I fear that Arnold may have missed the real Cost of Corporate Power which is not the longevity or duration of their impact, but the fact that our Congress, Legislatures, Governors, and Presidents are for Sale. It also does not matter exactly What Corporations are buying at any given point in Time; it is simply that it is the creation of a political system where the Will of the People is defeated in the money-making interest of Corporations and Business. I watch the Scene playing out, and have only one Solution: make all political contributions subject to the highest rate of Income tax applicable–no matter Where or How it was generated. I am quite sure the average Taxpayer would accept a $.40 tax on his allowable Tax Form allocation of a $1, if the Corporations were charged $40,000 for their $100k funding of a PAC. This could indeed level the Playing Field, and perhaps give a little aid to the Budget Deficit.
I commend this Post in the spirit of the above message coming from Donald Marron. He is somewhat altruistic, though We can pardon him as such for a excellently written Post. It all comes down to the Money, Honey, and exactly Who gets it! The Health Care industry will not abide a reduction in their Share of the Pie, and will literally spend Millions in political contributions to assure that it does not lose an iota of their Gains. On the other Side, WE have a President and a shrinking group of Democrats (the political Cash is corruptive) who actually worry about deficits. The People want more health care benefits, but less Taxation. How will it be resolved? What can the President do about it?
My policy recommendation would be for Obama to directly ask the Congressional Budget Office to establish a Model outlining the real rate of Taxation for Taxpayers if health care Costs are considered a form of lifetime taxation. A number of models (at least Four) need be compiled: the Fate of Taxpayers under the old system prior to the Obama health care reform; the Fate of the American Taxpayer after passage of the Obama health care reform; The Fate of American Taxpayers if the current Republican legislation is passed; and the lifetime Tax of Americans if a universal health care system was introduced. I would advise Obama to start utilizing the Results of these four Models to counteract the Republican sentiment in Congress. lgl