There’s a pretty agitating phrase that goes around when you talk about politics in the U.S. (maybe other places too, but I wouldn’t be an expert on any of that.) It’s when they say “don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good” and it always seems to come up whenever a progressive doesn’t like some sort of sniveling centrist sort of compromise, something that won’t move the needle very much. Right now it’s being used to go after Bernie Sanders for not supporting this bill without a bunch of additional insane things like adding dental and hearing and vision to our health care benefits – what a crazy notion! What pie in the sky stuff! Do we want everyone to just have a GOOD QUALITY OF LIFE? Very absurd notions, I’ll say.
I’m being pithy there, but I mean, it is really just so telling about where we are. These rich assholes in the government won’t vote for basic shit like that and there’s only one guy sticking up for what should be very easy improvements to health care. Say what you want about Bernie, but he at least does care about health care and isn’t just kow-towing to the leech-like middlemen of the insurance industry.
And then we get the usual disingenuous argument of “well, there’s good stuff in there, you can’t just expect perfection.” This is said any time we ask for any improvements to things. We’re told to swallow our wants for a better world and accept the morsels. Tiny incremental improvements that, coincidentally, do not inconvenience or challenge the real power in the country, don’t make any concessions for workers or good health care. They will sometimes go even more obnoxious and compare it to “asking for unicorns” or something. To these folks, it’s really true, though. They want the system the way it is. These people are tribal team members. Not serious to debate. Politics to them is a game where they want their team to win and that’s it. Disgusting and despicable.
The politicians are trying to pass something, but I think at this point we all see how futile it is when the something they want has so little of real progress. I guess if I had to choose, I’d rather this bill go forward than a Republican one making it legal to slap puppies in the face. But that’s not a real choice and it’s not something to be proud of. The Democrats want to pass stuff to keep their clout and keep the system the way it is mostly. Maybe little adjustments. Is that the best we can hope for? I think Bernie and anyone else who identifies as progressive ought to keep doing it this way. Obstruct them and sink everything until we fucking get healthcare and more of a piece of the pie in this country.
I guess it’s all just going back to my larger political philosophy. I’ve been much less concerned for some time now about what they’re doing in DC. It’s worth it to know, but I don’t really attach as much significance to it now. Real political change isn’t going to come from these people. I’ll be glad to back progressive challengers, but until we get a lot more of them up there, it’s just not the be-all end-all to care about the Hill too much. I think a lot of those people are soulless careerists and they aren’t willing to really do anything about the actual powers in this country, the corporatists, the billionaires. But yeah, I guess I’m just expecting perfection!