Friday, March 31, 2017

"Single-payer health care has always been a goal of the Left. But Democrats have turned it into a punching bag."

You can't make these things up. On April Fool's Day, our local Democrats will gather to "define tomorrow."

Hmm. What exactly has the party done with regard to activism at the local level since Trump's election?

It has doubled down on failed leadership, and Gahan's shoes are being polished daily, but beyond those -- am I missing something? Or does activism in this context imply ignoring local conditions to shake fists at far-off Washington?

As ever, we await a pulse. Is there anybody out (in) there?

Democrats Against Single Payer, by Branko Marcetic (Jacobin)

Single-payer health care has always been a goal of the Left. But Democrats have turned it into a punching bag.

... The good news is that the same popular, grassroots pressure that ordinary people successfully put on Republican lawmakers who were preparing to strip Americans of even the meager protections afforded by Obamacare can also be used to push Democrats to support single payer. As much as numerous pundits and politicians mocked Sanders’s concept of getting things done through a “political revolution,” the past few months of widespread activism by ordinary Americans have shown this was far from the out-of-touch fantasy many dismissed it as.

After all, it was years of grassroots organizing and agitation from the labor movement that forced Harry Truman to cite these simple moral imperatives while proposing a single-payer system all those decades ago: “that the health of this Nation is a national concern; that financial barriers in the way of attaining health shall be removed; that the health of all its citizens deserves the help of all the Nation.” There’s no reason those forces can’t force today’s reluctant Democrats to do the same.

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