Klein and Pearlstein: The Third Way Invokes Ted Kennedy

Ezra Klein and Steve Pearlstein continue pushing the Third Way health care deal. And like Kathleen Sebelius, they invoke Ted Kennedy to do it. Pearlstein writes:

The simple lesson from this story -- and certainly the one Kennedy himself drew -- is that when it comes to historic breakthroughs in social policy, make the best deal you can get, leaving it to subsequent generations to perfect. . . . Although you'd hardly know it from all the shouting of recent weeks, there is a deal to be had here if only Democrats would be willing to take it.

Of course the deal they are pushing is the one they want, not the one Democrats actually want. Nor is it the deal Ted Kennedy wanted (we know what Ted Kennedy proposed - Medicare for All.) Klein and Pearlstein want to jettison the public option. Fair enough. Most Democrats do not agree with them. [More...]

I think it is fine for them to argue for the Third Way health care deal. But let's call it what it is and what they are. They do not speak for Ted Kennedy or most Democrats. Most Democrats and Ted Kennedy disagreed with their view of reform, political bargaining and what is most important in the health care reform debate. I do not understand why Democrats should follow their advice in that Democrats do not share the goals they espouse. And I do find it inappropriate for them to invoke Ted Kennedy's name in favor of their Third Way proposals.

Speaking for me only

< Dick Armey Favors Public Option | What Would Ted Kennedy Have Done? >
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    Can't they read? (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by mmc9431 on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 11:24:22 AM EST
    Didn't the last letter TK wrote on HRC state positively that a strong public option was imperative? So for them to now assume that, what he said isn't what he meant, is a total disservice to TK. It clearly shows that they're  nothing but shills for the administration.

    The whole (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by shoephone on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 01:04:36 PM EST
    "Kennedy would make a deal" nonsense is exactly what Orrin Hatch and John McCain have been promoting since the moment Kennedy's death was announced.

    I'd rather see the Democrats pushing for what Kennedy actually wanted -- Medicare For All -- that aligning themselves with the likes of the increasingly irrelevant Hatch and McCain. But Democrats have a talent for disappointing me every time. The punditocracy ever more so.

    Irony of ironies (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Zorba on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 03:08:48 PM EST
    It turns out that for the past four months, Ezra Klein himself has been without health insurance, and just became aware of it.  See http://www.mydd.com/story/2009/8/28/153116/196#commenttop

    Does the Post pay 100%? (none / 0) (#14)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 04:08:21 PM EST
    Otherwise he should have noticed if payments were coming out of his pay check . . .

    I doubt it (none / 0) (#15)
    by Zorba on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 04:18:01 PM EST
    Most employers don't pay 100%, and, like most newspapers, the Post is in trouble financially.  I'm betting Ezra doesn't even look at his pay check stub.  It's probably deposited automatically in his bank account.  Not trusting our employers (or the bank), since anyone can make a mistake, my husband and I check our pay reports every two weeks.  Four months seems a bit much to let this go on.  He's lucky he didn't suffer a catastrophic illness while he was not covered.  Although, while not wishing him any ill luck, I would have felt just a tiny bit of schadenfreude.  My bad.  ;-)

    I don't understand how they come (none / 0) (#1)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 11:05:19 AM EST
    to the conclusion that there's a "deal to be had." Stripping the public option isn't going to get Republican votes. I doubt if it would even get more Democratic votes.

    they. are. dumb. (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by Dadler on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 11:11:57 AM EST
    as bricks.  no offense to bricks.  

    i would love to be in any situaton with these guys where concessions had to be extracted.  i'm sure i could extract their vital organs, too.  if that was the "pragmatic" deal to be had, they'd probably cut out their own kidney.

    these are the kind of folks who never, for one second, entertain the idea that perhaps they are full of sheet.


    Bricks actually serve a purpose... (none / 0) (#6)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 12:48:11 PM EST
    can the same be said for those two?

    the dealing has stopped being about Republicans (none / 0) (#8)
    by ruffian on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 01:02:43 PM EST
    and started being about Blue Dog dems.

    Los Angeles Times article by (none / 0) (#4)
    by oculus on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 11:30:03 AM EST
    Janet Hook on possible consensus.  Headline doesn't reflect the gist of the article:  LAT

    Bottom line:  if insurers are required to insure pre-existing conditions, everyone must be required to purchase insurance; then taxes will go up to subsidize purchase by lower income.  

    Mandates to force people to purchase (5.00 / 3) (#7)
    by MO Blue on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 01:00:29 PM EST
    private industry health insurance without any cost controls is a hugh giveaway to the insurance industry. It is also a hugh betrayal of the people Congress is suppose to be representing.

    and to say that Ted Kennedy woud have supported it (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by ruffian on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 01:04:40 PM EST
    just makes a mockery of everything he tried to do. If they can make a case for it, they should do it on the merits, whatever they think those are, and leave poor Ted out of it.

    It's also a good way to force middle class folks (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by shoephone on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 01:06:08 PM EST
    into bankruptcy.

    See you all in debtor's prison -- where we will get our health care provided by the state.


    thanks (none / 0) (#5)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 11:35:24 AM EST
    for reading it so i didnt have to.

    And as someone who has experience in the insurance industry your bottom line sounds just like them.


    Thanks, BTD (none / 0) (#13)
    by catchy on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 03:59:33 PM EST
    We need actual strong progressive voices to counter the Klein, yglesias et. al. weenie progressivism.

    Why people like Klein and yglesias think they should channel the momentum from Ted kennedy's death -- a strong supporter of the public option -- into a clarion call to pre-emptively cave on the public option is beyond me.

    Just signed up, thanks again.  

    Dear barely wet behind the ears (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 05:24:45 PM EST
    liberal hawk Ezra Klein.  It is fine Ezra that you know that sometimes you have to show up for the fight.  But cheerleading the military protection of a way of life that nurses and protects only the wealthy and priveledged is gross, disgusting, and sort of dispicable.