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Jack Diederich

I hadn't checked back in months, glad to see you are posting again - even if sporadically.

Why haven't the Republicans proposed a comprehensive alternative budget? Because politically they don't have to. As the Dems demonstrated it is enough to oppose whomever the public thinks is in charge (a majority of registered Dems thought the Reps controlled both houses of congress in 2008!). Unfortunately "keep your head down and let the other guy take his lumps" is a decent strategy - the Dems rode it to victory in both 2006 and 2008.

I'm guessing this was the presser that made me write a post on Obama the Aspirational. All his policies seem to be based on the idea that just wanting the right things for the right reasons will guarantee success. The take away quote is "Obama hasn't shown a hint that he thinks any policy he likes includes tradeoffs." Everything will just be peachy if we do it hard enough.

As for healthcare in particular, conservative think tanks (if not Republicans in office) have been putting forward viable solutions for more than a decade. Break the WWII bond between employer and insurance. Tax private insurance at the the same rate as employer provided insurance. For extra hilarity Obama has jumped on this train after running ads against McCain for favoring it; the difference is that McCain pledged to give self-insurers the same tax break whereas Obama now wants to tax employer provided benefits.

I didn't like McCain (and didn't vote for him) because he publicly projected that everyone that didn't like him was an ass. I don't like Obama because he publicly projects that wanting things to be so is the same thing as making them so. I think McCain took the wrong side on most policy arguments but Obama doesn't even try to make policy arguments - he states desired outcomes and then grins charmingly.

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