Friday, February 26, 2010

The New Stupid Party

For years and years everyone knew that the Republican Party was the stupid party. How did they know? Because the Democrats ran rings around them.

But maybe that was then. Maybe the Democrats are trying out for the worthy and honorable role of Stupid Party.

That's the takeaway from Thursday's Health Care Summit. The telling sign is that Rush Limbaugh had to admit he was wrong.

All along Rush had reckoned that the Health Care Summit was a trap set by the cunning Democrats for the stupid Republicans. Don't do it, he warned.

No doubt it was intended as a trap. But the trap didn't spring. In the event, Rush had to admit that he was wrong.

But the Republicans need to be commended here for having a pretty good strategery of going up there and ramming this down their throats and not rolling over and playing dead... They are taking it to him.

Tunku Varadaran had the specifics on a bad day for the Democrats:

Was he trying to make the Republicans look bad—retrograde ogres who would leave uninsured babies to die in their cribs?

Yeah. Now I think of it, that was probably the idea. Why wouldn't the Democrats try it? It worked before.

If so, he didn’t succeed at all. On the contrary, they came out of it looking rather alert and grown-up... What was so striking about the summit was the preparedness of the Republicans. All of them had done their homework: Lamar Alexander, Tom Coburn, John Kyl, John McCain, Dave Camp, John Barrosso, and Paul Ryan. The Democrats, by contrast, suffered from an acute case of “anecdotitis” (is it a preexisting condition?)”

OK. What is really going on here? (Kudos to the Republicans, by the way, for showing up to play.)

For explanation, we return to Irving Kristol, who wrote that when you are trying to do something for the poor you must include the middle class. That's why Social Security and Medicare work politically. They are intended to help the poor but they deal the middle class in on the loot.

Here's the problem with ObamaCare: Americans already have health insurance. So what was President Obama going to offer them in return for covering the 30 million without insurance? Well, he promised to lower costs. But the American people weren't willing to believe that. They clearly reckon that they are going to pay more. And they are right. So no deal.

Mind you, Social Security and Medicare were triumphs of political flim-flam. People were talked into paying taxes now on the promise of glorious benefits later. No doubt, for the average middle-class American, a better plan would have been a mandatory program of savings and a tax on the rich to pay for the poor. But Americans bought into the idea back then, and now, of course, Social Security and Medicare can't pay out on the promises.

ObamaCare can't offer a glorious future for all against a modest payroll tax for today. That's because Americans already have health insurance and the only glorious future that is likely to excite them is the idea of keeping what they have and not allowing the politicians tax it or take it away.

That, I submit, is what the Tea Party movement is all about.

And it looks like the Democrats are too stupid to realize it.

Welcome to the Stupid Party, fellahs!

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