Palin Comeback Advice from Gingrich

Newt Gingrich has weighed in with a plan for a Sarah Palin political comeback which Taegan Goddard summarizes as:

  1. Write a book.
  2. Land a regular commentator slot on television.
  3. Consider getting a condominium in New York or Washington.
  4. Write and master three types of speeches: to make money, to project her brand, to gain attention.
  5. Create some sort of national project or center.
  6. Plan on working really, really hard.

There’s an old saying about free advice being worth what you paid for it.  That’s doubly true, I suspect, if it’s a potential rival offering said advice.

Steps 1 and 2 would almost surely reinforce Palin’s existing handicap of being thought rather shallow on the important public policy issues of the day.  She’s not a professional writer and having to make the rounds defending what someone else ghost-wrote for her is what got her into trouble during the 2008 campaign.  And engaging in regular, off-the-cuff analysis is surely not her strong suit.

Step 3 would undermine her chief selling point as being Regular Folk.

She’s already mastered Step 4; it’s her main skill as a politician.  Raising money and, Lord knows, gaining attention are not things she’s had any difficulty with at all.  Her brand is another matter, I suppose, but she appears to be doubling down on securing the loyalty of the hard right.

Step 5 might actually be useful.  Gingrich suggests a “National Energy Project.”  The problem is that actually getting anything worthwhile done with such a thing would take years; starting it up and then running for the 2012 nomination (the race starts next Thursday, I believe, with pancakes in New Hampshire) would make her appear a dilettante.

To have gotten to where she is, she’s already done step 6. So, really, it’s a gratuitious insult disguised as “advice.”  Or maybe it’s not really disguised: “Many ex-politicians confuse being a celebrity with being a serious political player, Gingrich said. “She can be a personality for a long time,” he said. “But that is very different from becoming a national leader.”

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2012, US Politics, , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. odograph says:

    She can’t do a national energy project, because her gig (drill) is based on a fiction of unlimited US reserves. There aren’t enough exploitable reserves to withstand scrutiny.

  2. You know, if Gingrich really is entertaining thoughts of running in 2012, then Palin would be a rival.

    His advice may not be in her interest so much as his own.

    Just sayin’

  3. I think Doug nailed it.

    And please, Palin has not worked really hard. And she won’t. She’ll be no brighter or better-informed a year from now than she is today. See, that would conflict with her brand. Her job is to pander to idiots. That plus play the willing MILF in the fantasies of Young Republicans. As long as she stays dumb and hot she’ll be doing all she can.

  4. Gustopher says:

    If Palin is to become a serious political figure, rather than just a niche player, she has to address the “80% of people think she’s a blithering idiot” problem.

    Suggestions one and two, if she is successful at them, would go a long way. Or she could make 85% of people think that she is a blithering idiot.

    And as far as getting a condo in a New York or Washington goes… what about Chicago? Major media center, but not on the coasts — it might pass for “real America”.

    And yes, she has to work hard. Resigning as governor to separate the sourdough from the rye definitely looked like shirking responsibility.

  5. Charlotte says:

    Frankly, I think that she will do what she thinks is the RIGHT THING for this country. Which is WAY more than we are getting from our corrupt and disgusting politicians at this point in time.

    My Mother taught me that one doesn’t give advice unless asked. I highly doubt this happened. 🙂

    Call her a quittter, but where’s all the outrage about Senator Mel “selling out the Fl voters” Martinez leaving Florida without any representation except Senator “I know better than you and it’s always Democrat” Nelson?

    At least when Mrs. Palin resigned she didn’t leave Alaska without representation.

  6. Drew says:

    Michael –

    Really light. Embarrassingly so.

  7. kth says:

    Well as her ditzy publicist said, the world really is Palin’s oyster, with the obvious exception that she is never going to be President of the United States. As soon as she has disabused herself of that illusion, she does have a wonderful array of options that will variously make her wealthy, enhance her stardom, and move the country in her direction (if indeed she really cares about the latter).

