Foreign Affairs: Opinion- Lane Kenworthy- America’s Social Democratic Future
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat
The Affordable Care Act even though health insurance won’t be expanded to all Americans even when fully implemented and that is one of the weakness’s of it, which is why I was in favor of the public option when it came out as well as making Medicaid universal for everyone eligible and fully funded and self-financed for everyone in the country who is eligible for it. But the great thing about the ACA is that it is exactly not what the Tea Party and Libertarians says it is. That Social Democrats in America wanted. Which is that government takeover of at least the health insurance system.
Expanding health insurance to millions of Americans who do not have it, but allowing for them to decide where they get their health insurance. Because despite what the Tea Party and Libertarians say it is, this is not a government takeover of health care that Social Democrats in America wanted, but the opposite. It builds on the private health insurance model while fixing the weakness’s of that system as it gets to consumer protections. That millions of new Americans now getting health insurance and millions of Americans not losing their health insurance because of the new consumer protections in the ACA.
The Obama Administration and Congressional Democrats made a smart calculation in 2009 when they started pushing for heath care reform. And knew that there was a limit to what Americans wanted government doing for them. Especially the Federal Government and a big reason why they pushed the consumer protections in the law so heavily. As well as that old line, “if you like your health insurance, you can keep it.” And whether that is true or not that was big key to their message.
That they didn’t want Americans to think that Uncle Sam was taking over the health insurance system. Or the entire health care system that what they wanted to do was to expand health insurance through the private system. And create a public option that Americans could decide for themselves to choose or not. But again it would be their choice and not Uncle Sam making that decision for them. And as badly as they played the politics and failed to get Americans behind that message and it cost them the House of Representatives in 2010 as a result, that is the health care plan they were pushing and ran on from day one.
Lane Kenworthy was pushing the idea of social democracy in Foreign Affairs today. That ObamaCare is the sign that America is moving towards social democracy and we are going to transform America into Scandinavia. And create this huge centralized superstate known as the super or welfare state. That we are going to be transform from a Jeffersonian Federal Republic in the form of a liberal democracy which is different from a social democracy. Liberal democracy is about choice, freedom the ability for people to govern their own lives.
Social democracy is about having a large centralized central government to provide the basic human services that the capitalist economic system comes up short in providing. We are still that Jeffersonian Federal Republic and will remain that for an indefinite future. Because the younger generations Gen-X and Gen-Y, do not expect and want government trying to do everything for them. And tend to be more liberal to libertarian with their social and economic views. Instead of progressive to socialist. Which is why social democracy in America is still considered Far-Left.
For politicians and politics to be successful in America no matter from which political philosophy it is they are coming from, the people in power have to know where the country is politically and what is politically possible. The Obama Administration knew that which is why single payer Medicare For All was never on the table. And even considered because of the political backlash that would’ve come from the Right and Independents as well as some Democrats. Democrats paid a heavy price for the bill they got which was just building off of the private health insurance system. With the public option being pulled out because of some vulnerable Democratic senators.