So now the public option is said to be dead, but never fear because we will obtain health care reform in spite of it all.
Howard Dean as a doctor and former governor knows the ropes. He spirited a health care bill through the Vermont legislature and signed it into law. Dean did not sound optimistic about the prospect of reform when he appeared on Rachel Maddow's MSNBC program Tuesday night.
In fact, Dean, sounding like the refreshingly candid guy so many liked as a breath of fresh air in the political system, told Maddow point blank that a health care bill without the public option would be fraud.
How refreshingly blunt and deliciously on point. Dean knows in ways that those self-designated experts on health care, the esteemed senators Grassley and Hatch, do not, about cost containment how crucially it factors into the picture.
Let us say that a bill is finally passed, the champagne corks are popped, victory is declared, and after the bubbly has been consumed we come down from Capitol Hill euphoria into that state that causes such panic, called reality. What do we have with health care minus any public option?
Let us link that question to that dirty old word that people like to shirk like the plague. It is called cost, yes cost. With the gigantic profits racked up by the insurance and pharmaceutical giants having been duly noted, these hardly impoverished corporations will be seeing all this taxpayer money tossed their way.
Obama and operatives involved in the ongoing pursuit of a health care bill have told us that, even without any public option or the kind of cost discipline imposed through a program such as single payer, those incorrigibly dirty words, but yet what most Americans have indicated they want, the industry will police itself.
If the industry fails to police itself then Obama and cohorts promise that the miscreants will be dealt with later.
All this has a familiar ring. Remember when then Governor George W. Bush of Texas presided over the passage of that infamous anti-pollution law?
The big polluters would police themselves. What a grand result! It involved scores of deaths and illnesses, particularly among the oldest and youngest of the state's population. Meanwhile Houston became so thick with smog as to be virtually impenetrable.
So we are now being promised some of the same kind of discipline from within! Are they sipping champagne or kool aid?
For some reason I cannot seem to shake that revealing segment of 60 Minutes from a few years back.
60 Minutes was exploring the life and times of the CEO of super giant insurer Blue Cross. I will never forget the helicopter footage of the estate of this CEO, which made even the most opulent banana republic dictators look like welfare paupers.
So just sit back and await the results as the giants of health care impose that discipline from within which they never seemed to get around to in the past.
There is nothing like the Capitol Hill political gentry when it comes to throwing abject failure in the faces of the citizenry and proclaiming it to be rip roaring success.