Well, I returned from a business trip back to DC just in time to get snowed in. Here's a picture of our car yesterday morning. The left front tire is discernible after some digging, but the rest of the car is under about two and a half feet of snow.
It's been interesting watching the city freak out over this snowstorm. The grocery stores in our part of town were absolutely ransacked the two days before the storm. Empty shelves, hour-long lines. People were stocking up like they'd be trapped in their homes for a month. The day after the storm, people who were out and about (including my wife and I) tended to walk in the middle of the streets, since the streets were in better condition than the sidewalks. It gave everything a kind of apocalyptic feel. Everybody would go scrambling when the occasional snow plow came roaring through. And when I wrapped plastic bags around my socks to trudge through the snow in my tennis shoes, it felt even more like a scene from The Road.
Speaking of freak outs, have Democratic leaders decided to just give up on health care after the loss in Massachusetts? I mean, the path forward on health care is clear:
1) The Senate passes a "fix" to its original health care bill using the reconciliation process (otherwise House progressives won't support the Senate's watered down bill),
2) The House passes the Senate's original bill plus the fix bill,
3) President Obama signs the main bill and the "fix" bill into law,
4) Everyone celebrates.
And remember, reconciliation only requires 50 Democratic Senators plus Biden. Who cares about Scott Brown? Who cares about Joe Lieberman? So...what are we waiting for?
Of course no Democratic leader is saying they're giving up. They're just delaying, delaying, delaying. But at some point, you have to ask yourself, What would an epic failure on health care reform look like? I think it would look like a series of delays that goes on and on until all the steam is gone from the activist base pushing reform. Yes, we may be witnessing the Democratic leadership trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory again.
It doesn't have to be this way. Obama, Pelosi, and Reid need to take a deep breath, stop listening to the media's narrative about the collapse of the Obama presidency, and ram health care through.
I'd like to close with an open letter...
Dear Democratic Leaders,Congressional Republicans don't want you to compromise or listen to their "ideas." They want you to dither and fret until the public blames all of its problems on the incumbent party who has nothing to show for its time in office. Stop freaking out over the fact that your huge majority in the Senate is now one seat smaller. Stop freaking out over your declining poll numbers. What did you expect? The public is looking for some of the change they voted for. Deliver some. Start with health care.Sincerely,BTM