A very simple but powerful reminder the other day from Open Left’s Mike Lux:

Look, this should be obvious, but apparently it’s not: when some big piece of our economy is really messed up, but some major corporate interest is making lots and lots of money off the system, if that corporate interest doesn’t object to the “reform” being proposed, whatever legislation being proposed will not solve the actual problem. The 98-0 votes that folks like David Broder love and extol, the bipartisan bill signing ceremonies that thrill the hell out of everyone in DC – they don’t actually solve or resolve anything important.

If Democrats take the easy path, and get that big bipartisan love fest on the White House lawn, health care will still be messed up in all the ways it’s messed up now: health care costs (and the federal budget deficit) will still be spiraling up and up, the number of uninsured will keep going up as well, people who lose their jobs or have pre-existing conditions will still be priced out of the ability to get insurance. And instead of congratulating us for our great bipartisan compromise, voters will be pissed. President Obama and Congressional Democrats need to grit their teeth and stick to the business of comprehensive reform. It will make the insurance companies, and the Republicans, really mad. But failing to actually solve the problem AGAIN is a train wreck. Stick with it, folks, put your noses to the grindstone, and do what needs to be done.

Emphasis is mine. I think this piece of writing is interesting, especially when eyed through the lens of generational traits.

Scholars usually see millennials as resisting ideology in politics. Their parents — the boomers — make up a generation usually identified as the stubborn, “prophet” generation, championing a values-driven politics to the utmost degree. Millennials, on the other hand, are driven to finding the consensus opinion on issues. This might lead you to think that the latter would be demanding bipartisan discussions and consequently resist anything that would not be agreeable to the inside-the-Beltway-based punditry, Blue Dog Democrats, and/or the GOP.

But that isn’t happening. Winograd and Hais explain why:

Millennials are not interested in letting ideological posturing stand in the way of “getting stuff done,” as Obama likes to say, especially in an area as crucial as health care. Like the members of other generations, virtually all Millennials (90%) believe that it is time that health care is made more accessible and affordable for all Americans. However, only a third of Millennials, in contrast to about half of those in older generations, are concerned about the impact of greater governmental involvement in the health care system (36% vs. 47%). And, Millennials are far less likely than older generations to prefer once again deferring health care reform to avoid higher taxes or larger deficits.

The millennial value of problem-solving trumps collaboration here. The concerns that the pundits, Blue Dogs, and the GOP continue to raise (that government would be doing too much and have too much control over our lives should a public option be included) simply aren’t concerns for today’s youth. Millennials have always championed government activism if it means improving quality of life. And so, to us, any call for compromise based on a fear of too much government isn’t going to get much credence.

The bottom line is that Health Care Reform with a public option is good policy, and it’s what America needs now. Echoing Lux’s point above, you can be sure that if the insurance industry is opposed to anything in this debate, it’s probably a positive thing for the common good (including young people).

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