Wednesday, March 11, 2009

As with Labor, So with Healthcare

As President-elect Obama announced members of his economic team, progressives and a handful of others noted the absence of any labor advocates from the "Team of Rivals". Last week, President Obama hosted a 'summit' on healthcare reform. Absent were any advocates for single-payer — the system at use in very nearly every other industrialized country around the world.

Why, if Obama and his team of god=like thinkers are so 'open to all the options' is one of the most obvious and publicly popular options being excluded? Could it be that Obama has been told by The American Oligarchs that single-payer isn't allowed? That change is great, but only so much?

Luke Mitchell
of Harper's Magazine, speaking on Democracy Now, noted that Sen. Max Baucus, said first that "everything is on the table" but then "went out of his way to say that we can't have single payer."

We have a clue to the reason in the Obama administrations hand-waving over bank bailouts and particularly nationalization:

Private Property is Sacrosanct.

Ben Bernanke and Timothy Geithner, among others, have made a point of saying that the Obama administration has no intention of challenging the model of "private banking". Nor do it likely have any intention of challenging private insurance.

If in the midst of the US economic collapse, we cannot consider real change in either the US banking system or the US insurance system, then what hope have we of the Great Change that Obama held out promise for?

Indeed, we now have at least three clear instances of the Idols of Institutional Inertia which President Obama dares not challenge:
  • Private banking, despite prove provided in recent months of institutionalized corruption, greed, lying and outright theft on one of the largest scales in word history;
  • Private insurance, a case still in the making, but already well-supported by that of "too-big-to-fail AIG" and soon to be supported by what I predict will be a house of cards attempt address healthcare; and
  • Israel, a case where US National Intelligence Council nominee Chas Freeman has been forced to step down after ruthless campaign by the Israel lobby including US Senators Charles Schumer and the vile Joseph Lieberman.
We have also seen Obama effectively continue Bush policy on extraordinary rendition and slightly diluted belligerence with substantial but far from total troop reductions in Iraq and marked increases in Afghanistan.

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