February 24, 2012 1 Comment
The latest bee in Ezra Klein’s bonnet is the idea that ‘conservatives’ have switched all their views simply due to Obama’s having espoused them.
The two biggies are an individual mandate for health insurance, which was conceived by conservatives at the Heritage Foundation as a way to get (nearly) universal coverage while maintaining the private insurance system; and a cap-and-trade system for reducing harmful emissions, which was conceived as a way to use market forces instead of government regulations to achieve an environmental good.
Can I just state for the record that I have never been in favor of either a mandate to buy health insurance or a ‘cap-and-trade’ system? What do I win for my noble, Klein-approved consistency? Nothing? Shucks.
But actually, that’s kind of the point. If conservatives were really running around proposing a ‘mandate’ system in the 90s-00s, which I doubt by the way, is it possible that this was simply tactical? You know, for the purpose of trying to hold the line on something, not lose too many political battles (and elections), etc.? After all, conservatives were faced with a lefty opposition that wanted to overtly socialize (rather than fascistize, as they have now done) health care. If they came up with a mandate as a we-have-a-health-reform-idea-too measure, where’s the dishonor in that?
Again, I happen to think it’s a stupid and bad idea. But I don’t understand the point of singling it out for special disdain. After all, it cuts both ways too: apparently, the left and Obama now think that a mandate is a fine idea. So why didn’t they just team up with the Heritage Foundation and pass it back then? Hmm, Ezra?
Anyway, so what we’ve proved is that Ezra Klein’s point is pretty shallow. Yawn.
The real subject of his post though is how stupid Republicans are being for ‘opposing contraception’. Which raises the more important question, is Ezra Klein really this stupid?
Seriously, does the left genuinely not understand the difference between (a) opposing government-forces-insurance-to-cover-X and (b) ‘opposing X’? Or are they faking it for political reasons? I guess what I’m asking is, how retarded are they?
Answer in comments!