Not-So-Sudden Victory

What is repulsive is not that one man should earn more than others, for where community of environment, and a common education and habit of life, have bred a common tradition of respect and consideration, these details of the counting house are forgottten or ignored, It is that some classes should be excluded from the heritage of civilization which others enjoy, and that the fact of human fellowship, which is ultimate and profound, should be obscured by economic contrasts, which are trivial and superficial. [R.H. Tawney]

Congratulations to all the Dems–not just the elected ones–who worked to pass the health care bill.  It’s a big achievement. Thanks to Speaker Pelosi. Thanks to Senator Feinstein. Thanks to Senator Boxer. Thanks to all the members of the tireless liberal MSM!

Whatever CBO says or doesn’t say, I don’t for one minute believe that the bill’s new, highly subsidized system of insurance “exchanges”– allowing millions of less affluent citizens to gain access to ever-more-complicated medical technology–will  “bend the curve” of health care costs downwards or help the nation’s deficit situation.   I’d be surprised if even a third of the Democrats who voted for the bill believe it.   I suspect most of them support the bill for the same reasons most Democrats do–as a crucial step in preventing trivial and superficial economic contrasts from translating into ultimate and profound life and death decisions.

They–we–know there will almost certainly be a big additional bill to pay down the road. It will be even bigger if, as we can hope and expect, government attempts to restrict potentially useful treatments in the name of economy prove unsustainably unpopular. But it will be easier to pay this bill once everyone is in the same system–when old people can’t argue that their care is being cut in order to insure the young, etc..  We will all be figuring out how to pay for ourselves.

P.S.: The exchanges may not work either! Maybe future Congresses will decide to add a “public option,” or scrap them entirely in favor of a Medicare-like system that eliminates the insurance company middlemen. But they might work. It makes sense to try them first.

P.P.S.:  Good time for this song again. 12:52 A.M.