    I really see her displacing Limbaugh as the outside leader of the party, though I’m imagining more a Rush-meets-Tyra competitor to Oprah than a conventional political talk radio show. Hopefully she’ll find a producer with enough imagination to create a vehicle that would really tap her potential. But it only works if Palin really throws herself into it, and doesn’t get bored with it as she has with some of her past endeavors.

  8. DL says:

    Has Newt ever been a candidate for the vice-presidency? This chamelion might save us the trouble of telling him to keep his advice to himself, by leaving the spotlight.

  9. kth says:

    Charlotte, you’re right about Mel Martinez. It’s just as lame as Palin, perhaps a little worse if Martinez turns up on K Street to cash in his chips (there’s a law that you can’t be a lobbyist until you’ve been out of Congress for a year, and some suspect that he left now instead of the end of his term to start the clock).

    But that’s hardly an excuse for Palin to walk off the job, and it’s unlikely that her primary opponents (if she runs, which I doubt) will fail to remind voters of it.

  10. Rick Almeida says:

    I would be pretty surprised if Palin sought political office in 2101 or 2012. I would not be surprised if she had a lucrative radio or television deal within the next year.

  11. An Interested Party says:

    …she will do what she thinks is the RIGHT THING for this country Sarah Palin.

    That would be more fitting of her history…

    And for anyone who is just so horrified about all the mean things that are being said about the poor dear, all that will pale by comparison to what her primary opponents will do to her should she foolishly decide to run in 2012…

  12. TangoMan says:

    Steps 1 and 2 would almost surely reinforce Palin’s existing handicap of being thought rather shallow on the important public policy issues of the day.

    Your analysis is funny. When we take two of President Obama’s most significant policy initiatives, who is the face of the opposition to Cap & Trade and to Socialized Healthcare Reform?

  13. TangoMan says:

    She’s not a professional writer and having to make the rounds defending what someone else ghost-wrote for her is what got her into trouble during the 2008 campaign.

    Very few people can meet the threshold of being paid for their writing, but Governor Palin is a trained writer. From the University of Idaho profile while Palin was merely a Governor:

    Combining her curiosity with her love of writing, she decided to pursue a degree in journalism. “I was always asking everyone the questions, and I still am today,” Palin says.

    Her trouble on the campaign trail was that she had to be a surrogate spokeswoman and master the details of someone else’s policies positions in only a few short weeks. Most people who run for office have the luxury of months or years of preparatory work. McCain didn’t choose her because she was in the national spotlight with her positions on national issues, he choose her because of her record of reform, her proven ability to cut government spending and her maverickiness. Apparently McCain thought those qualities would be an asset in the White House and that her skill sets would transfer in tact.

    But never mind all of this contradictory evidence, you go on and keep feeding your emotional bias that she can’t write, that she’s dim, and then keep on scratching your head wondering why she keeps being on the forefront of the opposition to President Obama’s initiatives.

  14. Pug says:

    Call her a quittter…

    She’s a quitter.

  15. Herb says:

    I knew it was only a matter of time before Tangoman rushed to the defense of his beloved Sarah. Keep clapping, bud. I think I can hear Tinkerbell’s wings flapping in the distance…

  16. steve says:

    “. When we take two of President Obama’s most significant policy initiatives, who is the face of the opposition to Cap & Trade and to Socialized Healthcare Reform?”

    I assume the latter was because of her death panel quote? If so that was a blatant F’ing lie. Anyone who has read the bill knows that. Anyone who who deals with end of life medical issues knows something like that is desperately needed. Come visit my OR any evening and I can almost guarantee one or two patients who would have greatly benefited from having dealt with those issues ahead of time.

    As to the rest, I have agreed with you that I would love to see her become the official conservative representative on the Sunday morning shows and at all serious discussions of important issues.

