Monday, December 21, 2009

Time to channel the rage

Back in November, many observers of the health care legislation debate were rightly angered over measures in the proposal that would undermine a woman's right to access to the full range of reproductive choice -- Kate Harding, for example, wrote an article in titled "Face it: The Democratic Party is not for women."

E. J. Dionne has written an interesting take on the health care legislation that just recently received support from the magic, filibuster-proof, 60 Democratic Senators:

For progressives, the question on the health care battle going forward is not whether they have a right to be angry but whether they can direct their fury toward constructive ends. The alternative is to pursue a temporarily satisfying and ultimately self-defeating politics of protest.

Of course what has happened on the health care bill is enraging. It's quite clear that substantial majorities in both houses of Congress favored either a public option or a Medicare buy-in.

In a normal democracy, such majorities would work their will, a law would pass, and champagne corks would pop. But everyone must get it through their heads that thanks to the now bizarre habits of the Senate, we are no longer a normal democracy.


1 comment:

  1. Paul Krugman on this same topic: "Some people will say that it has always been this way, and that we’ve managed so far. But it wasn’t always like this. Yes, there were filibusters in the past — most notably by segregationists trying to block civil rights legislation. But the modern system, in which the minority party uses the threat of a filibuster to block every bill it doesn’t like, is a recent creation."