What's wrong with neoliberals, Krugman edition
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So it looks like the next talking point is going to be we hate children.
The setup: After the collapse of the latest efforts of the Republicans to have us all die quickly, what next?
Well, some progressives — by and large people who supported Bernie Sanders in the primaries — are already trying to revive one of his signature proposals: expanding Medicare to cover everyone. Some even want to make support for single-payer a litmus test for Democratic candidates.
So it’s time for a little pushback. A commitment to universal health coverage — bringing in the people currently falling through Obamacare’s cracks — should definitely be a litmus test. But single-payer, while it has many virtues, isn’t the only way to get there; it would be much harder politically than its advocates acknowledge; and there are more important priorities.
He then goes on to try and point out how the ACA could be made to work if we regulated the insurance industry like Europeans do, specifically the Dutch who have mandated private insurance, heavy insurance regulations and subsidies so that people can pay for it. Krugman is attempting to sell this as the “realistic” path forward in the US, despite the massive resistance to making the subsidies sufficient, as well as massive resistance to insurance regulation that would actually bring costs down.
Why’s it so important to protect Obama’s legacy….er…keep the ACA structure? Why, to keep us enslaved to our employers.
A far more important consideration is minimizing disruption to the 156 million people who currently get insurance through their employers, and are largely satisfied with their coverage. Moving to single-payer would mean taking away this coverage and imposing new taxes; to make it fly politically you’d have to convince most of these people both that they would save more in premiums than they pay in additional taxes, and that their new coverage would be just as good as the old.
This might in fact be true, but it would be one heck of a hard sell.
Apparently, Krugman can’t read any opinion polls, which show it would not be that hard a sell.
Amusingly, Krugman even admits that there needs to be a Public Option. Largely because it’s utterly obvious there are some pretty massive failures of the ACA. Yet somehow this public option that Krugman believes will eventually, someday lead to single payer is not a “hard sell” in the current political environment. Because apparently, insurance companies are simultaneously brilliant and stupid: They provide such wonderful employer and ACA coverage, but are utterly unable to see a public option as a threat.
But this really isn’t that surprising. Krugman’s wandering around in the world of the comfortable. Where employer-based insurance 1) exists, and 2) doesn’t suck. That’s a rapidly shrinking group of people, but it does include university professors. As someone who had the opportunity to suddenly pay thousands of dollars in unexpected medical expenses, I can assure Krugman that employer-based insurance is rapidly getting much worse for the employee. But it’s a lovely pair of “golden handcuffs” employers can use to try and keep you from striking out on your own.
So what’s Krugman think we should fight for instead? Expanded family leave and free daycare. No really. Stop laughing, he really wrote that. It’s really what Krugman thinks is the most pressing issue and we need to “spend our political capital” on it.
A little lesson for Professor Krguman from those of us not blessed with tenure: Leave gets you fired. Oh sure, your employer can’t explicitly fire you for taking leave. That would be against the law. But if you take it, your performance reviews are suddenly poor. Projects are handed to other people instead of you. Then you’re dinged again for not leading or contributing to those projects that are no longer yours. Then you get fired for poor performance. No matter what your performance actually was.
But that doesn’t happen in Krugman’s world. Perhaps he should spend some time outside his world and find out what a $10k out-of-pocket employer plan looks like. It’s what “good” employer-based insurance is now. Maybe he can find out what actually happens to people who take more than the absolute minimum medically-required leave.
And those of us who still think single payer is extremely important and one of the things we should be fighting for? Why, we must hate children since we don’t want to give that up to fight for free daycare instead.Pastiche, Oilwellian, Babel 17 and 62 othershifiguy, joentokyo, ccinamon, ReRe2, mrdmk, TIME TO PANIC, libodem, Ejbr, daleanime, dlegendary1, Abelenkpe, ctsnowman, HeartoftheMidwest, kath, 3FingerBrown, TwilightSporkle, tokenlib, Coldmountaintrail, beltanefauve, nevereVereven, 99thMonkey, GloriaMundi, closeupready, Peace Patriot, Pam, slay, Baba OhReally, ZimInSeattle, Iwillnevergiveup, Blackspade, Two way street, Jefferson23, Odd John, bvar22, Utopian Leftist, Lorien, ozoneman, twenty, snot, VagrantPeters, Dragonfli, Populist Prole, NJOCK, Fuddnik, Betty Karlson, Marym625, OCMI, area woman, DoctorJ, Iwalani88, graycat, BillZBubb, jwirr, Mom Cat, mmonk, 99Forever, Scuba, Enthusiast, N2Doc, PADemD, dreamnightwind, B Calm like this
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