In his Dec. 29 column, “The art of the escape,” Rich Lowry once again fails to understand the complications of the Affordable Care Act, sometimes called Obamacare. Let’s begin by analyzing the economics of the act.
In religion, churches and other houses of worship mainly exist for the wellness of the soul, and are mostly nonprofit.
In education, schools and universities mainly exist for the wellness of the mind, and are mostly nonprofit.
However, Lowry and other right-leaning pundits as well as conservative members of Congress are determined that our systems that exist for the wellness of our health, which many of us believe is a right, should remain in the status quo — for profit.
This latest accusation by Lowry that the president is trying to escape responsibility for the ACA is way over the top in irrationality. What Lowry sees as waffling by Obama is also seen by many on the far left as surrender.
In reality, Obama is walking a very thin tight wire in trying to maintain a balance in compromise. The liberals want a system of Medicare for all and the conservatives want business as usual, i.e., health care for profit. Lowry states that Teddy Roosevelt and FDR and LBJ all stood by their initiatives for social programs, and he is correct. But times have changed in the political world in which Obama exists.
What we have now is a Republican Congress and also some senators who are dedicated to make Obama fail and will even vote against their own ideas if Obama is for it. In fact, they were willing to shut down the entire government and to threaten the viability of our entire economy to keep Obama from succeeding.
In this Obamacare controversy, I am certain that many insurance and pharma executives and medical providers of all stripes are conflicted by the possibility that while they will get more business through government initiatives, they are petrified at the prospect of having accepted some “socializing” of the system. They were worried about Social Security and Medicare too, but just try to take them away from the American people. The Affordable Care Act will in the not-too-distant future join the others as the “third rail” in politics, and Obama’s name will not be spoken by the right-wing obstructionists then. Those of us who want this progressive program will not forget how he fought for it, however.