    Steve

  17. TangoMan says:

    Herb,

    The simple question to you is to name the de facto leader of the opposition to President Obama’s Socialized Health Care Plan. Now don’t go and pick a name out of the ether, instead back up your answer with some reference to a.) polling, b.) column inches addressed to the opposition leader you’ve picked, c.) clips on TV where this leader is making the case against Obama or where talking heads are talking about the leader’s criticisms.

  18. TangoMan says:

    I assume the latter was because of her death panel quote? If so that was a blatant F’ing lie.

    It’s no more a lie than a.) the Ballistic Missile Defense Initiative being tagged “Star Wars”; b.) a party championing failed and regressive policies marketing itself as being “progressive”; c.) racial quotas being marketed as “Affirmative Action.” In fact, “Death Panel” more accurately captures the core dynamic of the move to centralized decision making and centralized funding than any of the similar branding exercises I’ve listed above, which have real Orwellian flavors, of the white is black variety.

    A concentration of end of life cost control mechanisms into a unelected standards board in a monopolistic government entity is in a very real sense a death panel from which there is no appeal and no alternative. Just as one can lies by omission and commission, death can arise from both commission and omission. Euthanasia would be an example of a death panel making an active decision. Denial of care would be a death panel causing death by failing to take remedial action.

    The fact that such decisions are made by a range of insurers means that the power imbalance between insurer and the insured is more balanced. The power balance between a citizen and the unelected panel of a monopolistic government is skewed very heavily to the government’s favor.

    As for policy being driven by lies, there is the old adage that those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. The entire Obama plan is built on a fabric of lies.

  19. Highlander says:

    Newt is as good as anybody in providing advice on how to become a successful Washington prostitute.

  20. Herb says:

    Herb,
    The simple question to you is to name the de facto leader of the opposition to President Obama’s Socialized Health Care Plan.

    Why do I think this is a trick question? Oh, yeah, it’s that “de facto” part.

    And I like how you capitalized your description of the health care reform plan as “Obama’s Socialized Health Care Plan,” as if that its official title instead of a Palinbot’s unhinged hyperbole. It reveals how serious you are about the debate (not very) and how you’re more than willing to demagogue an issue to score cheap points. Such as…

    Sarah Palin is the de facto leader of the opposition. You win! Here’s your pin.

    PS. Your second post is just as pathetic. “It’s no more a lie than…” Dude, why don’t you admit it that you’re a moral relativist? It’s okay if Sarah Palin lies/exaggerates because you agree with her? Get some principles, man.

  21. TangoMan says:

    Why do I think this is a trick question? Oh, yeah, it’s that “de facto” part.

    Dude, it’s not a trick question. Do you know the definition of de facto? Without that condition you’d likely be responding that Michael Steele or John Boehner or Mitch McConnel were the leaders of the opposition to Obama’s initiative. Those would be trick answers for hardly anyone is rallying behind these fellows. They’re leaders in title, not in fact.

    Your second post is just as pathetic. “It’s no more a lie than…”

    My friend, the thing that is pathetic is to apply double standards to Governor Palin’s statements. Her Death Panel comment more accurately captures the essence of the debate than the examples I provided or even the pro-choice framing of the pro-abortion side of the abortion debate. Abortion legislation deals with abortion. When legislation is tabled that addresses choices in life, then folks can “honestly” gather under the labels of pro-choice and anti-choice. If I applied the same standards to the abortion debate that you’re applying to Governor Palin’s comment, then we’d have to conclude that people who call themselves pro-choice are liars. No one is calling pro-abortion people who gather under the rubric of pro-choice liars because we recognize the larger issue at play, the same way that there is a larger issue at play with the term “Death Panels.”

  22. steve says:

    “a.) the Ballistic Missile Defense Initiative being tagged “Star Wars”; b.) a party championing failed and regressive policies marketing itself as being “progressive”; c.) racial quotas being marketed as “Affirmative Action.”

