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The Expansionist
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
 
Party Discipline: Crack the Whip for Single-Payer. Barack Obama has done with healthcare what seems second-nature to him: abandoned his principles at the first sign of entrenched opposition. Principles don't seem to matter to him. They do to me, they do to American Liberals / "progressives", they do to the people of the United States, and they do, most particularly, to the people who voted the Republicans out and the Democrats in. They didn't do that for nothing. They wanted change — yes, "Change We Can Believe In". We believe that massive, basic change must take place if this country is to avoid disaster and do justice. Obama, however, does not. Indeed, it's hard to see what Obama does believe in.
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It's time for the people who put Obama and the Democratic majority in place, to make very plain that what we gave, we can take away. Do what we elected you to do, or we will get rid of you. It's time for a show of bare, unabashed power by the American people. We want single-payer. Give us single payer, or we will give you a comeuppance unlike anything you have ever seen in life.
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It's time for the true keepers of the flame — if any remain in the Democratic Party — to lay down the law to hesitant Blue Dog Democrats (conservatives, mainly from the South): vote the Party's program, or you're OUT OF THE PARTY. You will lose your seniority, you will lose the right to caucus with other Democrats and, thus, your rights both to be heard and to be considered an ally and friend to whom some consideration, some quid-pro-quo is due. You will lose all funding from the Democratic National Committee and other Party organizations in your next election. You will win, instead, dedication by all Democratic Party organs and celebrity fundraisers and endorsers to unseating you in the primary. We will find an opponent, fund him or her richly, and campaign in person and in media for your ouster from your job by a real Democrat. The President and other major Democratic politicians will tell your voters that you are no Democrat but an enemy of the very most basic stances of the Democratic Party, which focus on helping the little guy against the abusive rich.
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Don't even think about going over to the Republican Party. Oh, they'd be glad to have the votes against Democrats. But they can't count on your fealty, can they? If you are unfaithful to the Democrats, the party in whose name you ran, they must expect you to be unfaithful to them too. They don't give their members free will. To be a Republican nowadays, you have to toe the party line, and their line is simpleminded, Radical Rightwing service to the rich, no questions asked. It is not for you to challenge the Republican leadership by asking stupid questions like, "Won't this hurt my constituents?" or "Won't this weaken the United States?" or "...ruin millions of the most vulnerable Americans?" "Yes, of course it will. That's why we want to do it. Because the poor and middle class are the natural enemies of the rich, so we must hurt them to make them obey the commands we obey. Whatever the rich want, we will do. No questions asked."
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Democrats should tell Blue Dogs, "We are going to give you the benefit of the doubt here, and say that you don't want to vote without thinking, and you do care about that concept in the Preamble of the Constitution, 'promote the general welfare'."
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Do not for an instant think that the presence of Blue Dogs will force the Republican Party to change, to be more thoughtful and more generous to the poor and middle class. Ain'ta gonna happen. The "Party Of No" (which should be the new acronym, P.O.N., for what is still, for the moment, called the "GOP") isn't interested in trying to legislate with a majority in Congress. They know that the President is a Democrat who will veto any legislation that springs from PON principles, and will confess to you that "we won't have the votes to override, even with the addition of Democrat [note: "Democrat", never "DemocratIC"] votes." And yes, you will always be regarded as a Democrat by Republicans. They will never trust you, at least not for five or ten years after you make a switch. And in all that time, they will talk about you behind your back as "that Democrat turncoat", or words to that effect.
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All that the Republicans are hoping for is Congressional gridlock, in the expectation that they will escape public RAGE at a Congress that can't get anything done. Can you sleep the sleep of the just, secure in the knowledge that your voters won't blame you for gridlock that would be impossible without you?
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And don't think that going over to the Republican Party would save you from disgrace and defeat in the next election. Your constituents put a Democrat into office. They expected that Democrat to stay a Democrat. Two wiseguys in the New York State Senate changed parties, from Democratic to Republican, in mid-2009, which threw that state's legislature into chaos for a month. Both turncoats returned to the Democratic Party when their constituents made clear that they were FURIOUS and would vote them out the very next chance they got. The voters might STILL vote them out because of their thuggish and unprincipled behavior, and utter untrustworthiness.
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The people of the United States want single-payer healthcare. Period. They don't want a "public option" or healthcare cooperatives. They want single-payer. And they are right to want single-payer.
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It is your job to do what the people want, unless the people want something preposterous and unconstitutional, like rounding up an unpopular minority and putting them to death in gas chambers. Enacting universal healthcare paid from general revenues and funded by increased income taxes on the rich and super-rich is nothing like that. It's not monstrous but good. It's not foolish but wise — a lot wiser than you are.
