This is a very succinct way of saying what we've discussed often here - that liberalism creeps its way forward, one small step at a time, rarely moving backward. The Democrats know that even if they don't get the full-blown public option in this round, if they can still enshrine some sort of government control or influence over the health care system, they will have a wide open doorway to come back in a year or two (or whenever they regain the majorities in Congress) and take another crack at it. They're willing to take the gamble because they don't believe Republicans will actively roll back anything. Given their track record over the past few years, it's not a bad gamble, which is why we absolutely must hold our GOP representatives' feet to a white-hot fire over the next couple years, especially if we do manage to take back the reigns of power.
The best thing about Mark Steyn's guest-host stint on Hannity last night — other than Jonah's joining him on the panel — was that Mark asked some pointed questions of two brilliant political strategists, Dick Morris and Karl Rove, that seemed rooted in Mark's theory that, on health care and all it entails, "The Dems are thinking strategically; the Republicans are all tactics." For my money, I think the theory is being borne out: Democrats have their eyes on a different end-game than our guys do: namely, the establishment of permanent, European-style socialism in the U.S. Our guys are focused on converting Obama radicalism into big-time electoral success in the next election cycle. The Dems have already factored in that likelihood and are betting — over the long haul — that even if the GOP cuts deeply into Dem majorities or takes over Congress (and even takes over the White House in 2012), Republicans will lack the commitment (and perhaps the numbers) to roll back what the Left is accomplishing now.
That is, our guys are focused myopically on a battle the Democrats have already figured they can afford to lose. The real battle is: What do you do when you get back in power? Do you have a plan for how to undo what is being done? Do you frame the coming elections in a way that converts victory into a mandate not only to stop what Obama is doing but to undo what he has done?
I'm hearing a lot from our side about making big gains in the upcoming elections. That's not strategy or victory. You have to have a plan for what those gains would translate into. Democrats, by contrast, have a real plan for how what they're doing today will sustain Big Government, and themselves, over the long term, regardless of occasional electoral losses.
I'd love to see some rock-ribbed conservatives campaign on rolling back DemCare and implementing some policies that actually will reduce costs and improve quality, like tort reform and buying insurance across state lines. I suspect it would be a winning combination.
Regardless, we've got to push our elected reps to think long-term, implement policies that will not just stop the advance of liberalism, but actively push it back. It is truly the difference between short-term tactics and long-term strategery.
There's my two cents.