Tuesday, November 24, 2009

How you can tell if someone really cares about cost-cutting

Or anything, for that matter. The Senate bill contains some very real long-term cost-cutting mechanisms, like the excise tax on high-value insurance plans, cutting excess Medicare Advantage spending, etc. It also spends a fair amount of money to insure people who don't have insurance, which admittedly costs money, though all of this is accounted for. This is not to mention that the bill will reduce the deficit by $120 billion. Basically, if your #1 priority is "bending the curve", then there's a lot to like in this bill.

Of course, if your stated #1 priority is cost-cutting, but your real #1 priority is to place yourself in the center of public discourse (like some certain pundits named David), then endorsing health care reform is simply not an option. Don't get me wrong, the plan before Congress should do much more on this front, as well as any number of fronts. But if you truly desire cost-cutting, this bill is a step in the right direction. And considering the nature of Congress, a step in the right direction is indeed a miraculous event, and one that can be built upon in the future.

I'll take Broder and Brooks at their word that they care about cutting costs. But they care about other things much more. And this is why I don't trust either one's opinions on much of anything these days.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.