As of late, the Republicans have been using the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to support their argument that the cost of the Democrats’ health care reform bill would cost billions more than originally projected. Now, the Democrats are using the CBO to push their argument that not only would just a small percentage of Americans would sign up for the public option (2%), but that it would also help insurers as well.
That’s the thing about relying on a non-partisan organization like the CBO; it’s a double-edged sword. Their findings can be just as easily used against you by the other side, as you can use its data against their side. And that’s assuming that the CBO is correct to begin with. No organization is always right.
However, this really isn’t so much about the CBO, as it is about the “sandman” tactics that the Dems are using again.
“Only 2% of Americans are going to use the public option.” the Democrats claim. “What’s all the big fuss about? You’re getting all worked up over nothing! 2% is hardly a government takeover, is it? Hell, it will even help private insurers out because the premiums for the private plans will be cheaper due to the higher premiums of the public plans. What’s everyone so afraid of? We won’t let a government takeover happen; we’re on your side!”
In other words… back to sleep, middle-class Americans… back to sleep.
This argument is strikingly similar to one that was used with another policy that the Democrats pushed way back in 1913… you know it now as the income tax.
The Dems were successfully able to make it Constitutional for the federal government to grab a percentage of your income, by force, by using a tried and true tactic; they played the wealth envy game. They targeted their campaign towards poor and middle class Americans by soothingly assuring them; “Don’t worry…only the wealthiest 1% in the north-eastern United States would ever have to pay that mean ol’ income tax. That’s hardly a government takeover, is it? After all, we’re only making the richest among you pay their fair share. They have plenty of money. You won’t be affected at all! Remember, we’re on your side!”
Not surprisingly, the tax was passed by an overwhelming majority, and the 16th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution was added.
We all know how that little promise turned out now, don’t we?
You may be wondering right now, “Wait a second… I don’t live in the north-eastern U.S….I’m not wealthy; so why am I’m paying income taxes?”
I’ll get to that later but until then, I’ll leave you with this; don’t listen to the sandmen, don’t fall back asleep; we have enough nightmares with the income tax as it is.
After All the Fuss, Public Health Plan Covers Few: Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Associated Press, 11/01/09