Friday, September 18, 2009

Goin' Up The Country

Back from New England wondering if this is the best Max Baucus can come up with? Surely the derision from both sides of the aisle that has greeted his version of health care "reform," which doesn't include a public option, can be no surprise to him. And, yet, Chuck Todd claims here that the White House is willing to do what it takes to get Olympia Snowe (R-ME) on board. Personally, I think that Snowe is about as likely to support meaningful reform as Newt Gingrich.

I also have to wonder why a single senator from a state with a population of 1.3 million (or .004 percent of the United States total population) has been able to amass such power. Todd points out that the White House's approach to Snowe is designed to accommodate Susan Collins, her fellow Maine Republican, and conservative Democrats like Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Ben Nelson (NE), and Mary Landrieu (LA). Again, I must ask why?

Combined, these states amount to slightly more than 3% of the population of the country. Neither Arkansas or Louisiana voted for Obama, nor are they likely to. The one electoral vote he got from Nebraska came from the power of his organization and not anything that Ben Nelson did. In short, the White House is beholden to none of these senators for anything.

And, yet, the White House may have decided that it would rather have 60 votes for a watered-down bill than eke out a better bill via the reconciliation process (which, in short, would allow the bills sponsors to avoid cloture in the Senate, whereby 60 votes are required to bring a bill to the floor). Perhaps there's some grand strategy whereby President Obama and his advisors take the same approach as Lyndon Johnson did with the Civil Rights Act of 1957: Compromise for votes in order to get the camel's nose in the tent. Perhaps I'm just hoping against hope, too...


Slave master, I'm the shepherd of my pasture...

Clever Pup reviews U2 in Toronto...


Friday's Choice:
"Goin' Up The Country" with Canned Heat:

7 comments:

Sylvia K said...

Seems like I've been hoping against hope for some time now. With every twist and turn this mess takes I just keep asking why??? Haven't heard any really good answers, just more talk, talk, talk!

Great post as always, K!

Sylvia

Blogalot said...

Oh man...I always liked Canned Heat but that is one lame video!

Roy said...

We keep saying it and they keep not listening - without the public option it's not reform!

Heh, heh! I have to agree with Blogalot - that has got to be the weirdest video I've ever seen. The lip-sync was really, really off, and those kids dancing look like zombies. But it was good to hear Canned Heat again!

Annette said...

No, I think Todd is wrong.. and I think the so called conventional wisdom is wrong.. I don't think anyone is compromising anything.. The President has not changed a bit and is not saying it likes this bill.. he said again at the rally in Maryland he wants the Public Option and he wants exactly what he laid out the other night. Today Michelle was out talking and she said the same things.

He has asked US, we the people over and over to call our Congress people and tell them what we want. and that's what we have to do.. That's what needs to be done.. he can only do so much.. He has stated what he wants.. Now it is up to us and to the Congress to get it done. Then he will sign it.. Let's get it done.

K. said...

Sylvia, Annette: I don't look to Chuck Todd as the ultimate source, but other things I've read take a similar tack.

B-A-L, Roy I agree that the video scores high on the weird scale. I especially like the part where the flute player stops and the flute goes right on playing! Ian Anderson (of Jethro Tull) must have been inspired by the end of the video!

RobinB said...

LOVED THE VIDEO PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!
Esp Big Fat, the flautist flaunting the lipsynch thing. Have never seen anything so psychedelic without any of the trappings.

K. said...

Robin: The more I think of it, the more I think it's a piece of brilliantly staged performance art. Besides the flaunting fat flautist, you have the zombie-like German dancers echoing the the lead singer emotionlessly frozen into place. There's nothing like it!