    False equivalence. There were people in favor and opposed to those programs before and after they were proposed. In the case of end of life planning, I have never seen anyone, at least in print, opposed. Bear in mind it would encompass things like a living will, power of attorney assignments, medical decision making and living arrangements. Even Catholics who oppose euthanasia or anything close to it, can benefit by putting that into their living will and designating a decision maker. Instead, we usually end up guessing.

    As an example, when I had to decide whether or not to admit a demented, elderly to the ICU last night, the decision was made much easier by her having a living will which designated her daughter as the person to speak with. Most of the time, I end up talking with some relative who does not know what the person would really have wanted done.

    So, in this case, what is a universal good has been vilified for political expediency. After this, there is no chance it will make it into any other health reform bill.

    Now, as to your assertion about unregulated boards and end of life cost controls, I have only read about half of the bill. Where is this in the bill? I await your answer. Until then, here is a couple of things to ponder. Suppose we do away with Medicare. What do you think it would cost to insure people over 65 through a private insurance company? Secondly, say we keep Medicare. What is your plan to cut its costs.

    Steve

  23. Herb says:

    Tangoman, you keep on dancing, don’t ya?

    Do you know the definition of de facto? Without that condition you’d likely be responding that Michael Steele or John Boehner or Mitch McConnel were the leaders of the opposition to Obama’s initiative.

    Sorry, bud, but that is not a straightforward question that a normal person can answer. You’re right, I did think of Steele, Boehner, and McConnell first…because they hold actual leadership positions. But then I got tripped up on the “de facto” part, because clearly you weren’t looking for guys in leadership positions. No, we’re looking for the “de facto” leader.

    Then I thought about Rush Limbaugh…until I remembered that I was talking to Tangoman, Sarah Palin’s unpaid PR flack. It was at this point that I realized this was like one of those poll questions that is designed to get a certain answer.

    But beyond whether or not it was a trick question, I find it very strange (to say the least) that you have such a low threshold when it comes to Sarah Palin. She shoots off a few tweets, writes something on Facebook, and she’s the de facto opposition leader for healthcare reform??? Such a low standard for leadership.

  24. TangoMan says:

    False equivalence. There were people in favor and opposed to those programs before and after they were proposed. In the case of end of life planning, I have never seen anyone, at least in print, opposed.

    There’s no false equivalence in the argument. You say that there were people for and against those examples and the same applies to ObamaCare. You’re defining the comparisons too narrowly, in my opinion, so that we’re talking past each other. Palin’s victory is only a small battle in a larger war to defeat the entire package as it’s constructed. As a Governor she extolled the wisdom of planning for end of life. She’s also pointed out the huge difference between such planning taking place voluntarily and by legislation.

    So, in this case, what is a universal good has been vilified for political expediency. After this, there is no chance it will make it into any other health reform bill.

    Sure it will. Wait until Governor Palin wins the Presidency and she, like Nixon and the rapprochement with China, will be ideally situated to bring it about in that her credibility won’t be tainted by the toxicity of her advisers. 🙂 Seriously though, and I speak as a cold-hearted technocrat here who agrees with Singer and Emmanuel on the cost control measures, these issues need a battlefield that is prepared long in advance of actual legislation being proffered. The minds of people need to be exposed to the ideas of cost control and their confidence in the fairness of the policies needs to be nurtured by incremental proof of concept of associated policies. Obama and his advisors and too many Democrats are coming across as cold technocrats here. Palin, especially in light of the condition of her youngest son, has more gravitas on the issue. The Obama intent to ram through a Bill that Congress was to vote on without reading, chock full of goodies crafted by people like Emmanuel, designed to be a trojan horse to eradicate private insurance, etc was a HUGE tactical mistake for a reform that strikes at the heart of people’s lives.

    Suppose we do away with Medicare. What do you think it would cost to insure people over 65 through a private insurance company? Secondly, say we keep Medicare. What is your plan to cut its costs.

