Real Time Thoughts on Meet the Press (December 27, 2009)

(As before, the text below is a set of immediate short term recollection on the conversation that transpired during the airing of Meet the Press.  The text in parentheses are explanatory or questioning thoughts that are my own)

David Gregory has invited Janet Napolitano and Robert Gibbs to talk about the latest news on the alleged Nigerian terrorist.   Robert Gibbs is the White House representative today, the one man who wants the homebound political watchdog to know that the Obama administration IS keeping watch, though Obama himself may be on vacation.

David Gregory has invited Newt Gingrich, Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Governor Deval Patrick and Andrea Mitchell to talk about America in the next decade.

Newt Gingrich is saying something that I think rings true, namely that every GOP’er is going to run to repeal the health care bill.

Andrea Mitchell is saying that the politics of health care extension or reform are complicated by the fact that the benefits, if they materialize at all, will do so a few years after 2010, while the costs are all up front.  Now, Whatever benefits there are, however, will be complicated by the fact that the hard decisions to fund and actually make reform have yet to be made.  For instance they have yet to focus on the current lack of coverage for children with pre-existing conditions.  Second no one actually knows whether any of the benefits predicted will actually materialize.  The CBO score actually assumes the beneficial consequences of the reform and estimated the costs of the reform accordingly (There is a little bit of a horse and cart dilemma here.)

Mike Bloomberg is arguing that we have to lower costs of health care delivery. How do we do that?  Control the services that are meted out.  Also he is saying, as I have said before, that when the administrations talks about lower the cost curve, its talking about reducing the rate of increase of costs–the first derivative–not reducing costs, globally within the function.  Now how will this be done, by reducing payments to medicare and changes in medicaid.  As anybody who is running for office knows, you don’t do that–support such a move– and win office.

Deval Patrick is saying the coming decade will be the decade of innovation.  He is saying that in a time of relative scarcity, budget constraints we have to find out new ways of doing things.

Mike Bloomberg is arguing that this is the decade of national suicide.  We educate the world’s smartest people but do not hand out green cards to those individuals. (This is a good idea, of course, but it invites huge problems of adverse selection–we would invite into our country, those we would not want on sober reflection)

Education is jobs, is crime on the streets, is the tax base.  And here’s the rub, part of that, we pay for all our goods from NYC’s most productive sector of the economy: at least in NYC tax revenue comes from bankers and financiers.  It would be a shocking thing if the Governor of Michigan were to rail against the auto industry, if Governor Schwartznegger yelled out the industry. So its odd that its not in the least shocking that everyone who is anyone has no problem railing on the finance industry.  Yes, there are people who played the system and won big–unjustly so–but most people in the finance industry are smart people, pay for the tax revenue that NYC collects and earn $70,000-$80,000 a year.

(Holy crap, Newt Gingrich just said something brilliant: to be pragmatic one must know what the facts on the ground are.  I do think that Gingrich is right that the people on the ground who would do us harm belong to an irreconciliable wing of Islam.  Mayor Bloomberg is correct to then stress, that the vast majority of Muslims in NYC and the rest of America are god-loving and god fearing Americans who are patriots.  I think this argument cannot be stressed enough.)

Mayor Bloomberg has very intelligently united the argument for energy independence with geo-strategic politics.  By buying foreign oil from the middle-east we are empowering our enemies who would do us wrong to purchase the weapons for our own murder.  We cannot keep funding our enemies.

Gingrich is arguing that the GOP must be the party of a genuine alternative; not the party of NO.

Mayor Bloomberg has argued that the Congress must be given blame in polarizing the country because though Obama has tried to deal with the problems of the ground, the Congress has shied from making the difficult choices it needs to.

~ by Faheem Haider on December 27, 2009.

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