Sunday, February 22, 2009

Rival’s Idea

So, folks in Obama Administration want to adopt one piece of the rival John McCain’s ideas – removing the tax exclusion status of employer contribution to health care insurance of an employee. The difference is unlike McCain proposal, the taxable amounts would start from $7.5K per individual or $15K per family; which is actually the average cost of such plans. In other words, all gold plated insurances offered by your employer will be counted as taxable income after certain level.

Well, not a bad idea and is perfectly consistent with the prevailing political mood of – ‘whack the rich guys’. Of course not being a rich guy, this hardly affects me and for sure then I support such a proposal.

The politics of such a line of thinking is complicated. Obama Campaign relentless criticized such a plan. Ezra Klein has some wonkish answers in terms of justifying such a criticism in past. Let us put it this way – Ezra and Liberals are invested in it and so we will get some ‘common sense challenged’ arguments from these Obama supporters when they finally extend a support to such a measure (assuming that it surfaces in Obama’s budget). Rest of the common folks, because we did not get into buying and justifying every bit of what Obama spoke on the campaign trail; we will very well move on merrily. The proposal is good for common Americans.

Political threading of the needle Obama Administration will portray is, how Congress is taking the lead on this while Obama Administration keep talking in general terms of ‘rationalizing health care talks’. Whatever tap dances, rope walks and kabuki Obama needs to do here; let him do that. For good or bad that is included in the White House Job Description.

Should Obama be honesty, come forward and say that it is not just ‘team of rivals’ but it is ‘ideas of rivals when applicable’ too? Well, that will be good. But we common Americans - we are greedy, needy and in the end completely hammered by continued economic hardship. So ‘some dishonesty’ for the common good, we will live with that until Obama feels politically expedient to accept it openly. Moral and ethical issues – these are not common American’s issues; these are for Obama to address. We, we need results.

May be Obama’s friends in Congress come forward and bell the cat here. What is the use of a friend if she does not come forward in a difficult situation? Congress – we are waiting.

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