    The meat and potatoes of a reform discussion. Good. Would you disagree with the notion that people will be more accepting of decisions if they play a part in the decisions and that they are most accepting of their own decisions and least accepting of decisions imposed on them by faceless parties? I happen to hold this model to be true. Therefore, when rationing of care is required, even with a fixed amount of resources, I would design systems which empower individuals and families to make those decisions rather than bureaucrats. The problem with this approach is obvious, and we can see the behavioral aspects from this Milton Friedman quote:

    There are four ways in which you can spend money.

    You can spend your own money on yourself. When you do that, why then you really watch out what you’re doing, and you try to get the most for your money.

    Then you can spend your own money on somebody else. For example, I buy a birthday present for someone. Well, then I’m not so careful about the content of the present, but I’m very careful about the cost.

    Then, I can spend somebody else’s money on myself. And if I spend somebody else’s money on myself, then I’m sure going to have a good lunch!

    Finally, I can spend somebody else’s money on somebody else. And if I spend somebody else’s money on somebody else, I’m not concerned about how much it is, and I’m not concerned about what I get. And that’s government. And that’s close to 40% of our national income.

    Option 3, giving people a blank check to spend on themselves is a disastrous alternative, but if we construct a healthcare system which closely models people spending their own money on themselves and their loved ones, then we’ve achieved very high measures of cost awareness and very high levels of legitimacy.

    This is all a roundabout way of getting to a reform which grandfathers in Medicare for people over a certain age because they don’t have enough time in their lives to prepare for their own medical financing. As a society we have to eat the cost of providing their care because we, as a society, made a reckless promise to people that Medicare would provide them with care.

    The younger generations need to be bounded into a cost-benefit balance over a typical lifetime. Insurance spreads the risk for unforeseen events, but regular care should not be funded from insurance. There should also be an intermediate stage between everyday care which is payed out of pocket and catastrophic care for major life altering events. This intermediate stage of insurance should be like whole life insurance, which includes a savings feature and it should insure for very specific events with very specific limits. This category of insurance should have, by retirement age, with capital compounding effects, a sufficient capital base that allows for regular withdrawals to pay for the more frequent and expensive care required in one’s golden years but care that is short of major medical events. It is this “savings account” with attached insurance (again to smooth out risk events) component which allows people to spend as they see fit without an insurance executive or a government bureaucrat having veto power. People can decide to go all out for minor treatments or they can scrimp and fly to India for major surgery. They can divert their assets to pay for the care of loved ones. They can leave the residue of the fund to beneficiaries.

    The problem inherent in this system is what to do with irresponsible spenders who skimped on insurance limits and, after depleting their resources, need expensive medical care. We need to be mindful of not creating incentives for irresponsible behavior, so I would advocate the creation of a public charity program which offers medical care that is a.) heavily dependent on donations of money and talent and drugs, and b.) is well publicized as not being as advanced as that offered to responsible people. I’m sure that this point will find my detractors from the physician community who believe that all people deserve the same quality of care but who are unwilling to work for free in order to provide that care and instead want to coerce others into paying for that care and for the physician salaries. I think that the medical community will need to come to terms with this issue. This scheme purposely creates a disincentive for people to spend irresponsibly – care that is limited by badass bureaucrats, that is rationed by waitlist, that is dependent on generic drugs or donated patented drugs, that is more heavily skewed to low cost personnel, and is provided in cramped facilities with equipment that is passed on from hospitals which acquire more advanced equipment.

    Look, I could go on for pages detailing all the tweaks required, but from my perspective I’m trying to advocate reform based on principles of behavioral economics, a.) people are more price conscious when they spend their own money, b.) people feel their own decisions are more legitimate than those made for them by strangers, c.) there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch, d.) most “typical” people, should over the course of their own lives, balance their health spending with their own health savings, and e.) when public subsidy is provided it not create an incentive to rely on the State. In the end, everyone is covered but not equally provided for.

