Thursday, March 29, 2012

E. J. Dionne Says What I've Been Thinking

The irony is that if the court’s conservatives overthrow the mandate, they will hasten the arrival of a more government-heavy system. Justice Anthony Kennedy even hinted that it might be more “honest” if government simply used “the tax power to raise revenue and to just have a national health service, single-payer.” Remember those words. - E. J. Dionne
Now that Americans are beginning to recall their responsibilities as citizens and are protesting against the worst injustices some would like to perpetrate (Governor Walker in Wisconsin, the War on Women), I've been thinking that a Supreme Court pander to the radical right might just activate the realization that we need healthcare and that single-payer simplifies a number of issues. And that realization might just drive a movement that would provide the support for single-payer that wasn't there when the ACA passed.

Update: Ezra thinks not. But where he and I part company is that he's looking at the political parties (after saying this is an unfortunate way to frame the discussion) and I'm looking at the electorate. Yes, the pusillanimous Congress we've got would go the way he's saying. But will the voters stand for it?

1 comment:

troutsky said...

The very phrase "pander to the radical right" reveals the traumatic rent in the basis of government itself, which is a shared perception of legitimacy.

Once the judicial system is seen as a political tool (which I believe it to be) and this is logically extended to all state institutions, it is very hard to re-suture the liberal democratic concept of the neutral state. Add in the common perception that the press is also partisan and the Constitutional structure is shaken to it's foundation.