Why the Professional Political Class are Parasites on Us All

August 17, 2009 at 10:39 am (By Amba)

From Politico:

[S]trategist James Carville became the first leading Democrat to suggest publically that there might be political advantage in letting Republicans “kill” health care.

“Put a bill out there, make them filibuster it, make them be what they are, the party of no,” Carville said. “Let them kill it. Let them kill it with the interest group money, then run against them. That’s what we ought to do.”

(Read the comments:  ambivalence kicks in.)


  1. michael reynolds said,

    I think it was probably more meta than literal. It’s bluster, a threat. Chin-jutting.

    We’re in it now on health care, a point where almost all we’ll see is posturing and the real action is taking place out of sight. I’ve always suspected the public option was trade goods, something Obama would use to discipline the insurance lobby. But its tricky: bluffing is complicated.

    Keep your eye on the negative space: the things that aren’t being said. Howard Dean’s drawing a line in the sand on the PO, but Obama isn’t. Even Dean is going out of his way to stroke the Blue Dogs, not attacking them. Likewise insurance company mouthpieces (the GOP) are mostly shooting at the PO, not other reform proposals.

    Look how quiet Kos and HuffPo are being. It’s like they bought Bill Clinton’s suggestion to keep it down and wait.

    Despite the townhall screamers this isn’t total war, it’s oblique, which makes me think we already have a compromise plan in the works, that a rough consensus exists among the key players.

    I think we’ll get an arguably bipartisan bill that won’t kill people’s existing plans, that will raise taxes only on the well-off and that may even have the Maine Girls and one or two other GOPers on-board. I could be wrong, of course.

    Bonus prediction: they’ll name this thing after Ted Kennedy.

  2. PatHMV said,

    They have a liberal Democrat in the White House, 60 Democrats in the Senate, and about 58% control of the House of Representatives. How much one-party control does Carville want before actually trying to pass something? Sheesh. Carville is here pushing the President’s meme that all opposition to his health care bill must be simply obstructionism, that there really can’t be any legitimate criticism of it at all.

  3. amba12 said,

    Michael: what a punch line!

    Look at that interview with Graham linked on Maxwell’s Wyden-Bennett post — aw, hell, here — and it adds to your ring of truth.

    It may be that the whole thing is working as it should, or at least as best it can: the screamers at both ends keep their constituents riled up and gratified, and meanwhile they edge the big rope a little bit left, a little bit right.

  4. amba12 said,

    I should say that the screaming increases the force on each end of the rope. But most of the mass is in the middle. The cheerleaders can rile up the extremes in some confidence that they’ll never have to pay them off with more than words and emotions. The middle won’t let them.

  5. Randy said,

    Ropes can be cut and the lethargic middle has been known to pack scissors on occasion. ;-)

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