"Twilight of The Interest Groups" or Sunrise For a Whole New Set of Payoffs?


The Washington Post's Ezra Klein muses on the difference between health care reform back in 1994, when "industry" was against it all and now, when it's smooth sailing on these fronts:

This year, the Obama administration succeeded at neutralizing every single industry. Pharma supports the bill. Insurers are incoherent on it, but there's not a ferocious and united campaign to kill the proposal. The American Medical Association has endorsed the Senate bill. The hospitals have endorsed the bill. Labor has endorsed the bill. The business community is split, with larger employers holding their fire.

Curiously, Klein sees this as the "twilight of the interest groups" even as he notes that "You can take that as a critique of the bill's deals and concessions."

Let's bet on the latter, especially given that the two biggest groups that might have been against it—big drug companies and insurance companies—either expressly got massive payouts built into the legislation or stand to ginormously increase their customer base via mandates and down-the-road sweeteners that will help the economy stay stuck in a diabetic coma. And unions of course got carve-outs for their particular needs re: "Cadillac" plans (unrelated: When will we all agree that Cadillac signifies nothing so much as a shitty, overpriced ripoff?). If this is being neutralized, then where do I sign up for my freebies?

Or as Glenn Greenwald puts it on his Twitter feed, "Forcing the Government to bribe and accommodate you don't mean you're powerless and in your 'twilight'- it's the opposite."

NEXT: Actually, The Process Does Matter

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  1. Twilight of the Dogs.

  2. It appears young Mr. Klein has never heard the word "corporatism."

  3. Ezra Klein.

    Is there a word more synonimous with "dipshit" while still fitting into polite conversation? I don't think so.

    1. He's a reliable stooge. You got a problem with that?

  4. Wow, they've got every big interest group endorsing the bill, except for 2/3 of the public. When you put it that way, it doesn't sound so great, does it?

  5. When will we all agree that Cadillac signifies nothing so much as a shitty, overpriced ripoff?

    Even the Cimarron?

    1. Although the Cimarron was a shitty, overpriced ripoff, Cadillacs are good expensive luxury cars. Just because there are better (and even more expensive) ones now doesn't mean that the Cadillac reference is wrong.

  6. It appears young Mr. Klein has never heard the word "corporatism."

    I'm sure he's used it as a synonym for libertarianism sometime. He's an obedient little lap-twunt.

  7. Snoop clarifies about the "cadillac" -
    "He meant Lexus, but he don't know no better."

  8. Klein has forgotten that the biggest insurers -- that is, the HMOs -- supported ClintonCare back in 1993.

    1. In all fairness, he was probably too busy with his Fisher Price playset.

  9. It makes my head hurt that people as partisan and abjectly fucking stupid as Klein are taken even remotely seriously.

    It just serves as a reminder that partisans are complete and total fucking scum (hi joe!) with absolutely zero integrity or consistency. I cannot express my overwhelming, bonecrushing contempt for them. It's almost physically painful, it's so strong.

    1. And yet, they rule. How is that?

      1. Because that's who the fucking MSM puts up on the pedestals. And you don't get much else to choose from.

      2. Because they are convinced of the rightness of their cause. They will stand up for their beliefs, no matter how incoherent those beliefs are. Therefore, they look strong and decisive, instead of waffling and weak.

      3. Because they are part of a team, and that team is huge, and that team supports its own even when they go against their stated principles.

        It's fucking tribal, and as an individualist, I find it utterly repulsive.

        1. You certainly look like a threat to American security. Perhaps you should come with us right now?

          1. Maybe you'd better pick me up.

            (hands over ProL's address)

            1. Should have handed over Tony's address. Make sure to add a note: "Be advised that this particular anarchist disguises himself as one of us."

              1. Tony isn't a real person, and besides, ProL is a lawyer. He can take it.

                1. I cannot stand this team sports mentality in politics. Sit down with a leftist, and they'll usually note how untrustworthy they think government in general is. But then in fora like this or when voting, they get all in love with their team colors and forget reason.

                  Naturally, this criticism is meant to be leveled at partisans of any stripe.

                  1. What I don't get is why the team sports mentality exists. I mean, if you are a Mets fan, and the Mets win (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA), OK, you're happy they won. Because they're playing a game, and games have winners and losers. But you support them because of (usually) regional reasons, and that's it.

                    But in politics, you are supposedly on one of the teams for ideological reasons. So why do people completely excuse those on their side when they go against these supposed ideals? Do sports fans excuse a team member who is terrible? No.

                    Really, in my opinion, it's just about posturing. You join one of the teams to say to the world, "because I am on TEAM X, you now know that I am a certain type of person". So the ideals of the team don't matter for shit, just what they supposedly stand for. And the dipshits who join these teams only care that the team brand remains the same to the outside world, and don't care what actually is done.

                    A moron like joe wanted you to know that he cared about the little people, because he was a Democrat. And he would fight like a cornered rat any allegation that there was no difference between TEAM RED and TEAM BLUE, because it was critical to him that TEAM BLUE be perceived a certain way.

                    So. Fucking. Pathetic.

                    1. No doubt, people want to be labeled by mere affiliation. And others want the easy shorthand of being able to identify their teams by certain colors and mascots.

                      Rather than taking the time to understand that issues and the world itself are complex, let's just divide everything up into an artificial dichotomy that makes no sense whatsoever. Two parties? How ridiculous is that? Hell, I'm not sure parties make any damned sense from a liberty-preserving perspective at all.

                      I'm proud not to be a partisan. Like anyone with any depth and intelligence, my views are far too complex to be pigeonholed into some superficial, mendacious platform of slogans. I'm all for forming alliances with fellow travelers, but not permanent ones. You see, you've got to earn my trust on each issue, because I think for myself. And I pay attention to what you've been doing.

