Wednesday, November 13, 2013

They don't ring a bell when you get to the top

There's and old joke on Wall Street. "They don't ring a bell when you get to the top." In other words don't be blinded to the downside risk by the euphoria of the moment. Seldom does life present the traveler with a clearly marked Rubicon with neat boxes marked "cross and "do not cross". Obama and congressional Democrats forged their Rubicon like a somnambulant pedestrian crossing Fifth Avenue at rush hour in an old Walter Lantz cartoon. They reached the top just as the rise of the oceans began to slow, and our planet began to heal but nobody rang a bell. The country was treated to a massive stimulus bill, cash for clunkers, and Obamacare. The election of Scott Brown to the senate to block Obamacare should have rung a bell but no one was listening. They giggled in their conceits as Nancy Pelosi goose-stepped across the capitol grounds with her silly gavel.

The 2010 mid terms hit them like a cold shower but Obamacare was safely enshrined into to law with the emphasis on enshrined. Only in the last two weeks have Democrats and the public begun to entertain the possibility that Obamacare was unworkable. I'm not ready to predict it will fail completely nor do I consider recapturing the senate a fait accompli but if trends do tend to trend Obamacare and several scores of brilliant political careers could find their way to the recycle bin.
The Democrats crossed their Rubicon on March 23, 2010 when Obama signed Obamacare into law. Now the health insurance industry is in utter turmoil and the harm it is doing to millions cannot be undone. The outright repeal of Obamacare will not bring back cancelled insurance policies. People may very well die for want of healthcare coverage. Even the chronically ill in high risk pools sponsored by the states have lost their insurance because their substandard policies didn't include pediatric dental, and drug rehab coverage. The public is at last beginning to question the wisdom of letting the likes of Mary Landrieu and Al Franken make important decisions in the their personal lives and the eventual conclusion will not bode well for Democratic incumbents.
The latest PPP poll out yesterday shocked even me. Senator Kay Hagan of North Carolina was leading her 4 Republican opponents by 12 to 17 points in September. In the recent poll she loses to one and has only a 1 or 2 point edge on the other 3. The damage to the voters has been done and it cannot be fixed. Repealing Obamacare would prevent future damage but it's impossible to undo the fear and anxiety already visited upon some 5 million Americans. The Rubicon has been crossed. The die is cast. Live with it.

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