Home > Conservative, Labour, UK Politics, US Politics > If Universal Health Care is Achieved – Barack Obama Can Inherit The Mantle of Popular Capitalism.

If Universal Health Care is Achieved – Barack Obama Can Inherit The Mantle of Popular Capitalism.

In the UK people are looking back fondly to the election of Margaret Thatcher, whose 30th anniversary of her first day in office is today.

Thatcher when elected faced a nation that was

Being destroyed by strikes
A nation in massive debt
Rising Unemployment
High inflation
Crippled industry
Crippled public services
A World Pariah not involved in any Global negotiations.

During the election campaign, President Obama recognised the importance of Reagan and the grip he achieved over the “Reagan Democrats”. For the power behind those ideas though you have to look to Britain.

It was Thatcher that persuaded Reagan that Gorbachev was someone to work with. It was Thatcher whose policies exploded trade between Wall Street and London. Her success among the people was millions of new small businesses, delivery of high wage growth, a growing economy, low inflation and large reductions in income tax.

This is something the GOP forgets – especially those in the US that claim the mantle of Conservative.

President Obama faces worse challenges to those faced by Thatcher and Reagan in the 1980’s.

A nation in massive debt
18.5% Unemployment (not just claimant count)
Crippled industry
Crippled Government

In addition – President Obama had to add a World in the same economic position and his Country as a World Pariah.

On top of that he faces the problem of growing unemployment and deflation in the economy as a whole. The most dangerous and pervasive economy killer. This is combined with consumers still facing inflation in food and energy costs.

The International Pariah problem was relatively easily solved. Any new President who was not George Bush was better. Although the outside World would have looked at America with a degree of incredulity had McCain been elected.

The problems of the Cold War may become miniscule if the situation if Pakistan worsens. Mutual Assured Destruction kept the peace during the Cold War. That may not be the case if the Taliban reaches Islamabad.

Calmer voices are more likely to solve the Korean problem.

The economy is going to be a lot tougher but yet again this is why both the GOP and Conservadems are out of touch with reality. Attempts to block or reduce his programme will hurt only them and more importantly the US.

It is also why claims that he is a Socialist fail.

Barack Obama is not a tax raising President. Whatever Tea Party protesters may have said, Barack Obama has not increased taxes, in fact, through the stimulus, Barack Obama introduced $282 billion of tax cuts. The largest ever in history. Beating the Reagan and Bush tax cuts in cash terms and GDP terms. The difference. Where they are targeted.

Reagan cut taxes on all levels but as Republicans fail to remember – only after significantly increasing them. Bush targeted tax cuts towards the richest. Obama cut taxes for the ordinary worker. The economic importance of this is crucial. Tax cuts for the rich boost savings levels. The lower paid you are the higher propensity to spend. The key to ending a recession is spending.

One of the key factors killing off the US Industry, (especially the Car Industry), is not the productivity level of US employees. American workers are the most productive (in many ways over productive without enough holidays), in the World. It is the failure of the US Government to provide for the basic needs of ordinary Americans. The GOP claims to be Anti Government but defence spending has sky rocketed, the US has a prison system larger than that of China. Both of these elements have bloated the cost of Government and NO GOP President would ever tackle these issues. Despite the growth of Government, education for many remains poor, there is no decent health care system and pensioners have had their federal Social Security funds stolen to pay for GOP deficits.

Tackling the defence budget will be difficult, but it is something that must be done. The same must apply to the Prisons budget. That does mean a thorough examination of drugs laws and sentencing. The War on Drugs has done nothing except destroy talent and fill prisons.

They key factor though is health care. Universal Health Care removes that cost from the employer, allowing American companies to compete better in the World. It will allow American consumers to worry less and spend more as they need not worry about personal bankruptcy if things go wrong. It re-involves the un-insured in America, whose population group represents the size of a reasonably large economy. Most importantly it will truly give the average American worker the feeling that the Government works for them. This is no time for compromise solutions. Real health care reform must be introduced.

Barack Obama as Candidate was not radical enough to push for true single payer health care, in part because of the problems caused by the failure of Hillary Clinton in the past. Hillary and Clinton and Barack Obama pushed for a compulsory/ semi compulsory private health insurance system during the Primaries. It is for the Democratic Party to push for true single payer now, given the size of the election victory the American people gave him. Critically though, the key to any successful health care reform, is not the provider, something Blair was trying to get his party to recognise in Britain, but the outcome. Something Brown failed to recognise.

Reducing costs for American employers, ending health care bankruptcies for individuals and covering the uninsured is critical to any recovery. That can only be done through a truly universal system. If people want a gold plated service, they will still be able to buy it even if there is a universal health care system. Just because coach class exists on planes, it does not exclude the airline from providing first class seats.

Once universal health care is achieved it is not the GOP that will have involved everyone in a capitalist revival, it will be the Democratic Party. The consequences of that will be to keep a newly enriched America well away from the GOP for years.

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