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Great Moments in Chutzpah

A lot of people have quoted this today and termed it a shining moment in international chutzpah:

Saudi Arabia is trying to enlist other oil-producing countries to support a provocative idea: If wealthy countries reduce their oil consumption to combat global warming, they should pay compensation to oil producers.

It is, however, the perfect mirror image of what the insurance industry is currently trying to do in health-care reform: If we're going to insist on giving them 40 million new customers and spending almost a trillion dollars to help those people afford their wildly expensive product, then we're going to have to kill off the public option and lift any taxes and regulations the insurance industry doesn't like.

By Ezra Klein  |  October 14, 2009; 4:43 PM ET
 
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Comments

Ezra - You and many other progressives insist that health insurers will make out like bandits after reform is passed. It seems to be taken as an article of faith.

Have you looked at the stock market? Millions of people are making their views known everyday through the market and they think reform, as it's currently structured, will be BAD for health insurers.

I ask you who is more likely to be correct: a handful of pundits or the aggregation views of millions of market participants?

Posted by: mbp3 | October 14, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

mbp3,

Have you been living in a cave for the past year?

Posted by: jeffro20 | October 14, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

jeffro20 - have you been watching the reaction of health insurance stocks to the shifting winds of reform? Every time reform becomes less likely, stocks go up and everytime it becomes more likely stocks go down.

I'm not trying to be contrarian, i'm simply trying to explain how the market views reform. HC reform = bad for insurers.

Why is this so hard to believe?

I think the progressive community would benefit from thinking about this for a moment.

Posted by: mbp3 | October 14, 2009 7:07 PM | Report abuse

It sounds like Saudi Arabia wants a payoff in exchange for its cooperation on climate change negotiations. That seems like good old fashioned international relations.

Posted by: Drew_Miller_Hates_IDs_That_Dont_Allow_Spaces | October 14, 2009 8:37 PM | Report abuse

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