    Lastly, cost containment within Medicare becomes more politically feasible when the promise of limitless care is taken away from future generations.

    Actually, this is the last point – my ideas have no chance of being implemented because they violate the rule of people always voting for a free lunch and sticking others with the bill. This however doesn’t mean I need to hold fire when I see reform ideas predicated upon the average person receiving more in medical services over their lifetimes than they paid for. To the best of my knowledge almost all medical systems in the world are not self-sustaining and are facing disaster as the demography of their nations change over time. I’m advocating for a system that is not dependent on unsustainable demographic factors and we will have to get to such a self-sustaining system at some point because unsustainable systems have a nasty habit of being unsustainable. As I noted above, the battlefield for the implementation of a self-sustaining medical financing infrastructure needs to be prepared long in advance of any reform. Kind of like gay marriage. Talking about gay marriage 100 years ago would have you classed as a certifiable nut while today it’s a thoroughly mainstream topic for public policy discussion.

    What is your plan to cut its costs.

    Let this be your lesson to never ask me open-ended questions. 🙂

  25. An Interested Party says:

    Wait until Governor Palin wins the Presidency…

    BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…now why do you have to go and type that? My screen is soaked from the Danny Thomas spit-take…no offense, I mean, really, no offense at all, but anyone who actually thinks that Sarah Palin will one day be president really can’t be taken seriously…well, you did type “Seriously though” after that, so maybe you were just making a funny, even though you are her fanboy…

  26. steve says:

    “You’re defining the comparisons too narrowly, in my opinion, so that we’re talking past each other.”

    Maybe, but this end of life issue is a little more than a narrow issue. It is a major part of costs and is also a care issue. As I said above, there is no lobby out there trying to do away with end of life planning. You are willing to kill off one of the items in the bill that is a absolute good to, as you see it, win the larger battle. I am not. If I have to lie to win, I do not deserve to win. In the longer run it undercuts legitimacy.

    As to the rest, as you did not post the pages about unregulated boards making end of life cost controls, I assume it is not in the bill. Just more tactics, lies, in order to win the battle.

    On the meat and potatoes, the plan I helped write for our (Republican) Congressman includes an HSA provision. The difference between you and me, perhaps, is that I approach this with some skepticism and humility. This is pie in the sky because no one else in the world does health care this way. That worries me and should you also. As a doc in practice for a long time I can tell you people do not ask about prices. This will be a major shift. In times of stress people are not always rational. A lot of my less scrupulous colleagues make a lot of money this way.

    The ultimate problem is having any kind of insurance in the solution. If you have catastrophic insurance, you have insurance. Where do you set the limits? I see $3,000 bandied about a lot. If so, I see my colleagues simply pushing for more expensive treatments. At this point pretty much only doctor visits, some tests and therapy visits cost less than $3,000. Those affected on that end will just increase prices on the procedure end. My hope is that the savings on the lower end will offset those on the higher end, but I do not know as we have no model.

    I should note here, since you are not a doc, that the profession has been infiltrated by a lot of business types showing us how to maximize profits. So, while you are working at the consumer end, physicians with their MBA consultants will be working at adds against your plan. A lot will hinge on how vulnerable and informed the patient is at the time of the decision. Hell, a lot will depend on how much time they have to make the decisions.

    Almost an entire nation decided that housing prices would never drop. From the borrowers and lenders to the bond raters and investment bankers. They made those decisions in the light of day with no time pressures. No one telling them they might die. So, you see people as Home economicus, apparently, while to me, they are a bit more like Homer Simpson to use Thaler’s idea. Knowing this, I would favor a large scale trial of an HSA type plan befor eit is done on a national scale. The recent findings by the American Actuaries (see Cowen’s site) suggest that there is good reason to go ahead with such a trial.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/05/business/economy/05view.html?_r=3&adxnnl=1&ref=business&adxnnlx=1246806018-VXQe0QW6h5Di+0wMrsoHBg

    Steve

  27. TangoMan says:

    Maybe, but this end of life issue is a little more than a narrow issue. It is a major part of costs and is also a care issue.

