The problem with organizers is that their skill set is limited. They can rally the troops to take action, energize the un-involved, get the message out, and make a lot of noise along the way. They drop in, work on a problem, then move on to the next unsolved issue. They don't stay in one place and try to make things work.
Unfortunately, governing requires fortitude for the long fight. It demands that you revisit the same issues, ironing out the kinks while retaining support. That takes focus. It's playing the long game. It's selling and reselling and then doing it again, proving to the skeptics that you were right then and you are right now. It's less exciting, perhaps, than a glossy new challenge might be, but that really doesn't matter.
I think this is the problem with President Obama's absence from the health care debate these days. He's not sure what to do.
He can complain that the fight is personal rather than issue-driven, but that doesn't matter, either. He has Iran and Syria and Nairobi but here at home the ACA is teetering on the brink and he's no where to be found.
Chuck Todd is right. It's not the media's fault that anti-Obamacare news is flooding the airwaves. Where are the Administration Officials normally charged with shepherding a President's most important piece of legislation through the Congressional morass? Where are the Democrat's PAC's, making a fuss about losing an integral part of the liberal agenda?
I'm always amazed at Americans' ability to vote against their own self-interest. I realize that the basis of The American Dream is that everyone has the same chance to become a gazillionaire, that we all aspire to joining the 1% (even if you'd give it all away, doing good deeds that need doing, living a threadbare life of monastic purity) .... but at a certain point I just stop ... unable to go any further... astonished by the lengths that people will go to hurt themselves.
The Affordable Care Act is doing something on October 1st, but I'm not sure exactly what that might be. October 1st is next week. I've had all summer to read and consider and examine, but nothing came my way. My self-insured, affiliate Blue Cross/Blue Shield policy went up 11%.... what's a health exchange ... where's a health exchange.... what do they offer and will they be safe and where do I sign up? These are not hard questions. I'm at a loss to find the answers.
I know that without the passage of the ACA I would be uninsurable. My intersection with bullets more than exhausted the cap on my coverage. I'd maxed out my policy and BC/BS/AZ would have been done with me, had Congress not taken the first step toward rational health care policy in this country. Just as we now cannot imagine an uninsured elderly population, I hope that my grandchildren will be unable to imagine that I might have been an insurance pariah.
Perhaps the main-line Republicans (as CNN calls them) will be able to rein in the Tea Party and our government will continue to pay its bills. Hijacking the nation's agenda to serve a narrow set of interests has never been the way to lasting change. Social Security was controversial back in 1933; Aged Parm told me so and I believe her. This fact is, somehow, comforting to me.
Still, I wonder if FDR sat back and watched his program implode, come under attack, be held responsible for all that is wrong in the world? I think not. I want to see my President tell the citizenry that their adjustable mortgage rates will go up, that their borrowing power at the Credit Union will vanish, that everything will be just a little bit more out of reach, if the government refuses to pay its bills. I want him to remind the legislators that all they are being asked to do is to authorize the checks for expenses already incurred... expenses for which they voted.
I want him to remind voters that disability drops out of the sky, unbidden and unexpected, that a child with a chronic illness is rarely a planned for event, that moving to another state for a better opportunity means restarting your health insurance based on the body you have now... not the one the insurance company approved fifteen years ago. The ACA isn't perfect, but it's a start. It deserves our President's support.