect instrument as the opposition strengthened its resolve. The only answer now is to blow it all up and take the not so radical approach to guarantee health care for all. Pure and simple.
The time for tinkering at the edges and incremental modifications is over. Trump had a chance to actually foment such a historic transformation but is not up to the task, if only because he actually does not have either the intellectual capacity or curiosity to do it. He has shown a willingness to abdicate and delegate the hard work to Congress.
Therein lies our only hope. Will the Senate produce the leadership to force the issue? Calling on Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Sherrod Brown, Jeff Merkley. Will the House Democrats forge an alliance with Republican moderates to create a rebellion in the lower body? I know it is a stretch but how long can our democratic processes run on a life-support system that is sustained by polarization and dysfunction? Many millions will suffer unless we act now. To paraphrase Trump, “what do we have to lose?’