                    2. Totally agreed, ProL. It actually astonishes me, to this day, how you could ever actually want to be a partisan, because it make you look so fucking stupid. joe's a perfect example; he's no longer here because he can't not shill for TEAM BLUE, and at this point that's just retarded.

                    3. Hell, I'm not sure parties make any damned sense from a liberty-preserving perspective at all.

                      They're not mentioned in the Constitution, the Founders didn't exactly expect them, but they came about, and they've come about in virtually every free society.

                      Parties make sense from a liberty-preserving perspective in that it would take some pretty astonishing violation of liberty (including freedom of association) in order to prevent them.

                    4. I'm not suggesting that we ban them, though I do think they should have no legal meaning within the government.

          2. Orren Hatch suggested you for SCOTUS today. Congrats, you wise signora.

    2. This provides another occasion for me to wonder how Ezra Klein got his gig in the first place. I mean, I think Obama, Pelosi, Reid, McConnell, and the rest of the rogues gallery are total fucktards who shouldn't be trusted with running a lemonade stand...but I can see how they got to where they are today -- decades of hard work winning over the right people and screwing over everyone else. But Ez doesn't appear to have done anything to deserve his post but babble on his blog.

      1. It's because of ZOG.

  10. Every time I see Ezra Klein's photo, it makes me want to punch him repeatedly in the face.

    Is that wrong?

    1. We'd be worried about you if that wasn't your reaction, FK.

    2. Well, his face is in the dictionary next to entry for backpfeifengesicht, so your reaction probably is appropriate.

      1. 'backpfeifengesicht' is my new match.com user name

        1. I'm curious to see what kind of traffic you get with than name. I envision someone like this.

          1. Thanks Pro Lib.

            I was beginning to waver on my commitment to celibacy but that link has reinvigorated my determination to forego intimate relations with others.

          2. "She works for the Advanced Armor Corp. making suppressors for high-velocity rifles."
            Whoa there!

            1. I imagine we have some among us who would go there. Especially our more armed contingent.

  11. When will we all agree that Cadillac signifies nothing so much as a shitty, overpriced ripoff?

    Whoah there Nick, Cadillac automobiles have gotten WAY better over the last 6-7 years. The CTS is less expensive and BETTER than the BMW, Lexus and Mercedes in its class.

    1. The Reason staff has a view of automobiles that ended about 1992. They recently called Audis "underpowered and breakdown prone". This about a company that makes the Bugati Viron and a station wagon that has 500 hp. Sometimes the Reason staff's geek really shows.

      1. This about a company that makes the Bugati Viron and a station wagon that has 500 hp. Sometimes the Reason staff's geek really. shows

        1) It's the Bugatti Veyron, though that's not an Audi, you've switched to talking about the Volkswagen Group in general. Your point about the RS6 station wagon ("Avant") is correct.

        2) Being a geek about cars is a type of geekiness.

        1. There is nothing geeky about cars or motorcycles. Geeks own scooters.

  12. stand to ginormously increase their customer base via mandates

    Mandates? They stand to gain ginormously from all the new customers with new, "free" health care.

    "So you decided to come to the doctor because you had nothing else to do today? Great, we have a med for that!"

  13. Ezra Klein is dumber than a ball of tapeworms. STOP READING HIM.

    1. What about the lulz, Warty? Oh, right, Klein is such a douche there aren't even lulz, because you know people are reading him and nodding to themselves that he's right.

      1. The only lulz that Ezra Klein could produce involve him having his head sawed off by a barbarian. Go for it, Ezra. Accept that offer to be CNN's Pakistan's correspondent. Do it.

        1. I could get some lulz if he had his head sawed off (by himself) in Saw 54.

  14. So, I noticed that the Empty Suit in Chief today claimed that Social Security "lifted millions out of poverty". Somehow, it seems to me that when you're trying to get out of poverty, having 15% of your earnings sucked out of you to fund a Ponzi scheme doesn't really help.


  15. So if New Hampshire's motto is "Live Free or Die", and the FSP is half way there, we must conclude it's time for New Hampshire to die.

    For the reduction in carbon foot print this is very good.

    For bodies to pay into the Obamacare Fiasco it's very bad.

    Can't we put together some kind of attack where we start using their own internal contradictions against them? Stem cell research is Good, but genetically modified food crops are Bad. ???

    Of course if we try this, it'll probably be our own heads that explode and not theirs, or the voting public at large.

  16. Well, anyone who doesnt believe "payoffs" happen is truly ignorant. I mean think about it. How can anyone vote NO to something that will clearly benefit the sheeple (thats you and me)? I'll tell you how, because they have been BOUGHT AND PAID FOR! Its the American way!


  17. The whole Ponzi scheme thing, the understanding of it, that's above Barry's and Joe's paygrades. They let other people figure that shit out.

  18. My representative, Jason Altmire (who is a Democrat) just announced he's voting no. Don't drop the Rahm in the shower man.

    1. You're from Pittsburgh? What a loathsome scumfuck you are.

      1. No, I'm from Rockford IL. I just live in Pittsburgh.

      2. Warty, aren't you from some state I've never heard of? PA? I admit that my family bought an entire street in Lancaster, PA, but hell, we owned that shit and had lots of guns. But they were all originally from Manhattan, so it makes it ok.

        1. As long as they didn't cling to them out of bitterness.

          1. If I like radicchio, does that make me bitter? KULTUR WAR SO CONFUSING

  19. Klein is so fucking stupid he makes Glen Greenwald look intelligent and reasonable.

  20. I think once the insurance companies realize that the demand for their services have doubled yet their premiums are lower and they have a cap on how much they can charge they will not be that excited about this reform. Youtube Converter

  21. you have well made the point this article gets my letter of recommendation without a doubt.

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