Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Reconciliation: Then And Now

Now that President Obama has endorsed the use of the controversial "reconciliation" tactic to ram his health care plan through Congress, some have noted the gross hypocrisy between his current view and his prior statements as a US Senator.

On December 20, 2005, then-Senator Obama stated:
Under the rules, the reconciliation process does not permit that debate. Reconciliation is therefore the wrong place for policy changes... In short, the reconciliation process appears to have lost its proper meaning. A vehicle designed for deficit reduction and fiscal responsibility has been hijacked...
(Link via LT.)

Similarly, Rossputin and other bloggers have been circulating this astounding video of various Democratic Senators' pious statements from 2005 (when they were in the minority) defending the filibuster as a vital protection against the "tyranny of the majority":

As then-Senator Biden declared (time-stamp 3:48): "I pray God when the Democrats take back control we don't make the kind of naked power grab you are doing". (Link via @AriArmstrong.)

Unfortunately, arguments about political hypocrisy or arguments about procedural details can only be secondary arguments in opposing ObamaCare.

Economic arguments such as those offered by Congressman Paul Ryan are far more important:

(Ryan transcript here.)

But ultimately, the most important arguments to make are core fundamental moral and philosophical arguments about freedom, individual liberty, and the proper role of government, such as those offered by Dr. Leonard Peikoff in his essay, "Health Care Is Not A Right".

Unless we make the proper fundamental philosophical arguments, then secondary arguments about economics or political procedure will at most only delay (but not stop) the passage of some form of socialized medicine.