Health Care and Corporatism

Ron Bailey over at Reason wrote up a pretty interesting piece breaking down what some of Obama’s recent health care announcements mean to the average joe. It’s a good read, especially to someone who has had precious little time to study all of these announcement in detail of late. It’s also a defense of that dirty concept: capitalism and competition.

What’s more interesting to me is what he calls what the Obama’s administration is doing: “corporatism”. He quotes the Concise Oxford Dictionary of Politics:

“a system of interest intermediation linking producer interests and the state, in which explicitly recognized interest organizations are incorporated into the policy-making process, both in terms of the negotiation of policy and of securing compliance from their members with the agreed policy.”

He wisely doesn’t drop the ‘f’ bomb: fascism. No, I’m not calling Obama a fascist. That term has really lost all it’s meaning. Bush, also, was not a fascist. Wikipedia has an interesting section in their fascism article actually covering it’s loss of meaning due to it’s use as an epithet. So, Ron is smart not to use it, simply because it’s so polarizing.

Still, if you do happen to read the Wikipedia article, it really is kind of chilling. Corporatism? Check. Cult of personality? Check. Abortion and euthanasia? Check. Social interventionism? Oh yeah, big, big check. There’s a lot of commonly associated pieces of the puzzle that are missing, though: single party government, blatant disallowing of criticism, suppression of class warfare, blatant racism, etc.  It still bares watching, though. That Obama is a man of the Left is obvious. But, what Left, exactly? Something new?

I can certainly say, almost 4 months into his presidency, that he’s worse than I thought he was going to be, and closer to the serious doom and gloom predictions of the Republicans. I was hoping for something closer to Clinton, who wasn’t nearly as bad as the Republicans of the time warned he’d be. Instead, we have someone much farther to the Left than Clinton or Carter. Combined.

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