Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Prepared for Failure
During the Bush years, left-of-center critics noted a curious phenomenon among backers of the war in Iraq. Regardless of how bad the situation looked, it was always a vindication of the hawkish world view.

The occupation has been a miserable failure? That's because we didn't have troops, we haven't been tough enough, and we need more-expensive military hardware. ...

...Now, however, we're about to see a Democratic version of Dolchstoss. If you believe as I do that the president's health-care reform legislation will not perform as advertised, you can see it as a failure of the policy itself. Or you can see it as an inevitable consequence of the fact that the legislation was, as liberal wonks insist, a "moderate Republican bill," one that true progressives supported only very reluctantly. So to fix the legislation, we'll need to spend more money, further centralize the system, and impose tighter regulation and control. And if that doesn't work, well, clearly we need to spend still more money, centralize the system even more, and impose even tighter regulation and control. Wash, rinse, repeat.