As difficult as it's been to stomach the compromising and Liebercrat wankery, I simply can't disagree with this:
To put this a bit more sharply, if I could construct a system in which insurers spent 90 percent of every premium dollar on medical care, never discriminated against another sick applicant, began exerting real pressure for providers to bring down costs, vastly simplified their billing systems, made it easier to compare plans and access consumer ratings, and generally worked more like companies in a competitive market rather than companies in a non-functional market, I would take that deal. And if you told me that the price of that deal was that insurers would move from being the 86th most profitable industry to being the 53rd most profitable industry, I would still take that deal.
And then we endeavor to augment the deal with amendments and smaller bits of legislation as we go.
One note about Ezra's mention of the 90 percent requirement -- the Franken amendment. This is a significant piece of the Senate bill that progressives should be embracing. In fact, I was a little surprised last night watching Howard Dean on Countdown -- he said something about how the bill would allow insurers to continue to take, on average, 27 percent of every dollar for profit, CEO bonuses, etc.
This simply isn't true in the Senate bill. Actually, the Senate bill is more progressive than the House bill on this front -- the House bill forces 85 percent of premiums to be spent on benefits, while the Senate bill goes to 90.