There’s a recent comment that reminds me of a deplorable line of argument I’ve seen repeatedly but don’t I’ve ever addressed:
Nobody has universal healthcare. Not even after it’s fully implemented will it be honestly “universal”.
Obama handed corporations billions of dollars in enforced customers that hopefully will be better than having no healthcare at all.
Creepy how Obama supporters never did the math on how much corporations could be expected to profit from Obama’s plan until there was fear that the Supreme Court might eliminate it.
Suddenly there were pseudo-liberals trying to explain how bad the elimination of Obamacare would be to _corporation’s profitability_.
And yes, that’s closet Republicanism: Corporations profiting from expanded government.
Liberals, true liberals, know that it would have been more efficient and cost-effective to go straight to any of a dozen superior healthcare models that the rest of the industrialized world uses: Namely, telling corporations to go F# themselves.
While stated in crude and extreme form, this became a fairly common routine among leftier-than-thou critics of the ACA (and/or NFIB v. Sebelius.) John Roberts was just “bailing out” the health insurance industry or some such. (The theory that John Roberts is the only Republican in America sensitive to corporate interests is…not plausible, but moving right along.) I understand perfectly well that single-payer would be a superior system, but in the context of American politics, this is beside the point — if you have further complaints, direct them to James Madison.
There are two obvious problems with this argument. First, it proves too much. By the same logic, progressives should oppose food stamps because they’re really just bailouts of Big Food and Big Retail, and the federal government shouldn’t try to help poor people get food with anything but rations provided by state agencies. The fact is, when you get money into the hands of poor people, a lot of it is going to end up in the hands of Wal-Mart or Target or whatever. This is a really bad argument for opposing welfare programs. Second, I don’t think these claims that private health insurance are worthless are remotely credible. Do you have health insurance through your employer? Would you give it up for an increase in wages? I sure wouldn’t. Does anyone really think that health care is no more accessible for middle class people in Massachusetts than it is in Mississippi?
The same fallacies can be seen in Connor Kilpatrick’s assertion that not only does Obama not favor radical means, he doesn’t even favor progressive goals. Apparently, the endpoint progressives should be fighting for isn’t “making healthcare universally accessible” but “sticking it to corporations.” Not only is this exactly the wrong priority, but as long as #2 is your main goal American political institutions mean that #1 is will be permanently off the table unless the South is planning on seceding again.