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Excellent post but going further, let's assume Obama is a 'normie' conventional elite thinker but can see something when it's placed directly in his face. That would necessitate modifying one of your paragraphs as follows:  

He accepts that to get along and move up you need to pretend to believe that the financial industry is inherently good and should be respected - sure, there were some reforms that were needed, but those reforms were intended to help the existing financial industry continue to do what it is doing. He accepts that to get along and move up you need to pretend to believe that health insurance and pharmaceutical companies can play a constructive role in health care delivery and that we shouldn't try to cut them out of the process.

It's probably important to remember that Obama is both a member of the ruling elite and 100% a lawyer, and the basic approach in that industry is serving clients' needs regardless of your own personal beliefs. I'm sure he has personal beliefs on the above, but they're very general/flexible and not particularly important to his job. His job is to survive politically while serving his clients, a word he (like all mainstream politicians) interprets as meaning 'campaign contribution heavy hitters'. And those clients' fundamental demand is to write most of the specifics of laws, including 'reforms', directed at their industries.

fairleft

by fairleft (fairleftatyahoodotcom) on Wed Aug 18th, 2010 at 12:41:41 PM EST
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... I find it vaguely disturbing how the insurance and pharmaceutical companies are so often conflated (in the entire debate, not just in your particular post).

Pharmaceutical companies actually make products that enhance the survivability, convenience and comfort of the human condition. Furthermore, pharmaceuticals is a technically sophisticated industry with high capital requirements and long lead times. This being the case, it needs government support, either in the form of direct subsidies, underwriting of risk or some other way to suppress the market mechanisms that are so manifestly ill-equipped to deal with lead times longer than a quarter or so.

The health insurance "industry," on the other hand, is (like the private pension funds "industry") a purely parasitical entity that offers no redeeming features of any kind. Like a rat infestation, it arises because the sovereign puts insufficient or effort into maintaining basic infrastructure, such as hospitals, sewers and retirement benefits.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sun Aug 22nd, 2010 at 02:00:22 PM EST
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