Bai's major limitation in his current piece is that he simply assumes as fact that all of the trends in America's current economy - lack of job security, stagnating wages, etc. - are just the natural way of things, and that there's positively nothing we can do to make the world's most powerful economy actually work for ordinary people. To him and many other pundits in the political chattering class, this is just an unquestionable axiom, which is particularly sad since journalists are actually supposed to question the power Establishment, not bow down to it and kiss its ass. For Bai et al, the sky is blue, water is wet and ordinary Americans will continue getting the economic shaft - and there's just nothing the people's government can do about any of it, other than maybe to throw more taxpayer cash at the wealthy.
After laying out this thesis, Bai then posits different ideas about how government can properly operate in this world that he asserts can't be changed. But even in undertaking that tiny exercise, he actually omits the biggest obstacle to realizing his incredibly short-sighted dream.
Specifically, Bai basically argues that we should not expect businesses to finance health care plans for their employees because foreign competition with slave-wage work in the developing world would put those businesses at a disadvantage. He then seems to advocate for "government" picking up the tab to provide health insurance for everyone.
Frankly, it seems as if he is arguing for a universal health care system that exempts businesses from having to pay additional taxes for that health insurance system. Without additional corporate tax revenues, then, the system he advocates for would have to be financed by massive tax increases almost exclusively on the middle class.
This is a good description of what I have written about before: the difference between liberalism of the past, and progressivism of the future. For all of his dismissive rhetoric about how the Democratic Party is clinging to ancient priorities, Bai and much of the pundit class are the ones caught in the past, advocating the worst kind of tax and spend policies liberals have been chastised for: handing over huge amounts of taxpayer dollars, financed by middle class tax increases, in order to do what government refuses to force Corporate America and the wealthy to do, which is pay their fair share like the rest of us. Of course, that outlook from the punditocracy is likely no accident - it's no secret that many of today's media are more interested in serving power than questioning it.