    And what is at stake here is a principled difference between recognizing such discussions as they arise through choice as compared to having the government advocate such discussions because the government wants to save money.

    As I said above, there is no lobby out there trying to do away with end of life planning.

    “A government of the people, by the people, and for the people.” Why the solitary focus on lobbyist interests? Did you not see the interests of the people speak?

    If I have to lie to win, I do not deserve to win.

    Then I guess you lose because this reform is predicated upon lies. The biggest whopper is that 46 million more people will be covered but no one’s healthcare will be compromised. Another whopper is that people will get to keep their own coverage. This one is called a clever lie. Right out of the gates, yes, people are allowed to keep their own coverage but there are provisions in the reform which create incentives to shift to the public plan and there are provisions which trigger after a certain time which advantage the public plan. Lastly, Governor Palin’s characterization wasn’t a lie, it was a succinct description of the central feature of the whole reform effort – centralized cost control from which there will eventually be no escape.

    As a doc in practice for a long time I can tell you people do not ask about prices.

    Why on Earth do you find that a convincing criticism? In today’s cost-disassociated health marketplace, what is to be gained by having any patient ask about costs? Example: In America no one bargains when they walk into a store to buy an item because the custom here is to buy at the sticker price. In other nations bargaining is standard practice. Should people try to extract some universal truth about shopping behavior based on American custom? How about exceptions, like car buying? Do people pay sticker price there? The health care market is ossified in terms of rent-seeking, lack of competition and price rigidity. You’re invoking a variation of the naturalistic fallacy, just because something is a certain way doesn’t imply that it must always remain that way.

    In times of stress people are not always rational. A lot of my less scrupulous colleagues make a lot of money this way.

    Agreed. I’d suggest the solution is to avoid negotiating “on the spot” and instead have the patient co-op plans negotiate in advance so that when a need or emergency arises all the patient need do is find a hospital or physician that has an arrangement with their co-op. As I noted in an earlier comment, the asymmetrical information disadvantage can be negated with the role of intermediaries.

    The ultimate problem is having any kind of insurance in the solution.

    I’d disagree. The ultimate problem is price insensitivity. To address your concern about physicians gaming the system by advising for more expensive procedures, I come back to the role of a health intermediary that acts as adviser to the patient. As President Obama has ham-fistedly alluded to, the physician is often wrestling with conflicting demands, on the one hand trying to do right for the patient and on the other hand trying to maximize his income. A health intermediary does not have a conflict in that he neither benefits nor loses from the advice given. They don’t work for the insurance side and they don’t work for the provider side, rather they work for the patient side.

    Almost an entire nation decided that housing prices would never drop.

    This is an excellent example. It powerfully demonstrates what happens when market forces are corrupted through the introduction of social goals, via legislation, that seek to modify the decisionmaking process. It’s far better to keep matters simple and transparent, thus allowing the maximum of relevant information to be used in the decision making process rather than centralizing and obfuscating and preserving rent-seeking arrangements and tacking on social goals, etc.

    Knowing this, I would favor a large scale trial of an HSA type plan befor eit is done on a national scale.

    Here we agree. I’ve long favored that every policy be pilot projected, in fact I’d prefer a score of competing projects be piloted, then evaluated and modified and piloted again before any program be rolled out on a national scale. I don’t trust the ability of government to manage a complex scheme which requires constant oversight in preference to the market discipline of the invisible hand, and I don’t trust the accuracy of government financial projections. I base my distrust on historical evidence which demonstrates management inefficiency, budget forecasting inaccuracies, and the flowering of fields of unforeseen consequences.

    As to the rest, as you did not post the pages about unregulated boards making end of life cost controls, I assume it is not in the bill. Just more tactics, lies, in order to win the battle.