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The people want simplicity and fairness. Sick people have enuf to worry about without humungous medical bills being added to the mix. Single-payer will let them put all their energy where it is needed, on recovery and becoming productive members of society once more.
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The Democratic Party has run into unthinking nihilism by the worst people in the Nation, the scumbag servants of the rich that the Republican Party has become. That nihilism was, until Democrats started giving in to it, looked upon with disdain, distaste, and active contempt by the overwhelming majority of the American people. Now, with Democrats abandoning fundamental principles to try to accommodate the phony "grassroots" movement the Radical Right has created to fool media and the public about 'widespread opposition' to 'socialized medicine' — a movement termed "astroturf" by Liberals to show it is phony grass that has no roots — some people are genuinely confused by the lies and disinformation. This is especially a problem among old people with memory problems who should be wildly enthusiastic about single-payer because they HAVE IT, in Medicare. Seniors have, instead, been led to think that universal healthcare would not just destroy Medicare — rather than merely extend it to others, like their children and grandchildren — but even lead to extreme measures to control costs, as by "pulling the plug" on them! And all this is your fault, you faithless, worthless, piece-of-crap Blue Dog Democrats.
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Well, we're done with disloyalty. You can be a Democrat and vote for the Democratic program that intends to do what the people want us to do, enact single-payer universal healthcare funded by increased taxes ONLY on the rich and super-rich, who can easily afford it. Or you can leave the Democratic Party. Don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out.
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[Aside: on August 8th, I said here: "Don't worry about the rich. They can afford it, EASILY. They have all the money in the world, and we're just going to use some of it for better purposes than an 11th house, 2nd yacht, 13th car, 21st Armani suit, 37th designer gown, or 260th pair of shoes." At the time I thought some people might think that hyperbole, tho I knew it to be realistic. Then I saw a mention of Joan Rivers' new cable show, "How'd You Get So Rich", in which the wife in a nouveau-riche couple, who had only $50 million, which doesn't even remotely qualify them as members of the super-rich, had just bought her 260th pair of shoes! 260, the exact number I used in my example, when I hadn't seen that episode nor even yet heard of that shoe, um, show!]
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[Returning to what the Democratic leadership should say to Blue Dogs] Perhaps you and your Blue Dog colleagues think you can go your own way and form your own party. But third parties don't, historically, do very well in this country.
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Perhaps you think you won't let us tell you what to do because you can always just go over to the Republican Party, which will welcome you with open arms, because they see you as the hammer with which they can beat down the Democrats, and defeat single-payer and every other reform of the monstrous and unsustainably burgeoning healthcare-finance system that threatens to ruin the Nation. If you dare to move into the Republican camp, expect to find yourself out of work in January 2011 — if you even survive, biologically, to 2011, once your constituents, many of whom own guns, realize that you played a role in defeating something they feel very, very strongly about. People who lose their house, but not their guns, to medical bills may decide to make an example of you. More power to them.
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We are not asking for your advice. We've heard it, and reject it as cowardly and contemptible. We are concerned with and will now listen only to the Nation's will. We will move the question, single-payer or bust. We will join the rest of the industrialized world and end the healthcare nitemare the people of this country now suffer, in which millions don't go to the doctor in time for preventive medicine to catch and cure problems before they can kill, and doctor and hospital bills ruin people's lives, force them into bankruptcy (or worse, such as SUICIDE), and make it nearly impossible for U.S. employers to operate in the United States but 'force them' to outsource everything because health insurance is, literally, prohibitively expensive.
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We will urge people thinking about suicide because of health-related problems that could be solved by universal, quality healthcare, to think assassination instead. We will identify the enemies of universal healthcare, and say, "Don't kill yourself. Don't kill us who want to help you and everyone like you. We're not to blame. You know who IS to blame? Here's a list." And we will put your name on that list.
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Don't play us, because we will not be played.
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Don't defy us, because we will not be defied.
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Don't go over to the other side, because you will not find a better deal from the Republicans, and your constituents will not forgive being betrayed. President Obama will be re-elected in 2012, and you won't even be hired to lobby Congress if the electorate expels you from office in 2010, because nobody in the President's party will give you so much as 36 seconds of our time.
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We will not let you defy the insistence of hard-pressed Americans on universal healthcare via single–payer. You will vote for the Democratic single-payer plan, or we will EXPEL YOU FROM THE PARTY, and devote the foreseeable future to DESTROYING you.
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(The current U.S. military death toll in Iraq, according to the website "Iraq Coalition Casualties", is 4,331 — for Israel.)



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