29 Sep 2014

Harry Reid on ObamaCare Being Just a Step in the Right Direction

Conspiracy, Health Legislation 22 Comments

I know I linked to news reports at the time this interview occurred in the summer of 2013–in which Harry Reid unambiguously says his goal is a single payer system that gets private health insurers out of the picture–but I don’t remember if I ever posted the video of it (which wasn’t available when the story broke). In any event, watch this entire clip, it is quite revealing. It shows that those of us warning that the ACA is a stepping stone to single payer aren’t being “paranoid” as the critics allege.

22 Responses to “Harry Reid on ObamaCare Being Just a Step in the Right Direction”

  1. Levi says:

    Well that’s frightening.

  2. Daniel Kuehn says:

    I think it’s worth being specific about what “critics allege” (not required that you be specific – just that it would be a worthwhile exercise for anyone interested in undertaking it). I don’t think it was any secret that a lot of people in the U.S. want single payer. After all, that was a more standard Democratic position previously, and this is widely known too.

    I think what is more paranoid is this idea that there are these machinations to produce a system that will be so broken that it forces everyone into a public option and evolves into single payer. That is a little nutty. The system is what it is because it’s what they could get passed not because it is part of some craftier master plan.

    • Mike M says:

      “I think what is more paranoid is this idea that there are these machinations to produce a system that will be so broken that it forces everyone into a public option and evolves into single payer. That is a little nutty.”

      Is it really? Step back and look at it objectively. Its classic Cloward-Piven strategy.

      • K.P. says:

        You might be giving politicians too much Machiavellian credit. They could just fumble into it.

        • Impatient says:

          Yes. It was an all out bribe-a-thon of garden variety special interest corruption. Unions get exempted, some states get exempted, politicians get exempted, extensions get peddled, Obama’s backers get rewarded.

      • Daniel Kuehn says:

        Your logic relies on Cloward-Piven being not nutty.

        I’ve actually never read them before. I know what the Cloward-Piven strategy is said to be, but for all I know their actual point was more along the lines “this is really inefficient and perverse and eventually it’s going to have to give way to something more reasonable”. That’s not as nutty, but of course that’s not how paranoid people think about Cloward-Piven, or for that matter the relationship between Obamacare and single payer.

        • Mike M says:

          Good rule of thumb: Read, understand and think critically for yourself before opining on something.

          • Daniel Kuehn says:

            OK, if you’re going to get like this I’ll be more direct: good rule of thumb – if you want to make a claim like that address Obamacare don’t just reference something completely different and assume you’ve constructed an argument.

            • Mike M says:

              Very well. I’ll be more direct.

              Cloward-Piven essentially, at its core says, overload the system, create a crisis, collapse and rebuild in the vision you wish.

              Fingerprints of this strategy are all over the Healthcare fiasco. Part of my business is involved in healthcare so I see the gory details of the sausage making. You may think it is innocent innocence of incompetent or naive politicians. I’ve known and interfaced with too many of these people to know this difference. You are naïve to think this was just the byproduct of a messy legislative process.

              Essentially there are two types of politicians in this matter, the perpetually ignorant that are useful idiots in a different context and the Machiavellian control freaks. There is a smaller minority who actually understands and is trying to do the right thing but they are generally swamped by the first two groups.

              It’s not a “conspiracy”, it’s a strategy. We shall see if it is ultimately successful it might make you feel better to write it off as conspiracy of the “tin foil hat club”, but if you step back, strip your bias and look at it objectively, it becomes a bit clearer.

              So you see DK, I’m not constructing an argument, just pointing out the obvious if you are willing to look at it objectively.

      • Daniel Kuehn says:

        Good rule of thumb: If Glenn Beck finds it credible it’s probably nutty.

        Cloward-Piven, fascism and Progressivism, Mormonism, etc.

        • Richie says:

          Good rule of thumb, if DK gets huffy about something, it’s probably correct.

          My belief has always been that the design of Obamacare was to drive up the price of “insurance” so that the do-gooders could scream, “See! Those evil, greedy capitalists are profiting from your sickness!”, and then get the public on board for single-payer.

          Do you really believe that any politician is going to suggest single-payer outright? Haha. Right.

          • Daniel Kuehn says:

            What I really think is that politicians are not masterminds, and that legislation gets passed in a very messy way and they rarely get exactly what they want.

            This is not a planned path to single payer. It is a messy compromise in an environment where a subset of politicians of course would still like to see single payer.

            • Ben B says:

              Ok, but if some politicians are masterminds, then do you think the Cliven-Piven/Fabian socialism strategy is nutty? It seems like what you are saying is not that Cliven-Piven is nutty, but rather the view that our current political class are masterminds is nutty.

              It could be that many of the politicians who supported Obamacare are not intentionally adopting this strategy, but all that matters for it to be a strategy that is in play is if the major actors responsible for bringing about the legislation are indeed intentionally doing so in hopes that it eventually fails.

              On the other hand, why would a politican want to be the major actor behind legislation that he knows will fail? Isn’t this career and/or legacy suicide? Maybe, but politicians are also masters of spin, and they can always claim that they “had to do something!”, or that “all the evidence pointed to success”, and so on. But even if we don’t assume complete self-interest in regards to their political career, then maybe they see themseves as a sort of socialist martyr performing the ultimate altruistic act, and something that “must be done for the greater good.”

              And of course, I don’t remember any politican suggesting that the preceding healthcare legislation should be repealed because it was creating the problems that the ACA was trying to answer. Therefore, these mastermind politicians may not be worried that the ACA will backfire against public opinion for the need of further government intervention in the future.

      • Harold says:

        Mike M. It is different. Cloward-Piven wanted to expose what was in effect an already broken system, but had not fallen down because lots of people were not claiming what the law said they were entitled to. The failed system would be local and State based. Thus Cloward-Piven (or the incumbent Federal Democratic Govt.) were not the architects of the system that they wanted to push into failure, and would be able to step into the breach as saviours. It is very different to *create* a system that is designed to fail catastrophically, to which you will be forever linked. After failure, there is no way you could step into the breach as you will be tainted by the failure of *your* system.

        • K.P. says:

          Eh, now I think too much credit is being given to voters. Politicians (and their handlers) could easily spin this failure as being the fault of either the free market or the opposing party.

        • Mike M says:

          Harold, I think you underestimate the nature and history of government to blame bogyman for the failures of the system they are in charge of. It has historically worked well on the masses. I’m not saying it will work this time, just which is the pattern.

          • Harold says:

            Whatever the outcome with the voters, a strategy to create a policy designed to fail is different from a strategy to expose the failures of an existing policy.

    • Rick Hull says:

      Couldn’t it be the equivalent of the Greenspan put? Typically you are constrained in your action by the risk of catastrophe. Where game theory tells you that catastrophe has a strong likelihood of focused benefit from distributed losses (aka a bailout), wouldn’t that tend to remove prudential constraints?

      • Rick Hull says:

        If it’s not clear, the focused benefit is the narrow political agenda of single payer, while the distributed losses represent the opposition of the majority of citizens to such a policy.

    • Grane Peer says:

      A very thin layer of paint, one after the other. You will barely notice the color has completely changed. When you do, what? Oh, nobody planned on this color, it just happened by accident.

  3. S.C. says:

    Single payer would be a monopsony, right?

  4. Rick Caird says:

    After all the problems with ObamaCare, I find it incredible that more than a handful of Americans would trust the government to take even more health care responsibility.

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