Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Breaking News: Obama's Long-Time Physician Says His Pragmatism Is Doing Him In

Huffington Post is reporting this afternoon that the president's long-time doctor, David Scheiner, is disheartened by Obama's approach to health care reform, and believes that the reform process is doomed to fail.

And what's causing the failure? In Dr. Schreiner's view, Obama's pragmatism.

Schreiner says, "His pragmatism is what is overwhelming him."

Once again: the approach this administration adopted once it took office, an approach centered on cool, calculating pragmatism, undercuts the moral imperatives the administration claimed to recognize prior to its election.

We voted for those moral imperatives. And for the leadership to implement change we could believe in, centered on those imperatives.

Instead, we've been offered endless discussion that treats those moral imperatives as one among several "ideas" now up for grabs. We've been offered compromise and excuses, when we long for leadership. We've been offered bipartisan, "inclusive" roundtables at which the lions sit with the lambs, never having the slightest intent to co-exist with the lambs but intent on consuming them, instead.

Leadership. Moral imperatives. Change we can believe in. Not pragmatism.

Mr. Obama's pragmatism (and, even more, the cold, calculating pragmatism of some of his chief advisors) is indeed overwhelming him, and it is going to be the downfall of his entire platform of progressive change. The betrayal of moral imperatives began with the gay community, and now it's extending to the health care debate.

Our participatory democracy has been systematically dismantled by several generations of amoral neocon leadership. When we elected this administration, we thought we were on the road to recovering that democracy, along with the moral imperatives that ground it.

And how badly our trust and our hope now seem to have been betrayed.

Addendum: and then there's this: blue dog Democrat Dan Boren of Oklahoma
admits that he places the profits of the health insurance industry that's so strong in his district over the needs of every citizen to have access to basic health care. Where's the leadership in the spineless Democratic party and the White House to challenge this betrayal of core values by members of the Democratic party now serving in Congress?