Ed Driscoll

The Great Society, Redux

John Podhoretz writes that we’ve been here before:

Barack Obama’s press conference begins with a long and eloquent statement about health-care costs and America’s health care needs. The promises he is making about his plan verge on the science-fictional. Everybody will get everything, and costs won’t go up, and a few rich people will have to pay more, and doctors and nurses will be empowered, and…and…and…

There’s no telling where this is all going to go, but the over-promising in which Obama is indulging is, in the long run, a dangerous journey into a failed liberal-left past. These promises about the glories of a health-care future are nothing less than a recapitulation of the promises of the Great Society in relation to poverty—that we could, effectively, eliminate poverty through a series of government programs and mandates. The failure of that promise—indeed, the fact that the dysfunctions of poverty were spread rather than alleviated by the Great Society—is the key reason for the catastrophic collapse of big-government liberalism that has only now found its way back into the dominant position in Washington.

This could be its way downward again. The question is how much damage will be done in the meantime.

No doubt, plenty. Tune into PJTV’s three hour health care special to survey the battlefield.

Update: Or, perhaps John is off by about 35 years

Update: Or perhaps we need to set the Wayback Machine way, way back, as Steve Green drunkblogs Obama’s 927th live press conference since being transferred out of The Office Of The President Elect: “The US isn’t prepared to compete in the 21st Century? How many more industries do we need to nationalize before we’re ready to compete in the 19th?”