How Liberals Win by Bill Scher
Health care was not an anomaly for Mr. Obama. His original stimulus package never faced well-financed conservative opposition in part because the United States Chamber of Commerce backed the business tax cuts in the package. We got a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau after Mr. Obama put Wall Street at ease by resisting proposals to cap the size of banks. New standards lifting average fuel-efficiency goals were set once the White House accepted the automakers’ demand for a review in 2021 and flexibility regarding light trucks. The food safety bill empowered the Food and Drug Administration to recall tainted items but won industry support by dropping a ban on bisphenol A, or BPA, a chemical used in food and beverage containers.
The necessity of forging coalitions with corporations is understandably difficult for progressives to accept. Every time it happens, corporations seem to quickly go back to their usual tricks. They lobby to weaken enforcement. They litigate to have rules overturned. They abandon politicians who risked compromise for them. Corporations are exasperating, irritating and untrustworthy partners.
But most of the time politics is exasperating and irritating, not euphoric and cathartic. As Roosevelt himself told a group of dissatisfied youth activists in 1940, “if you ever sit here you will learn that you cannot, just by shouting from the housetops, get what you want all the time.”
Obamacare or the PPACA was aimed at fixing two problems in the broken health care system: millions of uninsured and rising costs.
It helps more people get insurance and get the health care they need.
As Dean Baker writes:
The system put in place under the ACA would put the government in a position where it could squeeze money out of providers. It could specify prices for services and procedures and tell providers take it or leave it. Given the enormous and rapidly growing size of the Medicare market, most would likely take it.If prices keep rising a public option can still be added to help keep them down. If that works voters may finally decide to follow advanced European countries by using a single payer system which delivers the most bang for the buck.
There will still be people uninsured after 2014 when much of the ACA takes effect. Expanding the ACA to Medicare-for-all would be a major further reform that would cover the remaining uninsured and help contain price increases.