    You’ve claimed to have read half of the bill so I’ll assume that for some strange reasons you’ve started at the back and are working your way forward, otherwise I’m at a loss to explain how you missed this on page 30:

    There is established a private-public advisory committee which shall be a panel of medical and other experts to be known as the Health Benefits Advisory Committee to recommend covered benefits and essential, enhanced, and premium plans.

    Here is some analysis about the boards used for cost control measures:

    A key House chairman and moderate House Democrats on Tuesday agreed to a White House-backed proposal that would give an outside panel the power to make cuts to government-financed health care programs. White House budget director Peter Orszag declared the plan “probably the most important piece that can be added” to the House’s health care reform legislation.

    But on Saturday, the Congressional Budget Office said the proposal to give an independent panel the power to keep Medicare spending in check would only save about $2 billion over 10 years- a drop in the bucket compared to the bill’s $1 trillion price tag.

  28. TangoMan says:

    I mean, really, no offense at all, but anyone who actually thinks that Sarah Palin will one day be president really can’t be taken seriously

    Anyone who makes predictions, especially definitive predictions, years before an event, can’t be taken seriously.

    Elections are won by the circumstances on the ground at the time of the election. If Bush and the corrupt Congressional Republicans hadn’t screwed the pooch as they had done, then the field might not have been ripe for a Democratic sweep. If the Democratic candidate was identical in accomplishments to Barack Obama but was white instead of black, then the election outcome would have had a very good chance of being different.

    If Governor Palin triumphs in the Republican primaries and bests her opponents in the field of policy, leadership, vision, rhetoric, campaign management, etc then in the general election the choice comes down to Republican or Democrat and depending on circumstances around election day, and keeping in mind that when incumbents run the elections are mostly a referendum on their performance, it’s quite possible that you’ll be seeing a President Palin. In other words, we’re dealing with two ends of an axis, 1.) President Obama performs well in office and there are no powerful external factors at work at the time of the election and he is reelected, and 2.) President Obama makes the Carter Era look desirable and all sorts of external factors influence voter decisions and a Republican wins the White House.

    To claim 3+ years in advance that you know that Governor Palin, if she is the Republican nominee, would be rejected in favor of a poorly performing President Obama is to profoundly make a case for one’s own stupidity.

    I get that you don’t like Governor Palin. Fine, don’t vote for her under any circumstances. I like Governor Palin and I would consider voting for her but my consideration will also be influenced by events that have yet to transpire. In the end, such future events may preclude my casting a vote for her. I will reserve judgment until the point I must make a decision. You however are predicting that people will base their future decisions on assessments made today and ignore relevant future information and future environmental conditions (Anyone But Barack, a strategic variation on the Anyone But Bush voting strategy.)

  29. davod says:

    Palin should write two books. A biography and one outlining policy.

    Palin’s Facebook columns are a great idea. Palin can comment on matters of interest to her, and the general public can view them without the fog of the MSM repeating others talking points.

  30. An Interested Party says:

    Palin should write two books. A biography and one outlining policy.

    Would they come with crayons…

  31. TangoMan says:

    Would they come with crayons…

    Who many multi-billion dollar budgets have you balanced? How many elections have you won? How many coalitions have your forged? How many crooks have you sent to prison?

    If you think her books are fit only for crayon drawing, then sorry, but your skills at finger-painting are not advanced enough to work with crayons. Get someone to change your drool-bucket soon, it seems to be overflowing.

  32. davod says:

    “Would they come with crayons…”

    Don’t worry, I am sure Governor Palin will write something just for you. You know, using small words.

    Who do you get to do your typing when your mommy is not around.

  33. An Interested Party says:

    Awwwwww….y’all are sooooo adoreable, you really are…who ever said chivalry was dead? Keep up the good work, fellas…

  34. davod says:

    You are most welcome.

  35. An Interested Party says:

    re: davod | August 16, 2009 | 08:26 am

    Here’s a Sarah Special just for you…